[Strawbale]lime and earth plaster and heating systems in bale walls

Catherine Wanek blackrange at zianet...
Wed Oct 13 18:52:21 CEST 2004

Hello Jeroen --

Rene D. has given you excellent suggestions ..... I have two things to add:

If the white powdery film is not fungus, but efflorescence (as was earlier 
suggested) then white vinegar will also clean that up easily.

In addition to heat, I suggest using fans to help dry out the interior of 
the wall.  Ventilation is key to a drying strategy -- heat alone, in the 
presence of moisture and food, will encourage fungal growth.

Catherine Wanek

At 09:00 AM 10/12/04 +0200, you wrote:
>At 07:36 AM 10/12/04, you wrote:
>>I try and start to drain the foundations next summer.
>Why wait till next summer? I suggest you start as soon as possible. The 
>winter can actually be a good drying season off course depending on the 
>weather. The lower the temperatures the better.
>>In the mean time I would love to get rid of the fungus without using
>>chemicals. I have stript the wall (it's only one inner wall though load
>>bearing) for the lower 20 centimeters or so. Because the earth plaster
>>wouldn't cure at all.
>You can use vinegar to kill fungus this is also usual practice on wooden 
>boats to kill off fungus when they have moisture problems. Earth Plaster 
>does not cure but dry
>>I hope lime will be able to cure so I can finish the
>This is a very bad idea: first of all the plaster will get a bad start in 
>life; second you will effectively capture the moisture behind the plaster 
>allowing it to only dry very slowly even though the lime plaster is 
>relatively permeable. The fact that the earth plaster is not drying 
>actually tells me quite clearly that putting lime plaster over this wall 
>will lead to a failure of the plaster and could lead to more problems 
>further along the line.
>>Here comes this shrinking problem (or not) because there is a heating system
>>installed  in the wall the same way as a heated floor is with plastic tubes
>>running hot water through it.
>The heating will help tremendously to dry the wall once you have removed 
>the moisture source.
>>  This means big and rapid changes in the temperature off the plaster. So
>>will this be a problem for lime? Earth plaster is working really well and we
>>have had no cracks.
>>Does anybody have experience with strawbale wall's using this heating
>>system? We are planning an extension to our house and would love this
>>heating system there also.
>Yes this wall heating is quite general practice including SB projects and 
>at least one I know about in the Netherlands. Look at my website 
>http://home.hetnet.nl/~rene.dalmeijer follow links to SB 
>houses>Middelharnis for a picture of the tubing being installed on the 
>surface of a SB wall (click on the thumbnail next to the text) The owner 
>can tell you details of the installation.
>    European strawbale building discussion list
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>Strawbale at amper....muni.cz
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