[Strawbale] Re: Strawbale Digest, Vol 25, Issue 12

peter van balen peter at tentotwo...
Mon Oct 22 18:21:40 CEST 2007

Hello Leanne,

I think Paul means with a humidity problem thet your bales may have been too 
humid at one stage or another and maybe still are (deep inside)? To test 
that you need a hay/straw humidity-meter; I've got one, which you can 
borrow, but maybe it's easier to borrow one closer to you; normally straw-, 
hay- or grain-merchants should have one. Ideally you'll find a figure below 
15% (this is mass percentage NOT relative humidity).

Good luck,



Message: 1
Date: Sun, 21 Oct 2007 21:23:05 +0200
From: "leanne" <leanne at aromanature...>
Subject: [Strawbale] Re: covered in spots
To: <strawbale at amper....muni.cz>
Message-ID: <002001c81417$f640bbe0$5e63fea9 at o2r1s0>
Content-Type: text/plain; charset="iso-8859-1"

Hello Paul,

>  have you got a website with details of your house on it?

We do, but it is in french and not up to date at all, so will post it when
its more informative!

>   Prehaps if you gave us a few more details of how it is built including
the materials and finishs used and the systems installed, for example
ventilation, heating etc it would be easier for people here to help diagnose
the problems.

Timber frame (douglas fir I think in english), straw bale infill, 2 coats of
earth plaster over the straw (only 1 outside for the moment) consisting of
earth, sand and chopped straw, terra cotta downstairs and chestnut
floorboards upstairs, loose cork and egg cartons to insulate between floors,
sheeps wool in the roof, no heating yet (wood stove to come), no actual
ventilation system.  Almost all finishes such as paint and glue were natural
(a few were not).
> Do you have plants or animals around you?

We live in the country, so all of the above around us! Closest neighbors
have a few horses.

>  With a new construction, depending on the materials used, <its quite
possible for there to be a certain amount of <humidity present within the
structure initially that you would <not normally "sense", especially when
using organic building <materials such as strawbales or earth plasters.
>   this should reduce over time as they dry out and equalize with the
ambiant enviroment.
>  If you think there might be a humidity problem where a <part of the
structure is not able to dry properly or there is <damp penetration then
again, depending on the types of <materials used, you would either see mould
blooms on <surface materials or if it is right inside the structure it might
<only be detectable with humidity sensoring equipment.

We had mold blooms while the plaster was drying but thats been months now
and I really don't think we have a humidity problem, but like you say we
would need a meter to measure that!

Leanne in France


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End of Strawbale Digest, Vol 25, Issue 12

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