Thermal Bridging - What is it?
A thermal bridge relating to house construction is a material touching the exterior and interior walls allowing thermal energy to leak in and out of the home more quickly. With typical framing construction the wall studs create this bridging. Wood isn't a conductor of heat I thought? Well every type of material acts as a thermal conductor, and while wood isn't a great thermal conductor, it is the highest conductor in a wall, making it the quick route for that energy to enter or escape.
Most homes are built with a 6" wall where a 6" stud creates this thermal bridging. A separation is required to block this easy route for thermal energy and there are many advanced framing techniques around to accomplish this. They do cause a headache as the framing takes extra care to plan out, especially around windows and doors, but the payoff in the end is major efficiency improvement in the home.
There will always be wood contacting the exterior and interior surfaces as it is tough to work around with the floor and ceiling, but the walls cover a lot of surface area so starting with the major thermal leak covers a majority of the issue. With North 49 Homes, all of our construction features Thermal Break Technology which creates this wall separation. Check us out at www.north49homes.com to learn more!