10 Best Small Home Decor Ideas

It will also allow moisture from our bodies to transpire through tiny pores in the fabric, helping to keep us dry on the inside. But it will not keep us warm.

Wearing a Gore-Tex jacket over a sweater is great for long-term comfort. Rain and wind are repelled, moisture is allowed to transpire through the sweater (which can store a lot of moisture away from our skin) and then out through the Gore-Tex. In the still air under the Gore-Tex, the thermal control of the sweater keeps us nice and warm.

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This clothing analogy can work to clarify some of the basic principles of weather protection, airtightness, and thermal insulation. It also points to the importance of climate — the outfit would be very different in an equatorial rainforest than a temperate-zone winter or a hot desert. In many parts of North America, conditions are highly variable, which means our buildings must be “dressed” for the worst weather extremes yet still function in more moderate conditions. Imagine yourself dressed for winter but standing outside in summer. Shade and reflective colors will help you stay cool, and well-placed zippers (windows) will allow cooling airflows to reach your skin.

Understanding this analogy does not make one a building scientist, but imagining appropriate clothing strategies can be very helpful to work through a basic understanding of performance and comfort in buildings.

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