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Thread: 2x6 vs 2x4 exterior walls

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    Default 2x6 vs 2x4 exterior walls

    Anyone know what year 2x6 ext walls became standard in Alberta?
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    I don't think there every was a transition time that made them standard. However, taking a guess at why you're asking, I'll just give a bit of info.
    2X4 exterior Walls are actually acceptable exterior framing, it's just that you need r20, which you can't get with just fiberglass insulation in a 2x4 cavity.
    So if you see such framing and are wondering how it passed, they probably also used blue insulation on the outside, or something else to achieve r20.

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    I think a better question is 16" OC vs 24" OC exterior framing.
    Better to have 2x6 for insulation purposes but I would think that closer spacing is more stable than wider spacing.
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    Thanks for the replies. Was kinda thinking, long ago the standard wall was 2x4s. Now the typical exterior wall is 2x6s. When did this change happen, or when did the majority of homes start being 2x6 walls?

    Based on the reply above its linked to insulation, and when the building code changed to require more R value in walls. When did this change happen?

    As it related to looking for a home to purchase, is there a certain vintage home that would be likely to be 2x4 vs 2x6?

    Thanks again.
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    I had a home built in 07 with 2x6 walls, styrofoam and osb, with 24centres. To keep the walls rigid, they added steel bands from each corner of the walls like a big X. Jayman called it their 'quantum wall system' and had them pre-built off site. It worked really well for keeping the home well insulated.

    A simple way to tell is by measuring wall thickness at exterior doors. I wish I could tell you when the changed from 2x4s to 2x6s, but I can't. My guess is it was in the early 80s as thats when homes are assumed to be 'tight construction'.

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    I would guess closer to 2000. My early 90's house in douglasdale was 2x4 construction.

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    I'm also curious when this started becoming the norm. My 1999 build is 2x6 exterior construction. I don't know if it's the main factor but I do find it quieter inside then the last house I lived in that had 2x4 walls.

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