Green Framing Feeling
Green framing feeling sounds a little subjective, but that’s because it has to be. For example, you are out on the job site framing, and the questions is whether to throw a small cut off of 2 X 6 into the trash or try to find a place to use it in your building process. Your decision is not only based on the cost of that piece of cut-off, but also the ease of just trashing it and the effect on the environment by using a new piece. Not an easy call to make, but you will have to make decisions like that all the time. If you choose the extra effort to conserve material, you will get a good green framing feeling.
A more tangible aspect of green framing is advanced framing. Based on the concept that wood is not as good an insulator as insulation, reduce the amount of wood in the exterior skin of a building and you will save energy and conserve building resources.
There are numerous ways to reduce the amount of wood in a building, but reducing the wood will reduce the building’s strength. There are ways, however, to reduce the amount of wood that either don’t affect the strength or still create strength enough to meet code requirements.
Some of the most common ways to reduce the amount of wood are the following:
1. Changing the stud layout from 16” O. C. to 24" O. C.
2. Changing common 3 stud backer to
2 X 4/2 X 6 L backer or ladder blocking
3. Using drywall clips instead of wood backing
4. Using insulation in headers instead of wood fillers
5. Using a cripple header instead of solid headers for non-bearing walls
6. Using single top plates
7. Eliminating trimmers where not necessary
8. Eliminating window cripples
9. Adjusting layout or door and window locations so layout aligns with stud-trimmers
10. Changing the exterior wall from 2 X 4 studs to 2 X 6 walls.
11. Using standard lengths during building so that standard material can be used with less waste.
The “Advanced Framing" illustration shows these 11 techniques. They may already be
integrated into your plans or you can integrate them on your own. If they are not already on your plans, make sure they do not conflict with the plans or that you receive the engineer’s approval.
Advanced framing was originally developed to assist builders in using methods that would save energy in houses. Because energy conservation is a major component of green building it is now a part of green framing.