On a drizzly day in October, a team from TLCD Architecture volunteered at the Habitat for Humanity home build at Green Valley Village in Graton, CA. The cool weather brought everyone inside to install insulation, which as it turns out requires a bit of finesse. But let’s hear from the team themselves:
Emily found it fun cutting out slots in the insulation where the wires and pipes were. She joked around about stacking the short people together to reach the 9’ ceilings (then of course they did it). “If only we had a trench coat to cover us and pretend we were 7 feet tall” said Emily! She thought coordinators Rick and Charlie were very nice and inspiring. Rick is retired but works maybe 70 hours a week for Habitat. Charlie studied as an engineer at CU in Boulder, but he hopes to be where Rick is in a couple years.
Joy was there with her hubby Ian and they gave new meaning to team building. She said “I love how much more exercise I got from actually installing the insulation than drawing lines at my desk”.
Giselle (that’s her sitting on Emily’s shoulders) said “I really respect the sense of community they’re building along with the homes being built”. Giselle should know because volunteerism and working in her community is a big priority.
Ross has a long career in architecture and has done home builds before. He said installing the insulation was simple enough until you encountered stud cavities with multiple utilities. “Note to insulation companies…please make 9’ long batts. Sean spent a lot of time on the ladder filling in the last foot of the 9’ ceiling. I didn’t hear one complaint, but I’ll bet his wrist was tired by the end of the day”, said Ross.
Sean noted that there are a lot more studs in a wall than most people think. “Architects are trained to assume that studs are spaced 16” on center, but when a wall is actually framed there is a bunch of extra wood around windows, electrical boxes and piping. And guess what… all of those spaces around the extra wood have to be filled with insulation, which means a lot of cutting and stuffing of fiberglass batts. It’s a dirty job, but somebody’s got to do it!”
Habitat for Humanity Sonoma County is a dynamic organization that brings homeowners and volunteers together to build homes for deserving families in our community. They are now expanding their reach to include The Habitat Center – the region’s first nonprofit industrialized residential construction factory and trades training center. The TLCD team looks forward to lending our brawn and our brains to this endeavor going forward.