Green Building Blog

(At Least) 3 Things Are Wrong With This Window Installation

Posted on September 28, 2012 by GBA Team

Last week, published a photo of a recently installed window in an new house under the headline, “What's Wrong With This Picture?”

The photo showed the window from the interior. Some of the flexible flashing material was visible on the rough sill and the rough jamb.

The list of problems outlined below was prepared by James Steacy of IBACOS.

Updated Encyclopedia Page on Photovoltaic Systems

Posted on September 27, 2012 by GBA Team

Only a few years ago, the installed cost of a grid-connected photovoltaic(PV) Generation of electricity directly from sunlight. A photovoltaic cell has no moving parts; electrons are energized by sunlight and result in current flow. (PVPhotovoltaics. Generation of electricity directly from sunlight. A photovoltaic (PV) cell has no moving parts; electrons are energized by sunlight and result in current flow.) system was about $7 per watt. Now that inexpensive PV modules are widely available, the price has been cut in half (to about $3.50 per watt) in many areas of the U.S.

As architect Jesse Thompson pointed out in his guest blog, PV Systems Have Gotten Dirt Cheap, falling PV prices are a game-changer.

What’s Wrong With This Window Installation?

Posted on September 21, 2012 by GBA Team

Readers are invited to identify as many installation errors they can spot in the attached photo of a window installed in the rough opening of a new home.

This is the latest in our ongoing series, “What’s Wrong With This Picture?” (To see two previous photos in the series, click the links in the box below.)

The photo comes from James Steacy of IBACOS (a Building America program partner in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania).

Video Series: Replacing a Window in a Brick House

Posted on September 19, 2012 by GBA Team

Brick walls can seriously complicate window installation and can sometimes confuse even the most experienced builders. Fortunately for us, Mike Sloggatt, who has thirty years' experience working on brick houses, was available to show us how to assess the situation and do the job right.

Better Video Delivery Mechanism

Posted on August 22, 2012 by Daniel Morrison

When we developed a few years ago, we knew that we would need, want, and eventually have a deep video program, but because the pile of work to do in order to meet our deadline was pretty darned big, and because we were a bunch of print guys and gals building this thing, we decided to let the video program sit on the back burner. We produced some, but didn't spend the resources to go hog-wild.

EEBA Conference Will Be Held in Arizona This Year

Posted on August 6, 2012 by GBA Team

If you're interested in attending one of the best conferences in the country, don't miss this year's conference of the Energy and Environmental Building Alliance (EEBA).

Founded in 1982, EEBA has consistently promoted superinsulation and energy-efficient residential construction techniques for the last 30 years. The three-day conference is being held in Scottsdale, Arizona on September 25 through 27.

New Advisors on the GBA Team

Posted on July 25, 2012 by Daniel Morrison

Chris Briley and Phil Kaplan are architects in southern Maine. They are smart, talented, funny, and they are go-getters. Chris and Phil began podcasting a couple of years ago on iTunes. One of our contributing editors, Scott Gibson, pointed them out to us, and we asked them to podcast on

EnerPHit — The Passive House Approach to Deep Retrofit

Posted on May 28, 2012 by Lenny Antonelli

Reprinted with permission from Construct Ireland magazine.

An Opportunity for Users to Rate Window Manufacturers

Posted on April 26, 2012 by GBA Team

By Martin Holladay

Everybody has an opinion on windows, it seems. When specifying windows, builders usually look for good customer service. Most builders want a local rep who answers the phone, provides quick turnarounds on bids, delivers windows on time, and promptly shows up on site when something goes wrong.

Homeowners want windows that look good, operate smoothly, and don't fall apart.

Energy nerds want windows with excellent performance specifications.

High-Performance and Net-Zero Homes — Part 5

Posted on April 2, 2012 by Ann Edminster, GBA Advisor

In the prior installment in this blog series, I proposed a rationale for the adoption of integrated project delivery (IPD) and promised to follow with suggestions regarding its implementation, along with some resources.

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