Community: GBA Pro help

Q & A Instructions

[Click map to enlarge]

The web site has a wealth of articles on a wide variety of construction topics. Before posting your question, you may want to check out the articles on this page: How To Do Everything. You just might discover an article there that provides the information you seek.

Please register for a free account or sign in to ask and answer green building questions.

If you want to post a question, the usual rules of courtesy apply:
1. Be nice.
2. If you can't be nice, be polite.
3. If you can't be nice or polite — well, please be brief.

To attach a photo or illustration: Under the box labeled “More explanation,” look for the words “File attachments.” Click that, and you should be able to attach a photo.

Thanks for joining the conversation!

5 Answers

Insulating brick veneer - No sheathing or wrap

We are currently remodeling a 1920s bungalow in Louisville, KY. Upon opening up the exterior walls (original plaster), we discovered that there is no sheathing or warp of any kind behind the brick veneer. The original construction of walls was simply brick veneer (corrugated brick ties to studs), air-gap, studs, and plaster walls (no insulation of any kind).

Asked By Keith Duncan | Sep 6 16
11 Answers

What insulation type and configuration for an old Victorian would work best?

I have a house, climate zone 5 (southwest PA) that is gutted to the studs. True 2x4 balloon construction. I have put on a new roof which I intend to put closed cell foam. But on the exterior walls, I'm trying to determine best course for insulation. So I have the studs, 1x8 sheathing that runs diagonally foundation to roof line. Covering that is old felt paper, then 1" wood dutch lap siding. On top of that 1" foam board, fairly dense, with a dense cardboard and shiny aluminum side facing outward, then vinyl siding nailed into that. The house is heated with a boiler and steam radiators.

Asked By Robert Semenko | Aug 29 16
11 Answers

Exterior walls

Zone 5a, Indianapolis
Single story ranch with slab on grade.
4 inch exterior walls
Current construction:
North facing exterior is stone (no weep holes) then 1/2 space then particle board then 2x4 framing with unfaced fiberglass batt then moisture shield ( guessing 3-4 mill regular clear plastic) then 1/2 in dry wall.
All other exterior walls are vinyl siding then particle board then 2x4 framing with unfaced fiberglass batting then moisture shield ( guessing 3-4 mill plastic) then 1/2 in dry wall.

Asked By Edward Kramer | Aug 28 16
7 Answers

Faced vs unfaced batts in 'flash and batt' approach

This is a follow-up question to one I posted previously:

Asked By Rob Moore | Sep 2 16
3 Answers

Insulating stone and mortar

I read the excellent articles on insulating down in the basement. Very helpful as we prepare to finish the space. Our foundation is stone and mortar and the area we are finishing is all above grade and dry. Without your help we would likely have insulated the walls with fiberglass batts. The ceiling (underside of the first floor) was already insulated with fiberglass including stuffing the cavity at the rim joist. I now know I have to go with foam and make this airtight. Here's my question:

Asked By Michael Groarke | Aug 28 16
2 Answers

Condensation on soffits after painting

I have a split-level house that has an second-floor overhang with soffits where the a/c ducts terminate to supply the 2nd floor with a/c and heat. We repainted the exterior of the house a week ago and now exterior condensation is forming on the soffits directly below the a/c vents. I've lived in the house for 10 years and we never had any issue like this that I'm aware of. This condensation keeps the paint from drying/curing. What should I do?

Asked By Buzz Mershon | Aug 27 16
3 Answers

New roof cost? Upgrading from a low slope to a steep slope

I live in Ontario Canada. Im considering all my options to improve my old home's attic space. You see, we get lots of ice damming each winter. The existing roof has a 3/12 pitch along with an 8/12 cathedral. Im wondering if it is cheaper to have a contractor build a new steeper pitch roof over my existing (or remove the existing for the steeper one).

Asked By Jake Rabe | Aug 21 16
18 Answers

Attic insulation quandary

Seeking advice on renovation plans for a 1910 house in ND - Zone 7.

- 2 1/2 stories above ground with full basement.
- 2nd story has 'sun porch' facing south.
- 2 layers of siding. Inner layer has lead paint (of course)
- Insulated in the 70's with formaldehyde foam, holes drilled through exterior to fill cavities.
- High efficiency propane furnace, forced air.
- 2 chimneys.
- 1st in middle of house used for original oil-burner furnace and water heater. Now used by wood fireplace in basement.

Asked By Tim Lange | May 16 16
12 Answers

Insulating floor joists, on stilts


Asked By Paul Huehmer | Aug 12 16
1 Answer

Spray foam my ridge vents and soffits closed?

Okay so I am investigating spray foam insulation for my garage. The most recent company I spoke with gave me a quote but also asked if I had a ridge vent. I said yes. They said they would also spray the vent closed because spray foam creates another atmosphere and we would not need it. Another atmosphere??

I don't understand why you would want to get rid of the ridge vent. Can someone shed some light on this topic, I am in the dark.

Asked By Joe Overhaulin | Aug 17 16
Register for a free account and join the conversation

Get a free account and join the conversation!
Become a GBA PRO!