Community: General questions

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!

1 Answer

Brick veneer air gap vents into rim joist in crawlspace/basement

50's rambler with a few additions over the years.
I believe it is cement board siding with brick veneer around the lower base.
Blower door test came in around 4,500 cfm50

Asked By B D | Nov 24 15
0 Answers

At what tempeture should blown insulation be in stalled on a steel roof 2x6 truss

I have a 24x60 pole barn and want to keep moister from dripping on inside items. It`s getting cold and I want to know at what temperature should a blown foam insulation be installed? I`am more concerned with moister than R value but plan on having 4inches blown on the roof.

Asked By Gordon walts | Nov 24 15
14 Answers

Connecting masonry cavity foam insulation to windows and running services in CMU hollow cores


I live just out of Melbourne in Australia. For reference, our climate zone is Cfb (temperate, without a dry season and with warm summers). Annual HDD (Farenheit, with base 65 degrees) is 2,838 degrees. Annual CDD is 450 degrees. It very rarely goes below freezing temperature.

Asked By George | Nov 23 15
1 Answer

Builidng a house from the "Affordable Passive Solar Planbook for North Carolina"

I have the opportunity to possibly build a new house on a piece of farmland. I'm trying to keep the costs down, and I really want to incorporate ways to reduce build cost and future cost of heating the home. I'm in Calgary, Alberta.

Asked By Solange Pomerleau | Nov 24 15
9 Answers

Why will our heat pump not warm the whole building?

Our office has complaints about the building we work in -- it will not get warm. We have an old boiler, but when we renovated in the 90's the company installed heat pumps and connected the two systems together.

Once it hits 32 degrees, the boiler was supposed to come on. Instead, half the building is cold and the other is hot.

Can anyone please explain what is going on here, and can it be fixed?

Asked By Desirae | Nov 23 15
1 Answer

Can you install a metal panel roof on plastic furring strips?

I am getting ready to install a metal roof (36" wide panels) onto my SIP roof. I've read that a 'cold roof system' is the way to go with SIPS - to allow any moisture that comes through the sips to evacuate. Is the extra layer of sheathing over the furring necessary, wouldn't you get more ventilation if the roof was installed just on furring strips? And could these stand alone furring strips be the plastic Cor-a-vent Sturdi-strip product to allow for better drainage and ventilation? Does this product make for a weaker connection of the metal panel to the sheathing?

Asked By Rene Cappuccino | Nov 24 15
7 Answers

Questions on retro insulating a 1968 Cape Cod style home in Zone 5 (northeast Penn.)

I recently bought a 1968 cape cod style home in NE PA region 5. There is a full below grade basement, main level, and of course the upstairs bedrooms with dormers / kneewalls and a tiny crawl attic. There are hatches to enter all these spaces. The bedrooms closets occupy space between the attic and kneewalls (sloped drywall against the roof rafters at top of closets). Presently there is R-13 fiberglass batting in the kneewalls, the roof rafters above the closets, and on top of the drywall ceilings in the bedrooms. So the kneewall cavities and the attic are unconditioned.

Asked By Ryan | Nov 21 15
2 Answers

Converting can lights

I have 8 recessed/can lights in my home. They are not ICAT rated, so there is currently no insulation around these fixtures. No air sealing, either. We're adding cellulose insulation within the next few weeks, so I'd appreciate some advice on how to deal with these dang lights.

We priced replacing with ICAT fixtures, but it's too expensive. Also considered removing them entirely, but that's even more expensive and time-consuming. We ordered some LED retrofit inserts (Cree C6), but they are too bright (625 lumens) and the depth of the light causes shadows that we dislike.

Asked By Green Heron | Nov 22 15
2 Answers

What is the best way to have a 28' chimney pipe cleaned on a high efficiency wood stove?

I just wasted 48.00 and was told my high efficiency wood stove can not be cleaned from the inside up because of the smoke baffle inside of it? I didn't even know it had one. They are telling me I will have to rent a cherry picker because my roof is to high and steep to clean it from above. Plus I assume now my chimney cap is not the correct one because I found out it leaks. Not around the wall but down the pipe, I found my ash drawer full of water. Other than getting rid of my wood stove I wonder if you have any comments or suggestions?


Susan Evans

Asked By Susan Evans | Nov 21 15
18 Answers

Specific advice on Mitsubishi mini-split system in region 5

Have had several local companies provide quotes on Mitsubishi mini split systems for my home. Have seen wildly different Manual J calculations, as well as different recommendations on equipment, some conflicting. Can give more info if requested.

Asked By Ryan O'Rourke | Nov 18 15
Register for a free account and join the conversation

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