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7 Answers

Converting a 1830 House to a Super Insulated House

I am diving into the insulation in my 1830 Farm House, 1500 sqft, which is located in upstate NY. I am looking to retro the house into a tightly insulated house that will ultimately heat off of electric heat or heat pump mini splits. I just had 10kw Solar system to create the electricity for the heat. The solar system was designed to cover 110% of our projected electrical consumption with a mini split system running. My goal is an 1830 super insulated house.

Asked By Larry Broderick | Dec 7 16
3 Answers

How can a homeowner find a contractor to install rigid foam on top of roof sheathing?

To everyone, but especially anyone in the Chicago area:

Asked By Rebekah Haworth | Dec 8 16
3 Answers

Batt insulation

I'm in the process of buying a home (Metro New Orleans, Zone 2A, very warm and moist) for my daughter and noticed the attic insulation was installed with the Kraft paper facing up. That problem is being corrected by the seller, but now I wonder if the wall insulation was installed incorrectly as well. When given an opportunity to re-inspect this coming Monday I will be removing electrical covers and other things to see if the insulation problem continues with the outside or exterior walls.

Asked By Bill Stretzinger | Dec 6 16
9 Answers

How do I determine the size of a ductless minisplit?

How do I determine the size of a ductless mini-split Heating and Cooling for my new to me Cottage type home built in 1925.

It is 36 feet wide by 26 feet deep. It is an open ceiling type to the roof rafters about 12ft high at the center peak with R-19 insulation, the walls are R-13, Two inside rooms/divider walls with no ceilings (open concept).

The two side outside walks and the front wall get no sun there Is total of 9 double pain windows on these walls the back wall 30ft long has 10 single pain wood frame windows that slide open from right to left.

Asked By Mitchell Thompson | Nov 1 16
1 Answer

Rodent-proof soffit vents

Hi,
what is the best way to create a rodent proof soffit vent air intake? I am looking for really durable products. My concern is that rats and squirrels could eventually gnaw through even hardware cloth. Any stainless steal products that people can recommend? Thank you very much.

Asked By Matthias Paustian | Dec 5 16
1 Answer

Filling nail holes in Zip?

I have a question. Framing almost done. Have exterior sheathing done with Zip board.

I noticed that the framers' guns' pressure was high, and nails in some areas went deep into Zip, or in some areas nails missed the studs.

Question: Does it make sense to try to fill deep shot nails with a liquid barrier of some type?

If yes, what type?

I was also thinking of putting a stapled or peel-and-stick weather barrier over the Zip instead. Does that make any sense?

Asked By Boris Rubinstein | Dec 5 16
7 Answers

Ipe wood vs. Azek (PVC) decking

My cedar deck has rotted. Periodic sanding & staining extended its life but now it is over. I am considering using either ipe wood or a PVC decking material (brand Azek). From the little I know, trying to consider a life-cycle assessment, neither seems like a great environmental alternative. Is there a clear choice between the 2?

Asked By Betsy Leibson | Apr 11 16
4 Answers

Insulating a wall that is half plaster/half drywall?

We live in a home that was built around 1920 near Chicago, IL. Our plot is narrow and the front portion of the home is the original house, with a very large addition on the back from the previous owners (2007). The staircase in the old house was sloping heavily to the right. We had a structural engineer come take a look and he attributed it to natural settling and didn't see any signs of continuing movement and didn't make any recommendations aside from sistering one joist. I'm not a master carpenter, but I have built a staircase or two in my life.

Asked By Al Ciu | Dec 2 16
21 Answers

Daylight basement insulation - exposed XPS and other questions

Hi,

I’m about to insulate the floor and 2 walls of my walkout/daylight basement, and I was hoping to get a little advice on a couple of points I’m not clear on. I’ve researched quite a lot, and learned a lot on this site, but I’m still not sure on a few things. Any help is much appreciated.

Asked By Aggy Clayton | Oct 28 16
1 Answer

What is wrong with my gas fireplace?

We have a gas fireplace insert. It will not stay on if the solid glass door is on it. If we remove the glass it will work. We've had a partial inspection done on the control and logs. They seem to think it is not getting proper air ventilation. Would this be due to improper install of liner? would they be something clogging up the liner?
Any thoughts would be appreciated. Our chimney is approximately 40 ft. so we are having a hard time finding someone to look at it.

Asked By Linda Wachs | Nov 29 16
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