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4 Answers

Has anyone heard or experienced any down side to using pumice as a building material for the floor or walls?

I am thinking of building with a 12 part pumice to 1 part cement mix as wall material with standard 3 layer stucco cement as wall covering . I heard New mexico pumice had possible radon emissions ?
I am wondering about moisture condensation inside of wall at the dew point leading to mold ?
I live in western oregon with high humidity ,the pumice would come from our abundant pumice fields.
pumice can't rot can't burn and has 1.5R per inch .
The only down side I see is there are no codes for pumice and would need to get an engineers report for earthquake stability using rebar.

Asked By keith schneider | Jun 25 10
2 Answers

Should engineered wood flooring be glued to a concrete slab?

The builder wants to glue engineered wood flooring onto a new concrete floor, over a primer. Is this wise?

Asked By Christina Griffin | Mar 2 15
7 Answers

Any good entry doors out there yet?


We're almost done with our Minneapolis energy retrofit, but I still haven't come up with any good entry and side door options. The home is framed with 2x4" walls, and there is also limited side to side clearance to add a more substantial European frame.

Asked By Ryan Griffin | Feb 25 15
12 Answers

EPS or polyiso? Layered, taped seams?

I have found a supplier for EPS (plain EPS, no coatings) or Polyiso (foil faced on one side, white non-reflective on the other side)

1.) The polyiso is double the price. However, it is effectively better at insulating to my knowledge. I assume it should be my pick?

2.) I don't want to use more than 2" of foam on the exterior. With either product, I believe it will be advantageous to layer two 1" thick pieces with staggered joints. If I don't have the time I will simply buy the 2" thick and call that good.

Asked By Nicholas C | Feb 22 15
29 Answers

Rheem's condensing water heaters (storage)


My 14-year-old electric water heater is starting to look a little long in the tooth. Time to upgrade.

So, I'm looking for intel on Rheem's Professional Prestige Series: High Efficiency Condensing Power Direct Vent (RHE50) or its sister sold by Home Depot - Rheem EcoSense High Efficiency Power Direct Vent (ECORHE50).

I can't find any online reviews of either product (save one favorable review on HD's site).

For several reasons, I'm looking at a high efficiency storage water heater instead of tankless.

Asked By Michael Brahmey | Oct 11 14
10 Answers

Gable vents vs. wind-driven snow: Is there a brand of gable vent known for preventing fine wind-driven snow intrusion?

Another fine snow/strong wind event here in eastern Canada today. After pretty much every storm like this I tend to find piles of snow in clients' attics, right around the gable end vents on the windward side of the attic (naturally). In one particular case it seemed to be a pretty big factor in the amount of moisture in the attic, as there was serious frost covering most of the roof deck. These gable vents always seem to have the louvers and screens that are meant to prevent rain and snow intrusion, but they fail in this regard when faced with very fine snow being blown sideways.

Asked By Peter Rogers | Feb 15 15
5 Answers

LED Filament bulbs

Does anybody have any experience with these new so-called LED filament bulbs?

Asked By Aaron Birkland | Feb 2 15
7 Answers

Roxul Comfort Board vs. Thermafiber RainBarrier

Any differences I should be aware of before I choose? I am wanting to use mineral wool for exterior insulation on a wood frame, two-story dwelling. Very impressed with Roxul online information, technical specs etc. Can't find much about RainBarrier, other than the company info sheet, but it's 1/2 the price of the Roxul. Thermafiber says that the Rainbarrier HD is the product they have made to be comparable to Comfort Board, but cannot find any comparisons between the two.

Asked By Caitanya Joy | Jan 23 15
1 Answer

Is there any manufactured "thermal-bridge-free" door hardware on the market?

As we seek to reduce and eliminate thermal bridges in our buildings, things like door hardware show up as thermal bridge challenges. Usually, door hardware consists of assemblies of thermally conductive metal that "bridge" the door, conducting heat from the interior through the door (insulated or uninsulated) to the exterior. Thermally conductive hardware may seem insignificant in a leaky building, but it can become more significant as the building is made tighter and more thermally efficient.

Asked By Albert Russell | Feb 10 15
2 Answers

StoGuard WRB

Can one apply a product like StoGuard with EmeraldCoat WRB on OSB roof sheathing and then at a short time later apply a peel & stick membrane over it?

Will the peel & stick adhere to OSB covered with StoGuard WRB?

Asked By Peter L | Feb 10 15
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