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1 Answer

Charging for Twike


I run the Twike on my farm and charge it for a couple of hours. My farmhouse is medium big with 4 kw solar panels installed atop roofs. With the roofs facing towards south, the energy production is prolific when there's much sun, I must say. I also have a 1 kw immersion tank that runs on solar power. Recently I came across this switching device called solarimmersion. Has anyone installed it? How can the power management get efficient with this? Any ideas?

Asked By kiel bolt | Jul 21 14
3 Answers

Raycore - is it the product for me?

I was pretty much on board with buying Raycore for the 4500 s.f. home I am building in downstate NY, which is steel framed, so I actually don't need any structural value out of the exterior walls other than for supporting the windows and doors (and supporting the walls themselves). I am also going with a wire lathe and stucco on the exterior - Raycore told me I could direct apply the wire lathe and did not have to use any sheathing if I did not need the shear strength, but I am hesitant to do so.

Asked By Joe McCarthy | Jul 14 14
3 Answers

Tape life expectancy ( air sealing & flashing tapes)

Maybe I'm not asking Mr Google the right question, but I'm not finding anything on the life expectancy of air sealing tapes & flashing tapes. I've seen the backyard tape test, but that doesn't answer the question of how the tapes will be performing in 20+ years. Any suggestions on where to look or particular tapes to recommend ?

Asked By Roy Goodwin | Jul 12 14
4 Answers

Air sealing metal electrical boxes

I'm looking for a good way to air seal metal electrical boxes. Local code requires conduit for all electrical, and no plastic boxes.

All of the solutions I've found are for romex and plastic boxes. I know there must be something for conduit and metal boxes.


Asked By James Lenihan | Jul 7 14
0 Answers

Where to get Roxul Drainboard in 3.5 inch thickness?

I live near Rochester NY. I am building passive solar home. Does anyone know where I can buy Roxul Drainboard in 3.5 thickness on the east coast ? I have talked to reps from Roxul and can only buy a truck load . Hard for the owner builder to go greener when we cannot get the products. Does anyone know of any cooperative, business or homeowner that has it for sale? Thank you ! Zenith7

Asked By michael holler | Jul 9 14
1 Answer

Rubio Monocoat vs. Safecoat Acrylacq for cabinets?

Hi there,

In working with a custom woodworker we are trying to build green cabinets (green from an air quality stand point). We are trying to decide on a finish for the hardwood doors of the cabinets. We were trying to sort out the differences between Safecoat Acrylacq or Vermont Natural Coatings to choose one of these.... but then.....Rubio Monocoat came to our attention.

I realize that it is a very different type of product than something like Safecoat Acrylacq (which is a water-based poly finish) -- I realize Monocoat won't have the sheen of a poly finish. I think that's OK with us.

Asked By Mindy Munger | Jul 9 14
1 Answer

Fully applied membrane substitute

When applying exterior insulation, the PERSIST method specs a fully adhered membrane covering the sheathing to control air, moisture and water. These self adhered membranes can be costly, so I'm wondering if there is any risk in using the peel and stick membrane where it's needed and then less expensive draining type house wrap in the field of the wall.

This might be trickier to install but right now I'm just interested in the performance of these materials - would it matter that the house is wrapped in 2 materials with very different perm ratings?


Asked By Mark Fredericks | Jul 8 14
12 Answers

Anyone use Glass Fiber Reinforced Polymer GFRP rebar in ICF or poured concrete walls?

I'm intrigued with the possibility of using Glass rebar instead of steel. Largely because I don't want to be surrounded by a large metal cage that could be doing various unhealthy things to us from an EMF (electro-magnetic frequencies) perspective. Also because I don't want corroding steel in my walls.

However, I can't get my head around the EMF implications. Do I actually WANT a metal cage around me - like a Faraday cage? Does it protect us from EMF's? Or does it make them a bigger problem?

Any EMF experts out there?

Asked By Zenon Tymosko | Aug 20 13
10 Answers

Do exterior solar screens provide radiant barrier to heat loss?

I live in Baltimore. I have been thinking about maintaining high solar heat gain in my windows for winter benefit. In the summer, when I need to put up insect screening anyway, my thought is to use one of those dual purpose insect screen and solar screen (e.g. like Linay type). I don't see any measured SHGC on the solar screen websites but there are apparently 70-90% solar radiant heat reduction options. I like the idea of cutting down the radiant heat before it reaches the window pane to reduce cooling load.

Asked By Richard | Mar 24 10
6 Answers

Is the permeance of Foamular 1/4" fanfold insulation really only .75 perms?

As found in the product properties provided by Owens Corning (See chart in link below)

They give a perm rating of .75. Looking at the product, it appears to be perforated with a number of small holes. I'm considering using this as an air barrier material for a knee wall, but concerned with the low permeance. Is the permeance rated on a per inch basis?

Owens corning provides data showing permeance of .75 for 1/4" and 3/8" fanfold, and 1.1 for half inch, 1 inch, and 2" foamular.

Asked By Rick Van Handel | Jun 26 14
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