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13 Answers

Wood Floor, Concrete slab, and Moisture

Hi all, I had a question about proper installation of a wood floor on a concrete slab.

Assuming the slab has been moisture tested (and passes with flying colors), would it be alright to just put a plywood subfloor and finished wood floor on top? Or would I still be at risk of a mold issue in the future?

Asked By Jay Sheth | Dec 29 11
4 Answers

Could a lack of air movement cause a disagreeable odor emanating from a closed crawlspace?

In April, we moved into in a new, single-story, 2,000 sf home in Virginia. Early on, we became aware of an disagreeable odor coming from our closed crawlspace. Six months later, it has not gone away. The house is well-insulated (R-60 in the attic and foam and batt insulation in 6-inch walls) It’s also tightly sealed. The unvented, unventilated crawlspace is part of the envelope. The house’s only ventilation comes from windows and two Panasonic spot-ERVs in the bathrooms.

Asked By Arthur McPhee | Nov 1 16
5 Answers

Matte finish paint disaster: Options for more durable finish needed!

Well this is slightly embarrassing, but I either talked myself into or go talked into doing matte finish paint for my entire house. We liked the look of the matte paint as we thought it would hide imperfections and looked kind of rustic to match our Tuscan house theme.

The paint is advertised as "eco friendly" and "washable flat" is its name. Its from Cloverdale. It also has "ceramic microspheres" or something that is supposed to make the paint super durable and its a breakthrough in matte finish paint.

Asked By Mark Helmrich | Aug 27 16
6 Answers

Basement Insulation - Remodel

I have a question I haven't been able to find a good answer to. I own a home in Minneapolis-St. Paul that has an unfinished walkout basement. Home was built in 1988. Basement was never finished. Basement is drain tiled with sump pit but no pump was ever installed. Nonetheless, the basement appears completely dry.

Asked By John N | Jul 7 16
6 Answers

I'm chemically sensitive and the neighbor uses lots of pesticides that make me ill

Hello. I own a small 2 story semi-detached home, 1024 sq ft in all. I'm chemically sensitive and the neighbor uses lots of pesticides that make me ill. I would like to keep these VOCs out. Air purifiers have not worked for me.

Asked By Brenda Koehlert | Jun 24 16
28 Answers

How to stop a Cathedral ceiling from sweating

Newly constructed home in upstate New York (Cold Climate) with cathedral ceilings throughout. R38 paper faced batts with Sheetrock and T&G pine cover the entire ceiling. After the long winter months have past the warmer weather causes water to come streaming down the inside of the valleys and down the walls for at least 5-6 hours. A roofing contractor said it was caused by ice damning so I replaced the shingles, s&i guard etc. in both valleys and I had a leak this past Sunday afternoon (no rain or snow). I don't know what to do besides rip down the ceiling and spray foam.

Asked By scott davis | Dec 6 11
2 Answers

What is the safest (healthwise) roller blind I can buy?

What materials would it be made of. I can find one made of linen but with an acrylic foam backing.

Asked By Angela Weber | Apr 29 16
8 Answers

Hardwood flooring question

Have about 3000 sq-ft area that needs to be covered. We would prefer Bazillion Cherry but not sure whether we want pre or on site finish?


Pros: Factory durable finish and the beveled edges which is what we like.

Cons: Shorter/inconsistent plank lengths

On site finish:

Pros: Longer plank lengths

Cons: Finish depends on the installer but might not be as good as pre-finish


What finish (on site or pre-finish) and what time of surface finish (oil or water based) do you guys advice?

Would appreciate any and all feedback?


Asked By Beenash Khan | Apr 19 15
3 Answers

Cold house in Southern California

Thanks to a giant ash tree in front (east side) of our Southern California house, we almost never need to run the air conditioning, which is great. Downside is, our house is uncomfortably cold even when it's 75 outside. We're thinking of remodeling. Is there anything we can do to use the natural climate to make the house warmer in the winter without making it warmer in the summer?

Asked By Donna May | Mar 1 16
1 Answer

Vinyl windows!

Hi, I am planning to built my new house at Toronto. In my present rented house, the windows are of wood. From these years of my stay in this house, I have felt wooden frames are very much prone to moisture. During the winter season there is a good amount of icing on the glasses that it blocks the view. When I researched on the various types of window materials, I found vinyl windows are the better among all other window materials in terms of quality and cost.

Asked By Phyllis J Beard | Feb 28 16
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