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6 Answers

Preparing for future solar panels

Building a new home and want to install solar panels at some point in the future. They won't be in the budget initially, when the house is built, but I want to prepare for them and make sure I don't miss something during the construction process that I will have to redo.

The panels will not go on the roof, they will go out in the yard or on an outbuilding or pergola, so I don't have to worry about running wires from the roof to the basement. However, do I need a particular type of breaker panel? Do I need to spec certain equipment?

Asked By Clay Whitenack | Apr 25 16
16 Answers

New slab with radiant heat

As part of our remodel north of San Francisco (ZIP code 94941), we are converting about 700SF of our lower level into living space. The existing slab has been removed we excavated a few additional inches to increase our ceiling height, and we are getting ready to put back a new 5" slab, in which we will also add radiant heat tied to the rebar.

Asked By Torsten Budesheim | Apr 22 16
4 Answers

Roofing and insulation on old house

I have an 1850s farmhouse I'm renovating. To insure good insulation, I had the attic rafters spray foamed with closed cell foam about four inches deep.

I'm trying to plan for an eventual re-roofing, and I wanted to know if there are any best practices I should keep in mind at that stage for eleminating any issues that might arise from the spray foaming. The old roof has a few layers of shingles on it.

Is there a recommended roofing type for this situation? Any ventilation issues I can helpfully prevent moving forward?

Thanks,

Ilmari

Asked By Ilmari Polojarvi | Apr 30 16
10 Answers

Exterior finish on 1850s farmhouse

I've got an 1850s farm house I'm in the process of renovating. The house needs considerable exterior painting.

Do you all have recommendations on the best exterior finishes for an old house like this? I could shingle instead of painting, for example, or strip and stain.

I'm hoping to create the most energy efficient old house possible with minimal future upkeep. Paint seems to need redoing quite frequently, and other possibilities would be welcome.

Thanks,

Ilmari

Asked By DJ Polojarvi | Apr 30 16
5 Answers

High humidity in spray foam attic

Hello all,

Last fall I had my attic spray foamed. Warm temperatures have arrived and I am experiencing higher than anticipated temperatures and humidity in my attic.

I have 3 main questions (pertinent details follow):

1. Is a semi-conditioned attic RH in the 60 - 70% range cause for concern?
2. Should my attic be 10+ degrees warmer than the interior? It will get much warmer here in the coming months and I am worried that the attic temperature difference will grow.

Asked By Nic Smith | Apr 30 16
5 Answers

Re-roofing low-slope roof, unvented insulation techniques

Shed dormer on back of 1.5 story cape cod.. 20ft X 20ft roof. Low-slope, 1.5 in 12.

Little or no access to interior "attic".

2X6 rafters. "Vented" at soffit. Insulated with 4" to 10" of fiberglass batts as room allowed (done before ceiling drywall was installed.)

Re-roofing dormer. Will replace roof sheathing. Considering un-vented roof for this shed dormer. No room to add rigid foam on top of sheathing

Asked By David Heinicke | May 1 16
2 Answers

Ventilation

I am rehabilitating a 1950's shop/garage building. It has a gable roof and has a 1 foot overhang on the gable ends. The overhang was constructed with 2x4's that were toe nailed to the gable wall. On the underside of the 2x4's, a thin (1/4 inch) plywood application was mounted. I am removing all of the existing exterior wood, facia and rake boards, siding, etc, and installing new materials. My question is, do I need to be concerned about ventilating this 1 foot overhang and, if so, what is the best way to accomplish that? Thanks.

Asked By Peter Liberatore | May 2 16
6 Answers

Insulation and Air Conditioning

After reading this blog I feel much more informed in a general sense about my insulation and heating/cooling needs, but I am still trying to figure out what the return on investment would be for certain applications in my condo.

Asked By Kevin Gabbard | May 1 16
6 Answers

Insulating floor of mudroom before closing it off

I'm building 5' by 8' mudroom addition where there previously had been a dilapidated porch-like structure. I've poured the foundation and secured the sill. The concrete foundation is about 5 inches above soil, then 6 x 6 sill. I will be framing the floor with 2x 6. I'm stuck with these dimensions because of grade etc. This "crawl space" is NOT connected the the main house's crawl space and will be 100% inaccessible once the subfloor goes down. Also, foundation is non vented.
Anyway- the plan is to-

Asked By Joseph Moore | Apr 29 16
1 Answer

Cellulose comparisons

My new construction will be getting dense pack in the walls. I've been looking at National Fiber's

Asked By daniel f. vellone | Apr 30 16
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