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14 Answers

House fully insulated with 2" rigid foam

Hi,
I have been an avid viewer of this site for a couple of years now, ever since I knew I was going to be building my new home. This is, however, my first post to the site.

Asked By Nick Beining | Jan 13 15
0 Answers

Radiant floor vs mini?

I have a 800 sq ft home in Asheville,NC and am looking to put on a 550 sq ft addition. I have looking into all options of radiant floor heat vs mini splits for our heating and get stuck between preference and practicality. I am adding three floors with each floor being about 190 sq ft.
I would love to put radiant heat in the pad of basement floor and mini splits in second and third floor, but sense that may be a bad idea since both have high up front cost. Don't need AC in basement however, so feel it is a waste to put a mini split there, and warm concrete in the winter would be nice!

Asked By Clayton Hufford | Jan 29 15
18 Answers

Double Staggered-Stud Wall vs. 2x3 + Foam Strip + 2x4 Wall

My new house will be in a part of climate zone 2B in Arizona where the winter nights often dip into the 30s and the summer days often rise to 100 with around 45 days of "monsoon season" mostly in August when we'll get an hour of thunderstorms once or twice a week. We have moderate to severe termites.

Asked By Jeff Cooper | Jan 23 15
5 Answers

Any ideas on best/greenest counter top materials?

Cost per square foot, if available, would be appreciated.

Asked By Jacque Hyler | Jan 29 15
9 Answers

Unvented roof deck with dense-packed cellulose -- vapor barrier?

Hi I just dense packed my attic ceiling (it is a livable space, not crawl) with dense pack cellulose (8"), held in with insulweb. we put the cellulose right up against the roof deck. I am concerned whether I need a vapor barrier and where it should go. My plan was to just put rough cut wood (not tongue and groove ontop of it for the ceiling, but a few people who looked at it thought I might need a vapor or air barrier. The roof is not vented.

Asked By carrie da | Jan 29 15
4 Answers

Combining electric cove heaters with PV

In a recent blog, Designing an HVAC System for a Cold Climate, Malcolm Taylor is quoted as recommending electric cove heaters, and a link to the Comfort Cove line from Radiants Systems, Inc. is provided in the blog text. Searching Green Building Advisor turns up half a dozen other references to cove heaters, all very short, and all positive. I wonder if there is more useful advice on choosing and using this technology for supplemental heat.

Asked By Derek Roff | Jan 29 15
13 Answers

Does a flexible stainless steel chimney flue really need an insulation wrap?

I am preparing to install a stainless steel flexible liner inside an unlined masonry chimney on an exterior wall to provide draft for a wood stove. Every internet website selling the liners stresses the need for an insulation wrap to keep the vapors warm, improve the draft, and diminish creasote buildup. This has also been emphysized at GBA for similar reasons on multiple occasions. The available wrap liners are typically alkaline earth silicate (AES).

Asked By W. Timothy Ward | Jan 26 15
0 Answers

Is power washing a 20 year old cypress siding house with a vinegar & water solution effective?

I am looking for ecological solutions to power wash the cypress siding on my 20 year old house. Using vinegar was suggested to me ~ has anyone had success with using vinegar, or can anyone suggest other ecological solutions?

Asked By Shannon Dancy | Jan 29 15
5 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
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