Q&A: A Forum for Green Building Experts and Beginners

Q & A Instructions

[Click map to enlarge]

The GBAGreenBuildingAdvisor.com web site has a wealth of articles on a wide variety of construction topics. Before posting your question, you may want to check out the articles on this page: How To Do Everything. You just might discover an article there that provides the information you seek.

Please register for a free account or sign in to ask and answer green building questions.

If you want to post a question, the usual rules of courtesy apply:
1. Be nice.
2. If you can't be nice, be polite.
3. If you can't be nice or polite — well, please be brief.

To attach a photo or illustration: Under the box labeled “More explanation,” look for the words “File attachments.” Click that, and you should be able to attach a photo.

Thanks for joining the conversation!

0 Answers

Klearwall Passiv AluP+ Window Bug Screen

Looking for a better way to attach bug screens to our Klearwall aluminum clad windows. We have purchased aluminum framed screens. The screen frames are 3/4" wide.
I really don't want to screw into the Klearwall windows using the flimsy plastic hardware Klearwall provided.
Any help would be appreciated.

Asked By adkinsdl | Oct 20 17
6 Answers

Draining the Mega-Footing

I have gotten my engineering drawings on my new house(Zone 4, NC, steep slope). In places, the footing for the uphill concrete wall is over 13' wide! I have attached a representative cross section. How should I handle drainage? I plan to use a spray on membrane with a dimpled drain over that. How far down should that go past the footing/wall junction? Where should the drain-tile go, still at the edge of footing?

Asked By Kevin Spellman | Oct 19 17
2 Answers

automatic control for passive solar overheating in winter?

Hi, I’m designing a passive solar house and in attempt to gaining the most energy from the sun, but the more energy you try capture, the more likely overheating becomes a risk on those warmer, sunnier winter days. I was thinking it would be simple enough to have an ERV with a bypass that can exchange overheated indoor air (say 80°F) with the cooler outdoor winter air (say it’s 60°F) when the indoor temperature hits a upper limit setpoint (say 75°F) and the outdoor temperature is cooler.

Asked By mjezzi | Oct 20 17
9 Answers

Roof replacement concerns; weird airflow; increasing R-value

This is my first post and its long.. I attached an image of what I think the current setup of our house is. Until the actual roof is opened I won't know for sure. I'm also new to all this and the correct terms to use. Zone 6.
95% of the roof is cathedral ceiling with a small attic in a corner. The inside ceiling is drywall and TG. There seems to be a layer of clear plastic behind the drywall. 80% sure there is drywall behind the TG boards.

Asked By Amz1323 | Oct 19 17
5 Answers

Can we use a tin or other metal for a basement ceiling in a retail space?

We own a retail building with a large basement. We own the stained glass/fused glass business in the space. We are remodeling the basement to be a part of the public/retail space. The problem is the ceiling. We have exposed romex wiring between the joists and the ceiling is rather low - 6'5" at the bottom of the steel beams. Our code inspector has ruled out foaming the ceiling then painting over the foam; drop ceiling or nailed on ceiling tiles, and wood paneling. He thought that a metal ceiling may work but did not know. Any suggestions or creative solutions?? Thank you!

Asked By glassteacher | Oct 19 17
3 Answers

Can we intersperse low e/high SHGC windows with standard low e on SE wall?

We are remodeling our home ~90 miles north of Seattle in Zone 4C and would like to incorporate some low E + high solar gain windows on the southeast face. Our contractor and the window salesman are discouraging it but also don't have experience with these windows.

Asked By bethanz | Oct 19 17
0 Answers

Changing Function codes on Fujitsu Mini splits

When changing function codes, can I do more than one at a time? The manual is unclear. Or do I have to change the code and reset breaker for 2 minutes every time?

Having to reset the remote every time really confuses things.


Asked By kjmass1 | Oct 19 17
10 Answers

Smart MemBrain with mineral wool

Using Thermafiber Mineral Wool in 2x6 stud cavities. Planning on using CertainTeed's Smart Membrain before hanging drywall.

1.) Is this the best idea in terms of proper product use and installation?

2.) Will stapling the Membrain to my studs cause any issue?

Asked By Nicholas C | Oct 18 17
3 Answers

Bonus Room Above Garage Insulation - SE Michigan

I know this has been talked about a lot but my bonus room above the garage is freezing in the winter especially the floor. The room has knee walls also. I am looking to get the room spray foamed and have had 2 guys come out with 2 different options and its a bit confusing. Options are below:

Current status - I ripped out the garage ceiling dry wall and pulled all the insulation down. There was differently a gap between insulation and the floor in spots and just not insulated good in my opinion.

Option 1

Asked By swdude12 | Oct 19 17
14 Answers

Can my outdoor minisplit unit benefit from a solar cover in harsh NY winters?

I am brainstorming a greenhouse type cover over my outdoor unit to keep it warmer in the winter to maximize its ability to heat. There are clear corrugated roof tiles at my local home store I am thinking of fashioning into a roof over the unit outside, facing South with possible partial sides. I am aware it needs air flow. My hope is to keep the outdoor unit warmer to avoid it getting too bogged down in the cold. It is a Fujitsu 15RSL3H made for extreme cold.

Asked By PamNYWinters | Oct 14 17
Register for a free account and join the conversation

Get a free account and join the conversation!
Become a GBA PRO!