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3 Answers

Wood burning stove below - what to do?

I live in an 1883 2-story farmhouse that was converted into 5 small condos in 1983 complete with wood burning stoves. Four of the units have had the stoves removed. The unit below me still has it and I swear smoke comes into my place when they use it. City allows except for occasional Action Days of no burning. I told the unit owner but she is out of town so I can't call her to come in and see for herself.
What would you do? Is there a way for me to test for smoke particulate? Picture attached -

Asked By Mary Schwaba | Oct 6 15
6 Answers

Anyone have experience with Chilltrix equipment?

A client has asked me to evaluation Chilltrix HVAC systems:http://www.chiltrix.com/small-chiller-home.html.

It appears to be an inverter driven mini split style system that uses a chiller rather than a condenser. I am assuming that it uses and expels significant amounts of water as it does not use a refrigerant, but their documentation is not very specific.

Any feedback would be appreciated.

Asked By Carl | Oct 4 15
4 Answers

Sidewall installation of dense-packed cellulose -- Many cavities are full of scrap drywall

Hi everyone,

I had posted this on the HomeImprovement subreddit, and was directed this way.

Anyone out there have any experience with retrofitting dense pack cellulose?

I've got a 66 brick ranch home with no insulation in the walls. I'm preparing to remedy that this week. I picked up my 1200 pounds of cellulose over the weekend and I've got a reservation for an Intec Force 2 blower.

Asked By Brandon McWilliams | Oct 5 15
10 Answers

Mini-split + heat pump water heater OR geothermal cool/heat + water heating?

Dear All,
I have read a number of articles on this forum and most seem to favor ductless mini-splits over geothermal. I believe peopel have said performance may be neck and neck while up front costs probably favor the mini-split.

However, what happens when water heating enters the equation? Some background:

Asked By Gina Jasso | Oct 4 15
8 Answers

Add rigid foam during re-roof

Our home on a barrier island 30 miles south of Wilmington, NC (close to NC/SC border) needs to have its shingle roof replaced. We’re planning on going to a standing seam metal roof.

If we know we want to eventually condition the attic, should we add rigid foam on top of our sheathing during the re-roof? Or spray foam the attic later?

If rigid foam makes sense now, what is the recommended type and thickness for this application?

Other house details
Climate zone: 3 Coastal
Built in 1947 (survived Hurricane Hazel!)

Asked By Robb Czyzewski | Sep 4 15
1 Answer

Insulating the exterior of a Rubberwall foundation -- hydrostatic pressure questions

(Zone 5A) 2 questions really

1st - have been using Rubberwall as my foundation sealer for years and been very satisfied with it. I usually will put a layer of some insulation on the rubberwall at the time of install to protect it but also when looking for a exterior insulation job. Lately I have been wondering if there are any redeeming qualities in the green colored rubberwall material. In other words is its manufacturing toxic or bad news in any way.

Asked By Arthur | Oct 5 15
12 Answers

How is thermal bridging prevented?

The construction process of our home, in southeast Iowa, was completed in January 2014. The house has fiber cement lap board siding and an interior spray foam insulation. In March of 20014 we noticed moisture accumulating, in a vertical line pattern, on the east elevation of the house.

Asked By S. Schneider | Oct 5 15
3 Answers

Sight-built SIPs detail -- leave the middle foil face?

As a follow up question to a previous one:

I am going with the "sight-built sip" approach.

Zip sheathing taped then a double layer of 1" eps foam and 1/2" osb on the outside with an additional layer of building wrap.

The sheets came foil faced.

Q:Does it matter if I leave the foil on the 1" layer attached to the sheathing? (sandwiched between the 2 layers of foam) Will it interfere with moisture flow away from the house?

It peals off fairly easily so that is an option.


Asked By Brian McDonald | Oct 5 15
2 Answers

Sure, exterior rigid foam when blowing wall cavities might be a good idea, but is it NECESSARY?

My 1920 platform framed home is on the border of climate zone 5&6.

The empty wall cavities are framed with true 2x4s, 16 OC. Walls are covered with lathe and horsehair plaster on the inside and 1" pine sheathing boards outside. The current siding is a horrendous installation of vinyl over the original clapboards. The cavities are now empty.

We intend to remove the vinyl (carefully, for reuse), strip the clap boards, dense pack the wall cavities, wrap the house in tar paper, and rehang the vinyl.

Asked By Mark | Oct 5 15
5 Answers

Insulation advice

Sorry to repost this, but we are overwhelmed.

Just got some prelims back and he's want to know about insulation details so they can be noted.
Zone 3,12/12 pitch standing seam roof with 5/8 plywood an clips,2 story with a option I bonus room on the third,it has a half story truss,24 on center,we were thinking about spray foamin the inside roof line but know if that the best option.
Walls are 2x6 on 24 centers,we planed on putting 1 inch exterior foam board under hardie board and over tyvek and osb but don't know if that's te best option.

Asked By Quinton | Oct 4 15
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