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9 Answers

Frost-Protected Shallow Foundation question

Hey,

I live in southern Vermont and am starting to build my home this summer. I'd like to build a FPSF and I am also planning on doing the build over a couple summers, starting this summer and continuing next year.

I haven't been able to find any info out there in regards to building a FPSF and not having a finished structure over it for the winter, as I know the system relies on the homes heat to some degree to keep it from heaving.

Any one know if this will be a problem, to have the foundation in place over winter without a house on it?

Thanks,

Moses

Asked By Moses Draper | Feb 18 15
4 Answers

Old house, ice dam resolution

Hello There,

I have read with great interest many of articles and conversation with fellow readers. Here is a brief description of my situation.

I own half of a 1891 ballooned-framed duplex located in Saratoga Springs, NY. The building has a low slope roof with parapet front and side walls, and drainage in the back into gutter. Since it was built, the house has suffered from ice dams. In fact, when I purchased the house two years ago and performed renovation, the back side framing lumber had significant rot.

Asked By Sonia Yau | Feb 22 15
8 Answers

XPS or PVC under base plate

I'm looking to start framing in our basement. The house is 15 years old, and did have some water leakage (some small puddles could form during big rains... We had crack injections done this fall to alleviate the issue), but no flooding yet (knock on wood).

I thought I read somewhere that you could use XPS insulation to put under the base plate of the wall. It seems like a good idea (a 1" insurance policy should the basement begin to flood).

Asked By Andrew Wayland | Feb 22 15
6 Answers

Dipping a big toe in solar

I was wondering if there was a good guesstimate tool for helping to figure out "how much Solar I need"?

I am thinking about adding Solar to a spec. house and was interested in Solar since the price point has dropped so much. I will be doing the panel install myself with my crew and have the electrician wire it up.

Asked By leo kloop | Feb 20 15
11 Answers

What is the best sealant to use for airsealing?

I know I want seal as many air paths as possible. Is there one particular sealant that works best for things like drywall to studs, spaces between double studs, rigid foam to studs and PE film?

Asked By Donald Lintner | Jul 28 09
12 Answers

EPS or polyiso? Layered, taped seams?

I have found a supplier for EPS (plain EPS, no coatings) or Polyiso (foil faced on one side, white non-reflective on the other side)

1.) The polyiso is double the price. However, it is effectively better at insulating to my knowledge. I assume it should be my pick?

2.) I don't want to use more than 2" of foam on the exterior. With either product, I believe it will be advantageous to layer two 1" thick pieces with staggered joints. If I don't have the time I will simply buy the 2" thick and call that good.

Asked By Nicholas C | Feb 22 15
4 Answers

Insulation help needed?

I am in the process of building a house and thought I had a good plan for insulating, but want to know if I can do better. My current method I planned on using will pass code, but i figured if I can increase R-value effectively, why not. Better to do it now. I live in zone 4a. We have hot summers and fairly cold winters.

1 story
2x6 construction
Vinyl siding
Tyvek house wrap
Osb sheathing
Fiberglass or denim batts in stud cavities for R-value of 21.
Drywall
Have a full basement, will be unfinished for awhile.
Attic will have like R 50 blown fiberglass

Asked By Nick Lynn | Feb 21 15
4 Answers

Possible electrical ground out or short?

On the 7th of January, my townhouse electricity started cutting out (around 7 times). There was some wind in the area and cold temperatures, near zero. It stopped and soon after I would get shocked if I touched a lightswitch or my pet's nose. My power usage has doubled, but that may be due to the temperature change. It is my first winter in this place. However in the past, I have never had such a huge increase in usage. It went from 537 kwh to 937 kwh and increased again this bill to 1087 kwh. Could a ground out cause the static buildup? (The floors are carpeted.)

Thanks.

Asked By Sheleen Feldhaus | Feb 21 15
3 Answers

Article idea?

Perhaps this has been done already but i am interested in an article that lists expected lifetimes of the different building materials, brick (frame and veneer), wood, EPS, XPS, cellulose insulation, fiberglass, drywall, plaster/lath, OSB, roxul, plywood and all the rest (with caveats about what shortens and increases their service life and i'm sure different formulations are available, i see many brick frame buildings in the ares over a century old and its easy to see some are looking very good and some are breaking down).

Asked By Alan B | Feb 23 15
2 Answers

When using a LED conversion kit for a recessed lite, can you fill the can with fiber glass insulation?

I have two lights in a vaulted ceiling that leak air like crazy and make it difficult to keep the room warm. If not is there a better way to insulate the lights without replacing them?

Asked By Rick Miller | Feb 21 15
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