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

[Click map to enlarge]

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

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!

2 Answers

Climate Zone 6B

In Green building techniques | Asked By JMS Build | Jul 30 14
1 Answer

Many building science resources recommend installing a capillary break over the footing (between the footing and foundation wall). Is there a reason this is preferable to installing a vapor barrier (i.e. 6 mil polyethylene) under the footing, up the inside face of the footing, and overlapping with the under-slab vapor barrier?

I'm assuming the foundation wall waterproofing extends all the way down the exterior face of the footing. I'm in Cincinnati, OH, and my question applies to finished basements, unfinished basements, and conditioned crawlspaces.

In Green building techniques | Asked By Eric Stear | Jul 31 14
20 Answers

Hi,

We are building a duplex in Yellowknife, Canada - climate zone 8 (design temp minus 45 - same as Fairbanks).

Our winters are long and dark so some sort of (external) insulated window shutter is a huge energy saving opportunity. Our walls are going to R50, while triple pane windows get about R4.

I'm thinking of using 2-3 inches of Roxul board sandwiched between wood. That could give up to R12.

In Energy efficiency and durability | Asked By Andrew Robinson | Jun 10 14
8 Answers

Looking for an answer before I start this project. I live in northern MN. I had my attic spray foamed 4" behind knee walls, 3" in the living space. This is a 1 1/2 story with a non-vented roof. I want to know if its O.K. to use foil faced 1" rigid sheets to cover studs [Editor's note: I think David means "rafters"], with the foil facing down between the knee walls. I did plan on filling all voids and foil taping the joints. Then 1/2" sheetrock over the foam. Just want to make sure this isn't considered a double vapor barrier, and if this would be considered good construction.

In Energy efficiency and durability | Asked By david chinn | Jul 27 14
1 Answer

Hello everybody.

I am currently designing a new single family vacation home in southern New Jersey on the beach. The project is going for LEED for Homes and Energy Star certifications. My main wall section from inside-out calls for 1/2" gypsum, 2x6 stud wall w/ batt insulation, 1/2 plywood, 1-1/2" rigid foam, WRB, 1x4 furring/air space, fiber cement siding. Air sealing details are similar to those offered in the GBA detail library. As a summer vacation home the main usage would be during the cooling season.

In Green building techniques | Asked By kevin field | Jul 30 14
2 Answers

We currently stay in a cottage 3 hours north of Toronto, Canada. The main level of the cottage has standard 2x6 insulated walls. I don't know what the roof insulation is like, but I will find out.
This cottage has so far only been used in the summer, but we plan to stay in it over the winter and want to do some permanent and/or temporary fixes to stay through the harsh Ontario winter in this cottage.
My biggest concerns are:
- only electric baseboard heat available right now, with very high electricity cost here

In Energy efficiency and durability | Asked By Hermann Thoene | Jul 30 14
17 Answers

Hi Guys,

So after getting a $310 bill from the folks at Duke Energy last month, I decided it was time to figure out a more efficient way to cool our home. I've since asked them for their free energy audit to identify areas where I can save energy.

In Energy efficiency and durability | Asked By Jeff Lever | Jul 29 14
10 Answers

We are building a new home soon and I really want to include a small cold cellar to age a few beers and keep some wine cool in lieu of a beverage refrigerator. I also want keep our chest freezer (we buy full animals to process) in here to lower its run time.

In Green building techniques | Asked By Troy Stevenson | May 7 13
Answers

Any folks out there interested in helping me out with a research study? It's an online study with 5 sets of questions and takes about an hour total. We are trying to understand perspectives on the pros and cons of various wall sheathing materials, especially for multifamily structures, and as it relates to green building. If you are interested, please contact me via emailat mary@deepblueinsight.com or call me at (404) 459-7100. Our website is www.deepblueinsight.com

You will be paid $300 for your time. We need three people to participate. Thanks.

In Green products and materials | Asked By Mary Elzey | Jul 30 14
13 Answers

We're about to begin framing on a new house in zone 6A (Minneapolis). From months of reading and following posts here, I've devised what I think is a wall/insulation strategy that will work. Does this look right, or are there any tweaks that could make it:
a) perform better (within reason; we're going after the "pretty good" model, not a Passivhaus)
b) more cost-effective
c) easier to build

The concept (inside to out):
- Drywall
- 2x6 stud wall
- Membrain or similar (6-mil poly if the inspector insists...sigh)
- 5.5" blown fiberglass cavity insulation (BIBS) = R-23

In Plans Review | Asked By Joshua Wyatt | Jul 28 14
Register for a free account and join the conversation


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