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3 Answers

Advice on rough finished new construction, Zone 5, top floor

Background: I did what I said I'd never do and bought a big house. I'm trying to house several older family members and my kids at this time in my life and I couldn't help it. The style, over built owner construction and 8 hard wooded acres hooked me. And the price was right. It's all finished except for the top floor. Which is where most of my advice will be needed. It's located in Middlesex County ma.

The 1250 sqf top floor has dormers and 1 skylight.. 2x6 walls and

In General questions | Asked By stephen edge | Jan 25 15
4 Answers

Where to buy competitively priced PV panels?

Hi there,

For years I've been reading here about how the price of PV has dropped and dropped. I believe that, yet I'm unconvinced that my web searches are showing me those most-competitively-priced PV panels and accessories (particularly since improvements continue to be made, and older models may sit on the web to be unloaded at not-very-competitive prices).

I realize the folks working for GBA may possibly not feel comfortable listing some good places to buy PV panels (or, maybe it's not a conflict), but in any case, I'd bet some forum members could advise...?

In General questions | Asked By Minneapolis Disaster, 6B | Jan 25 15
5 Answers

Bathroom exhaust fan damper

I was just installing a Panasonic whisper green select exhaust fan. I've heard that Panasonic makes quality fans and I liked the options that the fan has, but I was unimpressed with the damper. Its flimsy plastic and it doesn't seal the fan at all. I can clearly see through the fan and down to the floor through two big gaps on each side of the damper. I remember the last fan I installed was a cheaper brand but it had a nice metal damper that seemed to seal quite well. Is there anything that I can do to seal the fan better? Would installing a duct damper be wise. Thanks for any help.

In Energy efficiency and durability | Asked By Kevin Schramm | Jan 25 15
8 Answers

Wall vent vs. roof vent

We are installing a custom wood range hood and can't decide between venting through our wall or heading through the roof. The duct is 6" round. Going through the roof the run would be about 3-4' straight up. Roof is pitched about 5-12 and the vent cap would land right around 30" from the eave.

The range sits on an exterior wall, so heading though the wall would give the run a 90 degree turn and about 2' of ducting. The siding is 4" lap fiber cement. Any pros or cons or suggestions to persuade me one way or another?

In Mechanicals | Asked By Matt Cibula | Jan 25 15
2 Answers

What's the best way to integrate rain water to a condo system?

Hi,

First of thank you for having such a wonderful forum to share infornation on. I have found this place very usefull in the past.

To my question: im designing a 7 story medium sized condo that will house 6 families. Im thinking of integrating rain harvesting to the building as we some times get droughts and i hate to see all that rain water go to waste. I think it should be regulation to have some sort of backup water sytem just incase the mains dry up. But for now will just be using rain water for the watering closet.

Some numbers:

In Mechanicals | Asked By Osman Naskali | Jan 24 15
2 Answers

Windows - Canned spray foam vs. ExoAir foam tape

I noticed that builders will use canned spray foam to fill in the gaps between the window and the window bucks. The spray foam is messy and needs to be trimmed back on the interior and exterior since trim work cannot be done properly. I also question spray foams ability to expand and contract as window frames do over the course of the life of the home. I also have seen smoke pencil tests done after spray foam and there are noticeable air gaps between the window frame and buck.

In Green products and materials | Asked By Peter L | Jan 24 15
11 Answers

Longevity of double wall construction?

I'm currently designing a new home as an owner/builder (construction to begin later this year) for the Edmonton, Alberta area. I have several years of building experience, however I have to admit that I've only ever done status quo jobs - 2x6 construction with fiberglass batts, a poly vapor barrier and OSB sheathing.

In Green building techniques | Asked By Matthew Sokalski | Jan 23 15
2 Answers

What is the best heat-pump water heater for Zone 6A?

So you guys have more than convinced me to go with a heat pump water heater. I am going to have 9.3+kW on my roof. Should I just buy a heat pump water heater or buy a Marathon type electric water heater and add on a heat pump?

In General questions | Asked By brad hardie | Jan 23 15
4 Answers

Slab on grade floor repair

About 20 years ago two rooms were added onto this house, both have a slab on grade and the floor tiles are cracking, i had to repair a wall in one of the rooms, and it looks like the floor was the slab with a styrofoam sheet on top (2-3 inches thick), with 1/4in plywood, black adhesive (tar?) and kraft tiles on top (i have no idea what these tiles are called, they are 12x12 in, used in many schools and older buildings, are less then 1/4 in thick and are the same fibrous material all the way through (and i'm hoping not asbestos, they were installed about 10 years ago i am told).

In Green building techniques | Asked By Alan B | Jan 22 15
4 Answers

Whisper wind exhaust only ventilation durability with continuous run time?

Don't believe any of us know how long a Panasonic Whisper wind fan can be expected to run if exhausting 60 CFM out a bath ceiling if hard wired to operate continuously through time? Anybody have a guess?

In Green products and materials | Asked By Rick Jenkins | Jan 22 15
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