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

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2 Answers

I am building a LEED Platinum home and plan to convert all my scrap lumber to mulch. I used the Huber Zip Wall and Roof Panel system and have scrap material with the green and red coatings of these products. I know from the LEED for Home Reference Manual that it is OK to mulch OSB and plywood. Does anyone know if the "kraft paper" coating on the Zip panels is OK as well? I called the technical department at Huber and they don't know either. They sent me the MSDS sheets, but they don't know if it is considered acceptable to use as mulch.

In Green products and materials | Asked By Andrew Homoly | Mar 8 12
1 Answer

So it's a 12 pitch roof with a full dormer. Can we build up a regular sawn stick, (2X10) to make more room for insulation above the wall? I recently saw....(guru, here) saying that we ought to have at least as much insulation above the wall as is in it. The plan is for a 12 inch wall, It is the dormer rafter that I am getting at. Could we make a birds mouth by adding material, rather than the usual removal? Like someone might make nasty to a stringer.
Whattaya think?

In Green building techniques | Asked By dave litwak | Mar 8 12
15 Answers

I'll be breaking ground this Fall for a new home in Maine that will be small (1,214 sq ft) and super-insulated. Heatload requirements are estimated to be around 9,100 Btu/h in the dead of a Maine winter to keep the place at around 72F. One challenge I'm facing is maintaining the thermal efficiency of the home when using a gas range top and ventilation hood on a regular basis.

In Mechanicals | Asked By Litawyn Eco-Cottage | Feb 3 12
1 Answer

Good night for viewing the aurora even at lower latitudes (peak viewing between 1 and 5am EST):

The video embedded is worth watching despite the commercial.
It's a bit mind boggling to imagine how powerful the forces involved in a solar flare are.

This story reminded me of Martin's Halloween blog.

In General questions | Asked By Lucas Durand - 7A | Mar 7 12
22 Answers

First off, thank you GBA for creating this fantastic resource for all to use. My wife and I built our current home 5 years ago and we were considered cutting edge for our area with the first home to use SIPs (PU 4") and a Superior Walls Basement. Now we are looking to build a new home for our growing family and move even further north in Michigan (Zone 6A per your map) so we were hoping for even better insulation in our new home. We currently have R24 walls and R60 attic with energy heel trusses.

In General questions | Asked By Paul Shank | Mar 5 12

I am a big fan of Scott Gibson's designs and projects. I am currently using his design for "craftsman's kitchen" cabinets (built-ins) shown in Built-ins magazine (Best of Fine Woodworking). In the articles and plans, Scott does not mention what he uses for stain on the cabinets. I would like to use the same stain in my product if Mr. Gibson can email me the color and type of stain used.

Thank you so much,
Jeffrey Driscoll

In General questions | Asked By Jeffrey Driscoll | Mar 7 12
9 Answers

Please set me straight again.

I have pictures on a multitude of sources. Flickr being where one resides.

I copied the url and popped open attachments, and the paste command is a no show.

Time to find all the threads to do with posting here maybe.


In General questions | Asked By aj builder, Upstate NY Zone 6a | Feb 26 12
2 Answers

I am building a new home in zone 6 and am considering using 1" of spray foam insulation on the inside of the wall sheathing, and then filling the remaining area with 6" fiberglass. Wall framing is 2"x6".

I am looking for some feedback on using this method. I would appreciate your thoughts.

Thank you.

In Energy efficiency and durability | Asked By Rocco Risbara III | Mar 7 12
3 Answers

I recently purchased a house that was built in 2002 in southwestern PA. The ground outside appears to be rock and shell. The basement walls were gray foundation block. The height of the basement is approximately 9 feet. Approximately 2 -2 1/2 feet is above ground level. On the one wall and three corners I noticed a white substance on the block. This white substance started at the bottom of walls/corners and would go up even past the ground level to top of basement wall.

In GBA Pro help | Asked By Ron Miller | Mar 7 12
3 Answers

I am a "newbie" to this group and hoping this question is appropriate.

We are first time homeowners whose 90 year old single story craftsman cottage needs a new roof installed. Our city code desk advises that the current asphalt shingles & cedar shake layers currently laid over 1x6 fir boards (with spaces between) must be totally removed and new deck sheathing installed under a new roof.

In Energy efficiency and durability | Asked By Terry Allen | Mar 6 12
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