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!


6 Answers

Accu Vent Baffle Installation Detail Questions

I’m installing Accu-Vent baffles in a new construction home and have a few questions concerning installation details. Background: Climate Zone 4A, 8” raised heel trusses, 4.5:12 pitch roof with flat ceilings (although a small portion of the house has a 2:12 vaulted ceiling), R-60 cellulose on the ceiling. I am foaming the edges of the Accu-Vent to the trusses to minimize any air leakage up to the roof sheathing.

In General questions | Asked By David Baca | Jan 30 13
1 Answer

The "Adjustable Window Buck" Challenge

I have had this thought for some time, since delving into the 2nd rounds of the deep energy retrofit work here at NYSERDA. We know the work is important, we know it makes sense, and we know it costs a lot to do it. One of the lacking ingredients in the deep retrofit work is a “technical device” that people actually can see, since most of the work is just “brute force labor, good building science, and hard work”. One of the technical devices that I feel could help “propel” some of this work is a “dynamic, adjustable window buck”.

In Energy efficiency and durability | Asked By Martin Holladay | Apr 11 12
2 Answers

Heat Loss Calculator

I have just purchased a house in Santa Cruz, CA. It is about 2400 sq ft, two story and was built in 1975. It has Hydronic baseboard heat. The construction is pretty typical for that era. I have scheduled a blower door test to see what my starting place is. I plan extensive remodel and energy upgrade over the next year.

I have prepared a detailed floor plan and find 96 feet of Slantfin baseboards. Using Slantfin specs, I get about 550 to 600 btu per foot of baseboard which adds up to at most, 60,000 byu's. There is a 200K BTU boiler in the basement. Does this make sense?

In Mechanicals | Asked By Stephen Houlihan | Jan 29 13
3 Answers

Atticat expanding blown-in insulation

we are considering using blown fibreglass for the attic insulation in our r2000 project. the small village where our project is located has tje atticat system. another town 1.5 hours away has the blown cellulose system. basically, for the price of 24" deep cellulose we could get 36" of fibreglass. from what i have read on the gba, i would guess the majority of the gba folk prefer cellulose over fibreglass. i'm tempted to go with the fibreglass...opinions? is 36" too thick for fibreglass?...thanks again! p.s., the attic floor is 5/8" t+g osb and is flat.

In General questions | Asked By erik olofsson | Jan 28 13
7 Answers

Insulating Old house

I have a post and beam house, built 1790....the walls are board on board, then lathe and plaster. There is no space to put blown insulation in.
I am unsure whether to stud up the inside walls, and insulate, or add some kind of insulation board to the outside, and some insulated siding.
I would really like to talk to someone who knows what they are doing, someone that works in northeast New York, who is trustworthy and would do this for me.
The house is cold, and impossible to heat, I think it's time to do it up right.
I am in Hudson Falls, NY.
Thanks.

In Energy efficiency and durability | Asked By Hilary Cooper-Kenny | Jan 23 13
9 Answers

Seeking dense pack cellulose installer in New Jersey

Can not find cellulose installer with experience (or even without) to dense pack my 12 inch walls with cellulose in NJ Philly area. Local cellulose installer suggests I install drywall and then pack the walls. I would like to have the walls netted. Any suggestions for tradesmen or alternative approaches welcome.

In Green products and materials | Asked By Michael Arnold | Jan 24 13
1 Answer

Marc Rosenbaum will offer another online course

Marc Rosenbaum will offer his 10-week online course on Net Zero Energy Homes again, beginning on March 11.

Marc sent me an e-mail:

"The inaugural Zero Net Energy Homes online course had 50 students and was a great learning experience! We’re doing it again starting March 11th.

In General questions | Asked By Martin Holladay | Jan 29 13
4 Answers

Any recommendations for a particular type/brand of wall mounted electric radiator?

Is their a particular brand of wall mounted electric radiators that tend to be more efficient at distributing warm air into a room as compared to traditional floor mounted types? Thanks.

In Green products and materials | Asked By Matthew Michaud | Jan 27 13
11 Answers

Blower door testing with IR thermometer or smoke stick

Can I rely on using only an IR camera during a blower door test to find air leaks in the building envelope of a very tight new construction home?

We will be conduction our first of planned 2 or 3 blower door tests to achieve the Passive House standard of 0.6 ACH@50 in southern Maine. This first test will be done with the building envelop completed, windows and doors installed, air sealed all gaps, but before plumbing, electrical, insulation etc trades begin work.

In PassivHaus | Asked By Roger Normand | Jan 25 13
2 Answers

Deep Energy Retrofit

This isn't so much a question as a suggestion for those renting a basement apartment and looking for cheap approaches to a deep energy retrofit. The added bonus is we don't have to breath in fumes from the upstairs wood stove now! Images speak louder than words...

In Green building techniques | Asked By jessie pratt | Jan 29 13
Register for a free account and join the conversation


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