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2 Answers

Mounting shutters on a recently side home with deep recessed metal frame casing around windows


In GBA Pro help | Asked By Maureen Matthews | Dec 13 15
22 Answers

Ice & Water Shield membrane installed under roofing is buckling

After over a month of photos documenting the problem of vertically oriented ridges, my contractor has finally offered to fix the local bulges.

The roof structure below the roofing is a conditioned attic with an R-60 Deep Energy Retrofit roof (cellulose in 2x12 cavity, plus 4 in. polyiso wrap over 1st layer of sheathing, plus 2nd layer of sheathing over polyiso).

In Energy efficiency and durability | Asked By Erica Downs | Aug 14 15
5 Answers

Door at bottom of basement bulkhead stairs

I want to install a door at the bottom of my exterior basement stairs. I was planning on framing around the rough opening in the foundation and installing a pre-hung door. This would probably require that I have to reach low to turn the door knob as I descend the stairs from the outside. It sounds like this is a code violation as it does not meet the requirements of having a landing. Is this correct? I'm wondering because it seems to me that the safety concern would be with egress, in which case the door will have a clear area in front of it as you're exiting the basement.

In Building Code Questions | Asked By Steven O'Neil | Dec 11 15
5 Answers

Converting 3rd floor to unvented, conditioned living space — insulation dilemma

My house was built in 1902 and includes a 3rd floor that has always been used as a conditioned living space. The furnace was located above collar ties/ceiling on this floor with all insulation being blown-in cellulose on top of collar tie flat ceiling framing and batts behind knee walls. Furnace didnt pass inspection and was removed along with ductwork. My bottom two floors are zoned, each with a new energy efficient central HVAC system.

In Energy efficiency and durability | Asked By Anne | Dec 11 15
5 Answers

Practical way to air seal an interior soffit with Airtight Drywall?

I'm planning on using the Airtight Drywall Approach for my ceiling plane, but have a few interior soffits planned (for example a drop from the 9' ceiling to the top of the kitchen cabinets). I'm assuming that with ADA, it would be best to not leave the top of the soffit area open but rather keep the air barrier at the same level (right below the roof trusses)?

In General questions | Asked By Nick Hall | Dec 11 15
1 Answer

Proper venting for 12 pitch hip roof with soffits on only 2 sides

My 3rd floor was already a finished, conditioned living area when we bought the home. The furnace that was located above the ceiling joists had to be removed. Upon removal of all plaster and lathe we discovered that not only is there no ridge vent but only the front and back of the house have soffits (which are vented). There was blown in insulation above the ceiling and batts on exposed roof slope and behind knee walls.

In GBA Pro help | Asked By Anne Thies | Dec 12 15
13 Answers

What to expect in getting a bank to finance a pretty-good house

After reading the musings of Holladay, Dorsett, Chulpp, Lstirubek, and Risinger on green building for the past six months, I spoke at length with a builder this week. When I discussed exterior foam and ductless mini splits, his very professional and polite response was: "The bank's not going to want finance that." (To be clear, the builder did not simply throw me under the bus. He indicated that he has had some luck in convincing banks to finance unusual projects.) I live in a rural county 50 miles from the nearest urban area where anyone might be pursuing a pretty-good-house project.

In General questions | Asked By James | Dec 10 15
2 Answers

Thanks to everyone who chimed in

I don't have a question but wanted to thank all the Q&A contributors who helped me navigate a particularly aggravating build process. My wife and I have been in our house for more than 18 months but just last week received the final validations for our Georgia Earthcraft Platinum certification. The door-blaster test measured 1.1 ACH/50, and the calculated HER value is 46.

Green Building Advisor was an incredible resource before, during, and after the build. Thanks to everyone, especially Martin Holladay who was more than generous with his knowledge and advice.

In Green building techniques | Asked By Steve Knapp CZ 3A Georgia | Dec 11 15
15 Answers

3 layers of Roxul vs. 1 and foam.

So I'm trying to come up with a wall insulation that will work with my budget and prefer DYI.
I've priced Roxul as I like its qualities and come to the conculsion that putting 3 layers of R16 2x4 16o.c. is cheaper than 1 layer of Roxul R22 or R24 2X6 16 or 24o.c. and 4" of Pink ridged foam on the exterior. I know the lumber and labor of a double stud wall will cost more. (pricing that currently)

I would like to know if the 3 layers of R16 Roxul will perform well in this stack up compared to the 1 R22 plus exterior foam idea. Will it actually get R48 or will whole wall R-value be way down

In Energy efficiency and durability | Asked By Dave B | Dec 11 15
5 Answers

Are the following practical and effective heating system retrofits? ECM motor, Outdoor Reset, Thermal Purge

Hi folks,

Are the following products practical and cost-effective heating system retrofits (i.e. installed on existing systems)?

ECM Motor (for furnaces)
Outdoor Reset Control (for boilers)
Thermal Purge Control (for boilers)

Does anyone actually install them as retrofits? Or are heating systems more like cell phones nowadays, where you just get a new one instead of upgrading/fixing?

Thanks for the help,

In Mechanicals | Asked By Whitney Larsen | Dec 9 15
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