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

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27 Answers

To buy or not to buy an oil burner?

OK, so I'm new to this forum but would greatly appreciate any help.

The setup:

In Energy efficiency and durability | Asked By John Manganaro | Dec 9 14
4 Answers

Does any one know of companies that will sell insulated glazing units alone in the PNW?

I am converting my unattached garage to a work shop, and for fun want to make the windows myself.
Looking for double pane IGU's to purchase in PNW. Any info/advice greatly appreciated
Thanks
Dave

In General questions | Asked By David Argilla | Dec 11 14
12 Answers

Martin, GBA 2.0

So what tabs stay free and what is going more toward pay for?

Does this Q&A stay? Do we keep yapping here those of us that have or do we now pay $100 bucks to play here and sometimes learn something?

In General questions | Asked By aj builder, Upstate NY Zone 6a | Dec 12 14
2 Answers

Wall assembly with Durisol

We're designing and planning a two story house in North Florida (CZ 2/3 border). The house is currently designed to have the lower story be clad in traditional cementitious stucco and the upper story to be fiber cement siding over 2x6 construction and a monolithic slab on grade foundation.

We're considering building the exterior walls out of Durisol. I really like the idea of this kind of product over traditional ICF. But I have a few questions to know whether or not it would work:

In General questions | Asked By Nick Davies | Dec 12 14
17 Answers

High performance homes and buckling wood floors?

I have a meeting tomorrow w a great builder who has really embrased high performance buiulding. In climate zone 4. Closed foam in walls. ERV to prescribed amount 139 cfm x 24 hours per day. Floors have buckled and been a headache for builder and homeowner. Builder needs strategies in order to build high performance or tempted to back off on building "so well."

In Energy efficiency and durability | Asked By Rick Jenkins | Dec 10 14
1 Answer

Adding a dormer = new ventilation required?

Two friends of mine - one the building owner and the other a contractor - have been renovating an attic and plan to add a 10'x10' dormer. After providing engineering drawings at great expense, our city's building department is now asking for a 'ventilation plan' among other things, in order to get the permit.

It's an old building with no active ventilation in Hamilton, Ontario, Canada. Presumably the Ontario Building Code would mandate the ventilation. I suspect however that my friends are being jerked around by the building department.

In Building Code Questions | Asked By Jonathan Dalton | Dec 12 14
4 Answers

Curious exceptions to the rigid foam thermal barrier

I've noticed that it is common practice for rigid foam to be used on attic hatches and garage doors without being covered by a thermal barrier, which building codes require. Is there some implicit exception for doors/hatches? Or does the small amount of foam used cause it to be simply overlooked?

In Building Code Questions | Asked By Nick Welch | Dec 11 14
5 Answers

No local builders are bulding with GBA and BSC knowledge

The building code officials here mandate

fiberglass insulation in studded walls in basements covered with poly.

Energy Star, our national government advocates R-5 rigid foam on exteriors from zone 5-8. GBA and BSC say that is asking for trouble and should never be done!!

In Energy efficiency and durability | Asked By aj builder, Upstate NY Zone 6a | Dec 11 14
18 Answers

What to heat with in small duplex development

Hello, I am in final design stages of a small development on Vancouver Island Canada. It is 13 duplexes consisting of 850 sq.ft each on one level on a heated crawl space. They will be very tightly sealed and insulated. I want to reduce electrical needs to site to a minimum. I have natural gas so plan to use it for heat, cook, dryer, hot water. I am thinking of using the Ranaii direct vent heaters for main heat and tankless hot water. I may need or want to add a small ERV for added air movement and exchange.

In Energy efficiency and durability | Asked By MURRAY bANTING | Dec 3 14
2 Answers

Are there professionals who do site visits and advise on available upgrades and challenges?

I live in a house that is well over a century old and an unmitigated energy efficiency disaster (i just discovered an new conundrum recently). I've been doing some upgrades and asked a few questions (thanks GBA experts for your answers over the last few months), but there are issues that i am not sure how to address (for example how safe is it to dig out my very shallow crawlspace, is the dirt holding up the brick walls) and hopefully someone with a lot more knowledge then i have who might see issues i have not considered or know of solutions i have not discovered yet.

In Energy efficiency and durability | Asked By Alan B | Dec 11 14
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