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3 Answers

Insulating outside of block home?

I am building a earth-sheltered passive block home. I want to insulate it all from the outside. I have been trying to get Roxul Drainboard in 3.5 inches but cannot afford a whole truckload to do a small home. So I'm thinking of using 4 inches of XPS foam under slab and all walls.

Any suggestions for water proofing exterior of block and fastening XPS to all the walls?

Thank you.
Michael

In General questions | Asked By michael holler | Jul 11 14
2 Answers

Retractable pool enclosure up against an existing house

We are in a 5A climate zone, near Chicago. We wanted to add a retractable pool enclosure up against an existing house that would be used year round. http://www.libart.com/evolution-lean-to-structures

The existing house has a wall construction what has fiber cement siding, 1" rigid insulation with taped seams, Tyvek, 5/8" plywood, 2x6 framing with open cell insulation and drywall on the interior. See attached image. Keep in mind that this wall was build 9 or so years ago.

In Green building techniques | Asked By Nathan Kipnis | Jul 11 14
3 Answers

Intus window costs

Hi there~
I am a homeowner in Philadelphia, PA. I am wanting to renovate a building as energy efficiently as possible and my limits are by funding. My plan is to stretch funding by phasing in things. Windows are an immediate need. My windows research let me to a thread on this site discovered Intus windows. I will be reaching out to a dealer tomorrow (closed today). And, I'm wondering if anyone has a estimate of pricing. The windows seems incredible in terms of efficiency, and I'm concerned they will be out of my league financially. Maybe compare to an Andersen series 400 window.

In Energy efficiency and durability | Asked By Terrie Lewine | Jul 13 14
3 Answers

Would installing vertical furring strips next to the sheathing and behind the rigid foam help the wall to breathe?

Would installing vertical furring strips next to the sheathing and behind the rigid foam help the wall to breathe and still maintain R values? I am in Zone 7 and considering adding foam to the exterior since I am residing. Or is this just overkill? Thanks for any replies.

My wall from the inside out would consist of:
Paint
1/2" Drywall
Poly Vapour barrier
2"x4" studs ( fiberglass batt insulation)
3/8" plywood
** 1/4" furring strips **
2" rigid foam
Tyvek building wrap
Hardie Plank siding

In Energy efficiency and durability | Asked By David Bee | Jul 13 14
7 Answers

Insect Screen for Metal Siding

I'm looking for a detail for integrating an insect screen with vertical corrugated metal siding that is meant to function as rainscreen.

Are the typical metal J-trims and flashings enough to keep bugs out of the corrugated flutes or is there a better way?

In GBA Pro help | Asked By Daryl Ross | Jul 12 14
4 Answers

Why? Israel vs USA: solar hot water systems

In a conversation with a tenant earlier today....

The tenant (a PHD Cello student) had visited Israel last summer. When Green Building came up, he commented that ALL houses in Israel have Solar Hot Water Tanks installed. Ok, I will presume he is off by 50%, still 50% vs .....how many in the USA.....less than 00.1% as a guess. [And I doubt he toured many rural areas vs metropolitan.]

So my question is, what are we doing wrong...or what are they doing right. Yes, I realize the climate is different. Is it the laws, the need, the desire, or is is technical!

In Green building techniques | Asked By John Granoski | Jul 12 14
3 Answers

I think internal wall soundproofing is very important and could convince me to build a smaller house

I am in the research phase for building a house in MA (would be my first), and find myself on board with almost all of the consensus best-practice ideas here on GBA: super-insulation, air-tightness, simplicity of design, small buildings, etc.

In General questions | Asked By Ethan Fahy | Jul 11 14
1 Answer

Options for insulation for cathedral ceiling

We are replacing a roof structure on a portion of our 1832 timber frame home with regular framing (17' x 20'; 20' is horizontal roof span). Due to the 4' kneewall and 5 pitch roof, the ceiling height in the peak of the room is only 8', so we want to retain the cathedral ceiling in this large room. We are using a laminated 14" ridge beam and 2 x 10" rafters (16" OC), with no rafter tails (maintaining the original structure design with the timber frame). We are climate zone 5, Marine (SE Michigan, between the big lakes).

In Green building techniques | Asked By Emily Rusnak | Jul 12 14
3 Answers

Tape life expectancy ( air sealing & flashing tapes)

Maybe I'm not asking Mr Google the right question, but I'm not finding anything on the life expectancy of air sealing tapes & flashing tapes. I've seen the backyard tape test, but that doesn't answer the question of how the tapes will be performing in 20+ years. Any suggestions on where to look or particular tapes to recommend ?

In Green products and materials | Asked By Roy Goodwin | Jul 12 14
4 Answers

"Container Effects" from San Fransisco to North Ontario

Imagine the Lincoln Family (of 4) Live in North America
They don't care at all about Privacy
They do care very much about Comfort

Could they be "Comfortable" in a One Room "Cabin"
Heated and Cooled by a Single Ductless Mini-Split?

What if they Lived in San Francisco?
Or North Ontario?

In Energy efficiency and durability | Asked By John Brooks | Jul 12 14
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