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5 Answers

Truly "smart" thermostats and boiler controllers?

Well, my new boiler is in (a Lochinvar WHN-85, with a Lochinvar SIT 40 indirect water heater). As far as I can tell this early in the season it's working fine. But, I've been thinking about my thermostats and how they communicate with the boiler, and wondering if there might be a better way.

My old boiler was a standard dumb boiler. Each circulator was on if its thermostat was calling for heat, and the boiler was on (full blast) if a circulator was on and the water temp wasn't at the limit. True bang-bang control.

In Mechanicals | Asked By Daniel Griscom | Oct 11 14
13 Answers

Should my indirect hot water heater have a mixing valve?

I have a 2300 square foot colonial, built 1960 in Massachusetts (Zone 5A), with three zones of fin tube baseboard. There's a 75 gallon whirlpool tub which we almost never use; the two showers are fairly low-flow. Heat loss done by Comfort-Calc.net was 55,840. I use town water, which is very good quality (Quabbin reservoir). I've accepted a bid to replace my heating system with a Lochinvar WHN-85 boiler and SIT40 indirect water heater.

In Mechanicals | Asked By Daniel Griscom | Sep 15 14
1 Answer

#2 about noise from outside

my question below was answered about putting in new window. i already knew that. and i've already tal ked to landlord, they will do nothing. . aside from these two things, could you let me know if closed-cell 2" foam , or 2" acoustical tiles will help at all? just wondering what i can try in addiction to the things i have tried that are mentioned in my note below. thank you, cindy

In General questions | Asked By Cynthia Oeser | Oct 10 14
17 Answers

Correct way to use closed-cell insulation on a roof?

I'm rehabbing an old 3-story brick building in Pittsburgh. The roof is a flat roof but pitched from front to back. I got estimates to spray closed-cell on the underside of the roof and essentially encapsulate the structure. There is a 'space' between the 3rd-story ceiling and the roof, so if I drywall the 3rd-story ceiling, there would then be an air space above the drywall. I'm also planning on installing a new rubber roof. So I guess I have several questions:

1. Is applying closed-cell to create a barrier at the underside of the roof the correct way to go?

In Energy efficiency and durability | Asked By John Murphy | Oct 8 14
2 Answers

Skirting for Cabin

My cabin was built on piers and has no skirting to protect the pipes beneath the house. I'm trying to find something that's energy efficient and attractive. In searches on the internet, all the skirting I find seems to be for mobile homes. Can you suggest skirting materials that will work best for keeping out the cold in the mountains of North Carolina? Currently it just has tar paper and lattice ... (The cabin is on a knoll and gets some very cold wind).

Thank you!

In Energy efficiency and durability | Asked By Leslie Elliott | Oct 10 14
4 Answers

What's goin' on! Rigid foam insulation / WRB shrinks?

I did not join GBA until after the issues of "shrinking foam" were discussed. I used it for a WRB/exterior insulation combo without having understood that there might be an issue. I used Tuck (sheathing tape), Weathermate flexible flashing and Windlock cap head screws to install it. Topped up with Vytec (division of CertainTeed) split shake style siding.

Earlier this week I read the FourSevenFive.com's recent series of "Foam Fails" articles. This is undoubtedly very controversial and has serious legal liabilities associated with it.

In General questions | Asked By flitch plate | Oct 10 14
4 Answers

Small house up North

I'm currently planning a home for when I retire. It's in a maritime region, 57 degrees N with 3200 HDD. I'm considering a small house (~1000sf) on a single story. The selected site has clear view to the south and the long axis of the house can be aligned E-W so solar is an obvious consideration. The house will be heavily insulated and built tightly. I would like to know whether or not a combination of direct solar, thermal mass and solar P-V would be a good starting point for the design. I have access to my own wood for winter warmth.


In Energy efficiency and durability | Asked By Peter Hastings | Oct 10 14
1 Answer

Wall insulation plan

I am building an energy efficient house, one story slab on grade and just picked up 300 sheets of recycled 3" polyiso insulation. I am considering changing my exterior walls from double stud dense pack cellulose to the drawing below. Any reason I should not?

In Energy efficiency and durability | Asked By Jenz Yoder | Oct 10 14
4 Answers

Standing-seam roof condition

Is the rust and peeling of these roof panels an indication of serious damage? Is there a way to recoat these panels? I have no idea when this roof was installed, but would like to know if I should start consider replacing it, or if it will last another 10+ years. Thanks in advance - Dan

In General questions | Asked By Dan McGonigle | Oct 9 14
1 Answer

An all-window roof

How would you put a roof over one side of our house that is all windows. there are 16-5x8 double windows at a 45 degree angle.Not all, but some of them leak with every rain. We think we have tried everything to fix them with no luck. The only thing left to do is put a new roof on, but i think it would have to be free standing? It is just going to be myself and my wife doing this job. Dont know what to do! Any suggestions would be appreciated.!!

In General questions | Asked By larry boso | Oct 10 14
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