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13 Answers

Moisture management for tiny house subfloor?

My husband and I are just about to start building a tiny house on a trailer in Nashville, TN, and I'd like to make sure our subfloor does a good job of protecting against moisture, as well as drying out when necessary. Any advice would be greatly appreciated!

Our current setup, from bottom to top, is:

- Steel trailer frame
- Metal flashing
- 2x4 framing filled with Roxul, anchored to steel flanges on the trailer using bolts
- 3/4" Advantec with taped seams, which will connect to ZIP system sheathing as our air barrier
- Cork floating floor

In General questions | Asked By Michaela Riley | Jun 20 15
2 Answers

Foam insulating a roof that has 1x8 sheathing with large gaps between the boards?

I have a sixty year-old house, and want to spray foam in the attic, on the underside of the roof. The roof sheathing consists of 1 x 8 boards, and the spacing between the boards varies from 1/4" to 1/2". There is an ice and water shield underlayment and asphalt shingles on the roof. I have two questions: When the foam is applied will it expand through the gaps in the sheathing and cause the underlayment and shingles to lift? Do I somehow need to seal the gaps before the foam is applied? Will it make a difference if I choose to use open or closed cell foam?

In Green building techniques | Asked By Ron | Nov 18 15
6 Answers

Sealing in flame retardant foam in furniture

Hello all,

I recently learned that polyurethane foam in furniture oftentimes has flame retardants that are carcinogenic. These flame retardants escape from the furniture and become a part of the household dust which can be breathed in or swallowed. I have seen suggestions to buy new furniture that has no fire retardants or replace the flame retardant foam with non flame retardant foam. All of these options are quite expensive. Does anyone know if it is possible to encapsulate flame retardant foams so the flame retardants cannot escape into the air or at least greatly reduce the spread?

In General questions | Asked By John Doe | Nov 20 15
4 Answers

Air quality sensor / controller?

After much time spent thinking about an air exchange system retrofit for my home, I'm amazed at the installed cost, and am left questioning the necessity of it all. I reputable installer has quoted me $3,500 to $4,000 for a HRV-based air exchange system, so I'm wishing for a cheaper and/or more scientific way to determine my home's ventilation needs, other than something that just vents continuously regardless of conditions.

This article intrigued me:

In Green building techniques | Asked By Ryan Griffin | Nov 20 15
18 Answers

Do screws through exterior insulation reduce the wall R-value?

I was in a Net Zero Building class this weekend and there was mention that screws that are used to attached exterior insulation reduce the whole wall R-value by 39%.

The screws are attached from the outside thru the rainscreen, insulation, WRB, sheathing and into the framing.

This individual referred to an article from Energy Design Update (no issue was noted). I'd check but $600.00 for a subscription is too rich for my pockets.....

Any help here on the article or data at least, with other references?

In General questions | Asked By brad hardie | Mar 1 15
1 Answer

Insulating a 1949 cinder-block house

Currently the walls are covered by cheap wood panels. In between there seems to be some kind of wool like insulation, I see seeping on the floor where I removed the baseboards.

Plan to remove wood paneling and other to bare cinder block walls. Clean for black mold. Fill in cracks and joints between wall and foundation. Seal with Concrete Treat. Insulate.

Questions are:
* What to use to fill in cracks-spaces?
* I use Concrete Treat to seal the walls without it having a reaction with crack filler?

In Energy efficiency and durability | Asked By Marta | Nov 20 15
5 Answers

Global warming impact of HFCs in CCSPF vs. transportation emissions of rigid foam

The consensus about the global warming impact of HFCs in closed cell spray foam and XPS rigid foam makes it pretty clear that they should be avoided.

In Green products and materials | Asked By Nick Welch | Nov 20 15
10 Answers

Cellulose retrofit

I recently acquired a late 40's vintage brick veneer house located in southwestern Pennsylvania. The house is a two story 30' x 22' rectangle topped with a hip roof. Like virtually every other house in this area, it has no overhangs other than oversized half-round gutters. Having said that, the bricks all seem to be in very good condition, and there are no signs of water damage on the interior walls or ceilings. Additionally, there is no insulation in the exterior walls.

In Green products and materials | Asked By Garrick | Nov 19 15
6 Answers

Heat pump water heater in an unconditioned attic... any issues?

I'm working with a builder building some townhomes in Orlando. One option is for them to install heat pump water heaters in the unconditioned attic (R38 blown cellulose floor). There are a couple concerns I have:

1. Will it be too cold in the winter? The 97.5% heating design temp in Orlando is 38F. I expect this, plus the small temp buffer from being in an attic, should make freezing not a problem. Does anyone have experience with this?

In Green products and materials | Asked By Cy Kilbourn | Nov 19 15
5 Answers

Is thermal imaging accurate?

Customer had a thermal imaging co come out .images showed temperature deference so around wall outlets and switches.He thinks it is because of bad insulation install around them . ????Isn't there a building code not to pack or install too tightly ???

In General questions | Asked By Will | Nov 18 15
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