Recent Comments and Answered Questions on Green Building Advisor

  • | Nov 22,2017 10:57 AM EST
    Thanks Martin - after pouring over all this info...it makes senses! The one area that I haven't wrapped my head around (or even seen talked about much) is using foam on the interior. I would ...
  • Kevin Spellman | Nov 22,2017 10:50 AM EST
    Martin is correct--wood framed chase with stone veneer. You linked to my old post about this same issue. I was in the early stages of architect plans and had hoped he would detail this. However, ...
  • John Clark | Nov 22,2017 08:19 AM EST
    Would this work? Home Depot (and probably others) used to sell a hardwood flooring system comprised of plastic underlayment w/adhesive strip and foam backed hardwood planks. I helped a friend ...
  • John Clark | Nov 22,2017 07:58 AM EST
    with respect to multi-family. Over the last 10-15 years a dozen or so new high rise condominiums were built or are at some stage of construction and they're ridiculously inefficient. First ...
  • Martin Holladay | Nov 22,2017 06:44 AM EST
    Timothy, If you can install a PV system inexpensively, and you live in a region of the country where the local utility offers a good net-metering contract, and your house has a thermal envelope ...
  • Martin Holladay | Nov 22,2017 06:05 AM EST
    BP8963, Some online research reveals that fastening furring strips to a cob wall won't be easy. I didn't come up with any great suggestions after reading these ...
  • Timothy Godshall | Nov 22,2017 06:02 AM EST
    Thanks for the responses! I appreciate the feedback. Regarding lifespans: I should note that he's coming off an experience in a previous house where a brand-new, professionally installed ...
  • Martin Holladay | Nov 22,2017 04:19 AM EST
    Kevin, I'm guessing that you are talking about a metal chimney surrounded by a wood-framed chimney chase, and I'm also guessing that the chimney chase is finished above the roofline with glued-on ...
  • Mark Waldron | Nov 21,2017 11:14 PM EST
    All, Thanks very much for the input. Martin, I had plans to install some perimeter insulation, but now wonder if, in the particular case of this house, it is worth the effort. The walls of ...
  • Malcolm Taylor | Nov 21,2017 10:23 PM EST
    Kevin, Is the chimney masonry from the fireplace up, or only the visible portion above the roof?
  • rich cowen | Nov 21,2017 09:51 PM EST
    Wow what an extensive answer. I think that the retrofit makes sense only if it's a lot quieter. In other words, we could live with our oversized furnace for 5 more years if it was not making so ...
  • Malcolm Taylor | Nov 21,2017 09:46 PM EST
    Martin, Surely in country with as large a population and diverse interests as America, there is someone who wouldn't mind sitting in Mike's attic and adjusting the fan every so often?
  • Dana Dorsett | Nov 21,2017 06:16 PM EST
    Rich: To save 200kwh in a month seems unlikely. It would take a 28% high duty cycle for a 1kw single speed blower motor to even use 200kwh TOTAL in a month, and a 55% duty cycle for a 500w ...
  • Jon R | Nov 21,2017 01:54 PM EST
    Any increase in attic pressure up to and somewhat beyond the stack effect pressure will decrease Mike's heating fuel bill. Even if were incorrectly way over pressurized at times, is a ...
  • Jon R | Nov 21,2017 01:23 PM EST
    Related comments: note that with his concern about climate change, the calculations can't be done in kWh or $. Water and concrete (a guess) plus a tolerance for some temperature swing means that ...
  • Dana Dorsett | Nov 21,2017 01:13 PM EST
    That's right, the batts need to be pulled for air sealing, but if you're re-using them with the foil-side down there's no point to the vapor barrier latex.
  • Martin Holladay | Nov 21,2017 12:41 PM EST
    Jon, If Mike installs a variable speed fan, and can adjust the fan speed so that the attic pressurization exactly cancels the stack effect leakage on the day the fan is installed, you're right -- ...
  • Jon R | Nov 21,2017 12:11 PM EST
    Indeed, my system has a permeate pump and so I guessed 1:3.
  • Dana Dorsett | Nov 21,2017 12:07 PM EST
    What is the lifespan of the electric water heater he's using to heat the floor? How about the lifespan of the hydronic pumps for the radiant floor? It's not significantly different than the ...
  • Martin Holladay | Nov 21,2017 11:50 AM EST
    BP8963, The question hinges on fastening. If you know how to securely fasten vertical furring strips to a cob wall, then you should be all set. I think that the wall assembly would benefit ...
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