A Song of Ice and Fire – The Street Side Energy Audit

August 12, 2013
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  When my wife and I bought our current house, one appeal was that it was largely uninsulated. Given the choice between somewhat insulated and uninsulated, give me the blank slate every time. We moved in September and between the start of a super busy audit season and unpacking, any desired projects were temporarily back-burnered. […]

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Spray Foam and Cold Climates

August 7, 2013
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    Spray foam is a great tool for insulating and weatherizing. It can be applied to horizontal and vertical surfaces, can be the air barrier and vapor and thermal control layers once cured (at least for closed cell foam) and provides some of the highest R-values per inch available. It slices! It dices! It […]

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Energy Retrofits Without Energy Audits

August 5, 2013
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    While some building folks have opined that energy audits are less than essential, I am admittedly biased. It is what I do. But it raises an interesting question: how could one do the work on a house and ensure air quality, warmth, comfort and moisture control without an audit? What minimum provisions would […]

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Concentric Vents and Blizzard Nemo

July 31, 2013
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    Blizzard Nemo clobbered Maine and most of the eastern seaboard this past February. Snow blanketed the entire coast, piling especially high in the Appalachian foothills. We slogged through a three foot dump in Portland. 50 MPH gusts whipped snow every way, sculpting enormous snow drifts in almost alien landscapes. That’s what our family […]

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Ban The Can: Why You Should Avoid Recessed Lights

July 29, 2013
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    That image above is of a recessed light in a house built in 1994. The blower door was 5750 CFM50, which unless one were testing the Astrodome, is quite high. The outside temperature was around 10F and you can see that inside the can is 27F. Bad bad bad. I ran into a […]

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