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2X6″ OC framing and siding question

Hello building world,  Long time leacher of information from here, enough to make my head explode. First thanks for the entire community has offered so far.  My wife and I are building our forever home in Northern California, climate zone 3B. Seismic category D1. Wind category 95mph. Windland urban interface area (meaning high fire area, the lot was actually a fire burn lot). Now that the technical data is out of the way, we have gone with modified advanced framing for our wall assembly. Our builder agreed with 2×6″ with 24″ oc but still wanted to do double top plates…


Expert Advice: 10 Eco Best Practices for Home Remodeling and Building Projects from Dirty Girl Construction

Joan Barton established Dirty Girl Construction in Los Angeles back in 2008, becoming one of few women builders in this country. She’s also been on the vanguard of responsible, eco-conscious approaches to construction. And a longstanding go-to source for us when we’re looking for remodeling and building advice from the trenches.As we were working on our new book, Remodelista: The Low-Impact Home, we asked Joan about approachable ways to cut down on waste during home renovations of all sorts.  Without hesitating, she supplied us with the following punch list in her words.1. Source locally.We all want a house that is…


A plan for two air barriers: Pretty-good house performance for a rehab?

Thank you for the opportunity to benefit from the GBA community’s experience. The following design approach using two air barriers is influenced by Martin Holladay’s Q&A comment in his 2010 GBA article “One Air Barrier or Two” wherein he stated “In theory, if you have one good air barrier, you have stopped all air movement.  In most cases the second air barrier is unnecessary. The exception would be a wall without exterior foam insulation that is insulated between the studs with fiberglass batts.”   The subject residential rehab is in climate zone 5A, built in the early 2000s with 2×6 studs…


Remodeling 101: Farewell to the Gas Range, Welcome to the World of Induction Cooking

No wonder so many of us like cooking with gas. There’s something atavistic about fixing food over an open flame—a throwback to primitive man (and woman!) hunched over the fire. And gas heat is a snap to regulate—it’s on as soon as you turn the knob; the flame size shows how hot it is; and when you turn it off it’s immediately off. Plus, it’s cheaper than using electricity. If you already cook with gas, you probably don’t need me telling you this.But as you may have heard, gas ranges are on the way out. In 2019, Berkeley, CA, became…


Where to place fresh air intake / exhaust on a 2 story home?

4B, 2-story home with an unconditioned attic and 2 different HVAC systems (1st and 2nd floor) I’ve been improving the insulation in the attic (I now have R-60 with cellulose instead of R30 of fibreglass), I also air sealed the attic floor, as well as HVAC ducts with CCSF (2 inches), I’m happy to report that my HVAC runtimes during the hottest months are 40% less than the last 3 years. (Checked the historical averages from my tstat). However, I have another issue that I am trying to solve: Fresh Air / Exhaust ventilation. (Co2 levels are elevated now, possibly…


Domestic Science: How to Stop Your Washing Machine from Releasing Microplastics into the Ocean

Over the course of doing research for our new book, we learned so much about how to design our homes—and live our lives in them—in a more sustainable, climate-aware way. All of us at Remodelista have adopted new household routines as a result (read about them here). One of the most surprising facts we learned? That something as simple and essential as laundering our clothes can lead to extreme pollution in the form of microplastic fibers in our waterways.When you wash anything made of synthetic fabrics—e.g., a fleece jacket, spandex tights, microfiber cleaning cloth, or polyester mix sheets—the spinning and…

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