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RE: Insulation and no vapor barrier questions... help (Follow-Up #5)

posted by: naturelle on 03.30.2006 at 07:34 pm in Basements Forum

dominogold,

Are the walls finished now? If they are finished with panelling, it's not a big job to remove and replace it. I've done it several times myself. If it's drywalled, I can see your reluctance.

I definitely recommend you at least put vapour barrier over the batt insulation. That is not a major job and is not expensive, and if you do a careful job of using sealant to seal the lapping edges and at the contacts with joists and floor, you should keep the interior air from getting through to the cold wall.

Also, the area at the top should be insulated and more importantly sealed. This is the critical area, because the joist ends and rims are subject to the most air leakage and also need the insulation. You can understand why, when you see all the joist ends and rim joists sit on wood plates which sit on top of the wall at all floors. All the interfaces between the plates and the top of wall, and the joists with the plates and the subfloors are all heavy leakage areas. You may notice there are serious drafts through this area, and at the baseboard area and the whole floor (above)is cold. The cold migrates easily into the joist spaces well into the rest of the house. These areas are also difficult to seal, because of the many intersecting planes of the joist ends, plates and underside of floors. You could cut styrofoam to fit and seal it to the other surfaces. Some people try to resolve this using a simple if not as good a solution of stuffing and sealing bubble wrap into the cavity. One excellent way is to use spray foam insulation in the cavity, which will bridge all the leakage points. Once these areas are sealed you should pack insulation at least to the same extent as the rest of the wall and vapour barrier over.

Regarding installing the styrofoam against the wall to provide separation from the wood studs and fiberglass, I learned this the hard way, as I insulated, vapour barriered and panelled my basement walls at a previous house the traditional way. I did it the way they recommended back then, and thought I did a great job. To make a long story short, I ended up with sopping wet studs, fiberglass and panelling. The wood and panelling was rotting and there was a lot of mold starting to get very thick. What drew my attention that there was something amiss was hearing some grinding sounds coming from the wall. I pulled the panelling off and there were carpenter ants gnawing away on the rotting and wet wood. I found out ants and termites are attracted to and thrive in that environment.

I hope everything goes well for you.

Ted

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clipped on: 11.13.2006 at 08:35 pm    last updated on: 11.13.2006 at 08:36 pm

White railing with Ipe

posted by: scotte on 10.27.2006 at 06:49 am in Porches & Decks Forum

I'm planning on having an Ipe deck built for my house and want a white railing to match the trim on the house. While I like the look of the aluminum balusters, I don't think it goes well with my very old home which is sided with wood painted a barn red color. I also don't relish the idea of using a real wood material and having to paint all those balusters every few years. I have an idea but am not sure if it is possible... Can I use Ipe for my top rail, Have Ipe posts, and use a white colored composite (Timbertech?) for the balusters and bottom rail? The top rail and all the posts would be stained the same color as the deck and the balusters and bottom rail would be a white composite. My feeling is having only the balusters and bottom rail made out of composite would minimize the fake look of the composite, while cutting down on maitenance. Is this possible? Would it look good? Any other options out there?

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clipped on: 10.27.2006 at 12:34 pm    last updated on: 10.27.2006 at 12:34 pm

RE: Decided on Ipe ... A few questions (Follow-Up #5)

posted by: mike_kaiser on 07.02.2006 at 07:37 am in Porches & Decks Forum

Birgit,

You don't want to put any kind of wood into concrete. Concrete is porous and holds moisture against the wood causing rot. Use an anchor bolt and a post base on top of the concrete footing, which should be a couple or three inches above grade.

Mike

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clipped on: 07.14.2006 at 08:52 pm    last updated on: 07.14.2006 at 08:52 pm

RE: Really High Deck (Follow-Up #5)

posted by: brickeyee on 07.09.2006 at 08:11 pm in Porches & Decks Forum

"They looked nailed in, not bolted."

Not adequately secured. The slightest angle to anything wil cause the bottom of the columns to kick out.

"From far below, I could not see anything different about the way it was attached to the house - no extra enforcements."

If the ledger is supporting one side of the deck, bad news. Even with steel posts there is additional transverse load on the ledger from the flex. I typically double the bolt pattern and carefully ionspect waht the anchor in the house is. Additional fastening of joists to the rim joist is often required (protects against pull away), or strapping a joist if the ledger is attached to it (there is often not a lot holding the last joists in place for perpendicular loads from pull away by the deck).

Sopunds like you made a good choice. High decks are not an area to play around with. I investigate a few failures every year for insurance companies or injured parties.

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clipped on: 07.14.2006 at 08:43 pm    last updated on: 07.14.2006 at 08:43 pm

RE: Ipe question about sealing ends (Follow-Up #2)

posted by: joyce54 on 07.13.2006 at 11:25 am in Porches & Decks Forum

Hey there not a contractor or bulider just a home owner doing some do it your self projects some times getting in over my head....But dealing with Ipe your going to want endseal all the open cuts that you make I let one of my boards sit for a day with out end seal and checking and craking started after less than 24 hours. When talking to John at Advantge Trim and Lumber he told me that you can finish Ipe at any time with in 2 years of it being down and bring the color back. When we finished my first deck it was as soon as we got done we power washed the deck to get any saw dust or dirt out of the grain and then used Messmers UV plus suggested by John once the deck was dry and I LOVE the way it looks.

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messmers uv and end tmt
clipped on: 07.14.2006 at 08:38 pm    last updated on: 07.14.2006 at 08:39 pm