Air Quality

Filtering forced-air heat

Published on September 19th, 2012 | by Henri

Q. I read your column with great interest. I have a very important question about heating systems. Most newer homes have forced warm air heating because of the lower cost of installation. I intend to move ... Read More


Floors

Darkened color of old wood floor

Published on September 19th, 2012 | by Henri

Q. We recently removed a rug that had been on a hardwood floor for about 20 years. The floor has areas that are darker than others and it looks like these darker areas are where people ... Read More


Electricity

Electric heating costs

Published on September 19th, 2012 | by Henri

Q. Please answer quickly. We are in love with a beautiful house that’s for sale by owner. However there is one hitch! The house is electrically heated and we are scared of the bills. What are ... Read More


Condensation

Moisture builds up in remodeled house

Published on September 19th, 2012 | by Henri

Q. For 22 years, we have been living in a two-story home built around the turn of the century. Over the years, we have gutted and remodeled the interior, added a large addition, vinyl siding and, ... Read More


Insulation

Sealing holes after blowing in insulation

Published on August 30th, 2012 | by Henri

Q.    I enjoy you column and rely on it for my many household projects. I need a quick response as a contractor is coming tomorrow to have a contract signed on blowing in cellulose insulation to ... Read More


Pests

Controlling silverfish and firebrats

Published on August 30th, 2012 | by Henri

Q.    Our attic has been infested with silverfish and after 2 years we are finally getting some control of the problem. A period of cooler weather here in Chicago seems to have helped. Whenever any technician ... Read More


Windows

Replacing triple-pane window glass

Published on August 30th, 2012 | by Henri

Q.    My bi-level house in northern New Jersey has 13 triple-pane vinyl windows made by ThermalGard about 20 years ago. The windows are double hung, slider, casement, and picture. Most of the windows have water between ... Read More


Drains

Replacing sump pump with drain pipe?

Published on August 30th, 2012 | by Henri

Q.    I have a basement sump pump that operates during heavy prolonged rains. I have a steep slope in the front of my house and was wondering if a straight 4″ PVC open-ended gravity drain pipe ... Read More


Chimneys

Rusty metal chimney stains roof

Published on August 29th, 2012 | by Henri

Q.    Even though we applied a galvanized spray paint coating on the metal chimney of our boiler some time ago, we are still encountering a rust-colored stain on our now newly roofed motel. First, what would ... Read More


Insulation

Adding attic insulation

Published on August 29th, 2012 | by Henri

Q.    I have faced insulation that I want to install over existing insulation in my attic. Should the insulation be placed with the facing up or down? Thank you for any information. A.    The vapor retarder ... Read More


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