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Featured Articles

  • High-Performance Homes on a Budget

    Well-thought-out details make energy-efficient houses both attractive and affordable.

     
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    Net Zero House for a Cold Climate

    An architect shares his plan and process for building a northern Vermont house that produces as much energy as it consumes.

     
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    Getting Certified for Home Energy Audits

    As the owner of a small remodeling and handyman company (nearly $1 million annual sales before the downturn), I’ve always been careful to stay focused on our core offerings — bathrooms, kitchens, basements, and small jobs ranging from two-hour service calls to week-long “honey do” lists.

     
  • Energy Performance Monitor

    For contractors serious about assessing building performance, Onset has assembled the HOBO Measurement & Verification System.

     
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    Home Performance Contracting

    Careful diagnostic testing is the key to cost-effective energy upgrades.

     
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    In the News

    Stringent new energy code offers flexibility; company fined for breaking FTC’s R-value rule; Denver’s moratorium on fees pays off; PV-panel prices decline; more

     
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    Making the Best of Rising Energy Costs

    Now is a good time to refine your green strategy in a way that guarantees profit.

     
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    A Builder's Guide to Energy Codes

    A close look at current energy codes - and where they're headed.

     
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    Staying Informed Can Keep You Out of Trouble

    You can get yourself in a lot of trouble in our industry by thinking you know what you really don't.

     
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    Practical Engineering: Resisting Tornado Damage

    This APA storm report shows that structural sheathing, metal connectors, and strong garage walls can increase the likelihood that a home will survive all but the most powerful storms.

     
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    Catch a Falling Star

    New remodeler's specialty — repairing meteorite damage

     
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    What is Green?

    Green may sound simple, but it can be surprisingly difficult to define. An expert in the field explains what green means, and why it matters.

     
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    Choosing Vinyl Windows

    There's more to vinyl windows than meets the eye. Here's an inside look at how they go together - and how you can use them to best advantage.

     
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    Exterior Soundproofing That Works

    These details, used in soundproofing programs near the nation’s airports, do a good job of keeping exterior noise out.

     
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    Green Building For Profit

    These builders switched from commercial construction to environmentally responsible residential building — and they’ve learned how to make money at it.

     
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    Q&A: Installing Cedar Siding Over Rigid Foam Sheathing

    Q: What are the risks of installing cedar siding directly over foil-faced rigid foam insulation? Should tar paper or housewrap be used as well?

     
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    Successful Fireplaces in Tight Houses

    Want to keep the fireplace from smoking your clients out of their living room? The answer lies in building a straight flue, locating the chimney in the center of the house, and controlling air pressure with makeup air.

     
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    Choosing Concrete Anchors

    There’s a concrete anchor for every task, from light-duty applications to heavy structural demands, but selecting the right one can be daunting. We pick through the pile of available fasteners and tell which ones should be used for your particular jobs.

     
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    Choosing High-Performance Caulks

    Confused by the competing claims of manufacturers? Here’s a guide to help you select the right caulk for tough jobs.

     
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    Energy-Efficient Cathedral Ceilings

    It’s difficult to achieve a high R-value in a cathedral ceiling while preserving adequate roof ventilation. Here are four options for packing more insulation into the rafters, by an energy-conscious builder who has tried them all.

     
 
 
 
 
JLC Field Guide to Decking