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Other stories by Paul Fisette

  • Getting Contractor Discounts

    All deals are negotiable, but to get the best price, you have to understand the rules of the building materials market.

  • Q&A: Housewrap in Hot, Humid Climates

    Q. I'm in discussions with an architect regarding the pros and cons of using Grace Ice and Water Shield or a similar membrane material as a housewrap. These materials are more expensive than Tyvek or 15# felt but can't be beat when it comes to the wind-driven rain we get here in the Florida...

  • Q&A: Drywall Nail Pops

    Q. We're getting more nail pops in our drywall applications this year than ever before. I've been told that as wood gains moisture, it swells and squeezes the nail out of the nail hole. Are all these nail pops caused by excessive moisture in the house? Ho

  • Q&A: Insulating a Floor Over an Unheated Garage

    Q. Any suggestions on the best way to insulate the ceiling of a garage? The garage will have an in-law suite above, with living, sleeping, and bath areas. The floor construction will be 2x10 joists, or possibly 117/16-inch wood I-joists. I'm especially co

  • Resources: A Swiss Army Knife of a Book

    A Swiss Army knife of a book

  • Designing With Engineered Wood

    New engineered wood handbook reviewed

  • Q&A: Penetration of PT Chemicals

    Q: Our local lumberyard carries .40 CCA-pressure-treated wood. The label says the wood may be used for ground contact. The wood has needle marks from the treating process. When I cut the lumber, the treatment appears to be only about 1/4 inch deep, which doesn’t seem adequate for sill plates in...

  • Q&A: Caulking Siding — or Not?

    Q. When installing cedar clapboard, should gaps between the siding and trim be caulked?

  • Q&A: Blueprint Abbreviations

    Q. Where can I find a key to architectural abbreviations used on blueprints?

  • Q&A: Copper Pipes and Armored Cable

    Q. If a copper water pipe is in contact with the metal sheathing of BX cable, can that contact cause the cable to corrode?