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Features

  • Durable Substrates for Thinset Tile

    Behind every attractive tile job is a durable substrate. A master tiler shows how proper use of backerboard and waterproof membranes ensures a lasting finish at tubs, countertops, and floors.

     
  • Fast Fascia Techniques

    When you’re getting paid by the linear foot, you learn how to work quickly and methodically. A California carpenter reveals his hard-won tricks for hanging fascia without a helper.

     
  • Innovative Pneumatic Fasteners

    As the popularity of pneumatic nail guns increases, so does the range of fasteners. The Journal examines the newest materials and designs.

     
  • Installing Sprinkler Systems

    In the U.S., a residential fire starts every 68 seconds. To prevent loss of life, some municipalities are beginning to require sprinklers in new homes. Here’s what you need to know before you design and install a working system.

     
  • Sizing Air Conditioners

    To avoid callbacks, many hvac subs size air conditioners using methods that inflate the cooling load. The result is an oversized unit that cools the air, but operates inefficiently and does a poor job of reducing indoor humidity. Three energy engineers explain how to achieve proper cooling without...

     
  • Window Trim for Thick Walls

    Thick energy-efficient walls call for special treatment of window jambs and trim. Whether the finish is stucco, drywall, or wood, these three builders have developed details that work.

     

Letters

  • Letters

    Balancing cost and good design, working downtown

     

News

Q&A

  • Q&A: Polybutylene Piping: Time Bomb?

    Q: I have used polybutylene piping in many of my construction projects ( including my own home). After reading about a pending class-action lawsuit against the piping manufacturers, I’m concerned, and I don’t feel I’m getting the straight story from my plumbers or supply houses. Have I unknowingly...

     
  • Q&A: Wood Glue: Okay After Freezing?

    Q: We use a yellow carpenter’s glue for wood-to-wood gluing chores. Every winter, I invariably leave the container in my truck overnight, and the glue freezes. Can this glue be thawed and used after it has frozen?

     
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    Q&A: Sump for Foundation Drain

    Q: Should an exterior perimeter drain be connected to an interior drain and sump pit?

     

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Products

  • For What It's Worth

    No-scrape masking tape, zipper for poly door, gas-powered circular saw kit, improved clamp lamp

     

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