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AdvanTech OSB
posted by notes2jill on Sep 24, 2014

Brent thank you!

AdvanTech OSB
posted by behrlich on Sep 24, 2014

Hi Jill,

You raise a good question, but rest assured that Huber is not adding free formaldehyde. I spoke with the company and they are simply accounting for the free formaldehyde that occurs naturally in wood. They should probably make that clearer, though.

Thanks, Brent

AdvanTech OSB
posted by notes2jill on Sep 23, 2014

According to the MSDS (http://www.huberwood.com/assets/user/library/AdvanTech_MSDS_2013.pdf), AdvanTech contains "free formaldehyde." Adding formaldehyde would seem to negate the benefits of using MDI and PF instead of UF, no? Or is it really low-emitting, and what does this mean? Thanks for your great...

posted by acksolarsolutions on Sep 18, 2014

You simplified PV to much. Inverters and panels can stop working so there is maintenance. Also you lose a lot of those electrons moving though inverters and from roof or barn into the house, especially on smaller wires. The true measure of a PV should be how much energy is available at a point of use in vs. generated by the panels?

A well designed Solar thermal hot water heating system a little maintenance. Glycol protects the system from freezing and steam-back (a larger expansion tank) protects the system from blowouts during a power outage . If the internet is available, a...

Matrix Total Home System
posted by buildingshelter on Aug 26, 2014

Does anyone have experience with the Matrix by NTI?

posted by behrlich on Aug 13, 2014

Hi Evan, We share your nano concerns, and as a precaution, GreenSpec does not list nanotechnology products. I chatted with another one of their reps who said he has never sold this as "nano." He said it is a standard sodium silicate. And there is no information in the company's literature suggesting they have engineered this product to be <100 nm, so my guess is the manufacturer rep your wife spoke with was trying to hype the product and confused the chemical reaction with nanotechnology. I suppose it is possible that some of the particles are <100 nm naturally, but the company is...

posted by levi on Aug 13, 2014

My wife looked into this product and was told by a manufacturer's rep that Armor products rely on nano technology to achieve it's high strength. It would be good if GreenSpec indicated if the products being reviewed have nano technology in their ingredients, so that readers can make an informed decision.

posted by bdez on Aug 12, 2014

Hello - This alert is very helpful. I am repainting the interior of my house, and am finding it hard to locate sources of your editors picks so as to assess prices. Can you help with either sources in the Washington DC area, and/or average costs per gallon of the four types?
Many thanks for any advice,
- Barbara

posted by sbluestone on Aug 4, 2014

It's an interesting looking unit, but with its very large footprint, it is essentially useless for urban multi-family buildings in markets such as New York. Real estate is just too expensive to allocate this much floor area to a ventilation system.

posted by patonbike on Jul 22, 2014

Would a gas condensing tank heater perhaps run about even in terms of cost with a HPHWH in VT?

Hard to figure out without really knowing what numbers they derive the Energy guide figures which list about 1800 KWH for the year for the HPHWH. A Rheem gas condensor EnergyGuide puts it at 200 gallons. So at first glance the...

posted by acksolarsolutions on Sep 18, 2014

You simplified PV to much. Inverters and panels can stop working so there is maintenance. Also you lose a lot of those electrons moving though inverters and from roof or barn into the house, especially on smaller wires. The true measure of a PV should be how much energy is available at a point of use in vs. generated by the panels?

A well designed Solar thermal hot water heating system a little maintenance. Glycol protects the system from freezing and steam-back (a larger expansion tank) protects the system from blowouts during a power outage . If the internet is available, a...

posted by bdez on Aug 12, 2014

Hello - This alert is very helpful. I am repainting the interior of my house, and am finding it hard to locate sources of your editors picks so as to assess prices. Can you help with either sources in the Washington DC area, and/or average costs per gallon of the four types?
Many thanks for any advice,
- Barbara

posted by patonbike on Jul 22, 2014

Would a gas condensing tank heater perhaps run about even in terms of cost with a HPHWH in VT?

Hard to figure out without really knowing what numbers they derive the Energy guide figures which list about 1800 KWH for the year for the HPHWH. A Rheem gas condensor EnergyGuide puts it at 200 gallons. So at first glance the...

posted by UNSWcw on Jul 15, 2014

I have just built a house in Australia with an AAC floor. At 120lbs for 6ft by 2ft slabs, it is not lightweight. It is 3 inches thich with thin rebar through it and is supported on joists 18 inches apart. I chose it because it was fairly easy to lay and does not need protection from the weather as I knew it would be about 6 months before the house would be weatherproof.
I was suprised at how fragile it was. Do not work with it or even handle it when it is wet. It will crumble in your hands.
Do not drop it, support it thoroughly on both sides of the cut when cutting it, do not...

posted by andy.boutin on Jun 25, 2014

Like Dutch's post above, I would like to reiterate the fact that there is another solution: Wood Pellet Boilers. These are systems that connect to the piping and distribution in your home and allow you to use your radiant heat, baseboards or other current central heating system.

I have two wood pellet stoves and a pellet boiler (two pellet grills too, but that's another topic!) The first pellet stove I purchased in 2001 is a Quadrafire Castile Insert. It is so noisy it will drive you out of the room next door. In 2004 I got smarter about the purchase and put an Enviro Mini in...

posted by Bill Swanson on Jun 20, 2014

Be sure to read the warranty on any solar thermal products.

posted by tosch on Jun 20, 2014

Robert,
Yes we have many projects in the South. The materials lend themselves to the damp application conditions, the risk of storms, storm surge and the need for dry insulation materials to reduce energy loads.
The notion that a perm rating lifted off a product datasheet and the way it is measured is considered reliable has led to false hopes and failure in this region.
When we finally admit that buildings get wet in spite of our best intentions and egos, we will look more carefully at how well it dries and build dying capacity into the assembly.
The chambers are...

posted by richard_2 on Jun 19, 2014

We have developed and patented a solar thermal system (with evacuated tubes) to improve...

posted by bob_1 on Jun 16, 2014

I would like to know if y'all are doing any projects in the South: LA, MS,TX, & AR.
THANKS,
Bob Hesson.

posted by dave_4 on Jun 12, 2014

Jim, this article added a lot of clarity to a murky area, thanks for writing it.

My interest in an islanding inverter is to have a system that minimizes my utility bill, by tying to the grid when power is cheap or when the system is generating excess power, or when the system + battery backup cannot handle the load.

I have a time-of-use electric rate plan from my utility, PG&E. The rate plan prices power at about $0.10 off-peak, and $0.30 peak, which is 1 p.m. to 6 p.m. weekdays. This is also the rate that PG&E pays me if the system is generating excess power....

AdvanTech OSB
posted by notes2jill on Sep 24, 2014

Brent thank you!

AdvanTech OSB
posted by behrlich on Sep 24, 2014

Hi Jill,

You raise a good question, but rest assured that Huber is not adding free formaldehyde. I spoke with the company and they are simply accounting for the free formaldehyde that occurs naturally in wood. They should probably make that clearer, though.

Thanks, Brent

AdvanTech OSB
posted by notes2jill on Sep 23, 2014

According to the MSDS (http://www.huberwood.com/assets/user/library/AdvanTech_MSDS_2013.pdf), AdvanTech contains "free formaldehyde." Adding formaldehyde would seem to negate the benefits of using MDI and PF instead of UF, no? Or is it really low-emitting, and what does this mean? Thanks for your great...

Matrix Total Home System
posted by buildingshelter on Aug 26, 2014

Does anyone have experience with the Matrix by NTI?

posted by behrlich on Aug 13, 2014

Hi Evan, We share your nano concerns, and as a precaution, GreenSpec does not list nanotechnology products. I chatted with another one of their reps who said he has never sold this as "nano." He said it is a standard sodium silicate. And there is no information in the company's literature suggesting they have engineered this product to be <100 nm, so my guess is the manufacturer rep your wife spoke with was trying to hype the product and confused the chemical reaction with nanotechnology. I suppose it is possible that some of the particles are <100 nm naturally, but the company is...

posted by levi on Aug 13, 2014

My wife looked into this product and was told by a manufacturer's rep that Armor products rely on nano technology to achieve it's high strength. It would be good if GreenSpec indicated if the products being reviewed have nano technology in their ingredients, so that readers can make an informed decision.

posted by sbluestone on Aug 4, 2014

It's an interesting looking unit, but with its very large footprint, it is essentially useless for urban multi-family buildings in markets such as New York. Real estate is just too expensive to allocate this much floor area to a ventilation system.

posted by Nadav Malin on Jun 4, 2014

Online reviews of this product seem to be quite good, although I did see a comment that it's difficult to install. And one homeowner reports being quoted a price of $4.64/ft2, plus $1.43/ft2 for installation for a 1,900 ft2 job.

Roxul Mineral Wool Insulation Batts
posted by Peter Yost on Mar 6, 2014

Yes, makes perfect sense that you would like to improve the thermal performance of your walls by completing the cavity fill.

You only need to be concerned about the temperature of your first condensing surface (in this case, the interior plywood skin of your SIP-like panel) if:

1. the cavity fill insulation is vapor permeable

2. you don't have an interior vapor retarder

3. you are running wintertime interior relative humidities that support your dew point calculation.

You don't state what insulation you will be using to fill the wall framing cavities,...

Roxul Mineral Wool Insulation Batts
posted by Alan Benoit on Mar 3, 2014

I have a bit of a dilema. We are building a new town library in Vermont and we are trying to decide what to do with the wall cavities. We have a SIP-like panel on the exterior with 2" of polyiso sandwiched between plywood sheets, giving us R-14 continuous outside the wall. Because of the building's dimensions, the wall studs are 2x8s and 2x10s. When I calculate the condensation proability inside the wall cavity, it suggests that we have only about R-14 between the studs. Doing so would only fill 2-3.5" of the cavity and leave the rest empty. Because this is to be a 100yr building,...

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