Causes / Guides

Ice dams on roofs & how to fix them
Roof assemblies - renovation

What causes ice dams and how to fix them

...causes ice dams? Thermal bridging through walls: many older homes have insufficient insulation, particularly at junctions where the roof and walls meet. This problem is most notable with low-sloped roofs and short overhangs. As heat is transferred through framing members it warms the roof deck and melts the snow; t...

Condensation on windows in our homes - why is it there? - how to stop it?
Walls and Roofs

Condensation on windows is a pain but is it a problem & how to stop it?

...causes the condensation on windows or window frames if they are single or double glazed - especially if they have aluminum glazing bars. What’s the problem with condensation? Traditionally, most building experts will mention mold and mildew as the main problems caused by condensation in homes – but first off, here’...

Frost in Attics: What causes Attic Ice? How to Fix it?
Roof assemblies - renovation

Why is there frost in my attic? Is ice in roofs a problem & How do I stop it?

...causes a huge problem - mostly because they aren't aware it's happening until there's an issue - a lot like the ice monster that forms in the top of the freezer if the seal is defective - ice dams are caused by warm and relatively humid air leaking from inside a home into an insufficiently ventilated roof space, conden...

Frost Heave Prevention Helps Stop Frost Heaving Breaking up Home Foundations
New foundations and slab-on-grade

What causes Frost Heave? Preventing frost heaving is down to good foundation design

...causes the expansion that forces soil particles apart, and is what causes the ground to heave upwards. But did you really need to know that? Yep. And you can thank me in the comments section after you pull out that little nugget at a dinner party and impress your friends. Frost heave map for North America & Canada ...

Problem areas of air leakage in a home and blower door test being cond
Air and vapour barriers

Airtight Construction of Homes is Essential: "Your house sucks." "Oh yeah? your house blows!"

...causes of air pressure differences: The ones you can't control are wind pressure and the stack effect, also known as 'chimney effect'. Wind creates either positive or negative air pressure on a particular side of a building, forcing air in on some sides and forcing it out on others. Aside from being blocked by othe...

What is Interstitial Condensation? (And how to stop it!)
Walls and Roofs

What is Interstitial Condensation in Walls or Roofs? (And how to stop it!)

...causes attic ice and how to fix it? What causes ice dams & how to fix them And see more Green Building Guides for Sustainable Buildings on North America's favorite sustainable building advice website -

Marmoleum is a non-toxic eco choice for flooring
Flooring and stairs

Marmoleum: a healthy and durable flooring option.

...causes a temporary yellowish color called ambering. But a few hours of exposure to light makes the ambering disappear. Finishes can be applied before or after the ambering disappears. While floors made from the renewable woods cork and bamboo remain popular, it can be difficult to determine whether the wood is sustai...

How to Vent Roofs - the Methods, Vent Types, Fans
Walls and Roofs

Why Roofs need to be ventilated and how to ventilate a roof properly

...causes frost and ice to form. In spring when this ice melts, it will seem like you have a roof leak when in fact there is none (spoiler alert – if your roof ‘leak’ happens on a sunny day, it’s not a ‘leak’). All these effects are why air barriers in homes are so important for durability and energy efficiency. Having ...

Reduced carbon concrete Patio blocks and CMU
Concrete and masonry

Reducing emissions with CO² cured-concrete

...causes the binders to react. Solidia concrete instead uses CO² captured from the combustion fumes at the industrial production site, which is then re-injected into the mix. That CO² is sequestered permanently in the material instead of being released into the atmosphere. The cement reacts with carbon dioxide to form ...

Thermal image showing where home heat loss is occurring.
Insulation and soundproofing

How insulation works

...causes a noticeable air convection, creating the sensation of a draft. How do we combat this? Again, we end up cranking the thermostat higher until we feel comfortable. RADIATION (in this non-nuclear case) refers to heat transferred through electromagnetic waves, particularly in the infrared spectrum. Heat emanates f...

tidal power generators
Renewable energy

Tidal generators offer a predictable supply of renewable energy

...causes it to change into carbon dioxide, a less harmful gas. So rather than at the surface of reservoirs, 95% of the problem is at the dam itself where methane-rich deep water goes through the high-pressure environment of turbines and spillways. According to the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, methane has ...