Framing / Guides

Renovate, Remodel or Rebuild? How to choose which is Best for Homes
Wall assemblies - renovation

Should I be renovating my home or tearing it down & rebuilding?

...framing a new structure. Pre-war homes usually have more divided interiors (as they often housed very large families), but don’t let that instantly dissuade you from re-using the existing structure, as load bearing walls can be removed and replaced with supporting beams to open the space up. Replacing windows when re...

Passively-heated off-grid LEED house in Low, Quebec
Off-grid and Net-Zero Housing

Off-grid living blog: a firsthand account of building and living in a remote area

...framing (which is a poor insulator compared to the insulation it holds in place). Finally, the exterior has a house wrap weather barrier secured with 1x3 wooden strapping to allow for air circulation and water drainage, on which Hardie brand cement board is mounted. Altogether these walls are a nominal R-47. For th...

Slab-on-grade construction technical guide
Slab on Grade

Slab-on-grade technical guide

...framing can be done much cheaper with a slab-on-grade than a basement. With a slab, the same milestone is reached without having to build an 8-foot concrete wall, nor do you have to build a wooden subfloor on top. Comfort and efficiency: In the absence of 5 feet of dirt, a slab-on-grade in cold climate zones requir...

Spray Foam Insulation - Is it Good or Toxic & Dangerous?
Insulation and soundproofing

Is spray foam insulation a good choice for your home? Or a toxic recipe for disaster?

...framing members with absolutely no consideration of the moisture levels of the wood. And what happens when wood dries? Well, it shrinks. And what happens if something solid is stuck to it isn’t flexible? Well, it cracks. We have no doubt that in the beginning when all the chemicals are off-gassing from the foam into ...

Stairs made from reclaimed barn beams
Wood and organic materials

All about wood

Finding sustainable wood: We live in a country with over 400 million hectares of forest, so the supply is there; it's simply a case of properly managing it. That also means that when we cut one down, we should plant another. Wood is a renewable material, requires little processing and can almost always be purchase...

Slab-on-grade for Ecohome's upcoming video building guide
Slab on Grade

how to build a slab-on-grade on standard soil

...framing. Slab-on-grade forms © Ecohome 3. Plumbing and mechanical infrastructure All plumbing infrastructure (water pipes, drains, radon stack, central vac, power conduits, etc.) was put in place next, below the coming insulation and concrete. We used insulated water pipes courtesy of Uponor for greater ene...

Top Tips for Getting a House Ready for Winter
Wall assemblies - renovation

Winter preparation for your home - are you ready for the cold?

...framing , poorly installed insulation, or even the complete absence of insulation in some spots. Some insulation materials can settle; other times builders take short cuts and future homeowners pay the price. Depending on the severity of the problem you may want to re-insulate one way or another. It’s best to speak t...

Choosing between OSB or Plywood for house sheathing for Roofs, Walls & Floors.
Wood and organic materials

Which is better, OSB or Plywood for Roofs, Walls & Floors?

OSB v Plywood - Which is Best? Odds are, that if you pass a housing development of wood-framed houses, it will have OSB (oriented strand board) as exterior sheathing . When you count sub-floors, roofs and wall sheathing, OSB claims about 70% of the wood sheathing market in North America over plywood. Both products h...

Siding Choices - Board and batten siding
Exterior cladding

Choosing the right exterior siding for fitting, cost comparisons & appearance

...framing a house, see here . Composite wood siding products Composite wood siding © Céline Lecomte Composite wood refers to the repurposing of waste wood into usable siding products. Small chips and sawdust can be steam pressed into a very close likeness of actual wood siding, including the...

Prefab Passive House & LEED Kit Homes for Sale in Ontario & North Eastern US
Concept and design

Prefab Passive House & LEED ready kit homes - the future of buying a new home?

...framing, recycled paper (cellulose insulation), and wood fiber insulation panels . Double-framed wall construction with two offset rows of 2x4s studs injected with high-density cellulose insulation that will not settle over time The panelized prefab wall assembly was designed to dry outward, with glued, stick-on ...

The Top Twelve Green Building Trends for 2020
Planning and Design

Find out what's trending in 2020 for Green Home Construction

...framing can be attributed in part to an awareness of environmental issues and an upswing in the demand for green homes, but don’t forget the power of architectural trends and running with the cool kids. Open concept buildings with natural light and exposed structures have been a consistent theme for many years, and suc...