STEP House / Guides

Interior solid pine door
Doors and trim

Interior finishing

...house that match exactly, but you could always just call that 'character'. They may require some minor repairs, sanding or paint removal. Be sure to use a proper mask because older painted doors will almost certainly contain lead paint. You can often find them on used material websites, as well as at reclaimed mate...

Crawlspace radon barrier installation for radon mitigation
Radon in Homes - Mitigation

Removing radon gas from basements and crawlspaces

...house was tested to have high radon levels, and after radon mitigation was installed and we re-tested for radon, I now know we can live safely - so radon mitigation works! First step, find out if you have a radon gas problem by having the air in your home tested. A radon testing kit is not very expensive and should b...

Comparing ground source and air source heat pumps
Heating and cooling

Heat Pumps: Ground source geothermal GSHP or air source ASHP, which one is best for heating a home?

...STEP) is run out of The Living City Campus at Kortright, ON, where you can find The Archetype Sustainable House (ASH) . The two houses act as a living laboratory with more than 400 calibrated sensors that monitor the performance of the buildings' systems. There is also an on-site weather station measuring outdoor meteo...

Siding Choices - Board and batten siding
Exterior cladding

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

...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 addition ...

Building Climate Zones USA & Canada Maps Help with Specification of Homes
Planning and Design

Climate Zones in USA & Canada for Building Homes

...step to building a durable and energy-efficient home in North America, including Passive house to PHIUS standards , LEED or Net Zero Homes is knowing your climate zone. Just as we need to wear different outfits in different climates, homes need to be properly designed to meet the temperatures, humidity levels and extre...

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?

...House , Net Zero Energy and high-performance homes is consistently making the most of Passive Solar Gain , having a home where each day starts with fogged over windows is absolutely a huge detriment. A hidden effect of condensation on house windows is that once the sun does come up, which could and should be heating ou...

The EC3 Tool - Skanska - Calculating & Comparing Carbon Footprint of Buildings
Planning and Design

Calculating the Carbon Footprint of Buildings, Introducing The EC3 Calculator From Skanska

...House and Zero Net Energy , though the trend was led by improving building efficiency in homes once constructed – better insulation , better air-tightness , more efficient heating , better internal air quality … which is a step in the right direction, but far from the whole solution to better buildings and homes. Wit...

Why basements flood and how to prevent that with a sump pump
Basements improvements

Why Basements Flood & How to Prevent Flooded Basements

...step to preventing basement floods is directing excess water safely away from your house. Make sure your eavestroughs and landscaping are part of the solution, not the problem. Make certain that all that snow melting off your roof, lawn and driveway is directed away from your basement, not towards it. Having checked ...

Slab on grade or a foundation and basement?
Foundation choices

Choosing between a slab-on-grade or a foundation and basement

...house gases, and the average home foundation wall uses between 75 and 100 tons. It will also account for between 10 to 15 percent of your total building costs, which does not include finishing the inside basement walls, or building a floor on top of it. And if you remember the 'One-Tonne Challenge ' that asked Canadi...

Keyhole Garden
Landscaping

The Keyhole Garden: An Introduction

...steps. 1.) Site: Once you have chosen an area large enough to house an 8 - 10 foot diameter circle that has sufficient sun exposure for the plants you intend on growing, you're ready to begin. Given the raised-bed nature of the keyhole garden, the area need not have good soil, or even any soil at all. 2.) Collect: ...

Cedar deck and stairs under construction cedar naturally the most durable wood
Decks, porches and gazebos

Tips for building a deck - 10 Tips to make your deck last longer

...step of building a deck in Canada or North America should be staying on the right side of the law. Find out where exactly your property line is so you know you meet the necessary setbacks. Depending on how meticulous your municipality or state is, you may need a permit and you may need to show drawings to get one. This...