Walls that dry / Guides

White pine floors finished with Rubio Monocoat, a zero VOC durable oil
Flooring and stairs

Sanding your own wood floors

...that you've got all the scratches from the pass before . Once you've done a 120 grit pass, for a really smooth surface you can wet it (that brings up all the fibers) then wait for it to dry and do a quick pass with a 120 screen. The golden rule is that if you can see marks, swirls and scratches, keep going, move a grad...

How to Choose between an HRV and ERV system
HRV and ERV

Choosing between an HRV and an ERV

...that sufficient cold dry air seeped in to meet the needs of occupants, and ensure homes had no moisture damage. These houses were said to 'breathe', but that would be like breathing through your skin instead of through your nose. In a cold climate zone, it meant that cold, dry winter air would need to be warmed as we...

Which wood is best for framing timber frame construction in homes?
Wall assemblies - new construction

Lumber choices for wood frame construction - choosing timber for framing & building homes

...dry pieces of wood that have been machined on each end and joined using a water repellent structural adhesive. This technique is ecologically beneficial, as it makes use of short pieces of wood to create a finished product that is larger, more stable and easier to align, and is often combined with Glulam and CLT type p...

Faulty Toilet Flappers Leak a Lot of Water - here's how to replace them
Plumbing renos, repairs and maintenance

Faulty toilet flappers are the leading cause of leaking or running toilets, here's how to fix them

...that the water fill valve is working properly, and that it actually shuts off when the right level is reached and before it overflows. Having checked that, and seeing that the water does shut off, then proceed to check if the flapper looks to be in good condition and that nothing is impeding the chain or lever preventi...

Correctly installed Triple pane south facing windows on Ecohome's Demo House
Windows and doors

Installing doors & windows for the best performance in high efficiency homes, LEED & Passive House

...that is it has a reason to do otherwise. When installing windows and doors the first basic rule is to "think like water" - ensure that all openings are flashed and taped appropriately and to code so that water that wants to run downhill can do so rather than accumulate and that it is directed towards the exterior of th...

Radon in Homes - Mitigation

Removing radon gas from well water

...that can be activated in the event that the finished house has high levels. Some level of radon gas is present everywhere, and it is impossible to ascertain if a house will have high levels before construction as it requires the buildup of gas in a sealed home to show a reading. There are radon hot spots all across 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?

...dry – Never, ever, EVER dry laundry inside on a rack or line when it’s cold outside – every load releases almost 5 pints of water into the air. If it won’t dry outside, then don’t attempt to dry it inside unless in an exterior-vented dryer. The second advantage is for interior air quality – as the artificial scents in ...

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

...that can be exerted by water when it freezes; even the weight of tall buildings cannot withstand the damage that can be caused when ice forms below them. A force of 19 tons per square foot has been measured with one seven-story reinforced concrete frame building on a raft foundation that heaved more than 2 inches. But,...

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?

...dryer that does not exhaust heat to the outside and avoids the need for a dryer vent Gray water heat recovery unit : Waste water from the upstairs shower preheats cold water destined for the water heater and recovers approximately 50% of energy with passive operation that requires no maintenance and has no moving par...

ICF Block Construction - The Definitive History of ICFs from 1932 to 2022 © R j
Concrete and masonry

The definitive history of ICF blocks and ICF construction

...that remains in place as a permanent interior and exterior substrate for walls, floors, and roofs after the concrete within has set. The forms are interlocking modular units that are dry-stacked (without mortar) and filled with concrete by pumping and pouring it in place and can be horizontally orientated, vertically o...

How to Fix a Leaky or Dripping Faucet Easily
Plumbing renos, repairs and maintenance

How to fix a Leaky Faucet for under $1 (and stop that tap dripping!)

...that one day they will come in handy (and that you can remember where you put them and that age didn't make them go hard!). Nahhh, I've decided that wherever possible, I will leave it to my friendly local hardware store to stock my DIY spares inventory until I need it. Because Lilani is awesome and knows where everyt...