Banging pipes are caused by water hammer

- The animation below shows what would happen to these early-edition water hammer arresters over time. After that happened, these ‘air chambers’ became waterlogged and useless. . These early-edition water hammer arresters worked fine until all of the air was absorbed into the water ..More

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Minneapolis Time of Sale Energy Disclosure

- I’ll post the details here once I have them. What do you think of this program? What could make it better? Minneapolis will be having another public meeting coming up in February. . A Time-of-Sale energy disclosure program is going to happen, but exactly how it happens has yet to be determined ..More

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Are combustion air ducts needed for large basements?

- His basement measures 30′ x 25′, and he has 7′ ceilings, which equals 5,250 cubic feet of indoor space, and that’s assuming it’s all one big open space, or at least a space that all freely communicates; no doors separating rooms. . To put this into context, let’s say that Bob has an 80,000 BTU boiler and a 40,000 BTU water heater. Pretty typical sizes. 5 says, in so many words, that 50 cubic feet of indoor space is needed for every 1,000 BTUs of combustion. Section 304. The total BTUs is 120k. He needs at least 120 x 50 cubic feet of basement space, or 6,000 cubic feet, to possibly not need a dedicated combustion air duct ..More

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What’s faster: vented or unvented drains?

- . As I said in my blog post Plumbing Vents, Why Houses Need Them (forget the water bottle analogy), plumbing vents don’t make things drain faster; they protect traps. This is contrary to the water-bottle analogy that so many plumbers and home inspectors frequently talk about. What drains faster, a vented or unvented drain? For every side-by-side test that I have ever conducted, the unvented drain is faster ..More

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Fire separation between the garage and house; don’t say firewall

- . This also applies to structural members, and this extends to the attic in a common-sense type of way; the garage needs to be separated from the house. If there are habitable rooms above the garage, 5/8″ type X (fire-rated) drywall must be used at the ceiling. 6 Dwelling/garage fire separation: The wall between a house and garage must be separated by 1/2″ drywall. R302. The image below, courtesy of the fine folks at CodeCheck, illustrates this ..More

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