Four Important Smoke Alarm Safety Tips

-  It’s called a photoelectric smoke alarm.  They’re less prone to nuisance alarms and they respond to smoldering fires an average of 30 minutes faster. .  If you don’t have photoelectric smoke alarms installed in your home, get them. There is a different type of smoke alarm, available everywhere that smoke alarms are sold, which does not have this problem ..More

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How to Inspect Your Own House, Part 8: The Furnace

-  You should be able to leave your hand on the ductwork without feeling any pain. .  If the plenum is uncomfortably warm or you’d like to conduct a more technical test, check out my blog post titled A DIY Test For Furnaces. If everything is operating normally, the ductwork will be hot, but not uncomfortably hot ..More

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Minnesota Stucco Repairs: Case Study #2, Moderate Repairs

- Follow-up moisture testing can be conducted between three and five years after the repair work as a health check-up, as well as to provide documentation to any future home buyers that the repairs are performing as they should. . The repaired areas are covered by a 10-year warranty, and the cost of the job was approximately $20k ..More

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Window Replacement Part 4: (Vinyl) Lindsay, Alside, Simonton, Soft-Lite

- Using a beige interior (see picture)  has also been a popular option to go along with stained wood casing. The following four brands that I recommend all have several color choices including woodgrain laminate looks on the interior (see picture of dark oak woodgrain vinyl window next to stained oak trim). .   Some say, “Wow, that’s vinyl?”  Others see it as “looking fake” and go in a different direction. Those woodgrains, in many cases, change the minds of people who are looking for a wood look and steer them into vinyl ..More

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Water Heater Backdrafting: What if you can’t reproduce the problem?

- Without exception. Also, if there is a functional whole-house fan installed, I’d argue that this fan should not be turned on. .  If a whole house fan is operated with the windows closed, it will cause a natural draft water heater to backdraft every single time.  Those fans are only supposed to be operated with the windows open ..More

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