found this: more than the bling

MoccasinJanuary 29, 2011

This is one I think everyone needs to read. It is cross posted here from the Kitchens Forum.

See the link below.

Sobering thought.

And how do you know when you've had the right job done?

Here is a link that might be useful: Invest in Infrastructure....MORE THAN BLING

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columbiasc

Great advice and it can apply to so many areas, not just ice dams for you cold weather types. Have you ever seen Holmes on Homes on HGTV? Some of the stuff he uncovers is just amazing. I once worked for a builder and the mindset was mind numbing. So many times doing the right thing would have only cost a few dollars more during construction but thousands to fix later.

I've been in the banking industry for 25 years and have seen and heard a lot. My personal observation is that there are very few craftsmen left, everybody wants to be the boss. Once upon a time, you had skilled carpenters working as carpenters for their entire career. Today, you see guys come into the business, spend two or three years learning to be a carpenter and the next thing you know they are taking the test to become a contractor and don't want to drive nails anymore.

And you would think that with the economy the way it is and contractors and sub-contractors hurting for work they would be turning out their best work right now. My brother just gutted and remodled his master bathroom and found just the opposite. They didn't show up on time, cut corners and when challenged they tried arguing that no one would notice.

I think to some degree we brought that on ourselves by adopting the disposable consumption mentality. Cell phones are outdated in two years, a computer might make it four, televisions don't age much beyond that so why should houses be any different? I don't agree with that, I'm just saying I can see that attitude.

Scott

    Bookmark   January 30, 2011 at 8:22PM
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marti8a

How awful to have so much damaage. What is an ice dam?

    Bookmark   January 30, 2011 at 11:21PM
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columbiasc

Marti - The simplest way to explain this is to think about the way shingles are laid on a roof. You start at the edge closes to the ground and run a row of shingles left and right. This row simply lays flat and the left and right edges touch. The next row is laid so that half of the new shingle overlaps the first row of shingles sort of like you would lay discarded playing cards in Rummy, but backwards from the way the cards lay on the table when discarded. You continue like that all the way to the peak. Then you put a cap at the peak which lays over the gap where the two halves of the roof (think front and back) come together. That way, when it rains, rain flows downhill like it would flow down stairs, and because the shingles overlap, it never finds an opening to bare wood. Works great.

In the winter when it snows, warmth coming from inside the house can cause the bottom layer of snow to melt. Cold temps, usually at night cause it to refreeze but as ice, not as snow. Repeat the process and a little ridge forms. The melting snow puddles up there rather than running off the roof and when it refreezes it pushes it's way under the shingles. Over time this process can actually raise the shingles allowing quite a bit of ice to "push back" under the shingles. When that happens and the ice gets warm enough to melt, it is now under the shingles and can find it's way to bare wood or find gaps where the sheets of plywood come together under the shingles. Now you have water in your attic, running down your walls, etc. Now, I have never lived where this is a problem so I am no expert but I understand there are some common causes and relatively easy cures, IF you take those steps when building or doing a major renovation. Doing it later is much more expensive. Not to mention repairing the damage. I hope that helps.

Scott

    Bookmark   January 31, 2011 at 8:04PM
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Moccasin

Oh yes, I watch Mike Holmes' shows on TV. I find it very very educational.

I see him using the spray expanding foam for insulation after the construction stuff is done. I told DH that is the kind of insulation I want beneath our floors and in our attic. It is not a really cold climate here, but I cannot walk barefoot because the wood floor is so icy cold in winter. Our problem is humidity, I think. I also want to lay a good moisture barrier on the ground beneath our crawlspace.

I have a "thing" about dirt floors, and it raises the hair on my head thinking about crawling around under there. I've had this spooky aversion since I was a kid, and would never go into our dirt-floored garage. Something creepy this way comes, IMHO.

And up north, DH spent the last month before we left working on the attic space that led to an ice dam. You can imagine what would happen to the house while we are absent all winter, if that dam should be doing damage unchecked.
Thankfully, he has great neighbors willing to do more than keep an eye on the house.

    Bookmark   February 1, 2011 at 10:14AM
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lavender_lass

Our manufactured home, actually had the gutters installed backwards...no wonder we had to replace the roof! When our contractor came out (a good friend) I asked him if we could use the product I'd seen on HGTV to help stop ice dams.

It's a rubbery roll that they put under the first few rows of shingles...and it works great! He told me that he was planning to suggest it and was very glad we wanted to use it. Most of the homeowners he's worked with, don't want to pay the few extra dollars to install it...and think it's a waste of money.

We've been getting about 100" inches of snow the last four or five winters (with one exception) and I couldn't believe that people didn't want the peace of mind...it was maybe $200 and only had to be installed on the south side of the roof. Go figure :)

    Bookmark   February 1, 2011 at 4:07PM
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enigmaquandry

yeesh, good reminder. I wish there was a way to see what the inside of the walls look like without tearing them down!

    Bookmark   February 3, 2011 at 8:32PM
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