1:5:10:365 EcoTip Blog

September 25, 2008

:269 Rate It Green

Welcome to today’s 1:5:10:365 Tip for becoming a better steward for our home and planet environment.

1:5:10:269 EcoTip: If you want to find out what others are saying about various eco-products – Rate-It-Green is the place to go.

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 Additional Information:

Rate-it-Green has a section on their website called Green Ratings. The following is from the greeting for this section of their website:

Welcome! Our directory is live and ready to help you find available green building products and services. We encourage you to rate items and share what you know so that others may learn from your experiences. Note that this site is still new – it may take some time before you see multiple ratings. And make sure to keep your comments constructive!

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September 20, 2008

:264 Paperless Gypsum Board

Welcome to today’s 1:5:10:365 Tip for becoming a better steward for our home and planet environment.

1:5:10:264 EcoTip: DensArmor Plus is a paperless gypsum board product by US Gypsum that will hold up better to residual levels of moisture better than the gypsum board coated with paper. Its coated with fiberglass – so some care during installation needs to be taken, but when it comes to not providing nutrients for mold – this product may be a good choice. Many people think using green board will protect them from mold growth – but it won’t. I’ve seen plenty of mold growing on the surface of green board.

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 Additional Information:

Suggested Review: :256, :257, :258, :259, :260, :261, :262, :263

This is the ninth in a series of EcoTips about protecting oneself when remodeling and working around buildings when participating in disaster recovery such as occurred with hurricane Katrina and is going on now with Ike. This information is timely since 2008 is the most active hurricane season since 2005 and many buildings are being damaged.

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September 6, 2008

:250 Asbestos in Building Materials

Filed under: :250 Asbestos in Building Materials — Tags: , , , , , , — John Banta @ 7:36 am

Welcome to today’s 1:5:10:365 Tip for becoming a better steward for our home and planet environment.

1:5:10:250 EcoTip: Most people think that asbestos use was banned in the late 1970’s. This isn’t true. The EPA issued a rule banning most asbestos products in 1989; however, this was overturned by the courts in 1991.  The rules are complicated – and some types of asbestos use continues today. Many manufacturers have voluntarily stopped using asbestos – but the only way to be sure is to have suspiscious products tested. Canada and Russia remain major producers of asbestos.

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 Additional Information:

Asbestos is a naturally occurring mineral fiber that has been used in building materials and products because it is a good insulator and is fire resistant. Information about the attempts to ban asbestos are available at http://www.epa.gov/asbestos//pubs/ban.html

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June 27, 2008

:179 Well-Tuned Home

Welcome to today’s 1:5:10:365 Tip for becoming a better steward for our home and planet environment.

1:5:10:179 EcoTip: The well-tuned home can help exclude elevated levels of outdoor contaminants when conditions are bad.

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 Additional Information:

Suggested Review: :039, :040, :041, :042, :043, :044, :045  

This week it has become apparent how important a well-tuned home is when adverse outdoor conditions are present. There are over 800 wildfires burning throughout California. The smoke today was so bad the sun could barely be seen through the haze. The nearest fire is about 20 miles away, but the weather conditions seem to be concentrating the smoke at ground level throughout the entire valley. Even being outside for a few seconds is quite uncomfortable. We’ve been keeping our home’s doors and windows closed and that seems to be doing a good job at keeping the smoke out.

Homes that aren’t as well-tuned will tend to have greater problems with smoke or other contaminants entering or infiltrating from the outside. This is because they will tend to be depressurized causing them to suck outdoor air into the building through available pathways. A major source of depressurization would be caused by leaking duct-work and an unbalanced ventilation system. The low level of chemical out-gassing we have from our furniture and indoor finishings means we can also keep our house more closed up during the times when it becomes necessary.

It may seem like sealing the home would be more important, but sealing isn’t enough. The EcoTips listed above in the suggested review are some of the main tips that can help balance a home to keep outdoor contaminants like smoke from entering. Science

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