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U Value Windows

U Value (windows) – the U Value of windows, which for some reason stands for thermal transmittance, is a rating of how well a window conducts heat across one side to the other. This is nearly the opposite of the window’s R Value (or resis...
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ASHRAE

ASHRAE or the American Society of Heating, Refrigerating and Air-Conditioning Engineers is a national professional association for HVAC and refrigeration specialists. They advocate for the best quality work, knowledge, and application of technology t...
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UPC

UPC, or the Uniform Plumbing Code is one set of codes and standards for plumbers to be aware of. As an early reminder, we are not plumbers, and we are not code inspectors – no home inspector can or does verify adherence to codes. For more infor...
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IPC

IPC, or the International Plumbing Code, is a set of codes and standards for how plumbing is to be used and installed for the best results. As an early reminder, we are not plumbers, and we are not code inspectors – no home inspector can or doe...
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HEPA filters

HEPA stands for high efficiency particulate air (filter). You may have read about MERV air filter ratings which range from MERV 1 to MERV 20 and simply categorize what particles are caught. If you think, as I did years ago, that these are two redunda...
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Sealed Homes

Sealed homes – in the past few decades, builders and homeowners have become aware of energy loss in buildings. We have worked to seal homes to prevent drafts and ultimately energy loss. This is of course a good thing for our energy bills and th...
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Mold

Mold – mold is a broad term for living organisms that are categorized as fungi. In biology, there are six major kingdoms. We are most familiar with: the kingdom of animals which ingest food for energy (cats, zebras, humans, etc.); the kingdom o...
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Indoor Air Quality

Indoor Air Quality – is a subject that is relatively new to building scientists. We used to build a home so that it would stand the test of time, and we were happy enough. Today, we have learned about many factors that affect our health, from t...
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HVAC

HVAC is a general term that describes all (or in practice, any combination of): Heat, Vent, Air Conditioning. It may apply to a window air conditioner, or a massive central air handling system. It could include a gas, oil, or electric furnace to heat...
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Bathroom Exhaust Fan

A bathroom exhaust fan is common in newer homes, or may be retrofitted into older homes. Every bathroom needs a way to vent air outside, which may be achieved with an operable window or with an exhaust fan. The recommendation for a fan is 50 CFM (cub...
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