For questions generally relating to the outer "skin" of a home or other building, and the materials, features and fixtures generally found and used to construct and maintain it.

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1answer
122 views

How to Replace Exterior Door & Casing in Old House

My house is about 100 years old. The door jamb is about 10" wide. I've replaced a few doors before, but all of them had standard jams. I'm not sure how to go about replacing this. I'm assuming I need ...
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0answers
9 views

how to repair exterior wall above window

I removed rotten wooden panels off the sides of the windows but pieces of the wall crumbled in the process. I have to replace the wooden panels but need to know how to repair the wall.
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3answers
47 views

Best way to air seal, vapor seal, and insulate exterior wall in old house?

I have a 90-year old house in Seattle. Exterior walls are constructed as follows: lath and plaster, uninsulated 2x4 stud bays, plank sheathing, cedar clapboard, 1" foil-faced styrofoam, vinyl siding. ...
3
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1answer
17k views

Troubleshooting a leaking exterior door

I have an exterior door that leaks water into the house when rain is blown against it. The floor on the inside of the house is unfinished, meaning it is just the raw subfloor. I don't want to put the ...
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6answers
305 views

How do I choose paint for exterior steel on carport?

Planning on painting the steel purlins of a carport, that is peeling. I assume the primer and old paint are "oil based" alkyd. I think we will have it sandblasted. What primer should I use on the ...
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2answers
44 views

What should I use to cover the walls of an alcove for a water heater?

My water heater is located in an alcove on the back corner of the house. Today I found water line leaking from the heater, replaced and it is good now. I have always just assumed the walls and ...
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1answer
34 views

What is the importance of “breathable” home exteriors?

I have heard many people say that it's important for a building's exterior materials to be able to "breathe." In particular, materials like brick are desirable because of their breathe-ability, ...
8
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2answers
2k views

How do I run a wire underground to an outdoor post lamp?

I live in Geauga county Ohio. My question is three part. First what type of wire do I need to run from the house underground to a post lamp 100 feet away? Second,does it need to be in conduit and ...
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4answers
22k views

How do I find where mice are entering my house?

So the house I just finished remodeling, and am now living in, has a small mouse problem. We have caught a couple of mice, and suspect there may be more. Catching the mice does little good, if more ...
3
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2answers
346 views

What type of insulation is needed for exterior walls on a brick house?

I have a government grant (2,440$) to insulate all of my exterior walls. The issue is, I cannot access them from the outside because I have a brick house. My first guess was that I will need to take ...
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0answers
13 views

I want to install veneerstone to a painted, dirty concrete wall. How do I properly prepare the wall?

I want to install veneerstone to the concrete porch foundation. It is dirty and has been painted with latex paint. What do I need to do to the concrete so I can apply the veneerstone?
3
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3answers
113 views

What is a quick and easy way to disable a door so you can no longer use it?

I have a two story home with a one story garage attached. The garage has a flat roof. I can access the roof through a door in my upstairs bedroom. At one time the garage roof had a fence around the ...
7
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3answers
13k views

Is super insulating exterior walls with rigid foam board insulation possible?

2" rigid foam-board insulation can have an R-value of up to R-10, layering 4 boards would create a R-40 value, right? However that creates an 8" foam wall above the actual wall. What would be a ...
2
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1answer
81 views

Is there a reason for an exterior vent not connected to anything?

I have an exterior vent on the side of my house not connected to any piping within. You can look inside and see wood/concrete/insulation into the cavity between the basement ceiling and main floor. ...
4
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5answers
4k views

Should I use a roller or a brush for painting exterior walls?

I'm about to embark on painting my house. I have researched all the info here and on painting sites I can find about preparation and safety etc., but I'm still not sure the best choice regarding ...
2
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2answers
43 views

should I stain the bottom of exterior steps?

When staining exterior steps should I also stain the bottom of the steps? I ask because I think it might better to leave the bottom unstained to let any moisture in the wood evaporate. There would be ...
6
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7answers
36k views

How do I prevent water from collecting against side of house?

Our house has a concrete patio (I'd say about 12' x 10') in the back that is very slightly angled in so that rainfall can cause water to collect where the patio meets the back wall of the house. What ...
0
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1answer
76 views

Repairing a gap under a eave.

Last night I heard scratching in the wall and upon investigation found that a squirrel had managed to knock loose a piece of wood (I assume as there was no covering to be found) in the eaves where one ...
7
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4answers
9k views

When painting a house exterior, do you need to scrape and sand the entire house or just the peeling parts?

I'm repainting my house and everything I've read on the subject suggests scraping the old paint before applying new, but it isn't clear if you're only supposed to scrape just the peeling parts or the ...
4
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2answers
724 views

Should I add a vapor barrier when re-siding?

I am removing the siding on my house in Montana, which was built in 1964. From inside out I have sheetrock, 4" studs with R-11 paper backed fiberglass insulation and gypsum board sheathing. I want ...
2
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2answers
197 views

Is it a bad idea to use pine for painted exterior siding if prepared properly?

My house is about 95 years old, and currently has wood clapboard siding that is in pretty rough shape and needs to be replaced. My local lumber yard has 1/2" x 6" for $0.53/linear foot. Since vinyl ...
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2answers
122 views

How can I secure a metal frame to polyurethane foam?

I have used polyurethane foam to cover a 5 cm (2 inch) horizontal gap between a metal door and the ground. Polyurethane foam , as I know , needs to be covered with cement in order to withstand the ...
2
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0answers
62 views

How many arms should a 5.8m long awning have?

I am preparing to install two awnings with folding aluminum arms. The length of each awning is 5.80 meters or 19 ft. The house is at an elevation of 200 meters or 656ft (in the city outskirts) and ...
0
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1answer
130 views

Can I fill this AC line inlet with expanding foam?

I think the PVC inlet for my AC lines is a possible entryway for mice getting into my attic. Is there any reason I shouldn't fill it with expanding foam to seal it off? Or is there a better, less ...
5
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2answers
6k views

How do I properly feed coax through an outside wall?

I would like to add a new cable outlet to an outside wall and wanted to find out what kind of drill bit is needed to drill through and feed the coax cable as well as anything else to be mindful of. ...
2
votes
2answers
176 views

Can I use THHN/THWN-2 within a lamp post?

Foreword: I've been using UF wire for about 10 years now, and I've really grown to hate it. It's hard to work with, hard to strip, and hard to pull through conduit. I prefer all my underground wire to ...
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1answer
65 views

How do I remove this exterior Water Valve cap?

How do I remove this exterior water valve cap? Bonus points for a name! Update: I cleaned it a bit more: I attempted to pry it but, I haven't made much progress: I also noticed this bolt but I ...
3
votes
1answer
102 views

What is the most effective exterior insecticide?

I am planning on doing a perimeter spray around my house. There are a lot of different options for insecticide but I have not been able to find any comparison or description of the different ...
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2answers
174 views

What would cause the mortar to crack across a number of bricks?

Over the winter a large crack appeared, running across the mortar between a number of external bricks. The crack runs on a diagonal and includes a crack along a windowsill. It appears that this ...
1
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1answer
139 views

How do I cover the attic rafter bays after installing baffles from the soffit before replacing the siding?

Should I be covering exposed fiberglass batts I stuffed into rafter bays below stapled in plastic baffles with an air barrier, such as with foil faced rigid foam board or house wrap, before replacing ...
0
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2answers
70 views

Solid stain on untreated exterior wood

I am putting together a bar top on my deck, and don't want to use pressure treated wood on the top surface (as I understand it that would be ill advised for an eating area). An option I am considering ...
4
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1answer
316 views

How should I fill in decorative “gashes” in wood siding?

Our house has old siding with decorative holes: At first I thought this might be termite damage but a house inspector examined it and confirmed that this is purely decorative style. I'd like to ...
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2answers
55 views

Facade entrance damage

The entrance to our condo was damaged in the last few moves and I am not sure how to fix it. Check out the pictures What is this material called? It seems to be some soft of plaster shell with ...
2
votes
3answers
933 views

how to fix rotten exterior wall

Due to moisture my outside wall is rotten in a small section of house. Picture attached. What is the best way to fix this.
0
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0answers
27 views

How can I construct an exterior rock facade?

I want to cement 1/2 cut river rock to cement board or Durock outside as facade around my porch. I'm concerned about harsh weather contributing to early deterioration. What technique will hold up the ...
1
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2answers
53 views

How to choose from options from house painting company?

I recently had someone from a painting company visit my house to give an estimate. He gave me three options: (1) the cheapest paint, six year warranty, $3000 (2) a thicker paint, nine year ...
1
vote
1answer
53 views

Back door frame no longer square

I live on the 3rd (top) floor of a condo building. Our back door - which opens to the outside, is not square. The building was built in 2006 and the drywall around the door at the corners is cracked ...
4
votes
2answers
7k views

How can I prevent the clanging of my extractor fan vent cover?

I installed this exterior vent for our oven extractor fan However, the metal plate in the vents keeps swinging open and closed when it gets windy and we can hear it in the house to the point where ...
1
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2answers
282 views

Cheap solution for underside of barn overhang (soffit, siding, something else?)

My wife and I bought a house and it has a barn with an overhang by the entry door on the side. The 2x6s (I think that's what they are) are exposed and the birds love it. There is also a little gap at ...
1
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1answer
83 views

Can I install a floodlight with 18AWG conductors on a 20A (12AWG) circuit?

I am running a new 20A circuit with 12 AWG wire to the exterior of my home and will be adding a flood light to the circuit. All of the flood lights I have seen have 18AWG conductors in them. Is it OK ...
6
votes
2answers
6k views

How do I properly seal an exterior door?

I've recently discovered that rain is getting in around my exterior (front) door and forming a little pool in the frame under the door. I'm assuming I can fix this by adding a seal around the door ...
0
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2answers
113 views

How do I replace a missing exterior wood shingle?

I just bought a house and noticed one of the shingles was missing on the exterior above the garage. How would I install a replacement piece (just go up there and nail it in?)?
3
votes
3answers
1k views

How can I safely work around power lines?

I have to do some painting and repair work on the outside of the house near the incoming power line. The repair is pulling off molding and replacing it as well as painting the surrounding area. I am ...
2
votes
2answers
1k views

How do I seal around an outdoor rated wall mounted luminary?

What's the proper way to seal a exterior wall mounted luminary from water entry? I was unable to find one for purchase with any sort of gasket, and it appears that any water sheeting down the wall ...
1
vote
1answer
119 views

What type of exterior floodlight will turn on slowly (or not at all) when it's cold out?

I have eight (8) floodlights on my tennis court. I didn't install these, they came with the court. Questions: Recently, in the evening when it was cold I switched them on and only 3 of the 8 came ...
2
votes
1answer
652 views

Replacing a sill, on a factory built Marvin window?

The following windowsill, and the ones like on the same building, have failed. Patching with Smith's Flexible Epoxy kept the sills alive for a few years, but now the entire sill feels like balsa wood ...
6
votes
2answers
299 views

What is the proper and accurate way to measure space for window screens?

One of our metal windows is missing a screen and I'd like to replace it. I don't have other windows of the same size so I can't easily copy the screen dimensions. How should I measure the window ...
1
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1answer
203 views

can I cut in / blend old brick extension

Our house was extended some time before we moved in and it has left a straight line of mortar running down the front and back of the building went instead of cutting out the half bricks that wrap ...
3
votes
1answer
86 views

What is the white paneling under the vinyl on my house, and how can I fix it?

On the back of my house, the section between the vinyl siding and the ground is covered with some sort of white, textured material. What exactly is it? Is it stucco? Secondly, what would be the best ...
3
votes
1answer
103 views

What kind of paint should I use on the hinges and hardware of an exterior door?

I've stripped and painted an entry door. What kind of paint should I use to paint the hinges and hardware?