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26 votes
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What is this tube sticking out of my roof?

Almost certainly a vent for plumbing. It connects to the sewer, so it doesn't need a cap. It's highly likely there's a sink or other fixture nearly below it.
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23 votes

How can I lower an attic ladder by remote control?

There are kits you can buy, where you attach a metal ring to the door and then have a pole you store nearby to reach the ring and pull down on to extend the ladder
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  • 20k
23 votes
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Mold or rust stain on roof truss

Neither. It's labeling paint. It was either sprayed onto the entire lumber unit or this truss set for identification. source
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  • 106k
20 votes

Noises from attic - Should I be concerned?

You should always be concerned about a new noise in your house. Examine the outside upper story soffit framing to see if any soffits are missing or broken. If so, there's a good chance something's ...
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  • 55.3k
20 votes
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how to reduce heat lost to attic through attic door

You could glue and/or screw some type of insulation to it:
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17 votes
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What is this amber substance on the wood in my attic?

"it's sap crystals that have been extruded from the wood due to high attic temperatures. We see more of this sap staining when the wood used for framing was not kiln dried before construction." ...
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  • 4,282
15 votes

Repairing a partially cut roof strut

You could put two plywood plates either side to strengthen it. But you may not need to. How long has it been like that? Is the snow load significant? Just remember that that strut is working in ...
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  • 21.3k
14 votes
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How to make attic easier to traverse?

I live in Florida too so I know exactly what you mean about hot attics. I had the same problem except for the pvc water pipes. I put up a number of 2 by 8 feet of 3/4 inch plywood on the rafters. ...
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  • 55.3k
12 votes
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How do I get the insulation blower into the attic?

The blower doesn't go in the attic. The hose and the control cable do. If you took the blower up there you'd also have to carry the insulation up after it. If you don't have enough hose, request an ...
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  • 106k
11 votes
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If I blow insulation everywhere in my attic except the door trap, will heat escape through it?

You don't put blow in above the door. Use batts or cut several layers poly board insulation to mimic slightly less than your attic cover. 4-5 layers will give you good coverage. This will not ...
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  • 46.2k
10 votes

was in attic for an hour without mask. could this cause issue?

Fiberglass can be bad for the lungs: http://www.lung.org/healthy-air/home/resources/fiberglass.html However, for it to be a real issue, one needs a lot of exposure...typically someone that works with ...
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  • 23.8k
10 votes

How do I get the insulation blower into the attic?

OK for the most part these do not go in attics, but can. As long as you have a pretty good attic opening you can fit these in there and I have had to in two story homes - or deal with a mess. In no ...
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  • 46.2k
10 votes

What is this tube sticking out of my roof?

It's a vent pipe for the plumbing it connects eventually to the sewer. It will catch a small amount of rain but the rain will stay inside the pipe and eventually reach the sewer. You're probably not ...
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  • 13.7k
10 votes
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What is this type of insulation?

Vermiculite is a hydrous phyllosilicate mineral which undergoes significant expansion when heated. Exfoliation occurs when the mineral is heated sufficiently, and commercial furnaces can routinely ...
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  • 106k
10 votes

how to reduce heat lost to attic through attic door

Answers suggesting that you add insulation are good, but that solution doesn't accomplish much without sealing against airflow. You can have R-500 and it's worthless if air is pouring around it. ...
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  • 106k
9 votes

was in attic for an hour without mask. could this cause issue?

Adding a little more detail above the other answers, plus recommendations. Fiberglass is made of fibers of glass (duh!). When you inhale them into your lungs, they are not easily broken down by ...
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9 votes
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Electrical engineering background, can I do electrical work on my house

Contact your local building department, and ask them if this would require a permit, and if you can do the work yourself. That's the only way to know for sure, as different areas have different rules. ...
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  • 128k
9 votes

Want to cover up nail points in attic ceiling

Leave a hardhat or bump helmet (lighter version of a hardhat) by the attic hatch. Put it on when you enter; take it off when you leave.
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9 votes

How can I lower an attic ladder by remote control?

There are electric ladders exactly for this purpose. There is no cool video of this one but the description says These stairways are available in 2 different models. One is the S3000 Series which ...
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  • 673
9 votes
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Venting Range Hood into Attic Space, Temporarily

The biggest issue you have venting into the attic is warm, moist air being blown into a somewhat closed area (aside from the grease and particles you have a filter for). If the attic space you vent ...
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  • 26.6k
8 votes
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What is the best way to close gaps between a chimney and roof from the inside?

Pretty much any fix that you attempt from the inside has the potential to create issues in addition to the primary problem, which is that your chimney isn't properly flashed. Spraying foam or ...
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  • 6,825
8 votes
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Is Nonmetallic Sheathed Cable Safe to Touch?

Yes, it is safe to touch the insulating jacket of an undamaged NM cable. However, in the state of California, it may cause cancer to lick the cables.
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  • 128k
8 votes

How can I safely work in my attic without a floor in place?

What you have in your attic is blown cellulose or fiberglass insulation. It can be moved out of the way and replaced in small areas without too much harm to its insulating value. To move around in ...
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  • 106k
8 votes
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Loft board orientation for best loading

The load will be transferred to the supports mostly based on how you stack it, not how the sheets are laid. OSB has a dedicated (and labeled) strength axis. It's normally lengthwise with the sheet. ...
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  • 106k
8 votes

Repairing a partially cut roof strut

It's not likely a problem. Many such roofs don't have that center bracing to begin with. There's no beam above (just a light ridge board), so it's fairly minor bracing. If it worries you, lay a rail ...
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  • 106k
7 votes
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Why is there tar leaking into my attic?

Looks like the sap is coming out of a board from the heat of the attic.
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  • 31.3k
7 votes

Should a smoke alarm be installed in the attic?

As a firefighter that recently battled a large and rapidly moving fire that appears to have started in the attic, I found myself searching the topic of smoke alarms in attics. Though it is a low ...
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7 votes

What is this black material in my attic?

That material is most likely grit that came off the shingles of the roof. It could have gotten there during a roof replacement when old shingles were removed and roof sheathing was also replaced. If ...
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  • 61.6k
7 votes
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What is this ceiling beam called above interior wall?

That board is likely nailed to the top of the 2x4 wall framing and provides a nailing surface for the ceiling finish material. Yes, you can drill through it. It’s called a nailer, is not structural, ...
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  • 1,099
7 votes
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Ok to add cellulose over blown fiberglass insulation?

Add the cellulose right on top, I have seen folks remove the old but this is crazy both materials are insulation and combined the provide a higher R value. I would caution if all the moisture issues ...
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  • 98.2k

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