Q&A / 

Concrete Block QUESTION #1: I’ve been researching foundation types for both new homes and room additions. I’ve narrowed it down to either poured concrete or concrete block. Many websites thump their chests saying poured concrete is better than concrete block. What’s your opinion, Tim? Have you worked with both materials? Carol Ann S., Richmond, VA […]

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Different Deck Piers QUESTION #1: Tim, can you explain why I need concrete deck piers under the wood support posts that hold up my deck? I saw an older deck where the posts just rested on pre-cast concrete stepping stones. The deck seemed fine to me. Are deck piers overkill and a way for contractors […]

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Smoking Fireplaces QUESTION #1: Oh Tim, I need your help. I’ve got a masonry fireplace that puffs smoke into the room when a fire is burning. It gets worse as the fire dies down. I’ve spoken with three different bricklayers who build fireplaces and have received three different answers. Confusion reigns at my home and […]

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25th AsktheBuilder Anniversary October 2, 2018 is the 25th anniversary of my Ask the Builder syndicated newspaper column. I’m very proud of surviving this long as a writer and publisher and thought I’d share some of the good and the bad I’ve seen since that morning I waited outside in the dark for the newspaper […]

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Treat Your Own Wood Question #1: Tim, is there some other safe DIY treatment I can do to prevent the wood from being destroyed by wood rot and insects? I’m chemically sensitive and don’t want to rely on the normal treated lumber that one buys from lumber yards. Is there a downside to DIY treatment […]

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"I do NOT make a normal practice of bashing my peers, but this instance is so egregious I had to point it out." Exterior Wall on Slab Must Be Out on the Edge An exterior wall must be placed on the outside edge of the slab so the exterior siding laps down and over the […]

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Gutter Guard Madness Question #1: Tim, the annual gutter cleaning campaign is about to happen. What’s your feeling about gutter guards? Have you tested any? There are so many different designs, how do you even begin to make a decision? Are they really worth it in the long run? Is there a cheaper alternative? Molly […]

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"I think the decking can get to over 160 F, or more, the closer you are to the summer solstice. " Temperature of Composite Decking - Can Cause Burns Fast! The temperature of composite decking is hotter than you'd ever imagine. I tested my own Trex Transcend composite decking. Free & Fast Bids CLICK HERE […]

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Whole House & Attic Fans Question #1: Tim, what can you tell me about whole house fans and attic fans? Do they really work to cool an attic space? I’m not sure which one I should consider one since I have air conditioning. What’s required to allow them to work at peak efficiency? Robert T., […]

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