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Posts Tagged 'California'

Water Damage Due to Contractor Error

My contractor was adding a second story to my home. After taking off the roof, the contractor improperly secured the tarp on the house before a major rainstorm and the result was that my entire house was waterlogged (all dry wall was soaked) and my custom made 3/4" solid oak with mahogany inlay floors were destroyed. The contractor wants to take care of this rather than involve his insurance but by my estimates the cost to repair could be 30%-50% of what we contracted for the remodel. The contractor is already making judgment calls about which walls to completely tear out the drywall and which to save...but when I recently tested some of the walls the contractor recommended we leave in place they had moisture levels of 100%. Though I wanted to let the contractor take care of it, I am thinking that we need to have his insurance company pay us for the damages and then I can pay him a proper amount to fix the damage rather than leave the contractor in a position where he needs to cut corners to be whole on this project. What is your opinion? Should we get insurance involved?

Replacing Water Damaged Floors

I had a leak/flood recently, had to get rid of old linoleum and carpet. Now the concrete floor is exposed. Fans dried out the place for 4-6 days. I want to put engineered wood flooring on top of the concrete slab. Due to the moisture from flood, do you recommend just a moisture barrier sealer, or sheetings before putting on the flooring? How about plywood first? The place was soaked overnight. Moisture crept up walls 8 inches. I heard it's good to put plywood planks first, or a vapour barrier to seal concrete first. For the sealer, the flooring guy wants $1000, isn't that excessive?

Newly Installed Floor is Not Level

How do you level a floor that has been taken down to the subflooring and has a 1" discrepancy in unevenness? We are floating a 10'x6' screen and the uneven floor is causing it to not sit straight. We just installed new flooring and supposedly the floor installer had leveled the floor!

Can I move a fire stop in my wall?

Im planning on installing in-wall speakers and as I was measuring I came across a fire stop in the middle of where I was planning for the speakers to go. Can I move the fire stop from it's current location to just above or below the speaker location? Or can I add an additional fire stop to essentially box in the speaker?

Sustainable Flooring for an Orange County Home

I love the look of bamboo flooring. Is that the most "green" wood-type flooring available? Is commercial bamboo farmed, or is it so abundant and fast-growing that that's not necessary?

Basement Stairs Need More Tread

Stringers are 2x8. Treads are also 2x8. dont know rise and run at this point. The stairs are 50+ years old and they are very stable at this point. The problem is I want more tread for foot placement. Can I do this without replacing the 2x8 stringers?

Can the building inspector require me to replace the wiring?

I recently had a new boiler installed in the basement of a rental property which required the city building inspector to come in and inspect. Unfortunately I was not there as I live out of state but the company that installed the boiler and my tenant were with him. During his inspection he noticed that my basement wiring may not be up to code. I'm not 100% sure what is going on but he mentioned to my tenant something about an electrical inspection. I know it would be wise to replace my wiring if it is outdated and not up to code but my question is, can the building inspector require me to replace the wiring? What if I honestly can't afford it at the given time?

Fireproof Decks for a San Diego, California, Home

We're trying to be fire-wise in our new home in the hills outside of San Diego, California. We're specifying stucco walls and tile roofing. Our decks will cantilever over steep grassy slopes. What's the best material for fire-resistant decks?

Solar Heating and Cooling Near San Jose, California

We're building an 1800 square foot home using passive solar principles--mostly south facing windows, a Trombe wall that stores heat in the day, then radiates it at night, etc. We will have an freestanding gas fireplace in the living room for heating. In San Jose's mild climate, would lack of a heating and cooling system affect future resale value?

Painting Versus Mixed-in Color for Stucco

I'm replacing my old siding with stucco on a house I bought for my retirement. Assuming I live here 15 years or more, is it cost-effective to have the color mixed into the stucco versus painting every five years? Does the integrated color prevent cracks?