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The Fine Homebuilding Podcast

The Fine Homebuilding Podcast embodies Fine Homebuilding magazine's commitment to the preservation of craftsmanship and the advancement of home performance in residential construction. Hosted by the magazine's editors, The FHB Podcast is an informal but vigorous show about the techniques and principles that allow listeners to master their design and building challenges.
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The Fine Homebuilding Podcast
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Feb 15, 2019

The Fine Homebuilding editors attack several building and remodeling dilemmas, including the correct way to install asphalt shingles at roof edges

This week's podcast starts with a deep dive into electrical consumption as Rob Wotzak describes how his Sense monitor is helping him find energy hogs in his home. Then it's on to mold removal, contractor relations, insulation choices, furnace makeup air, and best-practices for wind-proof roofing.

Feb 8, 2019

The Fine Homebuilding editors offer advice for several old-home upgrades, compare notes on their favorite home-building books, and invite listeners to stop by our mobile podcast studio at the International Builders' Show.

Patrick, Matt, and Rob share some great listener feedback about questions from previous shows (keep that feedback coming, folks!) before they discussed attic and staircase remodels in Maine, a garage-workshop in New Jersey, and a possible door replacement project in who knows where. There are a few special details to report this week: IBS 2019 is just around the corner, and we're looking for folks to chat with on the podcast while we're at the show; there's also a sweepstakes going on where anyone can enter to win a $500 shopping spree in the Taunton Bookstore. 

Feb 1, 2019

This week's podcast starts off with Matt's insights into residential construction methods in the many places he's lived around the world while writing for the newspaper Stars and Stripes

Because the Fine Homebuilding editors have nothing to report on their personal home-remodeling projects, Patrick asks Matt to recount experiences he's had living in unique homes in Europe and the Middle East. Then it's on to the advice portion of the show, where the guys offer solutions for improving attic insulation, avoiding het loss through leaky recessed lighting, and repairing crumbling plaster or stucco on old masonry foundation walls.

Jan 25, 2019

The Fine Homebuilding editors discuss the dangers of remodeling a house without informing the local building department.

Patrick, Matt, and Rob share some great listener feedback about home-workshop air quality before tackling questions about legally renovating a home, the pros and cons of radiant floor heating, and solutions for air trapped in a hydronic heating system.

Jan 18, 2019

Several frustrated homeowners ask the Fine Homebuilding editors to suggest the best course of action for some common DIY dilemmas.

Rob, Matt, and Patrick–plus podcast producer Jeff–talk about their own experiences with homemade workbenches, plugged sewer pipes, and basement remodels before doing their best to solve a bunch of listeners' old-house problems.

Jan 11, 2019

One listener wonders which modern tools and materials are better and which ones are worse than the ones available to previous generations of home builders

This week, Patrick, Matt, and Rob field listener questions about tool-manufacturing quality, crown-molding best practices, building a foundation for a covered breezeway, and designing an accessible home, after rambling on about several of their own remodeling projects.

Jan 4, 2019

Patrick, Matt, and Justin share stories about storm windows, energy-efficient homes, and drywall tape before tackling a few listener questions.

Justin Fink is back in the studio this week with an update on his custom storm-window project. After chatting about Justin's windows, Matt's trip to an informal building-science conference, and Patrick's new affection for fiberglass drywall tape, the crew discuss heating options for small buildings, closet-cabinet material choices, and why anyone still bothers to use Phillips screws.

Dec 28, 2018

Are battery-powered miter saws tough enough? Can you glue solid oak to concrete? How can you install an outlet in a garage slab? Find answers to these questions and more.

In this week's show, Patrick, Matt, and Rob mull over questions from several readers, including one contractor who is stuck on how to replace some water-damaged flooring that's installed directly over crumbling gypcrete. The guys also discuss how to protect a flush-mounted plug in a shop floor, how to get fresh air into a well-insulated backyard workshop, and whether it's time to forget about corded power tools and go fully cordless.

Dec 21, 2018

This week the Fine Homebuilding editors discuss winter condensation, straw-bale homes, punky floor joists, rental-property remodels and more.

After getting feedback from a few listeners, Patrick, Matt, and Rob find themselves again discussing the pros and cons of whole-house fans and the process of finding a good contractor. They move on to helping some other folks determine how far to go when fixing up a rental house; how to deal with rotted joists in a drafty crawlspace; if wet windows means there is a serious ventilation problem; and what materials make suitable moisture barriers for sills in a straw-bale house.

Dec 14, 2018

The Fine Homebuilding staff gives their best advice for improving leaky board-and-batten walls, buying old houses, keeping HVAC systems within conditioned space, and safely venting gas appliances.

In addition to addressing several listeners' questions Patrick, Matt, and Rob, check in on a roof repair from a previous podcast where the owner of a hunting cabin in Vermont ignored their advice and decided to take the easy way out. The crew cut him some slack, acknowledging that sometimes you just have to get the job done and move on.

Dec 7, 2018

The Fine Homebuilding editors contemplate listener questions about cladding choices, sheathing layout, and wall-framing techniques.

After chatting about some of their own roofing and cabinetry projects, Patrick, Matt, and Rob compare their lists of tools they can't live without, discuss the best options for replacing old wood siding, and advise a future home builder on framing and sheathing best practices. Patrick also recounts his visit to a jobsite where the homebuilders were using an impressive new automated whole-house air-sealing system.

Nov 30, 2018

The Fine Homebuilding editors debate the pros and cons of stem walls, monolithic slabs, and pole barns to help a listener design a new outbuilding

As usual, there are plenty of home-building and remodeling topics to cover in this week's podcast. After chatting about their own cabinetry and roofing projects, Patrick, Matt, and Rob do their best to help a few listeners find solutions for framing a garage, insulating and air sealing a cold bay window, and painting moldy exterior trim. Plus, Patrick alerts listeners to a recall of some dangerous water heaters.

Nov 23, 2018

Patrick, Rob, and Matt cover a wide range of topics in this week's podcast, including building wood sheds, wrangling missing contractors, choosing an air conditioner, sealing cracks in garage floors, and providing makeup air for boilers and water heaters.

Nov 16, 2018

When a listener asks what measures he should take to keep cellulose from falling through his exhaust fan when insulating and air-sealing his attic, the Fine Homebuilding Editors wonder if he should get rid of the fan altogether.

Nov 9, 2018

Justin Fink is back after a few weeks’ hiatus, and he teams up with Patrick and Matt to talk about cool new tools Patrick spied at the STAFDA tool-dealers show in Phoenix, to revisit the topic of building storm-resistant homes, and to investigate why a listener's red-oak flooring is cupping. The crew also digs into more listeners' emails about replacing rotting sheathing under a porch and stopping condensation near a concrete door sill.

Nov 2, 2018

The Fine Homebuilding editors discuss what to do if your house has an ancient electrical system, whether or not shoring up a steep hillside is a DIY project, and and how much of a gap you really need to leave when nailing up cedar shingles. Plus, they sneak in yet another wet-basement question. As usual, they also share stories about their own home-remodeling projects.

Oct 26, 2018

After following up with a professional inspector's response to last week's discussion on home inspections, Patrick, Matt, and Rob share their findings on what makes some houses more stormproof than others, and where homeowners can go for help when rebuilding after a hurricane. They also take a stab at suggesting the best practices for insulating and air-sealing  a floor that separates living space above from an unheated garage below.

Oct 19, 2018

Patrick McCombe, Rob Wotzak, and Colin Russel kick off the podcast with a discussion about water-resistive barriers (the materials under your siding that protect the walls from moisture intrusion) before answering listener questions about prolonging the life of a water heater, dealing with humidity and rot in an old stone basement, providing makeup air for a fireplace, and finishing clear-cedar wainscoting.

Oct 12, 2018

Editors Patrick McCombe and Matt Millham welcome Fine Homebuilding’s new Digital Brand Manager, Rob Wotzak, to the podcast this week. The team discusses topics ranging from how far to dig into an old wall to get the weatherproofing details right when re-siding, what steps are essential when tying in a new roof to an old one, and what types of replacement windows make the most sense.

Oct 5, 2018

Justin and Patrick roll up their sleeves and wade into the flood waters to help Matt figure out what to do about his wet basement. This, plus code interpretations when it comes to deck footings, and some help for a listener with rotten walls.

Oct 2, 2018

Join Justin for the second episode of a two-part series in which he interviews friend, Fine Homebuilding ambassador, and building-industry business consultant Shawn Van Dyke. 

Sep 28, 2018

Justin and Matt welcome video director Colin Russell to the podcast round table, where the day’s discussions range from Justin regretting his advice on I-joist roof rafters, the perks and scary downsides of DIY spray foam, sheathing replacement, and what to do with cupped floor boards.

Sep 25, 2018

Join Justin for the first episode of a two-part series in which he interviews friend, Fine Homebuilding ambassador, and building-industry business consultant Shawn Van Dyke. 

Sep 21, 2018

Justin, Matt, and Patrick field a follow up question on a particularly frightening rotunda framing job, and discuss options for building a round structure from straight joists. Other topics include preferred shower waterproofing systems and strategies for widening a concrete stoop to support the columns of a new portico roof.

Sep 14, 2018

The guys take a deep dive into the options for updating outdated kitchen cabinets before turning to questions on scratched tile and foundation options for a shed on a sloped lot.

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