Fiberglass Windows, Sliding Glass Patio Doors, and Mold-Growth Prevention

Project: Building an Addition for an Elderly Parent, Episode 4, Part 2

As the house is being closed in, work can begin on the roof. Homeowner Howard Brickman decides to install a special underlayment that will allow the roof to breathe and clear any attic moisture that might build up. A peel-and-stick membrane is applied to keep out exterior moisture before the Galvalume standing-seam metal roof is installed using a steel and aluminum mix that prevents rust and deterioration at the cut edges.


The roof is finished with a set of photovoltaic panels that will absorb the sun’s energy and send it to a basement inverter that will convert it into AC power and store it for the household's electricity. If more power is generated than needed, it will be sent back along the power grid to the power utility for a homeowner's rebate to offset future energy spending.


The closing in of the house is completed with fiberglass-framed windows that feature low-e glass, a slim-profile sash, dual-operation sash that go up from the bottom or down from the top, and a tilt-in design for easy cleaning. The core humidity in the building materials is logged and the moisture is sucked out to dry the house before walls are installed and mold has a chance to take hold. Outside, preparations are underway to attach fiber cement siding and cellular PVC molding that will last without painting and can be profiled on site.

Part 1: Installing Galvalume Metal Roof and Solar Panels
Part 2: Fiberglass Windows, Sliding Glass Patio Doors, and Mold-Growth Prevention
Once the roof is in place, the windows and sliding patio door in the back can be installed. The Pella fiberglass windows include low-emissivity glass for greater efficiency. The fiberglass frames make them more resistant to extreme weather. The windows will not warp or rot in the heat or cold. Duane Putz of Pella describes the product features such as durability, scratch-resistance, color-matched hardware, and the Energy Star rating. He demonstrates how the upper and lower sash can be raised or lowered, providing natural ventilation. The sashes tilt inward, making it possible to clean the exterior face of the glass from the interior of the home.

With the windows in place, the addition's interior can be dried out. The goal is to prevent mold growth problems from developing within the house while it is being built. Kurt Bolden of HydroLab explains how moisture is detected within the building materials. Moisture is the number one cause of defects within a building. Given the readings for this project, if the lumber is put behind insulation and prevented from drying, it could lead to increased risk of mold growth in the walls.

Charles Cressy of Water Out reviews the drying-out process to prevent mold growth in new structures. Dry, warm air is piped into the building and circulated throughout. The moisture trapped in the building material should become part of the air that is circulated and sucked out of the building. The Water Out trailer is typically used to dry out flooded buildings, and is capable of doing this incredibly fast.
Part 3: Installing Fiber-Cement Siding and Cellular PVC Trim
More and more homeowners are converting their houses into multi-generational homes for themselves, their children, and their aging parents. In Norwell, MA, Bob Vila meets a couple making room for a mother-in-law.