Author: ecologicconstruction

Dutchess County NY based carpenter and construction contractor, specializing in traditional and green building techniques.

Custom Mahogany Windows


Lead safety

oldpaintLead poisoning can affect children’s developing nervous systems, causing learning disabilities and behavioral problems. Lead is also harmful to adults. Ecologic is a lead safe renovator. We can assess your home for lead and other hazards.

The most common way people are exposed to lead is through dust from old paint from 1978 and earlier. Renovation projects can disturb lead-based paint and create dust and endanger you and your family. A lead safe professional can check for lead-based paint in your home, make risk assessments and determine if your home has lead hazards. If your home was built before 1978, you should assume that lead paint has been used on walls, moldings, and doors. Even though the lead paint may be coated with lead-free paint that is no peeling,  renovation work can create a hazard if not done properly. The work area should be contained with heavy plastic so that dust does not escape. Floors and any furniture that cannot be moved should be covered. Doors and vents should be sealed off. This will help prevent dust or debris from getting outside the work area. A lead safe renovator will minimize dust by misting areas before sanding or scraping; scoring paint before separating components; and prying and  pulling apart components instead of breaking them.  After the work is completed the area should be cleaned up thoroughly using a HEPA vacuum attachment, followed by wet mopping with plenty of rinse water. (more…)

The Only Sustainable Practice for Wastewater

100_4937Eventually our standards for what is considered “sustainable” will have to actually be sustainable.  As long as we, as a society, are not recycling all our wastes, as nature does, our practices are not sustainable over the long term.

Nathan Roy at Ecologic Construction is currently designing one of the first residential onsite waste water systems that is truly sustainable.  It is not a composting toilet!  It is a much cleaner, more efficient better solution. (more…)

Passive Solar Principles

The bath tub area is set in a bump-out area, surrounded by five windows. We used a special tool to calculate the overhang of the roof for different solar angle projections at different times of the year. In the summer, there is shade. In the winter time there is abundant sunlight and warmth filling the entire room. The surrounding slate tiles help to capture the heat.




milkpaintWe are proud to use Real Milk Paint (c), a versatile and easy to use environmentally friendly, a non toxic paint. Made from 100% organic material, Real Milk Paint is not only safe for the environment, it is also protects our customers from the harmful fumes of non-organic paint.

Real Milk Paint can be mixed with pigment powders to create virtually any color, and is the perfect environmentally safe paint for floors, walls, decks, and more. Our exclusive formula was originally developed for our antique restoration projects, so Real Milk Paint is perfect for antique furniture refinishing.


Tung Oil Finish

tungPlant-based tung oil is one of the oldest ways of preserving wood and still the best.  It penetrates the wood, prevents mold from growing and brings out the rich beauty of the wood grain. Used with a natural no VOC citrus solvent, it can be applied to floors giving them a rich deep sheen without that plastic looking shiny coat that most sealers have.

You will need to apply several coats.  The first coat should be thinned with 50% citrus solvent. The successive coats should be less thinned, and the last coat 100% tung oil.

Sand each coat with 320 sandpaper before applying the next, so the next layer will bond.  Sand  lightly to avoid sanding through one a previous coat. Ideally allow a week between coats, although one or two days might suffice in warmer weather with proper air circulation.  Tung oil has fantastic resistance to water, mold, bacteria, yellowing, darkening, and offers strength and flexibility.

Eco-Cottage: Slate roof installed

100_6859Slate roofs are by far the best choice, as long as the supporting structure has been planned to handle the extra weight. Slate is beautiful, durable, and ecologically sustainable.

100_6866Yes, slate is an expensive material to purchase, time-consuming and expensive to install, but a slate roof will last for a century and more with proper maintenance. Considering the long-term value of slate, it is probably the least expensive choice for your roof.  An asphalt roof will need to be replaced every ten to twenty years, but your slate roof will only require minimal maintenance every twenty years or so.


Tall Shed

100_6887This tall shed was made from posts and rafters recycled from an old pheasant coop.  The roof is Galvalume. We sided it south-facing so that we can put solar panels on it. The siding is pine shiplap.  The shed was constructed to be able to move easily.  The bottom plate is made of 6×6 skids, sitting on a 10 inch gravel base.


The dimensions are 12 x 20′ and 15′ high at the peak.

Here it is show before the door is installed.