Thursday, September 26, 2013

Rough Plumbing

The Tub is In
Washer Hook Ups & Drain

Pex Tubing Used for Supply Lines
It's quicker and easier to install than copper pipes

Red for Hot and Blue for ...

Drains & Supply Lines in the Laundry Room

Clamps are Used to Attach the Pex Tubing to the Shower Faucet

Metal Plates cover the Lines to Protect them from Sheetrock Screws

From the Guest Bathroom, to the Laundry Room to the Master Bath
Future Water Heater Location
They pressurize the line to test for leaks and
monitor it with the gauge

Lots of Pipe

The rough plumbing is pretty much complete. You don’t realize how much piping is run until you look back at the pictures of pipes stacked up or in rolls. Now we have supply lines and drains running from future sinks and toilets and showers and a bath tub through walls and floors and vents through the roof. We have a Master Bath, Guest bath and future baths in the Room over the Garage and in the Basement. There’s a Laundry Room and a Kitchen. And outdoor faucets.

 It’s an incredible amount of work and to think it all gets hidden behind walls never to be seen again. We hope. But like the wiring, it brings the house through one more phase and brings us closer too moving in. Once the rough wiring and plumbing is completed and inspected the insulation can get started. And then the sheetrock and then plastering and so on.

Just when you think you’re close…

Sunday, September 22, 2013


WaterFire and Gondolas

Lighting the Fires.

Gondola alongside the fires
The Wind really Whipped the Fires Up

Water Place Park
Another View

Moving Statues

A Quick Clip - Not sure how well this will work

Last night we went into Providence to have some down time and watch WaterFire (

WaterFire, which begins at sunset, is the burning of wood in about 100 braziers that have been placed in the Water Place Park river canal in downtown Providence. This is accompanied by music that is piped into the speakers in the canal which really adds to the effect. The braziers are supported by three floats so that the burning wood is kept above the water in a basket as if they were floating above it. Providence has been doing this for almost twenty years and it has attracted millions.

But it’s not just the fires. There are gondolas (yes, real ones) plying the canal with their lucky passengers. The parks also have entertainers with some dressed as statues that move only after you’ve made a donation. There were many folks having their pictures taken with them. What a hoot it was when one of the gargoyles put his claws on the head of a young teenager when she wasn’t paying attention. Talk about a squeal.

The weather, even with a bit of wind, couldn’t have been better. It was a perfect night to stroll along the canal, watch the many fires and relax. The company I was with, made it even better.

Enjoy your week.

Saturday, September 21, 2013

Bathroom Fans

Master Bath - Future Fan Location
Fantech - Dual Unit with Fluorescent Lights
Fantech - Single Unit with Fluorescent Light
Not the best diagram but this shows how they are installed
One of the most important appliances you should have in your bathroom is an exhaust fan. In fact most local codes require that one be installed. The fan removes the moisture generated by the shower and sinks which in turn keeps your walls from looking like a rain forest. By reducing the humidity, this of course also helps to reduce the opportunity for mold and possible wood rot.
When the electrician started to install your standard boxy fan I learned my better half hates bathroom fans that make so much noise that you feel like you’re near railroad tracks at the end of an airport runway. You know the type I’m talking about. You turn them on and the fan is loud and the unit shakes and rattles enough that you wonder if it’s going to drop out of the ceiling. And of course as they get older, they get worse. And  they won’t pass the tissue test (the fan should hold a tissue against it when on if it has any suction at all.).
With a little homework we found about Fantech Inline Bath Fans ( Instead of having the fan in the unit right above your head, the fan is located away from the grill up in the attic. That puts the motor and vibrations up in area that has sheetrock and insulation between you and it. That means a lot less noise.
For the Master Bathroom we’ve decided to use the dual unit which has 14 watt fluorescent bulbs in each grill. One side will handle the shower and sink area while the other side will take care of the toilet area. It’s generally required that a fan move 50 CFM (cubic feet per minute) of air for a toilet and 50 CFM for a shower. When combining the two, that means we need to move at least 100 CFM of air in the Master Bathroom. This unit is rated at 270 CFM so it’s almost three times as much as what’s needed. I think it will work just fine.
The guest bathroom will have a single unit with a fluorescent light. This unit is rated at 110 CFM. This should work just fine as well.
They are a more money than your regular fan, but my better half was very adamant about not having noisy fans. So being the smart husband that I am I agreed that they were a good idea. And now we have to wait until they come in to wrap up the rough wiring.
But that’s a small price to pay for a little peace and quiet…
Enjoy your weekend.

Tuesday, September 17, 2013

Rough Wiring Completed

Single Gang Box
The nubs on the side are to set the depth for sheetrock

With Wires Stapled
Two Gang Box
The wires are tucked away in prep for the Sheetrock

Three Gang Box
Each Gang (set of screws) is for a device such as a Switch or Outlet

Light Box
It slides along the frame for centering

5 Inch Recessed Lighting

Overhead Wiring Runs

Wires all Stapled and Tucked Away - Ready for Insulation
and Sheetrock

Main Wire Run to Box in Basement Below

Wiring in Kitchen
White Wire is 15 Amp, Yellow 20 Amp

And One Last One Just Because...

The rough wiring is now pretty much complete with the exception of a few adds that I’ll write about another time.  All of the wires are now stapled to the 2x4’s and tucked into their boxes.  I put up a more pictures than normal because we never get to see what’s behind all of that sheetrock. Hopefully these pics will give you some idea.

Just looking at the wire runs makes me pause to think about how much work it is to run all of those wires to all of the lights and switches in our new house. As I’m writing this I'm thinking I should have counted how many there are. Maybe next time.

Once the rough wiring is fully wrapped up and the rough wiring inspection is completed by the local town wiring official and a couple of framing items are finished off, they’ll be in to insulate. Another step closer.

Enjoy your week.

Saturday, September 14, 2013

Rough Wiring

Rough Wiring

It's Easier to Pull It From a Large Spool

Wiring in Master Bath for Soffit Lights and Mirror Lights
They loosely loop it around to make it easier for fixture placement
Looking Towards the Front Bedrooms from the Dining Room
200 Amp Panel
The Extension Cord Question

Leading to a Live Outlet!

With 2 KW used
I saw this a number of times and it didn't click that we actually had power.
It looks things are ramping up. The rough wiring is almost complete and they surprised us with turning the electricity on.
Earlier we spent a lot of time walking through the house with the electricians confirming where the switches would go (we had done a first pass with Meridian in August) as well as additional outlets. I can’t emphasize enough walking through each room and in your mind flipping switches and plugging in things. Some folks miss this and think good flow is limited to furniture placement. Switch and light placement are integral to a good flow.
While code dictates the minimums there isn’t any reason you can’t add to them. For instance we wanted to make sure that on the wall in the Master Bedroom where the headboard is going that we had double outlets for clocks, phone chargers, lamps and what not. You don’t want to wish you had thought of that the very first time you start plugging things in.
The same goes for lighting. We have a number of recessed lights and wanted to make sure they were just right. We think we’re there.
One of the best parts was when I was walking through was noticing an extension cord that was looped down through the floor. I thought it was odd as they had usually been using a generator outside to power tools. When I traced it to the basement, I found it plugged into a live outlet! Yay, we have power! Finally.
Another nice step to making it our home.
Enjoy your weekend.

Sunday, September 8, 2013

Life Returns to Normal

Siding Over Back of Garage
We're thinking of adding a small awning roof over the
garage door to break up the wall

Side of Garage
An Awning Roof will be Over the Garage Doors.

Trim Work Over Front Windows

Front Scaffolding - Ready for Siding
 Full Front View
Connecting the Power Lines
Electrical Meter- Remember the dial we used to watch spin as kids?
They don't have that anymore as they are digital.

Sorry. It’s been a long week since coming back from vacation.
 Caught up at work after being away for a couple of weeks, lost a friend to cancer after a two year battle, moved more pavers, brought ourselves up to date with house decisions and my better half’s new 2013 Honda Accord (1,400 miles) stopped steering leaving us stranded. Life returns to normal…
 Progress on the house. The siders returned and wrapped up the back and side of the garage. They also set up the scaffolding on the front of the house so they were staged for an early morning start.
 I was lucky enough to go by when the electric company was there connecting the wires from the pole to the underground conduit.  While there wasn’t much to see (and I’m pretty sure he wouldn’t have let me ride in the bucket to take pictures if I asked) it’s a step forward to bringing lights to the house. So we now have a connection. No electricity in the house yet, but at least we have a connection. And a meter so we can get a bill once it’s turned on.
 I’ve moved a bunch more pavers and now can see the progress with an unorganized pile being moved to neatly stacked pallets. And my back is holding out. So far…
 We’re looking forward to this week coming up after last week’s return to normal. I think I’d like a new normal though.
 Enjoy your week.