Sunday, March 31, 2013

Weekend CountDown

Thursday - Living Room Painted, Bathtub Cleaned
Friday - Plumber fixed Leaking Toilet and Removed old Shower Head Stem. Plumber had to cut open the wall and cutoff the old valve and replace it with a new one. Small Bedroom Primed, 2 Sheets of Paneling Primed, Table Saw Assembled, Started Work on Flooring Bedroom, Fun, Fun, Fun.
Saturday - Replaced Access Panel for the Crawl Space, Moved Wiring for Baseboard Heater in the Main Bedroom, Installed Ceiling Vent Fan and Light in Bathroom, Installed Vanity Light, Installed Light Switches and Outlet, Installed Medicine Cabinet.

Took Easter off on the little house and help my wife with re-installing some trim at our house.

So we didn't get any flooring done or the bathtub/shower surround done, but it was a good weekend all the same. My son Tony came and we spent most of Saturday installing the Ceiling Vent Fan and Light and the rest of the electrical in the bathroom. I goofed on my wiring the outlet and it was causing the breaker to flip. I didn't have time to troubleshoot as my wife and I had dinner plans. We hadn't even made it to the restaurant when my son Tony sent my wife a clip of all the electrical working. Way to go Tony.

Pictures to Soon Follow.

Thursday, March 28, 2013

This Weekend Goals

BATHROOM, BATHROOM, BATHROOM -- It simply has to be functional come Monday. Unfortunately I am still not sure what to do about the window. Do I repair, replace, make do..... There is a lot to do in this little room -- Add a surround to the Bath and Shower, Replace the old shower head stem and new shower head. The surround will not cover the whole wall so that will have to be laminated / Painted. This goes the same for the ceiling above the tube/shower area. The Tube is an absolute mess and is in need of a thorough cleaning. There still is no medicine cabinet, and light. I am still hoping to somehow figure out how to add a ceiling vent/light. This is going to push my electrical skills to the limit for sure. The trim needs installed and the toilet still leaks. I may have to throw in the towel on the toilet leak and call a plumber. And of course at some point in time it would be nice to have something hiding my wonderful ole hot-water-tank.

And as if that was not enough lets add Living Room Painted, Floored and Trimmed. Oh wait there's more -- The main bedroom still needs flooring, trim and the electric baseboard heater moved.

Gee that's not too much to ask is it......I can only dream.

Wednesday, March 27, 2013

Fixing a Crooked Light Switch Wall Plate

The house is a wreck and there is just way too much left to do. My hope is that we can have the bathroom, Master Bedroom and Living Room done by the first. It will be a busy weekend for sure.

I spent just about the entire night fighting with replacing a crooked duel light switch in the living room. The box was installed crooked and looks like it had been that way since the beginning of time. The old box was metal and there was just no easy way of getting it out.  I literally had to take it out in pieces. Luckily I was able to do this without damaging the wall. I had to leave one side of the box as it was somehow wrapped around the stud.

This is the gang box I used. It is made for replacing old boxes. It has two tabbed flaps, one in each corner to secure the box to the wall. I had to re-size the hole a bit so the new box would not be crooked like the original.

In the end I triumphed and had the new box and switches installed before I called it a night. Level and Working. 

Monday, March 25, 2013

Two Week Punch List - Revisited

Well not only can I not blog and remodel at the same time, things just take longer than you expected. So for a reality check I thought I would revisit our fist Two Week Punch List (Wish List) I originally posted in January.

We should be closing soon and the Punch List for the first 2 weeks is starting to look like this.

DONE - Get Utilities Set Up - Water/Sewage/Trash, Electric and Gas.  

NOPE -Thing 1 (Storage Shed) - Clean, Replace Latch, Lock, Electric and Lights working

NOPE -Thing 2 (Storage Shed) - Clean, Fix Door, Lock

Living Room
Light Fixed, Ceiling Painted,  Walls and Flooring left to do.

Main Bedroom
Closet Ready for Trim, Room Painted, Light Fixed, Sill need to lay floor and trim and install door. -

Youth Bed Room - Ceiling Painted, Old Closet Removed Still a lot of work left to do - Remove Old Closet,  Add Closet, Paint, Light, Door

Bathroom - We replaced the Toilet and Flooring and painted the walls but it is still a mess.Seal and Paint Shower Window and Enclosure, Shower Head, Paint, and the Toilet has the never to still leak. Floor, Replace Medicine Chest, Add Light and Switch, Shower Doors

NOPE - Porch - Well we did get the windows closed. fix Screen Door, Close Windows, Remove Mounted Cabinets

Kitchen - Outlet is fixed and we have a small temp refirigerator  Oven is Clean but I shorted out the baking element doing the final clean. Refrigerator, Clean Oven, Fix Counter Outlet

Exterior - Got a Lock for the breaker box and sheds but have not had a chance to fix the step. Lock for Electrical Breaker Box, Fix Step

Progress is being made but at a much slower rate than I had anticipated.

Thursday, March 7, 2013

Bedroom Update

The main bedroom is done with the exception of the floor, trimming out the closet, attic panel and ceiling light.  Here is a shot of the new Light Stone Gray Walls, Ceiling Painted Flat White, Semi-Gloss on the trim and windows, and new blind. Oh and lets not forget the electric baseboard heater the bank made us add. We are hoping to be able to move it to the wall on the right.

Front and Back Door Refresh

It's amazing what a fresh coat of paint can do to improve the looks of things. The front and back door both of which were white got a coat of primer and semi-gloss and new lock set.  The dark brown trim also got painted white. Took about 3 coats of primer to the brown trim before we could add the finishing coat.  The blind for the back door adds a nice touch.  Looking GOOD.

Wednesday, March 6, 2013

Old News Delays Project

You can only imagine my surprise when we found the floor in the small bedroom lined with old newspapers.  It was the layer right above the original wood floor. Needless to say we lost quite a bit of time reading what we could from 1949.  I have know idea why they would do this.

Blue is the new Green

when we took the corner down to the studs in the small bedroom the blown-in insulation had compacted leaving gaps at the top and some had crumbled to the floor. The crumbling continued and became a issue and a pain to clean up. We decided to replace the old blown-in insulation with Denim Insulation. This stuff is awesome. No itch and easy to install. The only real drawback is that it cost about twice as much as the tried and true fiberglass. The following link from How Stuff Works covers everything you would want to know and then some about this amazing product. Denim The New Insulation

Royal Flush

I was not planning on replacing the toilet. The current one while a little grungy worked fine. However, it was only 14 inches tall from the floor to the seat.  We are a tall family and everyone felt like they were sitting on the floor.  So we are replacing it with a 18 inch from floor to seat model.  Now I want to replace the sink even more. The bathroom is proving to be quite the budget buster.

Moving Operations To the Porch

I spent one day just cleaning up the mess we had made of the back porch. Things were really starting to pile up in there. It had became a catch-all for all our demo work and anything else that was in our way. I bagged up all the lose stuff, took the big stuff to Thing 1 and Thing 2 and cut and rolled up the old carpet and padding for pickup.

Once the porch was cleaned up. I decided it was time to move all the sawing from the Living Room and Kitchen to the Porch. It is obviously much colder but the dust and mess was starting to get out of hand.

The kitchen is the last room scheduled to be done and will not be ready by the scheduled move-in-date of April 1, but it has to be useable.  We hope to have it done by the end of April. The Enclosed Porch doesn't make the list until May

Tuesday, March 5, 2013

Demo Demo Demo

Okay it didn't take long for me to figure out I couldn't DIY remodel and blog at the same time. So much for the Day by Day blow by blow post. So I am just going to start posting some of the highlights.

We had two demolition projects that turned out to be real nightmares. The first was the built in walk in closet that was made out of the small bedroom. It was built as a permanent install and was heavily re-enforced. My son Tony had quite the time ripping it out.

To add insult to injury we found that the back left corner sagged and when we ripped up the flooring, we found some water damage.  We ended up taking the corner wall down to the studs to see if there was a leak in the wall. The good news is that we found none. We think the problem maybe caused by a broken seal between the house and enclosed porch addition. We are going to have to wait for warmer weather to remove the vinyl siding to see if we can find the problem.

The other nightmare was the kitchen  cabinets just inside the porch door. At first I thought these cabinets had been added for extra storage as they do not match anything else in the kitchen. Come to find out they were the original cabinets and we soon found out why they were still there. They were built into the wall and there was just no easy way to take them down. 

My youngest son Tyler pictured here holding the bottom portion of the cabinet had some blood, sweat and tears on this project. We ended up having to saw and hack the cabinet to pieces to remove it. The end result was one ugly wall and a hole in the drop ceiling where they had tiled around it. You never know what you are going to find when you starting tearing into things. It's like peeling back layers and layers of previous DIY's.