Friday, October 21, 2005

Some people should never hold a hammer

I found another previous-homeowner-was-a-remodeling-idiot patch today. I noticed that the subfloor was bowed up a bit and was going to screw it down but it was solid. Since the storage room is beneath it I measured from the wall and I went below and found that "spike boy" (as I'm going to call him from now on) had hammered up a scrap piece of cedar but couldn't hammer at the right angle so there were bent up nails coming out of it everywhere. Fortunately (grrrrr!) he managed to get 3 huge spikes in which took both effort from me for 20 minutes and Jeff for another 15 to get out. Then, of course, the floor didn't go down. I'm thinking it's the lovely joists pushing on it but Jeff thinks it's just plain bowed. So I guess I'm chipping it out or something and putting in a new support.

Jeff and I worked mostly on the electrical today. This is the lovely "Smurf" junction box to replace the postcard sized one that they had stuffed 5 wires into. I thought that we would just drywall over it but Jeff said that you had to leave it accessible. I said there is no way I'm letting a Smurf box show. He said we could just paint it. Grrrr. I'm going to have to find a nice hole cover to fit it.

Found out that even SEARS won't touch the central vac. I guess Liberty Home Warranty called around and no one wants to work on it. I got up at 7:00 am to get to my 8:00 am - 12:00 pm so-called "appointment" with my Sears associate who never showed. I had Jeff call them at 12:20 and they said that my job had been passed around like a loose woman and no one knew how to work on the old units. So basically, there is little hope for its survival. I may try to check all the electrical connections and see if I can get it to work but I'm thinking it's going bye bye. Better to have no unit than a broken unit.

Speaking of broken units. Service Experts called and wanted to show me personally the cracks in my heat exchanger; brought a camera and everything. It wasn't that spectacular or anything but I let them keep their diagnostic money. So, I may end up putting in a new furnace because Liberty's service guy says there's no leak and Service Experts says "she's gonna blow!" I had to sign a liability waiver that says that they told me it's cracked and it's my butt if I turn on the furnace.

Lessons Learned:

Make Sears or whoever call your cellphone a few minutes before they are going to arrive. You shouldn't have to wait...and they usually forget you anyway, especially Sears.

There is no definitive testing for heat exchangers so your mileage may vary. The gas company says that you can have cracks with no evidence of CO leakage YET! Eventually the heating will cause it to leak. So both my furnace guys were which one is going to get me a new furnace?

Don't cover junction boxes with drywall

Leave plenty of extra romex? (electrical wiring) at the tail ends. You could accidentally slice a wire or want to pull more out. If you don't give yourself some slack you'll have to rewire.

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