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Old 08-09-2011, 09:36 PM   #31
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526 Lincoln Victorian - AKA The New Money Pit


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That is a very unsafe ladder set-up
We actually had a discussion about which unsafe way we wanted to do it. At that point the front of the room was already ripped off; so we didn't want to put the ladder there. We eventually decided to put it there and have me hold it while he went up.

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Old 08-27-2011, 05:39 PM   #32
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Well, much progress!

First; the basement stairs are dry. I wouldn't believe it if I hadn't seen it myself. I don't know if I should be angry or happy. I think I'm just confused. I bought some more shelving for the basement to get tools organized/etc.

Joe walked the foundation with me, learned a lot and took a lot of good notes. When I have my plans finished I'll post them.

For now; I got the back wall of the house sided. Thought I'd share the pics. I re-papered the wall the best I could. The siding was on well in the first place and instead of trying to put it on well spaced and leveled; I ended up just trying to match what was there. One layer was barely under the layer above it. I went accross the wall removing nails and trying to push it up. I at least got it 1/8 inch under the board above it now. I ended up with one full board left over.

At the top of the first pic is a gap, I ended up removing all those boards and repairing that entire area. So I ended up siding the roof part too... I just couldn't let the gap stand.

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Old 08-31-2011, 01:46 PM   #33
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Wanted to make a post about the office being done; one of many posts I hadn't gotten around to. This is all DIY stuff that I did...

Got the built ins done in the closet:


Then got the ceiling fan in. I started by getting up into the attic and finding the spot where the outlet was. It was a black outlet box and it actually said on it that it could support weight. It was odd; and I didn't believe it (was nailed sideways into joist). I measured the depth etc and made a wide fat T bracket that fit down on top of the box that I could mount to both joists and then mount the box/ceiling fan to. Then I installed the ceiling fan.



I've gotten soooo much more done; will be posting everything asap. I really need help with more basement stuff... I hope to get my questions posted.

With the floor, paint, trim, closet and fan in; we consider the office complete! With the new HVAC and the ceiling fan, it is very easy to both heat and cool the office!

My next post will be the 'super post' about our HVAC disaster; I've been getting the pics/etc together for quite a while now.
I really like that color!!! Nice choice!
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Old 09-19-2011, 10:39 AM   #34
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Well, I did a test jack-up on the front porch. I should get some pics for context. Jacked it up about 1.5 inches before the front door started opening/closing normally. Due to how some of the porch is built; I will have to take it apart a bit before the real job. It was really nice being able to work the front door; but it is a real mess under the porch.

I'll get some before pics together when I am back under doing more measuring/cleaning.

I've been gone for about a month; real busy at work and then out of town for the weekends. Hope to get work done this weekend. (Paint back of house, clean under porch)
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Old 10-02-2011, 02:46 PM   #35
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Back in business with working on the house. Even got a dining room set. I'm writing to get some thoughts off my chest about the upcoming winter and the following year.

Things on my mind for the house:

  1. I'm still not sure about the pipes in the basement; all of them. The ones under the floor and the ones that connect to the downspouts. It is tempting to break up the floor in order to remove some of them; instead of just doing a cap. Everyone here suggests those plugs; but why am I plugging something that should be removed? I'm especially not sure there is a one-way valve going out to the street. If not; one bad Milwaukee spring and the basement will fill with backup?
  2. The duct work is a mess to me; I want to alleviate it this. I also don't know now based on reading the Building Science stuff. Since we have duct work in the attic; we don't vent it? (attic is now considered inside the envelope?). I'm really lost on this part.
  3. There appears to be electric problems in the master bathroom; the lights will go out after being on too long. Not burnt out; and they'll even come back on. One of the lights above the sinks always burns out.
  4. The basement walls are shedding paint/drylok/whatever it is at a fast rate. Two dehumidifiers aren't keeping up; and the lowest we've gotten humidity is 53%.
  5. The electric outlet for the furnace (and the pump to move the water to the sink); keeps tripping. I don't know why. But when it does the mini-pump to move the water overflows and starts flooding the basement floor.
  6. I would swear the floor is sagging in the dining room and kitchen. I have no idea about replacing the joists or jacking it up or what. How do you even go about hiring a structural engineer to look at this stuff?
  7. The front porch has "sunk"; and it causes the front door to not close correctly. The porch is visibly sagging on its east side. I experimentally jacked it up and things seemed fine; I will have to try something permanent in the spring.
  8. There is still the vast majority of work to be done with keeping water away from the house; we did so much this summer and it hasn't seemed to help much.
So; it's going to be a long winter of trying to handle inside projects; mostly the ductwork/etc. I'll also work on the basement walls. The single biggest problem seems to be an inability to get good information. It wasn't until Joe came out that a lot of the basement stuff became clear. It is one thing to want to do these things myself; it is another to be forced to because of consistent bad experiences. If Joe or someone would take the job of fixing up the basement and water issues; I think we would just do the loan at this point. I'd rather be working on the bathroom, kitchen, garage, etc. Things I'm confident and have experience with.

Signing out for now; I have some pictures to get uploaded. With the mud room gone; I got the inside pantry where the door was finished up; it's now a pantry instead of a hallway!
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Old 10-14-2011, 01:01 AM   #36
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Any new pics yet?
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Old 10-16-2011, 11:18 PM   #37
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Any new pics yet?
I lost my main camera memory card; there were a lot of pics on there. Tried to take it to work to post from there on lunch :-(

Anyways, here is a picture of the back of the house; the tear off and close is complete. In the spring I'll do another coat of paint over the entire back of the house. The paint was old; but it ended up ok. I'll tell the full story in the next post.



Other progress made..I tore out one of the old basement windows still left and boarded it up for the winter. We simply can't afford to deal with it until spring.

We found out the first floor bathroom leaks; which means when we purchased both tubs leaked into the basement. My wife took a bath downstairs and when she drained the tub a lot of water simply went straight to the basement floor.

The inside of the tear off is closed up and needs one last application of mud. I'm not sure how to replicate the popcorn look on the walls for such a large area.

In the good news area; humidity in the basement is below 50 finally. I did another 2 hour session of scrubbing the walls with the wire brush.

Not much else to report :-(
I hope to find the memory card and use it to fill in even more.
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Old 02-19-2012, 06:58 PM   #38
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Wow, been a long time. Took a bit of a break and saved up some money. Planning a lot for the spring/summer; so it will be a wild time as soon as the sun comes out!

For now; our gas/electric was $325.00 last month!!! During the wimpiest winter ever!

No more second water heater. We thought it was dumb when we purchased the house; and this weekend we made the decision to cut it out of the loop.

So, I've never done plumbing before... I went and bought a full kit. I've watched my dad do plumbing many times and assisted.

Got the gas turned off, water turned off; drained both heaters and opened one of the air valves so the water could flow out easily. (can be seen in pic).

Here is a picture. I think I did a pretty good job?

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Old 03-07-2012, 09:29 PM   #39
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Finished basic drawing of french drain and dry well system. Going to try and get it looked at on here.

After Joe's visit; we talked about how to deal with my basement water problems and he suggested a french drain running to multiple dry wells at the front of the house. Before I have a trench digging party; I have some questions that will need to be answered...

1) Will this really help with all the water in the basement/etc.
2) How close to the house can it be.
3) How deep should it be.
4) How wide should it be (rock width, etc. easydigging.com says 8, 10 or 12")
5) I assume I should do solid perforated pipe (holes down); sleeve, pea gravel, landscape fabric.

I still have to test too ... ex. - will a dry well work.
I'm also hoping to run to downspouts to it (actually would like to do them all).

Just logging my progress here; will also add a link to the post with my question. HERE-> Please Help Me With This French Drain System!

Here's the rough sketch, it's huge.


Last edited by coderguy; 03-08-2012 at 08:10 AM.
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Old 03-07-2012, 10:35 PM   #40
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How's it going George?


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Originally Posted by coderguy View Post
Finished basic drawing of french drain and dry well system. Going to try and get it looked at on here.

After Joe's visit; we talked about how to deal with my basement water problems and he suggested a french drain running to multiple dry wells at the front of the house. Before I have a trench digging party; I have some questions that will need to be answered...

These are only my opinions, other''s may have different thoughts......

1) Will this really help with all the water in the basement/etc.

ALL? There's no guarantee's in life, other than it's proven to always end in death. It will undoubtedly alleviate most, if not all, water issues in the basement IMO. Not sure what other option you really have.

2) How close to the house can it be.

Where you run solid pipe, it can be tight to the house.


3) How deep should it be.

The perforated collection pipes can run level, and the solid pipe transferring the water to the front yard should have minimal pitch (1/8" per foot min.) Make sure you have the pipes at least 8" below grade in the back yard, and the height will gradually get lower as yo get to the front.

4) How wide should it be (rock width, etc. easydigging.com says 8, 10 or 12")

Just wide enough to get 2 pipes in where it's solid, 12" wide is good where using the perferated in the rear yard to collect water.

5) I assume I should do solid perforated pipe (holes down); sleeve, pea gravel, landscape fabric.

Only perf. at the very rear where you want to collect water. the rest should be solid. DO NOT feed the downspouts into perf. pipe,it will only create more problems for you long term. I wouldn't bother with the sleeve either, but rather wrap the sides & top of the stone with good landscape fabric.

I still have to test too ... ex. - will a dry well work.

WHat you're sketch doesn't show is the fairly aggressive hill in the front yard where the drywells are. Generally, I'm not a big fan of drywells, but in your case where the water can leach out through the hillsid, I think it will work fine. Also, considering how "scarred up" the earth is where you're at in an older part of a dense neighborhood, the odds are better that the water may find some hidden underground aggregate that will help leach the water away faster.

I'm also hoping to run to downspouts to it (actually would like to do them all).

I wouldn't run any of those downspouts INTO the basement, or the draintile in any way.

Just logging my progress here; will also add a link to the post with my question. HERE->

Here's the rough sketch, it's huge.
I would also run two lines here George: One 4" solid strictly for the downspouts and another next to it for the french drain/patio drain. You don't need the downspouts backing up into the patio or back yard.
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Old 03-08-2012, 03:08 PM   #41
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How's it going George?




I would also run two lines here George: One 4" solid strictly for the downspouts and another next to it for the french drain/patio drain. You don't need the downspouts backing up into the patio or back yard.
Have you been following the thread in the landscaping section?

I'm at the point of getting yelled at for even considering this.
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Old 03-18-2012, 01:04 PM   #42
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So I did the test dry well this weekend;

Took a post hole digger and went 4 feet down. Poured in a 5 gallon bucket of water. It drained quickly at first; then drained at just under 3 minutes per inch. When it got low (and I had to leave); I poured another 5 gallons of water in. When I returned home the hole was empty.

I checked it again this morning, and the hole isn't "dry", but there is no standing water / etc.

Not sure if this is a good enough result? Here are some pics:




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Old 03-19-2012, 12:02 PM   #43
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Coderguy, you have an interesting thread here, and I'd like to read it, but its driving me crazy having to scroll back and forth because your pics are too big.
Can you please resize them?
It's possible this may keep others from participating on this thread too.
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Old 03-19-2012, 12:29 PM   #44
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Coderguy, you have an interesting thread here, and I'd like to read it, but its driving me crazy having to scroll back and forth because your pics are too big.
Can you please resize them?
It's possible this may keep others from participating on this thread too.
I have to second this. Whenever this happens on a thread, I don't read 90% of the content because it's just too freaking annoying to even bother trying.

The house is awesome, though, and the renos you've finished so far look great.
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Old 03-19-2012, 03:01 PM   #45
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Originally Posted by Blondesense View Post
Coderguy, you have an interesting thread here, and I'd like to read it, but its driving me crazy having to scroll back and forth because your pics are too big.
Can you please resize them?
It's possible this may keep others from participating on this thread too.
Well, based on this feedback; I have set some time aside to go through this thread and rework the images.

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