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Old 10-13-2008, 06:29 PM   #16
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Are tankless water heaters a good choice for the midwest


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No compressor? Is the coil relatively cold enough to pull humidity out of the air?

Good to know.. And yeah, I can imagine how cheap that is if it's just a pump and blower.

Sadly I can't just go digging up my yard.. I'd need a permit, and therefore the work would all have to be done by someone licensed which makes the cost absurd.. etc. I'd do it anyway, but someone's bound to notice. You do all the digging yourself? Bobcat? (Can't do that by hand..)
I have a backhoe. It is old but it works and digs holes just fine.

We don't have a humidity problem in the desert. It is below 40% most of the time.

A permit to dig a hole????

What socialist city/state do you live in?

Just an FYI, you can use a large motorized post hole digger, the kind on small wheels you can tow behind a car. Dig the holes as deep as you can and then coil the pex in the bottom. Use sand to fill in voids and then refill the hole.

If anyone asks you are just planting a few trees and changed your mind....

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Old 10-13-2008, 07:39 PM   #17
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A permit to dig a hole????

What socialist city/state do you live in?
Ugh, don't get me started.. Town Of Oyster Bay, NY sets the rules. Get this: technically I need a permit to do any electrical work in my house. This includes changing a light switch or receptacle. Plumbing is not so bad, you can change fixtures, but anything else requires a permit. And they are DIY unfriendly: Plumbing permits need to be signed by a master plumber (and since they're responsible for the work, good luck getting them to sign off and let the homeowner do the work). Homeowners can do "simple electrical work", but they have to pass a written test given by the town, and submit full drawings of the intended work, and sit down with some kind of board to discuss it. You have to go through all that every time you want to do any work (well, I think the test is once every 5 years or so). Oh, and the most minor of permits cost ~$200.

Phew.

And I don't know exactly where digging up one's backyard falls in, but I'm sure there's a rule against it. And HVAC work definitely needs a permit.

I know a lot of pros on this site always advise to get permits and inspections, but .. I won't finish that sentence.

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Just an FYI, you can use a large motorized post hole digger, the kind on small wheels you can tow behind a car. Dig the holes as deep as you can and then coil the pex in the bottom. Use sand to fill in voids and then refill the hole.

If anyone asks you are just planting a few trees and changed your mind....
Gooood idea.

BTW: planting / removing / delimbing trees? You got it. Permit! So I damb well better change my mind.

(And PS - Building inspectors around here actually drive around looking for violations. My father-in-law was replacing his own garage door and had a tarp covering the opening overnight. His neighbor told him he saw the inspector on the sidewalk peering at it from every angle. He's in a different town than I am, but same idea all over Long Island).
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Old 10-13-2008, 08:35 PM   #18
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Are tankless water heaters a good choice for the midwest


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Ugh, don't get me started.. Town Of Oyster Bay, NY sets the rules. Get this: technically I need a permit to do any electrical work in my house. This includes changing a light switch or receptacle. Plumbing is not so bad, you can change fixtures, but anything else requires a permit. And they are DIY unfriendly: Plumbing permits need to be signed by a master plumber (and since they're responsible for the work, good luck getting them to sign off and let the homeowner do the work). Homeowners can do "simple electrical work", but they have to pass a written test given by the town, and submit full drawings of the intended work, and sit down with some kind of board to discuss it. You have to go through all that every time you want to do any work (well, I think the test is once every 5 years or so). Oh, and the most minor of permits cost ~$200.

Phew.

And I don't know exactly where digging up one's backyard falls in, but I'm sure there's a rule against it. And HVAC work definitely needs a permit.

I know a lot of pros on this site always advise to get permits and inspections, but .. I won't finish that sentence.



Gooood idea.

BTW: planting / removing / delimbing trees? You got it. Permit! So I damb well better change my mind.

(And PS - Building inspectors around here actually drive around looking for violations. My father-in-law was replacing his own garage door and had a tarp covering the opening overnight. His neighbor told him he saw the inspector on the sidewalk peering at it from every angle. He's in a different town than I am, but same idea all over Long Island).
And this is the plan for the US by some politicians who want to control everything we do. It's scary.

I got red flagged on one of my remodels so I drew up some plans for a shell and got a permit. It passed and now I am filling in inside since they can't see what I am doing and no one can turn me in.

Of course my taxes went up after the addition passed.

Portland does a flyover every year and photographs the city in case someone does an addition without a permit.

In Oregon we have a measure on the ballot where anything under $35,000 will not need a permit except for electrical and plumbing. Guess which way I am voting.

On to your hydronic cooling. What you are doing is not HVAC, you are just digging some holes. You could probably get by with a 3 foot hole.
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Old 10-13-2008, 10:37 PM   #19
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This thread just took a turn to the ridiculous, and I think it is sad to see normally responsible posters on this site promulgating advice against securing a building permits. Furthermore, I find it nothing short of irresponsible to brag about circumventing permit requirements on interior work. If you put yourself out there as a reliable source of information on this site you need to give responsible advice, because people will take your advice as the gospel.

I have no problem with the arguments against the strict rules of Oyster Bay, NY. The requirement for a masters license is ridiculous, and it is furthermore ridiculous to discourage DIY projects. Jurisdictions like that put a bad taste in any reasonable person's mouth, including mine, and such rules only encourage DIYers to circumvent the permit requirement instead of being a self-advocate and getting their work inspected. I can enforce the code on any project no matter who did the work, masters license or not. It has been my experience that cities that have strict rules about masters licenses have very strong union influence. Unfortunate.

However, this is a DIY site, frequented by people that are amateurs, not professionals. In the vast majority of cases, DIYers are better served by getting the necessary inspections to double check their work for minimum safety standards. For that matter professionals are too.
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Old 10-13-2008, 11:16 PM   #20
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KC,

.. And we're completely OT to boot. Sorry about that.

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In the vast majority of cases, DIYers are better served by getting the necessary inspections to double check their work for minimum safety standards. For that matter professionals are too.
Look, I agree with you. I don't want my neighbor doing a hack electrical job, burning down his house and mine in the process. We're not exactly on farmland over here, so what one guy does can seriously impact those around him.

But the fact of the matter is there is no way I will ever pull a $200 permit and take a day off of work waiting for an inspector so that I can change a receptacle.

Oyster Bay is severe in its rules, and the reason I know this is because I read the town code (regarding building codes anyway) so that I could comply with it. I'd recommend every DIY'r do the same.

( http://gcp.esub.net/cgi-bin/om_isapi...wse_Frame_Pg42 in case anyone's curious).

I do like to complain about it though, as does just about every homeowner around here..

I have nothing against inspections, but permits should be inexpensive and easy to obtain so that we can get to the inspection stage. Otherwise it encourages un-inspected work and unsafe practices, IMO. (Of which there are plenty around here).
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Old 10-13-2008, 11:29 PM   #21
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Are tankless water heaters a good choice for the midwest


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KC,

.. And we're completely OT to boot. Sorry about that.



Look, I agree with you. I don't want my neighbor doing a hack electrical job, burning down his house and mine in the process. We're not exactly on farmland over here, so what one guy does can seriously impact those around him.

But the fact of the matter is there is no way I will ever pull a $200 permit and take a day off of work waiting for an inspector so that I can change a receptacle.

Oyster Bay is severe in its rules, and the reason I know this is because I read the town code (regarding building codes anyway) so that I could comply with it. I'd recommend every DIY'r do the same.

( http://gcp.esub.net/cgi-bin/om_isapi...wse_Frame_Pg42 in case anyone's curious).

I do like to complain about it though, as does just about every homeowner around here..

I have nothing against inspections, but permits should be inexpensive and easy to obtain so that we can get to the inspection stage. Otherwise it encourages un-inspected work and unsafe practices, IMO. (Of which there are plenty around here).
Exactly.

Not only are they expensive, they use the upgrades to increase your taxes. So why would anyone want to have their taxes increased?

My home is listed as a 2 bedroom, one bath. That is good for me. My taxes are less than everyone else and I intend to keep it that way.

Then there is the inefficiency of the whole process. In my experience they make it so difficult to do any remodeling that many just don't do it.

My neighbor is disabled and lives on a fixed income. He wanted to get a wheel chair ramp and the city told him all the specification and informed him the permit was $200 and there were no exceptions.

His son and I just put it together. An inspector saw us finishing it up and checked for the permit. He red flagged the house. We threw the red tag away and finished the project.

The city came by and told him he had to tear it down. I called the TV and radio stations and told them the story. They called city hall to confirm the sequence of events. We never heard back from anyone and the ramp is still there and he uses it every day.

I never tell people to go without a permit. At the same time I never tell them to get a permit. I just don't talk about it. If they ask me if they should get one I just shrug my shoulders.

When I am working as a contractor I get permits and make sure the owner knows just how much they are paying to get these permits. I tell them how much less the job would be without having to deal with the city.

And that's all I have to say about that.
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Last edited by Marvin Gardens; 10-13-2008 at 11:32 PM.
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Old 10-13-2008, 11:34 PM   #22
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Not only are they expensive, they use the upgrades to increase your taxes.
$8,000 - $15,000 on a 50'x100' lot around here, BTW..

I know, if I don't like it, I should move. :P
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Old 10-13-2008, 11:38 PM   #23
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...permits should be inexpensive and easy to obtain so that we can get to the inspection stage. Otherwise it encourages un-inspected work and unsafe practices, IMO. (Of which there are plenty around here).
Agreed! Municipalities shouldn't create unreasonable barriers that discourage people from abiding with the law and the code. Fact is that most people that avoid the process aren't avoiding the permit, they're avoiding the inspection(s). Permits are normally pretty inexpensive and easy to obtain, with some municipalities being the exception.

I just don't want to see avoidance advertised as the right thing to do when discussing permits and inspections. The scary installations that I see on permitted projects make me glad I do what I do, because fact is that it saves lives and property...The ones that don't have permits keep me up nights because god only knows the dangerous work that goes on.
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Old 10-13-2008, 11:45 PM   #24
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I love the tax argument and I agree. I hate taxes, but this is America...A capitalist economy that involves taxation for your slice of the pie...Bigger slices cost more. Perhaps you'd be happier in a socialist/communist country/economy where you get the same exact slice of the pie as the next guy.

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I tell them how much less the job would be without having to deal with the city.

[COLOR=darkorange
And I wonder...Do you give them a list of the items that the inspector catches you on during the entire course of the project?[/COLOR]
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Old 10-13-2008, 11:47 PM   #25
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Are tankless water heaters a good choice for the midwest


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I just don't want to see avoidance advertised as the right thing to do when discussing permits and inspections.
Fair enough, and I'll stick with MG and keep my mouth shut if I disagree with the need for a permit.. (Though the wheelchair ramp was a good example of where municipalities need to reduce permit fees or make exceptions. I'm sure he built it solidly, but someone else in the same boat, who knows?)

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The scary installations that I see on permitted projects make me glad I do what I do, because fact is that it saves lives and property...The ones that don't have permits keep me up nights because god only knows the dangerous work that goes on.
Can't imagine what you've seen. And totally agreed it saves lives.
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Old 10-13-2008, 11:52 PM   #26
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Are tankless water heaters a good choice for the midwest


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I love the tax argument and I agree. I hate taxes, but this is America...A capitalist economy that involves taxation for your slice of the pie...Bigger slices cost more. Perhaps you'd be happier in a socialist/communist country/economy where you get the same exact slice of the pie as the next guy.
We used to be a capitalist economy. Now I just work so that I can bail out billion dollar companies.

I do everything to code. I have never had an inspector tell me to correct something.

Oh wait,,,there was that time that he had me insulate the pipes in a heated space "in case" the heat went out. I only insulated the pipes I put in and left the pipes right next to them uninsulated since I didn't put them in. He told me I had to insulate them and I said I didn't put them in, didn't modify them and won't be insulating them. I won, he lost.
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Old 10-14-2008, 12:08 AM   #27
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We used to be a capitalist economy. Now I just work so that I can bail out billion dollar companies.
Agreed on that one too.. At least we're going to get big dividends on our ownership of those companies.
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Old 10-14-2008, 05:36 AM   #28
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Are tankless water heaters a good choice for the midwest


I am jumping in here late but I have a tankless system in Pa.on a direct line east of the windy and it has been great for the past 2.5 years even in the winter so if you system can handel it or you can do an upgrade I would do it
just my two cents worth

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