Thursday, September 4, 2014

TBT Sunroom - Redesign

How about a true TBT? Last time we talked about the old house we had torn off the entire back wall and had leveled the floor. I was looking through my old blog's posts for pictures and I found the post I wrote when we originally did all this construction. It's too funny to rewrite so I'm going to include parts of the original post here in italics. I hope you enjoy it as much as I did rereading it!

Original Title: Rolling, Rolling, Rolling. Keep Those Windows Rolling. Yee Ha!!

The benefit to taking the entire back wall off a house is that you can completely redesign it. We didn't love the number of windows that came with the house and we didn't like that there was no exit to the backyard from the first floor of the house. So, when we reframed, we framed out the wall to include two large windows and a double wide door (all of which we had to special order). On the basement level, we kept the walkout door and two smaller windows. The hardest part of the framing was making sure that the openings were exactly the right size and level so that out windows and door would fit (there's nothing worse than getting specially ordered windows and door home and finding out that the openings are the wrong size)

Now we needed to prep the outside of the house to put them in. 

1st step: Sheathing. This step is basically creating a wall on the outside of the house. This is what you attach the siding to. Nate and I started Wednesday night and then as a surprise for Nate, I finished it on Thursday while he was teaching. I should have set up a video camera for this because I could have won a ton of money from AFV. Heavy boards, saws and I apparently don't mix well but it did get done!

2nd Step: House wrap. This is the waterproofing of the house. It was surprising fast to put up and, minus a trip to Lowe's to get some more, only took about an hour.

3rd Step: Get windows and door home.

I would normally advise against rolling windows. However, when Home Depot doesn't deliver them, you've got to get them home somehow! Luckily, since our order was large enough, they did let us use the Home Depot truck for free (for a grand total of 75 min). Here's the break down of the time

0 min - 20 min: Move the truck in front of the loading area and wait...and wait some more... and finally call Nate, whose in the store, who informs me that he's walking back and forth between the Costumer service area and the loading area trying to let the loading guys know that the windows and door actually belong to us.

20 min -30 min: Wait outside with Nate for the fork lift guys to come to the loading area to load the door onto the truck since it's so big.

30 min- 45 min: Finally go inside to see what is taking so long. I take a look at the windows and door for the first time. Notice there are a bunch of marks on the door and scraps. Complain to the Manager. Fork lift guys show up but can't load the door yet since it's all banged up.

45 min - 55 min: Walk back down to Customer Service where they give us a small refund on the door since we can't wait another month for a new one. Meanwhile the loading guy we were working with went home and the fork lift guys left.

55 min - 60 min: Walk back down to loading area and regroup the team to load the truck.

60 min -75 min: Load truck. The only thing that made this a tolerable process was the fork lift guys comment once he got the door on the truck of "I think we need some rope". I found this hilarious although I'm pretty sure that I was the only one who did. I desperately ran back to the rental area to reset the time on the truck since we hadn't actually left the parking lot yet.

0 min - 35 min: Drive painfully slowly back home in an effort to not to topple anything out the side of the truck. Home Depot is also on the opposite side of the raised train tracks from our house so we had to go through the one tunnel that we wouldn't crash into since we were over 11' tall with the door. (Luckily we thought of that BEFORE we got to the tunnel)

35 min - 50 min: Unload the truck as fast as we possible can. This was made more difficult by the fact that we also brought home 10 sheets of 4'x8', very heavy, sheathing.

50 min - 60 min: Drive to gas station and fill up the tank so we don't have to pay $6.50 a gallon from Home Depot.

60 min - 73 min: Drive to Home Depot.

73 min - 74 min: Hunt down the rental guys

74 min -75 min: Return truck and get jabs from the rental guy about cutting it close. 

4th Step: Install windows and door. This was a little tricky since they are secured from the outside and as you can see, there's not much to stand on outside the windows. This was solved by feeding the windows at an angle out and Nate "catching" them on a ladder while I held the top and then somehow pushing them into place. This worked well on everything but the door. We have doors that swing out and they kept trying to swing! It was a little touch and go on the door but we got it in.

We are now one step closer to finishing the back porch. Our plans for our deck also passed and we have the permit so hopefully soon we will be able to open the doors and step out onto a deck! (instead of a 6 foot drop).

Want to see the whole renovation? Click the links!