Thursday, February 19, 2009

Its Alive!

Our house has a heart now, humming away and pumping warm liquid through its veins.

Last weekend we had the heating installed & also experienced our first domestic emergency.


While the plumbers were working away and my Mother-in-law & I were in the kitchen discussing paint colours, a fountain erupted in the middle of the room. We were standing just to the side of the line of fire so didn't get a full shower, just a little sprinkle.
We yelled, the plumbers yelled, I turned off the open valve, the plumbers turned off the water from the source.
See that long wet splotch on the floor, we were standing right beside that. Close call.

After everyone had calmed down, they turned the water back on. We looked around, and didn't see any more fountains, but a few minutes later I thought I heard a noise upstairs. Sure enough, a valve in one of the bathrooms had been left open all the way, not just a fraction like the kitchen one. We had a full-force geyser and about 1/4" of water on the floor. Good thing we still have holes in the ceiling so the water had somewhere to drain out without doing any damage to the new drywall.


It was bit of an ordeal buying the boiler.
We decided to upgrade from the one specified by the heating designer because we heard too many negative things about that brand from too many different sources and also wanted something more energy-efficient. Had a tight deadline because we wanted the drywall 'mudders' to do their thing and they couldn't work until they had heat. So it came down to "what do you have in stock that will work with the already-installed & drywalled-in vent".

In the process I learned more about boilers than I ever wanted to know: I can now read specs to determine efficiency rating and type of vent needed. Also learned that "super-high-efficiency" translates as "super-high-priced". Plus the high-efficiency type need a special stainless-steel vent which would mean ripping out the existing vent and re-drywalling. After spending half a day on the phone & on-line studying spec sheets I figured out which of the ones our supplier had in stock would work for us.

It's a German brand that I was told is the same quality as the 'other' high-priced German name but without the high price; a few more BTU's than we need but its better to be over-powered than under; and, most importantly, it works with our B-vent.

I got an earful from Cole because it's not Energy-Star rated but he cooled off when I pointed out that it's rated only 0.8% less than the Energy-star one that would have cost us a lot more. I'm sure not going to worry about less than 1% difference in efficiency.

The plumbers said it has to run flat-out for a week before they install the thermostats so our house is Hot-Hot-Hot. When Kim & I went to do a clean-up the next evening it was like walking into a sauna. Whoever told me it would take a few days for the house to warm up obviously didn't know what they were talking about. The plumbers said the drywallers wouldn't mind, they need the heat, but I'm afraid to go into the house when they're there - they might be working in their underwear. I would be.

1 comment:

Tina Holden said...

As always, enjoy reading your blog.
Left you something on my blog Jem...you got an award to pick up.
Tina
http://beadcomber.blogspot.com