Sunday, November 30, 2014

A New Water Heater and Adding A Hallway

Hello everyone.  I hope you all had a wonderful Thanksgiving.  Mike and I worked during day but we had a good dinner:)

Today's story is about our new water heater and adding drywall to the hallway area to make it part of the inside of the house.

We ordered a new dishwasher at the same time we ordered the water heater.  If you order a kitchen appliance with the water heater than the delivery was free.  It's a good thing we still needed a dishwasher.

We tried to plan it right so that the drivers could take our old water heater with them.  Mike and I got up and showered and he started to drain the old water heater tank.  Just as Mike started that the Lowes truck showed up.  I have never seen them come before 8:00 am but they did.  At least they can take the old dishwasher.

Now for the change out.  After the tank was drained Mike starts the disconnect.  This tank still works but it is from 1989 and we thought we would replace it while we are doing everything else.  Besides it is way too big for us.

Starting to take it apart:

Once Mike gets it all disconnected we bring it outside to steal some of the old parts:

I bring the new water heater inside:

The old copper water pipes look good so Mike will reuse those:

The electric on the other hand looks pretty scary:

Mike drilling a hole to add a new electric box:

Putting the box in:

The electric wire that we took out and it will stay out:

Mike adding new electric wire:

We got the new water heater in place and Mike does the water line hook up.

And for the final tightening:

Ta da…our new water heater:

And now back to what we were working on…the new hallway where we raised the floor.

Mike adds an electric box so we can hang a light in the hallway.  We can't put one over the door because the ceiling is lower in here:

Ooh…time for my job:)  Adding some insulation:

I help Mike lift the drywall in place and he starts adding the screws:

While he does that I go back to the bathroom tile on the bay window wall.  This is some ugly stuff and unlike any tile I have ever taken off/down.  It does not have mortar on the back. It is like it was added with concrete to the concrete wall:

I'm working on it but it does not break like normal tile.  It comes off in tiny splintered pieces.  This little bit took me half an hour to do:

Mike is still working on the drywall:

He came over to see if he could help with the tile.  It doesn't look like we will be able to get it off.  I wish we knew that before I started chiseling, lol.  Oh well.  Change of plans…we are going to drywall over it.  We just don't see any other option for this tile.

The scary part is this is the same kind of tile that is in both of the main bathrooms.  We will have to figure out something creative for that when the time comes.

For now…I have to fill in what I took out:

The last wall going up:

This is our last full piece of drywall….for now…yay:

Mike and I debated about the furring strips on this header.  We decided to take them down to give us a little more headspace:

Once all the extra wood is down we can add the drywall.  We measured and cut and now Mike is screwing the top piece in:

And the side piece:

That's our story for today.  We have been busy with lots of decisions and plans.  If all goes well we will be done with the main living area and kitchen by Christmas.  Then we will take a break:)

I hope you enjoyed this update and I will post again on Thursday.


  1. Enjoy seeing your progress - as always! :)

  2. I'd knock that whole window seat out with the sledge hammer and put a tall round lamp table centered at the window, flanked by 2 matching wing chairs. Would look great with the built-in bookcases. That window seat looks like a previous remuddle add-on and does nothing for the room.

    Recessed can lights would be good for that low entry and hall.

    1. I'm all for it. Come on down and have at it:). That wall is solid concrete…not block and then you have to worry about the windows. The tile was an add on…I don't think the poured concrete was. It is solid.

      We don't have room to get into the so called attic so this house is really hard to run any new wiring. We are having all kinds of issues with the outlets and switches. We can't get in any attic and the interior walls are concrete. This is not a normal house and it will take a lot of different ideas to make it work.

    2. Go with wiring to interior walls if you can.....
      I agree the recessed lights would be ideal in that hallway....and they can be installed from below, so you don't need to be in the attic, if the ceiling is accessible, but then again, you have already closed it off....oops!!

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    4. We didn't have enough room for a recessed light right above the door. The wood for the roof framing was right there.

  3. It's looking great. We are helping our son get his rental house ready for a new tenant, and are getting a little taste of how satisfying it is to knock out another project. It is kind of additive, although much smaller scale than you and Mike.
    Why did you get a baby water heater?
    Have you ever been able to talk about the history of your house with anyone who knows about it? It is unusual, and I'd love to meet the guy who built it and hear what his thinking process was. gentlearts

    1. Enjoy your renovation. It is fun…when it's not to much, lol.

      We got a 40 gallon water heater which is luxurious to Mike and I. We have a 10 gallon one in TN:) It saves money.

      I'm not sure of if the original owner is still alive. We did hear he was a captain and he wanted to see the water from all around. That might also explain why the bedrooms are so big, lol.

  4. Lisa said: "Then we will take a break."

    I'll believe it when it happens, LOL!



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    2. Place your bets, lol. I know…we will rest for two days and Mike will say…"we need to accomplish something" and we will be off to a new project. We still have the garage and the den to finish and then way down the road the bathrooms.

  5. Busy as usual....though just as usual, I have a few comments.....LOL!!
    I don't know if I would have reused the parts from the water heater, unless it was obvious that they were recently replaced. A relief valve that is a decade old might be questionable...and if it fails, not worth the money you saved.
    (Yes, I know, this is already a done deal, so I'm just talking here..LOL!!

    As for the tiles in the should be able to rough sand (with a grinder) and then put new tile right onto that existing modernize it, and since the existing tile is obviously not going to fall off, I think you should be OK going right to it. If you are worried, I guess you could screw some screen to the existing tile, and then put the "mud" right on there.

    I know you think you're going to take a break after Christmas,,,,,but we all know you guys better than you know just isn't gonna happen...LOL!!!

    1. Don't worry we only reused the existing copper water lines and the pipe fittings. The electric Mike replaced and the new water heater came with a new pressure relief valve.

      The bathrooms will be the last thing we do. There are options for covering tile and I think that's what we will have to do. We will try to take it down and see what happens.

      Always love to hear you talk and your input:)

  6. I love update days! Yep that house was made to stay put!! When was it made, I think concrete homes in Florida were the old form of building down there. You two could ride out some pretty big storms in that house.


    1. The house was built in 1960. The Florida houses that Mike and I have remodeled in the past have been early 70's and the exteriors were all concrete block but no the interior. I'm sure we can weather some storms but if they call for a big one we will high tail it out of here in the RV, lol.

  7. That looks like a fairly new air handler in there. The ducts also appear to be well sealed, a plus.
    You might want to add some shut-off valves at the WH, at least on the feed (cold) side. The drain at the T&P should get hooked back up, even though it is using the a/c condensate drain pump as a drain. The pump could never keep up with a full force of a T&P valve discharge. Is there a way to drain to the outside or is it surrounded by interior space? Good to see Mike straightened out the electrical wiring rats nest.
    You guys are getting it back together. I guess with the kids coming out you’re under the

    1. It is new which is a bonus. The water heater does have a cold water shut off valve. It is right next to the water heater. We have the parts to hook up the pressure relief valve to the condensate pump. We just haven't done it yet. Sadly there is no way to have it drain outside. It is the brick wall that is between the kitchen and living room.

      We are working on the details now. I hope the kids can make it by February…of course they are welcome anytime. Mike and I miss them.

  8. Awesome! The new water heater fits perfectly right on your home. It's pretty generous of the appliance store to give a delivery free-of-charge, huh? I guess you're really lucky. Anyway, Mike was definitely handy during the installation. Also, the new hallway looks great. Kudos to you for doing a great job, guys! All the best! :)

    Shelley Coday @ C & C Heating & Air Conditioning