Robert the roofer set to work yesterday nailing shingles to the new roof over the new garage. He returned early today to continue. Steven stepped out the side window of the master bedroom, onto the roof, to see and ask questions.
Above, standing atop the new roof over the new garage, looking back to the house, this is the first time Steven has seen the old and refurbished roof from this altitude — all of about 20+ feet above ground. The new cricket is clearly visible at the back of the chimney. The roofers added this to push water away from the brick. There was no cricket when Steven and Jacquela purchased Emerald Hill. When we opened up the walls in bedroom 4, we discovered water damage and some mold traveling between the roof and chimney, down the brick, behind the sheathing.
Steven received from Cowart the quote for the new garage door for the new garage bay — and approved it.
Ron and Matt started to clean up the garage; it’s almost time to scrape up the old linoleum tiles, acid wash the glue away, and turn the garage over to Steven and Jacquela.
24+ hours of nearly continuous rain. So far. Hurricane Patricia is shredding itself apart over the mountains of Mexico. Flood advisories are posted for Texas. Jacquela and Steven visited Emerald Hill. Saturday afternoon. First chance to see how the house holds up under a stress-test deluge.
The entry at the side door to the kitchen is dry. The entry at the back door is dry. These are the two weakest points of entry for water, based on the termite and water damage we found when taking apart the house during demo.
Upstairs, all the ceilings and walls are dry.
With one exception.
There’s a slow dripping leak at the vent stack pipe in bath 3. It appears the stack is open to sky above the roof — and water is slowly traveling down the pipe. The paper protecting the tile floor is wet. As is a small section of drywall, wicking water up the wall from the tile. Steven alerts Ron and Mark at Ranserve via email and messaging. Jacquela locates a bucket in the garage. Steven puts the bucket under the pipe. Ron texts that the bucket should suffice until Monday morning, when he will determine what fix might be required.
Flashing helps direct the flow of water around openings. Since water can seep into your home’s walls, deteriorating building materials, causing structural damage, and creating moisture and mold problems, it is very important to properly install flashing when constructing a new house or altering the exterior of a house. Flashing is used beneath the first course above ground level in a masonry building, above all wood trim on shelves, doors, and windows, where exterior stairs and decks attach to the house, and around any features in the roof structure. Below are some of the common flashing details on residential roofs. DIY Network.
The Tyvek is up. Don and his crew from Potter’s Roofing nail the roof flashing into place, tucking it under the Tyvek.
When Ranserve took out the interior drywall, Steven stood upstairs, in the center of the house, turning 360 degrees — and daylight intruded into the house through gaps between the original cedar siding and the top of the lower roof. The flashing and Tyvek begin to seal those gaps. The house won’t be airtight when Ranserve is done, but a lot less heating and air conditioning will escape, helping the house qualify for the Austin Energy Green Building program.
Third meeting of the busiest week yet for Steven with Ron Dahlke, who is cranking hard and fast on 12 cylinders. And it’s only Wednesday. Today’s agenda:
Roofing. Ron met with and Steven approved quote from Potter’s Roofing Co. to install sheetmetal and waterproofing at several locations; to remove existing and install new vent flashing in the lower and upper roofs; to patch where mushroom vents and the skylight are removed — and other damaged areas; and to replace the chimney flashing with a new cricket that will move water away from the brick at the back of the chimney where it meets the roof; water flows directly against the brick and existing flashing when it rains. This is wrong. Some of these tasks are built into existing line-item budgets. Some of this work will require change orders. Why the change orders? Ron and the framers opened up the framing behind the chimney and discovered signs of water penetration traveling down the brick.
Pocket doors. Ron finalized and Steven approved quote from BMC for interior pocket doors — built into the framing materials line-item in the budget.
Exterior doors. Steven also approved second quote from BMC for exterior doors at the kitchen, back door and at at the mudroom into the garage — not including the front door and not including the back door to the garage. The front door is an entirely different task — and Ron is researching whether the back door to the garage must be fire rated.
Vanities, medicine cabinets, electrical. Steven delivered dimensional plans for the bathroom vanities, and the medicine cabinets that will be used in bath 2, the mudroom and master bath. This enables Ron and the framers to properly nail lumber into position for the medicine cabinets, which insert into the wall between studs. It also enables Ron, Sean the electrician, and Steven and Jacquela to properly position electrical outlets for the medicine cabinets, which feature built-in LED lighting, and for wall outlets adjacent to the vanities.
HVAC. Ron advises that the HVAC rough-in begins Thursday/tomorrow, 23 July.
Kitchen cabinets. Also 23 July, Aaron Pratt at Centex Custom Cabinets is scheduled to visit, to begin measuring for the kitchen cabinets.
Pending. Ron continues to track pending submittals from subcontractors for refinishing the wood floors and laying new wood; how to get electrical power through the slab to the kitchen island; and the candidates for the potential front door.
Discovery 1: Structure. Taking out the hearth to the left of and in front of the fireplace reveals the brick may be the only thing holding up the ceiling beams above the fireplace — and we may need to add structural support across the front of the fireplace under the ceiling beams. Ron is researching this with the structural engineer, Ben Feldt at Feldt Consulting Engineers.
Discovery 2: Insulation. Ron advises that the sheathing between the brick and studs on the first floor may need additional sealing — every time that demo took out an old cable or fixture, that left a hole in the sheathing. One way to fix this may be to deploy the painters with silicon before we begin insulation. Another approach might be to use expanding foam insulation instead of blown-in insulation. The building plan already calls for foam in the attic, upper and lower roofs, with blown-in insulation in the walls. There’s a cost delta to switch out to foam — should we do this selectively, only where needed, stud bay penetration by stud bay penetration? Or, should we just foam everything? Ron offers to schedule a meeting with the insulation contractor. Steven notes his history with foam — the current house is the first built by John Hagy Homes that is insulated with foam, helping to qualify the house for 3 stars with the Austin Energy Green Building Program — 11 years ago, when foam insulation was new to market. And … the foam yields an airtight house that is much easier to heat and cool, and vastly more efficient.
Separately, Steven met with and walked the house with one of the candidate companies to install the structured wiring system — security, low-voltage cables for TV, sound and phone, and the computer network.