Look What All Y’all Started

Updated on April 4, 2021 in General Stuff
9 on March 23, 2021

So somewhere along the way I mentioned the Texas power failure and our discussions surrounding it to my wife.

So as of this moment we are driving down to Charlottesville next Monday to pick up a gorgeous, white Jotul stand alone gas fireplace for the living room and we’re having the local propane guys out to sink a 120 gallon tank in the side yard I think some time this week. And then over the next 2 weeks we’ve got a local guy coming over to plumb the whole thing up so we have stunningly beautiful Norwegian gas heat in the living room, impervious to the wiles of electrical power failure.

But oh! It doesn’t stop there. Since my house sits on a hill, the north side of the basement is below ground. But the south side is marvelously ground level and sloping down away into town. So I’m rebuilding the basement, moving the finished north side to the unfinished south side leaving my lovely wife free to add big picture windows in the basement walls that look out over the town and the Alleghenies in the distance.

Oh, and since there’s a currently unused chimney on that side of the house we’re putting in another, more modest, yet to be determined gas fireplace there, too. In the vicinity of the majority of plumbing in the house. So in any case we can sit and watch winter go by in style, or accommodate wayward children who need a place to crash, or rent the space out to one of the numerous temporary assignment types that come and go with the wife’s work.

And should the power Armageddon ever strike the Valley and our all electric house, I can plug my 400 watt generator truck in to keep the lights (mostly LED these days due to other wife-driven improvements) and maybe internet and computers working until the Mounties find us.

Thanks guys. You’ve been a lot of help.

 
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0 on March 23, 2021

Nothing like having a hard core home improvement project going. 🙂

Speaking of which, I’ve been digging in to my basement refresh project. Coincidentally, like yours ours is a walkout, and the project includes rebuilding a section of the back wall to install new windows.

It also included replacing some old ceramic tiles. That did not go particularly well.

You’re right about the LEDs. Every time I re-do a room, I put those in. Of course, I put in way more than were there before, and the place ends up looking like an operating room. But you can run them without regard to load on any old 15A circuit, which makes life pretty damned easy.

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1 on March 23, 2021

PS: On LEDs, a buddy of mine has discovered these little LED “pucks” that are 1/2″ thick. They work great, and the best part is they don’t require a can to install. In fact, you can put them anywhere you want, even directly under a joist, since they are only as thick as the drywall. 

Very nifty setup.

on March 23, 2021

Exactly. That’s what we’ve been getting in to. Along with seperate circuits. So now rather than one bank of lights, we’ve got up to 3 per room for whatever the mood calls for.

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0 on March 24, 2021

Glad to help, LOL.

My own suvival project is finished, and the power actually obliged me the other day by going out again! I went outside, pushed the button on my gas generator, plugged the power cord into the outdoor pass-through receptacle, plugged in the TV, internet modem, and a light, and carried on. Worked awesome.

My next component will be one of the battery powered generators I started my thread with. Seems redundant, I know, since I already have the gas generator, and it is redundant, but I want a quiet, battery powered generator to keep indoors for brief outages, and will use the gas generator to charge up the battery generator if and as needed. For about $1500- 2000, I can get enough battery power to run the mini fridge, a couple of lamps, space heater and internet modem in on room going for maybe 6-8 hours which is a long outage for us. Don’t need lights in the daytime, and we can always just go to bed a few hours after sundown.

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2 on April 4, 2021

Well, the current economic chaos rippling through all manner of manufacturing and durable goods has made getting gas stoves any time in the next 9-10 months kind of iffy, but my resourceful wife tracked a floor model still under full warranty down in Charlottesville. So a couple weeks ago we drove down, loaded it in the truck, and brought her home. Yesterday we had a local crew out and installed it in the living room. It’s a Norwegian Jotul that’s drop dead gorgeous.

Next up is having the propane company out to bury the tank and plumb it into the house and hook it up to the fireplace. We lucked out on the tank too because of the absolutely screwy supply issues running amok these days (I won’t even mention my work where steel prices have caused quotes to have a useful life of about 15 minutes), the technician quoted us $850 from the sheet he had in his truck that he’d gotten 2 days before that turned to $1400 by the time he got back to the office that day. The lucky part was my wife pitched a fit and they honored the original price.

So sometime in the next week or two, the living room will be elegantly gassed and able to survive any massive electrical failure. The next step is to work on the basment reno at the other end of the house and at some point find another, probably not as fancy, stove for the basement.

Woo hoo!

on April 4, 2021

Damn, that does look fine.  What will you be using for emergency lighting.  I think a camping lantern is fine, to be honest.

And I need to play my Martin in that room and hear the toasted wheat overtones bounce off that hardwood floor.

on April 4, 2021

My 2017 F150 is essentially a 400 watt generator with a 36 gallon tank and a V8 engine. Plug into the outlet on the porch and disable the feed from the utility and I should be able to power those nifty LED disks you see in the picture that are now throughout the house as well as a computer and internet. And we can use my wife’s little Jeep to round up grub.

And you’re always welcome.

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1 on April 4, 2021

That’s a nice looking room, right there.

on April 4, 2021

I take no credit for it. I let the wife go nuts and try to keep up and stay out of the way.

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