Category: House

Oct 08 2016

Hurricane Matthew update

Well the hurricane was fairly intense with lots of rain and very strong winds. We had 9” of rain in less than 24 hours with a max windspeed of 85 mph at the airport. Actually, it wasn’t all that bad at ground level and the newscaster said it was a category 1 storm.

If this was a Cat 1, I would really hate to be in a category 4 storm. I can already see there are a bunch of things I need to do to prepare for the next big storm.

I did have some damage after all. The gently curved tree in which I used for hanging my freaking huge wind chime couldn’t handle the wind stress and came crashing down this morning. I really wouldn’t have cared that much, but it hit my fence and wood storage rack. I can’t complain because it is an easier fix than if the tree had hit my house. Other than a bunch of small limbs in the yard I came out fairly well.

Luckily, I didn’t loose power or internet at the house. Cant say the same for most of the neighbor, as a large tree took the power lines down for a large section of the neighborhood just down the street from my house. This tree was HUGE and probably 40” dia across at the base. They will need a crane to get out.


Here are a few shots of tree which came down in my yard….





Feb 25 2015

Pool Heater Replacement

Today I installed the pool heater I purchased from Amazon. The original heater only lasted 12 years (WTF??). Actually, I was quite pleased to keep it alive for so long but it has been giving me problems for the last few years.

Time for an upgrade!!


My biggest concern was getting it out from under the deck. I thought I would have to removed the concrete base it was sitting on to get it out. I guess that is part of the reason I havent replaced it sooner.


Actually I was luck and it came out easily (after cutting all the tubing).


After installing quick disconnects on all the lines for easy future servicing, the new heater was installed in about 3 hours. The old heater is going into storage for spare parts if needed.

After firing up the heater my pool temperature increased at a steady 4 deg per hour from 64f to 90f.

I love being up to my neck in hot water…

May 06 2014

Back door refinishing

Todays project was to sand and refinish the back doors. They had been in installed for 12 years and had taken a beating from the weather when I didnt have the back porch covered.


I replaced some of the hardware and they now look great!


Apr 19 2014

Block retaining wall continued

The wall is taking shape nicely, but I am still not sure how I am going to finalize the end. I guess I’ll work that out when I get there..


Foundation is started. A gravel drain on the backside was installed on the back side to to prevent excess water pressure from casing wall collapse.


I custom cut the top and glued the cap pieces around the curve and decided to put an loop at the end for flowers.



Back fill the low area with top soil and plant some grass.


The final result. I like it….


Apr 10 2014

Block retaining wall

After the trees were removed, I had to decide on what to do with the slope of the yard. I have never like the 4 ft drop of the yard.


The decision was made to make a block retaining wall.

One of the hardest parts of the project was hand digging out the remains of the stump so I could lay the foundation for the wall. What a mess, but it was interesting to flow the roots out. Such a massive tree with not much holding it up.


A foundation was laid to stack the bricks on …


I ended up buying 2 1/2 truck loads of bricks.


Apr 02 2014

Sewer Upgrade

I have been having problems with clogging of my sewer line. After the last time the city came out to clean the main line apparently they decided to fix the issue once and for all….


When the line was removed there was a big slug of tree roots (the brown slug in the center of the picture) growing in the sewer line from a cracked clay pipe.


The line was replaced with a PVC line,


and the yard restored with sod. The amazing thing is it only took the crew about 2 hours to complete the work. Yeah! No more backups.


Apr 01 2014

Tree cutting

Lately I have been getting concerned about try limb overhangs, rotten limbs, etc and decided to have some tree cut down. In total I had 6 trees removed. I love it now and should have a lot less leave to rack in the fall….


These trees are crazy tall so I hired some tree cutters…


Rot area on my hickory tree.


Glad I took these big guys down. I’ll be much safer if a hurricane comes through.



I find it fascinating that the Allen the tree climber just loves getting up in trees and cutting limbs. I guess it is all in what you get used to and being safe


Donnie the tree man. I like this shot, but Donnie gave me the run around and didn’t grind out one of the stomps after I paid him. Taught me a less about contractors.

Mar 31 2014

Septic Tank Breakin

While installing the french the trailer was filled with 2 tons of gravel. Suddenly the trailer would move anymore.


WTF? I thought I hit a sink hole

Apparently it turned out to be an improperly abandoned septic tank from ?? 1950s maybe.


I asked a buddy what to do, and he said break the cover in and fill it with sand.


It is great to have a friend with a tilting bed. In a few hours it was filled and now I’ll let it set for a month to compact the soil then I’ll plant some grass on it.


Another problem corrected at the house.

Mar 28 2014

Stump grinding

Donnie show up to grind out these MASSIVE stumps left over from the trees which were removed.

How is this lithe machine going to take on……


Huge stomp…


After a long while of grinding Donnie finally got it out of there. Nice!


Mar 28 2014

French Drains

I have never been happy with the water drainage off the west end of the house. One half of the house runoff is all coming down in one small area, so I decided to install a french drain to collect it and keep from washing out my yard.



A collection pipe was added to take care of the runoff from the roof over the addition


The water from the roof drains travels down the pip to a gravel filled ditch with a perforated pipe to distribute the water. If it overfills, then I can add to the drain and pipe the excess off.


Around the pool filter area.


The final look. Note: it works very well and I have zero erosion of the yard now. Next step is to get gutters installed on the back of the house to collect the water to the piping.