Adding plastic to my windows, insulating and more plumbing stuff

Mom got a great deal on some plastic window film at Shopko. We have been adding that film to windows. I have caulked around the window frames and it has made a huge difference eliminating cold spots and drafts. I rehung some thermal curtains around the backdoor, it seems to working better at blocking drafts as well as the older pekes ability to hit the doggie door.  The PC room is still a bit cool but it is getting better as far as drafts/cold spots and is warmer overall.  Speaking for myself only, I dealt with the cold, Mom made me think about why the house was cold and had a solution.  I don’t have a solution to everything, some times I need another person’s  mindset to fix a problem.

We are doing very good on the additional electrical costs so far considering Mom is running a heater in the PC room and the chicken house plus a heat lamp to her chickens, Xmas lighting and Mom using extra hot water for bathing. I figure the total extra cost is about $20.00 more compared to last year’s bill. Adding the plastic on the windows and the LED bulbs has helped keep the cost down overall.  The birds are happy and laying but we are getting eggs that are stepped on and cracked. Do we need more laying boxes or is this a thing that happens with chickens?

I got the new water supply line installed on the small bathroom toilet. That was a tough job because of a confined work area and I had to work mostly left handed.  I got a great supply line kit from lowes that covered all size valve attachments  3/8, 1/2 and 7/16. It worked out great since the valve attachment turned out to be 3/8 rather than a 1/2 inch I thought it would be.  I noticed the the tank is leaking just a touch around the bolts that hold the tank to the bowl.  All I need is new bolts and gaskets and that should fix the last leak in that bathroom.  A great way to check for leaks is a bit of food dye in the tank and paper towels around toilet on the floor.

I got the new drain and plug for big bathroom installed. Wonder of wonders the drain pipe was installed correctly and it was easy to install the replacement drain. Mom was a great help holding the drain in place above, while I attached the drain pipe below.  The valves I got from Home Depot were not complete and I think they are the wrong type for the the installation. Monday I will return the valves and look for the universal type setup I got from lowes.  Thankfully I have done a enough small plumbing fixes around the house to know when things don’t look quite right. Plus I have found a few items at lowes that seem to make the plumbing jobs a bit more “Idiot Proof” which is great for me. Once I get the faucet installed I’m going to add labels under the sink cabinet for the sizes and types of all valves, supply lines and fittings. Then if I need to replace any fixtures in the future I won’t have to drive to a hardware store several times to get the correct sizes.

In some ways trying to replace some of the bad plumbing installations correctly actually makes some jobs more difficult and expensive. I think doing it right will pay off in the long run and I have learned a lot about basic plumbing both theory and “real world” installation. I can understand that a person may have to “make do” on short term repairs as I have done that a few times myself. What I hate in my house is these were not “make do” repairs, but just good enough to get by, until it breaks again.  Overall I suppose I should not complain as I’m learning a lot and replacing the valves and supply lines will cost about $50.00 and the faucet was just $50.00. Heck you can’t call in a plumber for less than $50.00 just for showing up, not counting the costs for parts and labor.


4 Responses to Adding plastic to my windows, insulating and more plumbing stuff

  1. I save the plastic or paper labels to things needing replacing for car, like lights or windshield wipers. I save the containers or whatever that come with washers for faucets. You get the idea. Tape them to a sheet of paper and put in same area you keeps warranties on things like stoves and refrigerators. I cannot fix these things, but I can have the right part if a friend helps me. Having the right tools and parts makes volunteers’ job easier. Paying to have my water line replaced from the road to house was a costly fiasco with the best plumber in town.

  2. Jamie says:

    Practical: I bet you fix many things they are just not hardware related. Healing is a repair, darning a sock or sewing pillowcases or even saving a meal from a fiasco. All of those things take time, effort and practice.

    My Mom says she would not have the courage to try and fix/repair plumbing like I am doing. Yet she bought and installed plastic on all of my windows and it has made a huge difference in how warm my home is and has added to the comfort level immensely.

    My start on fixing my plumbing was clearing a clog and stopping a leak. Replacing the guts of my toilet because I like the old fashioned toilets that have a tank that you only need to flush once rather than the new water saving toilets you must flush 2-3 times and waste water.

    Most of my gripes are about the previous owner is being a bit stupid stepping over a dollar to pick up a dime, or making due with what is on hand rather than doing thing right. I’m sure he was convinced he thought he was saving money at the time but I’m less than pleased going back and making thing right!

  3. Kimberly says:

    As to the chickens. Now, this is only my opinion. But, a couple of things could be happening. 1. They may need some calcium (egg shells crushed and fed back to them, or crushed oyster shells. 2. The eggs may need to be collected more often.

    Now that it’s in the negatives here, temperature wise, my girls don’t like to come out of the coop and spend limited time in their covered run. So, it means that they have more time to mess with the bedding and such in their nests, out of boredom. I put a plastic mirror in the coop, for entertainment. I hang cabbage and do other things to mix things up a bit.

    • Jamie says:

      Kimberly: Mom is adding more oyster shell to the bird’s feed and checking the boxes twice a day. I think we may need a couple of more laying boxes but I think you might be correct about the chickens “messing” with the bedding is causing the cracks.

      The chickens really enjoyed scratching through the leaf clutter in the backyard and I wonder if they miss getting greens and bugs in their diet with the snow and cold we got recently?

      We are starting to get 3-6 eggs daily so the birds seem to have settled in and are very happy.

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