Winter Ready

December 21, 2010 at 10:41 pm 7 comments

Our home is ready for winter now that we have had some recent maintenance and improvements done.

  1. Sprinkler system winterized. Last year a company charged us $120 to winterize our underground sprinkler system.  This year I was lucky to find Precision Irrigation who did it for half the price we paid last year!  I hope to use them every winter.  They were easy to work with.  I called them to say I wanted the work done and they said they would come in the next couple weeks, we did not have to be home when they came.  After they came and winterized our sprinkler system, they left us a bill and that was it!
  2. Insulation installed in basement. Our handyman John pointed out that we had no insulation in the basement.  Jeff and I did not even know this was a problem or something that we should do!  (He also recently pointed out there is no insulation in our walls, but that is a project for another time.)  John bought the proper insulation and put it in the basement ceiling.  It was a long process as the insulation had to be cut to fit in each area, and the drop ceiling panels in one half of the basement had to be removed to put the insulation in.  I am glad it is done and now the basement definitely feels warmer!
  3. New furnace installed! Our home now has a brand new 80% two stage furnace.  The old furnace was the original furnace put in the home, way back in 1962!  I still don’t know how it lasted that long, and I was really worried it was going to break right in the middle of winter.  This is why Jeff and I decided it would be best to replace our furnace before the start of winter.  The guys arrived to install it around 10:00am and were working until 5 or 6pm.  They even had to come back the following day to finish up a few odds and ends such as putting new mortar on the chimney.  If you need to get a new furnace, be prepared to take a day off work or find out if it can be installed over the weekend, because it takes all day to put in!  We got a good deal on our new furnace by asking for help from the realtor who sold us this home.  He used to work in the heating/cooling business so he has a lot of connections.  Tip for home owners out there: don’t be afraid to ask for help from people you know such as your realtor, handyman, etc.  They may be able to get you a better deal than you would get on your own!  Our new furnace is a lot smaller than the old one, and seems a little louder.  Check out the pic of the new one!
    new furnace

Entry filed under: Home Improvement.

Living Room Updates 2010 in review

7 Comments Add your own

  • 1. Chelsea  |  December 22, 2010 at 10:35 am

    Yeah, we still need to do a lot of insulating. We had a fairly new furnace when we bought the house, but we had an HVAC co. come out to tune it up. It was really loud when it kicked on, until the fan was adjusted.

    One tip though, is to be beware of prices like that for the sprinkler winterization. That’s usually a red flag, especially if they tell you that you don’t have to be home. He may or may not have done the job to your expectations or job requirements…in some cases he might not have done anything at all and left you with a bill. It’s best to get a third estimate or do some research to determine what fair pricing for that particular service would be. There are a lot of shady contractors looking to hook customers in with a ridiculously low rate. If something costs 50% less with another contractor, more often than not, there’s a reason for that. In that case, get a third estimate to be sure.

  • 2. Travis "That Home Inspector Guy" Moyer  |  December 24, 2010 at 9:44 am

    (Had to add my 2 cents which is actually 1/2 cent with inflation) Actually, the best way to insulate your basement is by insulating the walls and not the ceiling. Seems weird but true. You should have registers to warm your basement and condition the air and make the first floor feel warmer on your feet. Now the walls of your basement suck a lot of heat out. The rule of thumb is that the ground is a constant 55 degrees at 55″ down but from ground level down to that spot gets cold. If you add insulation to the walls, whether you drape it down from the sill plate or fix the foam board to it, you will get much better results. Insulating the ceiling does nothing for your house. It might make your basement feel a bit better but it is not efficient.

  • 3. Travis "That Home Inspector Guy" Moyer  |  December 24, 2010 at 9:48 am

    BTW, in your pic (nice new furnace!) your furnace doesn’t have a filter installed. I’m sure it’s just because it was just installed and you took the picture right then but was just wondering. Also, I have a post on furnace filters you might find interesting and useful at

    Thanks for letting me annoy you guys with my comments 😉

  • 4. Kim  |  December 24, 2010 at 3:35 pm

    Hey Travis, yeah I took the photo before they were totally finished installing the furnace. We do have a filter in it.

    Our house I believe has no insulation in the walls so that is definitely our next project!

  • 5. lanette woll  |  December 26, 2010 at 5:22 pm

    You guys really are all ready for winter now! Ready or not, here it comes!

  • 6. Stan  |  September 24, 2012 at 8:57 am

    I am curious as to why when removating your home you went with an 80% efficient furnace? And with local codes, did it require a chimney liner?

    • 7. Kim  |  September 25, 2012 at 2:25 pm

      We got an 80% efficient furnace because it was cheaper than a 90%+ one, and still a big improvement over what we had before. We did not need a chimney liner.


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