Another Bath Remodel

Darren Wright

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So a while back I started the Laundry Room remodel and got to the point of demo and getting the new tank-less water heater in. I've been waiting to get the main water line for the house replaced as the DIY builder that built this house put the copper directly on top of the concrete wall across half the length of the house to the end of our downstairs bath. My wife finally gave me the go-head to demo the bath (as long as it's done by mid March), which will let me get the lines replace and upgraded to the right size. It comes in the house at 3/4", but drops down to 1/2" to feed two baths, the kitchen, and two outside faucets. I'll be running 3/4" pex to the other end of the house and replacing all of that.
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Today was demo day for the bath. The previous owner used the pop-corn ceiling spray on the walls in the bath and painted over it to give it a "stucco" effect.
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It didn't look bad, but had some water damage around the tub, and we didn't like it enough to repair and try to match it. And since it was all painted, it would be a bear to get off, so my solution was to gut things back down to the studs.
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If you note in the pic above, the toilet is opposite of where the vanity was, which was hanging in front of the toilet making it a tight sit. :dunno: Typically the toilet is on the same side as the vanity, so not sure what they were thinking during the build of the house. We're still leaving the toilet here, but will be putting a 36" vanity in (vs. 48" to give some walk space around the toilet.

So other than the issue with the pipes, I also found the exhaust fan wasn't ducted to anywhere and was in a closed cavity, so for the past 25 years it's been blowing dust into the joist space. I decided to kick it on once the drywall was down it it kicked out a huge puff of dust. Guess it's never had that kind of cfm through it before. :)
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Next up is a bunch of tile removal, unfortunately I don't have any matching and the new vanity will be smaller. My wife also wants a lighter colored tile to help brighten up the room.
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Rob Keeble

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I dunno, I may have not got some things perfect in my life when I am doing dit, but how does one manage to deliberately do something like that fan and sleep after. Takes all kinds I guess. Amazing u not finding loads of mold. So what other secrets does this place have that are yet to reveal themselves eh Darren. Your intuition on pulling the drywall served u well.
You lucky the house is not wired with aluminum or u would be re wiring just to be sure there no suspect joints waiting to cause a fire.
Going to be great when u done....then I suppose its time to sell and start again lol.

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Darren Wright

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Sunday I took a wack or two at removing the floor tile with a 2" chisel and hammer. I spent probably about an hour getting one square foot of tile chipped out. The little 2" tiles are natural stone, slate I think, and pretty much flake away layer by layer, but I wasn't getting hardly any decent chunks popping away and ended up with two blisters in the process. :eek:

Today I brought my mid sized twin cylinder compressor to the house along with an air chisel (similar to this one...http://www.harborfreight.com/medium-barrel-air-impact-hammer-69866.html). I spent about 2 hours chipping away, not one blister and was able to get right back down to the original concrete. Hardest part is getting through the webbing that held the tiles together.

Here's what got done today, maybe 8-9 sq ft in that 2 hours.
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What I have left to do this week.
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Oh, I parked the compressor in the garage and poked a hole through to run the hose down. The compressor pretty much ran for that entire 2 hours (only a 6 cfm@90psi compressor), so did an oil change on it tonight.
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And will be getting a new mask out of the box, I think this one did it's job. :) To put the job into perspective, I've removed plaster/lath from old houses, done drywall work for a living, this has been one of the dirtiest jobs yet, maybe a close second to cutting concrete with a dry cut saw in an enclosed space. I might be cutting a bigger hole in the drywall and mounting a couple of filters and a box fan to suck air out of the room before my next session.
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Darren Wright

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I got another 1/3rd of the tile up tonight. Tried the 2" thinset blade I bought from amazon, works very well.
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I'm hoping to finish the rest on Saturday morning, then get started/finished replacing water lines this weekend.
 

Darren Wright

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Just finished running all pex for the main line and tying in all the existing faucets to it. Still had to sweat about 13 connections, but the direction I had to route things I couldn't have done with copper very easily. While I was redoing the lines for the lavatory I added another set of connections on the other side of the wall to add a slop sink in our garage. I still need to add the drain, but only about 3 cuts and a new tee and that will be done.

Yesterday I spent about 2 hours picking up the rest of the supplies, some unfinished cabinets for the laundry room, a vanity and toilet for the bath, didn't have the drop ceiling tiles I was wanting, so will have to shop around for those.

Next up is a few electrical changes, then drywall.
 

Rob Keeble

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Darren your shares at home must be higher than apple stock price.

Am I to understand u prefer copper to pex?

I only experienced pex for the first time last summer and I liked it very much. My old school comfort level still goes back to copper. But I has my share of issues with it too.
I do think with pex a key is the use of good crimp type and tool. One I have is a cheapo I got to repair travel trailer. Joints did hold up though to high pressure city water though so can't complain.
What's your sweat with pex?

Best of luck with the rest of the work.


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Darren Wright

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I've got no issues with pex so far, was easy to use and much cheaper than copper. Just new to me. ;)

I did buy the Zurn brand crimpers, with 3/8" -3/4" dies. Also came with the ring removal tool, which came in real handy several times. My arms are a little sore, its not as flexible as I expected.

I do have about 250' of it left over, so guess who will be running new air lines all over his shop soon. :)

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Darren Wright

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So this morning I spent re-doing the drain that comes from my master bath down through the drain/vent for the down stairs bath. Seems like every 6 months I've had to run a gallon of Draino down the sink to keep it somewhat open. Even then, it still didn't drain well, pooling up in the sink after a few minutes of the water running.

Well I think I found the cause.
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Yup that sucker ran up-hill about an inch or so. :eek: I cut into it and was full of 30 years of calcium and hair. It had about 1/4" of space at the top for about 2' that everything drained through.

I cut it, cleaned it out and got it sloped about a 1/2" down hill now for that 2' run, should be good for a while.

That is the last of the plumbing, should be able to start throwing up dry wall tomorrow.
 

Carol Reed

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You have found some interesting stuff in that house over the years!. I think I'd find out who built it and when I moved, I'd make sure I'd not buy another built by this same yoyo.
 

Ryan Mooney

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Hah, amazing that drain worked at all.

I wonder if a tile bully would have worked better than the hammer and chisel. I suspect the air hammer was still a better choice in the end.

On the pex for the garage (and storage for that matter):
"Most PEX piping manufacturers only allow 30-60 days of exposure for normal piping, and up to 6 months of exposure for PEX plumbing that has had ultraviolet stabilizers added during production."
 

Darren Wright

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Hah, amazing that drain worked at all.

I wonder if a tile bully would have worked better than the hammer and chisel. I suspect the air hammer was still a better choice in the end.

On the pex for the garage (and storage for that matter):
"Most PEX piping manufacturers only allow 30-60 days of exposure for normal piping, and up to 6 months of exposure for PEX plumbing that has had ultraviolet stabilizers added during production."

No, just didn't have the room. It was slate tiles and they flaked apart, so had to keep hitting them from a side that got them flaking the right way. Then there was the layer of webbing that held the tiles together for installation, which was not fun to get apart either.

I've read about the pex and uv, and it's not recommended, but also read of folks coating it with latex paint and having good long term results. There's also no direct sunlight that will be hitting the lines where they will be installed. Also, I don't leave the compressor on nor do I leave pressure on my lines, I usually shut off the ball valve at the end of use.
 

Ryan Mooney

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Yeah at least if the pex breaks it will just leak unlike pvc that goes hither and yon so the main risk is the compressor fire concern. Sounds like you have those parts covered :thumb:
 

Garry Foster

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Up hill drains are so much fun. I have a section in the gray tank drain in my Motor Home..

Haven't tackled it yet...

Looks like you are making good progress
 

Darren Wright

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Thanks. I didn't make as much progress as I hoped this weekend. The drain lines really took longer than I had expected and a couple of extra runs to the borg for fittings. I also got to looking at the electrical and realized I hadn't put a box over the vanity yet ( there used to be a can light in a bulk head over the old one) and had a couple of wires that weren't routed to my liking, so spent most of the morning today re-routing and wiring the lights up again. Also got a register mounted for the hvac. Still need to route an exhaust fan duct outside.

I finally got started on drywall at about 6:00 and finished up around 8:00. I'll get a coat of mud on tomorrow night and hopefully the rest done by Friday so I can paint and get started on flooring (which my wife has yet to pick out :) ).
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I'm planning on a drop ceiling though I may have a little more drywall over the shower area, I still trying to decide what I want to do.
 

Darren Wright

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That looks like progress to me :thumb:

You're faster at mudding than I am by a whole lot!

Well, considering there's only 6 corners and a couple of flats to do, it will move quicker than normal. It may take a while for the first fill coat to dry, but I may stop and get some quick-set mix for those to speed things along.
 

Darren Wright

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It probably takes me longer than normal to do corners since I'll only do one half at a time after the first coat. Most folks spend too much time sanding the first few coats also, the goal is to knock off the high spots and ridges, nothing more, then fill the voids with mud. I don't spend time sanding until the last coat dries then do any touch-ups as needed.
 

Darren Wright

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Finally got SWMBO to go pick out some tile, it's almost got a quartersaw white oak look to it. This was the dry fit, I then pulled it all back up a row at a time and reinstalled using thin set.

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Tomorrow I'll pull the spacers, do a cleanup of the gaps and grout. Should get the bathroom back together this week.

I haven't found much in the way of drop ceiling tiles I like and my wife suggested beadboard, she showed me this pic, which gave me some ideas...
Beadboard+ceiling.jpg
 
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