Wednesday, March 25, 2015

On Track! And Some Toilet Talk

Our Three Week Plan is in full swing and we are on track to complete right on time or maybe even a little early. The plumbers came last Tuesday and finished their work, then the final plumbing inspection was on Friday and we passed with no issue. The final electrical happened yesterday and we passed that as well. The building inspector actually called David today to check in on us and she let us know that all the trim and baseboards don't have to be finished for her to do her thing, so we may actually plan to have that inspection on Friday since all we need to do is put up the hand rail on the stairs.

We have finished work in the bedroom and bathroom and they are looking pretty snazzy, especially the bathroom which I like to walk into and just stand there gazing at it.

There were a couple of "special" items that I have lumped into the trim category in my mind that were a little more involved. The first one involves the stairs again, and I'll talk about that in another post when it's complete.

The second thing involved our specialty toilet system. To avoid having to jackhammer up the concrete floor and install plumbing, we opted to get an up-flush toilet system. Basically the shower, sink and toilet all drain into this pump which then pumps the waste up to a gravity drain line which then connects with our main sewer line. We wanted to install the pump behind the wall for aesthetic reasons, but we also wanted to be able to access it without tearing out drywall in case anything ever went wrong with it. 

Which meant I had to make a custom access panel. It was a lot of trial and error. I started out with a rectangle of plywood (the same plywood I have been using everywhere in this basement. This stuff is the Then I put casing all around it like a picture frame with wood glue.

Once that was dry, I had to make three holes for the various pipes and cords to come through. First, I lined it up on the wall to determine where the water line would come through. I used a paddle drill bit to make a hole. Later on, I realized that once the water line was actually connected to the toilet, that was no longer going to work. So I cut the trim off next to the hole I had drilled, so that I was left with a slot which allowed the panel to slide around the water line.

I took this picture before I realized my mistake about the water line.
Then I cut the whole thing right in two. I measured and marked where the hole needed to be for the main toilet drain pipe, clamped the two sides back together and used a hole saw to make my cut right where the two pieces met. This way, I could still take the panel off the wall once the pipe was in place. I also drilled a smaller hole in the same way for the power cord to come through.

Once the plumbers came and installed everything, it became apparent that the panel needed to be cut into three pieces so that it could slide behind the toilet tank and around the water line coming into the toilet, so I cut straight across one side of it, through the hole I had made for the water line.

After that it was just a matter of caulking and painting.

Then sliding everything in place. I secured each piece with a brad nail so that everything stays in place, but it will be easy to remove if we ever need to.

So if all goes smoothly, we will be getting our certificate of occupancy later this week, and then moving in furniture next week! Woo hoo!

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