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post #91 of 2687 Old 06-11-2007, 10:01 AM
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Originally Posted by Cathan View Post

As for the concrete, I've never mixed it before. Any reason why one couldn't do that in the basement? That way I would only need to haul the dry bags and not the wet stuff.

Dust, dust and more dust. I ended up blowing out two oxygen sensors on my hot water tank from mixing concrete in the basement, and that was only 750 pounds of the stuff. The dust accreted on the sensors and the heater immediately shut down.

I'd say go ahead and do it, but pour the bag into your mixing tray VERY slowly and from not more than about 3 inches away. That'll help keep the dust down. If your furnace and hot water tank are anywhere near the area, make sure they're off and try to seal your concrete work area with builder's plastic to keep the dust in a confined area.


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post #92 of 2687 Old 06-11-2007, 10:04 AM
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As for the concrete, I've never mixed it before. Any reason why one couldn't do that in the basement? That way I would only need to haul the dry bags and not the wet stuff.

I would strongly recommend you hire a truck and get the concrete delivered. A few reasons:

1. You probably want "high/early" concrete - the high MPA early setup type
2. You're probably talking over cubic meter of concrete and that will be a massive PITA to mix up yourself. And you have to do it right given the application
3. Its not very expensive - IIRC I paid $250 to have the truck bring it out

I had to take mine into the basement myself. But if you have an egress window you might be able to get it pumped in for some extra $$

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post #93 of 2687 Old 06-11-2007, 10:07 AM
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3. Its not very expensive - IIRC I paid $250 to have the truck bring it out. I had to take mine into the basement myself. But if you have an egress window you might be able to get it pumped in for some extra $$

Still, if money's an issue or you want the learning experience, an 80-pound bag of concrete at HD is $4, and they'll take back the bags you don't use. I had a day to spare hauling it into the basement, mixing, pouring, tamping, screeding it and cleaning up afterwards. It was worth my time just to learn how to do it right so that I know how in case of future need.

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post #94 of 2687 Old 06-14-2007, 10:28 AM - Thread Starter
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Got the plan drawing back from my engineer. First cost overrun - I was quoted that it would take around 3 hours of work, ended up with a bit over 7. We settled on a flat $550.

Anyway, here are some images of the plans.


This one shows the removal of the current beam and the addition of the new replacement beam.


Here we have the new beam extension. Nothing a little Elmer's glue and spit wouldn't hold togther.



Here are how the joists with be sistered so that I don't need to replace the current ones.


Any finally how the columns will have to be installed. Because the two new columns are so close together, the engineer want one large footing. It will be 4'8" long x 2' wide x 12" deep. Once the column is installed I have to add more gravel and then repour the slab. That's a heck of a lot of concrete!! But also likely where I can save money if I am willing to do it myself.

Looking online it seems I can rent a small concrete mixer for around $20 per day. Assuming I can get it into the basement, that should make the mixing part of the job pretty easy. I'll just need to rent it twice.

The metal work and column and beam installation I will likely farm out. Hopefully I'll find some help because it's a pretty small job.

Anyway, please let me know if you see anything on the plans that could be inproved. This is still all in draft form with the engineer.

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post #95 of 2687 Old 06-15-2007, 08:38 AM - Thread Starter
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In reviewing the plans a little further I'm going to make one one change. I want the foot depth calculated so that it will be level with the slab. No point in digging another 8" and having to pour a second round of concrete once the lally column is installed.

Once I get the final copies, I plan on pulling permits next week. I guess I should plan to pulling permits for the rest of the project at the same time.

Because of the scale of the whole project, I may just plan this thing in two stages. The first stage would be to build just the theater and foyer hall and wet bar area. At some later point I pull permits to build the bath and finish the exercise room. That means for now the only work that needs to happen on the other side of the basement is to put in the egress window well.

And speaking of window well egress, although I'm getting a few bids, the more research I do, the more inclined I am to just put it in myself. I found a really straight forward guide in one of my handyman magazines. Basically it's 90% grunt work (digging and back filling). Seems like a reasonable place to invest some sweat equity.

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post #96 of 2687 Old 06-18-2007, 10:18 AM - Thread Starter
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Well when I got home from work on Friday I had a nice little package waiting for me on the driveway. The Bosch table saw was delivered. It was shipped just in it's own box, which looked like it took a beating. I'm hoping everything is okay inside. I was busy hosting a friend over the weekend, so won't get to putting it together until later this week.

The only thing I was hoping to get done this weekend was prepping the SMX material I had ordered for the long storage. Based on reading some threads on Rubin's site, I purchase a ten foot long 3" pvc pipe to wrap the material around. So I bought the tube from HD and washed it before enlisted the wife's help to unbox the smx materials. Turns out the smx material was already neatly wrapped around a cardboard tube and covered in shrinkwrap. Not a wrinkle was visable, so no need to reroll it around the pvc pipe. I guess the earlier shipments weren't sent out this way. So back to HD I go to return the pvc pipe. I've got to thank Rubin for this attention to detail.

I also got the final column relocation plans from the engineer. Now I just need to pull the permits. I think I may take off later this week to head down the the Fairfax County government center and pull the plans for everything. I'll need to read-up to see what is needed. Any tips before I go?

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post #97 of 2687 Old 06-20-2007, 08:29 AM - Thread Starter
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Okay, so I'm taking a day off tomorrow to pull the permits. I'm not entirely sure what sort of detail I need with my plans. Here's the basic plan I'm bringing with me.


I assume that for electrical I'll need something seperate. How specific do I need to get with lighting, switch and outlet locations?

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post #98 of 2687 Old 06-20-2007, 08:51 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Cathan View Post

I assume that for electrical I'll need something seperate. How specific do I need to get with lighting, switch and outlet locations?

I don't know what your municipality will require, but mine didn't require separate electrical. They did require that I show the approximate location of any ceiling can lights on the diagram you showed, as well as a separate side view of the proposed space showing the wall height and fireblock.

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post #99 of 2687 Old 06-20-2007, 08:57 AM
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Michael,

Have you seen this info for Fairfax?

http://www.fairfaxcounty.gov/dpwes/p...ons/basements/

Looks like as you are moving columns and installing window you can't use the simple method - a full set of plans is required.

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post #100 of 2687 Old 06-20-2007, 09:16 AM
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Usually the post down from a beam lands below the floor. When you pour the floor, the post is locked into place laterally. I don't know why the engineer has it so far below the slab, but you could certainly ask.

Submitting plans is sometime a bit of a guess. Some require full sets, some a sketch.. who knows.

If any of your mechanical is existing, I would note that on the plans (eg "Existing mechanical to remain"). Otherwise they might think you are putting in a new hot water heater and hvac system.

Also, I would label the electric subpanel as "new xx space subpanel". I have never seen a 110v subpanel (first, because we have 120v power, and second they are 240v). Something like that could send up a flag.

I suspect they will require plumbing and electrical plans if you are adding fixtures. Vent and waste sizes, recepticles as required above countertops, GFCI in bathroom etc.

If your window is a required egress window, the window well has minimum dimensions as well.

Then again, they might just accept it and point out any problems during construction.

Good luck,
Tim
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post #101 of 2687 Old 06-20-2007, 09:30 AM - Thread Starter
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Mark - Yeah. I've read the documents a few times. They aren't particularly clear when it comes to simple versus the other route. I understand that simple won't work, but as for what's involved with the non-simple route I'm not entirely sure. Best I can tell is that I'm going to be shuffled from one department to the other. I do have the plans that the engineer created for the column/beam shifting part of the the project. For the window well I plan on bringing specs of the window well I plan to install. I'll create a seperate map of the lighting and outlet locations including GFI outlets. No clue how to document a wetbar. It's a sink for crying out loud and there is exisiting plumbing nearby to tap into.

Mr. Tim - I had the engineer change the plan on how the lally columns are attached to the floor. It's at slab level now so much easier to build and install. The sub-panel text has a typo. It should be 240v. Thanks for catching that.

Did I mention I hate this part of the process?

edit: Here's version 2.1 with the changes.

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post #102 of 2687 Old 06-20-2007, 09:41 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by drin View Post

I don't know what your municipality will require, but mine didn't require separate electrical. They did require that I show the approximate location of any ceiling can lights on the diagram you showed, as well as a separate side view of the proposed space showing the wall height and fireblock.

-drin

drin, obviously every muni is different, but I was told NOT to call my project a "home theater". I was told to call it a "rec room". I guess it had something to do with the law/regs....
Go figure....

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post #103 of 2687 Old 06-20-2007, 09:43 AM - Thread Starter
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Okay. I'll change the name to rec room. Version 2.1 on it's way...

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post #104 of 2687 Old 06-20-2007, 09:44 AM
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hehe yeah the permitting process can be a pita, depending on where you are, how good a day the clerk is having, what phase the moon is in..

You can't go wrong with pointing out the details that you know on the plan. If you demonstrate knowledge of the codes you are usually given some leeway around here.

I know the sink is just a sink, but some people don't even know that it has to be vented. Most codes allow studor vents now, so it's not as big a deal. I personally dislike them, but they have their place. You could put "connect wet sink to existing 3" stack in wall" or whatever your situation is.

Also, if you build a room around any fuel-fired appliances, you will have to provide fresh air intakes. If your water heater is electric and the hvac doesn'tuse oil/gas, you don't need them.

Good luck,
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post #105 of 2687 Old 06-20-2007, 09:56 AM - Thread Starter
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Version 2.2 of the construction plan and version 1.0 of the electrical:



And again, many, many thanks for the feedback. Having the little things caught now is way helpful.

edit: I should also mention that the electrical will change a bit. I don't have the rope or riser lights on the plan, nor the 20 amp outlets noted that will go into the closet.

edit x2: I fixed the name of the "rec room" in the electrical diagram. Not gonna bother updating the image file.

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post #106 of 2687 Old 06-20-2007, 01:04 PM
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Rec room is probably a better description for the tax assessor.

Any thought to adding a shower to that powder room?
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post #107 of 2687 Old 06-20-2007, 01:26 PM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
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Any thought to adding a shower to that powder room?

Yes, we've gone back and forth on the issue. What you can't see on the plan is that the washer and dryer will be on the wall behind the powder room. If I push that wall back it really would eat into the space you need to access the back part of the storage room. And if we bump out the wall in the "excercise room" it will get pretty narrow.

In the end we figured that we'll have two full baths and 2 half baths in a house with just two people. We won't use the basement shower and our two guest rooms upstairs have a full bath of their own.

Also, it mean less hassle for me not having to build one and therefore the theater will get done sooner.

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post #108 of 2687 Old 06-20-2007, 01:26 PM
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Rec. room is a much easier description to get past the inspectors than home theater. I put home theater on my initial plans and they told me to change it before submitting.

Also as mentioned above, if your hot water/furnace are gas fired you'll have to provide adequate ventilation. They'll probably ask you to calculate the total volume of air required to provide full combustion for those appliances and put the number on the plans, along with the volume of air in the room surrounding the appliances. I suspect you'll find that the air volume in the furnace room (once the theater walls are up and finished) won't be enough to provide combustion, which means you'll either have to provide outside ventilation for the units or make enough volume available in the basement.

I ended up changing the furnace room door and the door at the top of the basement stairs to fully louvered doors. The air is now pulled in from upstairs into the furnace room. It was MUCH cheaper than coring through the concrete sill to install an outside duct.

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post #109 of 2687 Old 06-20-2007, 01:30 PM - Thread Starter
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Drin - funny you should mention it, I was literally just calculating air volume based on something Tim sent me. I have roughly 1,400 cublic feet of space in the storage area. That would allow for 28,000 BTUs (50 cubic feet per 1,000 BTU) for both my WH and furnace. I'm at work so can't check what they actually are rated for so no clue if it's enough.

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post #110 of 2687 Old 06-20-2007, 01:32 PM
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Quote:
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Drin - funny you should mention it, I was literally just calculating air volume based on something Tim sent me. I have roughly 1,400 cublic feet of space in the storage area. That would allow for 28,000 BTUs (50 cubic feet per 1,000 BTU) for both my WH and furnace. I'm at work so can't check what they actually are rated for so no clue if it's enough.

That's the standard required air volume that I usually see used. 28,000 BTU sounds low for a furnace and hot water heater, however. That will of course depend on what part of the country you're in.

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post #111 of 2687 Old 06-20-2007, 01:36 PM - Thread Starter
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Either way, I'll add the info to the plans and will ask if louve doors are allowed. If not, I'll draw in two vents going into the excercise room. I think it's 1,000 BTU per square inch of vent opening.

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post #112 of 2687 Old 06-20-2007, 03:16 PM
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Michael,

My Furnice is 100,000 BTU which seems pretty standard for most 4/5 bed houses in this area. According to Combustion Air Calculator it needs 6667 cu ft of Indoor Volume.

This is what I failed on. My unfinished space & Rec Room only accounted for ~5,200 cu ft so I had to add more vents to the stairwell to 1st floor which was a PITA as now get more furnice noise on 1st floor.

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post #113 of 2687 Old 06-20-2007, 05:22 PM - Thread Starter
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Seems my water heater is 40k BTU, but I can't find anything on the furnace (Trance XE90). TRane's website turns up nothing and Googleling it seems to give me a range 40k-100k.

If I assume the whole think is around 100k, no way in heck I have enough airflow. I'd be surprise in my unfinished basement did. Looks like I'll have to figure out a venting system.

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My furnice has a label under the main panel that has input BTU 100,000 and Output BTU 80,000 (does not seem too efficient).

I found this site that has specifications for the Trane XE90 - but looks like there are numerous models.

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post #115 of 2687 Old 06-21-2007, 03:57 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Cathan View Post

If I assume the whole think is around 100k, no way in heck I have enough airflow. I'd be surprise in my unfinished basement did. Looks like I'll have to figure out a venting system.

That was my finding as well in my basement. I'm surprised we weren't gassed in our sleep from incomplete combustion gases!

The two options that were available to me were:

1) replace the doors to the main floor with fully louvered ones to allow airflow into the furnace room.
2) drill through the foundation sill to install a vent from the outside.

We had already spent $3K moving the furnace and hot water heater to a basement corner and installing a power vent for exhaust gases - there was no other way to have space for the theater - but I drew the line at another sill coring. The doors were a much cheaper alternative, and didn't require another foundation penetration.

I don't know if either of those would be possible for you, but they might be worth keeping in mind.

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post #116 of 2687 Old 06-21-2007, 05:05 AM
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Assuming a typical frame house, you can cut out the band joist and install the vent between ceiling joists. Much easier to cut wood than concrete.

Install an elbow down and you're set.

For example, you could fit an 8x14 duct in a typical joist bay.

My personal preference would be outside air intakes. With the louvered doors any products of incomplete combustion would be spread throughout the home. Again, my personal preference. A properly maintained system should have no problems.

Good luck,
Tim
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post #117 of 2687 Old 06-21-2007, 05:23 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mr.Tim View Post

Assuming a typical frame house, you can cut out the band joist and install the vent between ceiling joists. Much easier to cut wood than concrete.

Makes sense.

Quote:
My personal preference would be outside air intakes. With the louvered doors any products of incomplete combustion would be spread throughout the home. Again, my personal preference. A properly maintained system should have no problems.

That's a good point too. In our case, when we moved the furnace and hot water heater there was (of course) no chimney in the new location, so I had a Power Vent installed for exhaust. I also had two additional gas sensors installed so any incomplete combustion gases cause the Vent to power up until the combustion gases have been exhausted.

I considered having another vent cut into the foundation but with the Power Vent already there (and given the layout of the house above the foundation where the furnace/hot water heater were located) it would have ended up with vented exhaust gases being pulled back in as intake gases - not a good scenario.

I also installed a CO/CO2/smoke detector in the furnace room to hopefully forestall any combustion gas buildup. It's been 10 months and we've had no problems, knock on wood.

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post #118 of 2687 Old 06-21-2007, 05:28 AM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mr.Tim View Post

Assuming a typical frame house, you can cut out the band joist and install the vent between ceiling joists. Much easier to cut wood than concrete....

So if I understand this correctly, I would be putting a 8"x14" permanently open "window" into my storage room? Wouldn't that bring in all sorts of humidity during the summer and freezing cold during the winter? Or does the HVAC basically counter act any exchange with the outside climate?

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post #119 of 2687 Old 06-21-2007, 06:38 AM
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drin-

Sounds like a very smart install Power vents are sometime prone to trouble, but only because they fail safe. When there is a problem, the power vent prevents the appliance from firing up.

cathan-

Yes, pretty much. Right now I have 2 ducts that are completely open. However, before the winter comes I am going to install motor actuated dampers on them.

The sequence would be house calls for heat-->motor actuated dampers begin to open-->dampers open completely and end switch is activated-->end switch completes circuit and boiler fires

Depending on climate, you may be able to just leave them open. It gets kinda cold here so I am going for the dampers. In addition, as I suspect you agree, it doesn't make sense to have cold or humid air circulating through any part of your house when you don't need it

Tim
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post #120 of 2687 Old 06-21-2007, 06:48 AM
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I'm not even sure that is allowed by code here in Loudoun. When the combustion air issue came up I was asking the inspector about direct venting into garage or outside and he seemed to indicate it was not allowed. Might want to speak to someone at the county office about your options.

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