P2: Fixing the Laundry Room Before and After

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I’ve spent more time and more money on the laundry room than any other place in the house. It gets an unfair advantage because of the geothermal, but even if we discount that, the laundry room still takes the cake.

What I’ve done in there so far.

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Top left corner; a central vac hookup pipe in an almost inaccessible place. Middle: old water heater.

1. The central vac pipes used to run into the corner. I cleaned them up and moved them into the tool room. With the geothermal two-water tank system there just isn’t the room.

2. The dryer was given to us; the washer I bought on Kijiji. I drove to Midhurst checked out the machine, drove to the U-Haul, rented a truck, drove back to Midhurst; grabbed the washer, drove to my brother’s; singlehandedly got the washer out of the truck onto the garage floor (1) without being crushed and (2) not just dropping it; and returned the truck  to the U-Haul rental. The woman behind the counter did not believe me that I completed the task without moving the gas gauge (I hadn’t). I would take ownership of the house a few months later.

3. When I did get the house, I moved the old washer and dryer to the rental unit I put in. The sink was a mess. My dad bought me a new wash sink. It was so bad that a 60-year old grump thought it had to go; that’s how bad it was.

4. I cleaned up the water pump base. It looked like the sink did, but it had more salvage potential. We cleaned it up and placed it on a piece of counter that would have otherwise gone in the trash.

5. I replaced the carpet.

6. I used the remaining countertop from the rental reno and some of the torn out drawers to create a cabinet beside the dryer.

7. I put in a laundry line in that my wife asked for, but against my better judgment; my judgment was wrong; it’s very handy.

8. I replaced the carpet with a rubber floor.

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The old pipes, the rusty water tank and table that I thought was grey, but turned out to be white after a damp cloth touched it. Note the pressures gauge: the last it was ever seen.

9. I replaced the pipes to the water pump. I don’t even remember why, but I know somewhere during the replacement I lost a pressure gauge.

10. A year later, I replaced the water pump with a water pump that had pressure (the well pump was short cycling).

11. I then replaced more copper pipe as changing the tank meant additional pipe that wasn’t long for the world decided to give up as well.

12. I insulated all the pipes and cut two new cold air returns in the basement.

13. I bought a dehumidifier and set it draining into the geothermal water pump.

14. I started finishing the basement window (poorly). I put a piece of white shelving down on the windowsill. It’s better than two 2x4s; but worse than a job done right.

Now; now for whatever reason now I reach behind the dryer because I can feel the room getting too warm when we use the dryer and I feel for leaks and my hand come back damp. I call my dad and he tears into the hack job where plastic vent tubing sits exposed in the wall to just about four feet up. He then turns to me and says yep you have to replace it; and while you’re at it tear out the rest of the wall too. Item 15.

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For sale: Oil Furnace AS-IS (that is running on oil).

I go three weeks without a dryer, but I do as instructed. I decide now I will replace that faucet sticking out of the wall as well. Now I’ll get this room finished a little bit more. Item 16.

Later (the new now) I look around the room and nothing is the same. I changed every appliance, redid every pipe and replaced every surface. The wire shelf is now a solid piece of wood (item 17). The oil furnace is now geothermal (but we’re not counting it; but if we were item 18) and the plastic fire hazard dryer vent tube is now not plastic, not leaking, and not butting against cold concrete.

It still has a long way to go; but from where it’s been; a different room, a different house.

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Here’s a video of the dryer vent installation.

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