After a very busy long weekend, we have a working boiler connected to the thermal store. Hot water is possible – well, almost.
A joint is leaking, so we had to drain it all down until it can be fixed next weekend. Frustrating, but still a lot of progress. Pictures next week maybe, it was too cold and dark when we gave up.
Tim asked if he should concentrate on heating or bathroom next. I know it’s been quite mild so far, but it’s December and it’s getting colder. Heating please. I wouldn’t want to use the bathroom till it’s heated anyway.
A minor milestone. I finally finished stripping the paper from our bedroom at the weekend. The first job I started, 4+ layers of wallpaper and at least 2 of paint, it feels like it’s taken for ever. I suppose it was the ‘background’ task with lots of other stuff going on around it.
The plaster is much better than I expected, the original lime plaster and in pretty good condition. TV programmes and the internet seem to think it’s almost magical. Evidence suggests that ordinary filler doesn’t work too well, judging from the shrinkage on existing holes, so it’s probably worth trying a specialist lime filler.
There are impressive gaps around the window frame. I don’t want to reinstate the ugly PVC cover strips, and they can’t possibly insulate the gap. So expanding foam will be going in, and filled over to neaten things up.
Found in the bedroom cupboard: the world’s most securely fixed coathooks? I don’t know what they expected them to have to support.
We’re working hard on the heating. The thermal store should arrive on Tuesday and Tim’s fitting the expansion tank today. I’ll book the boiler fitting once the tank has arrived.
Expansion tank fitted in the loft – the first item to go in rather than be torn out. Yippee!
The boiler will supply hot water to the thermal store, which will feed the radiators and have a heat exchanger to provide mains pressure hot water. Short term, we will blank off the radiator pipes (until we have some radiators) so the thermal store can be filled with water when the new boiler is installed and commissioned. The plumber is booked for next month.
It didn’t take long between us to gut the old bathroom. Tim got the old fixtures out the first weekend, and the delightful polystyrene ceiling tiles followed soon after. We decided to put in a false ceiling rather than struggle to remove the last glued on bits of polystyrene, reducing the room height to 2.4m
I’ve been making good use of the lump hammer and brick chisel – nothing like a nice bit of mindless violence. Removed all the tiles and tore up the old flooring. After a brief attempt to remove the textured paint, I have realised how much I like the idea of a fully tiled bathroom.
Everything for the new bathroom has been ordered, so we will be able to start adding value soon, instead of taking it away.
When we first saw the pub, we didn’t realise just how big it is. Your brain looks at the proportions and sees what it expects to see. And not many rooms have ceilings over 8ft 6 high.
I was quite surprised when I looked at the second photo and realised just how tall the room is. And when we compared the estate agent’s details with the ones for Yoxall, we discovered that that one room (admittedly the former bar area) is as big as a whole floor of the White House (3 bedrooms, bathroom, landing and stairs up and down)
We don’t need that big a living room, so it will be divided up. One side will make an annexe – bedroom with ensuite plus living room – for Daniel. On the other side, our living room at the front and the thermal store and heating controls and downstairs loo at the back.
We’re going to lower the ceiling to 2.4m, still higher than a lot of houses. It will be a lot easier to run pipes and cables in the space under the existing ceiling than to try and tunnel through it.
The cellar looked a lot bigger once we got the light working too. It seemed tiny by torchlight, but it’s big enough to make a nice office. Even though there is no emergency exit at the moment, it’s a pub cellar, so it had a lovely big trapdoor which we can open up again. And even the cellar has a lot of headroom.
You expect stairs hidden behind a door to be narrow and dark. It still surprises me every time I go up and down. There’s a big window just above the photo, although I don’t think it will be cleaned very often.