When it came to insulation for the new house, Ryan was convinced. We were going with spray foam insulation. Open cell insulation would help the home be super tight (no drafts or energy waste), meaning our home would be even more efficient.
Unfortunately, spraying insulation is not a DIY job. Even if we HAD the equipment (which we don’t), the materials are expensive on their own and it’s a really huge job. In the end, hiring a spray foam contractor was our only real option. We chose a contractor recommended to us with a competitive quote. We were hoping to be ready for insulation by the first part of December.
So, then we were told that they could spray on Dec. 21 (before Christmas) or Jan. 4 (after New Years). We learned this on Dec. 11, giving us 10 days to finish ALL OF THE THINGS WE HADN’T DONE.
Getting everything done is sort of a big deal because with spray foam insulation, you want everything in exterior walls complete – electrical, plumbing, venting, etc.
But we were going to get that spray foam on Dec. 21. Because Ryan was going to be off work for 12 days around the holidays and it would have been a huge bummer to lose that work time.
So we were going to get it done, even if it took every last burst of energy Ryan had. (It did, by the way.)
Ryan and team went into crazy mode, including several more days of vacation for Ryan. (Thank goodness for vacation time.) This included:
- Get the water filtration system hooked up.
- Run the gas line to the furnace.
- Run all the vents and drains for two bathrooms and the kitchen.
- Run the pipes for radon mitigation. (We’re doing this proactively, assuming it’s going to be necessary.)
- Plumb the laundry closet
- Confirm all lights and electrical outlets are in-place.
- Work on the in-floor heat systems. Our geothermal contractors were here at least 4 days getting some things wrapped up. (Here’s a peek at the basement utility area. It’s pretty intense, including the furnace, two water heaters and the boiler for the in-floor heat.)
- Finish ductwork (contractors).
If this were an HGTV show, I would give you the play by play. Like miscommunications with contractors and late nights and even Ryan getting ill. In the end, Ryan finished everything needed just in time for the contractors to come over on Monday morning.
A voiceover would tell you this after an intense cliffhanger and a commercial break. But this isn’t HGTV.
So, HURRAY! Everything magically got done and the spray foam folks got to work. This was pretty interesting to watch. A crew tarped and taped off all the windows, outlets and lights. Then, they sprayed the downstairs first.
These are 2×6 walls with 5 1/2 inches of insulation. The spray comes out a liquid and immediately expands to fill between the studs. It’s like insulation magic. Once the foam is set, they used a giant saw-zall to hack off any excess.
On Day 2, they finished spraying the basement and most of the upstairs. And on Day 3, they finished the upstairs (including the tall ceilings) and the garage.
The crew was incredible – and they even spent the entire afternoon cleaning everything up. (They removed a huge trailer of waste and even swept everything up.)
The house was noticeably warmer and quieter! The insulation really make the interior feel like a home. Merry Christmas to us!
But the fun was just beginning. Ryan ordered plaster board, and it wasn’t going to be delivered until after Christmas. (Leaving the guys with four days to
twiddle their thumbs sleep rest.)
But, because CHRISTMAS IS FOR MIRACLES, the delivery on Christmas Eve was cancelled and they brought it out on a boom truck first thing on Dec. 24.
Another Christmas miracle? The boom lifted the boards right into the house – even through the upstairs windows. And that meant no one needed to rest because there was WALL BOARD TO HANG.
Fa la la la la la la la la
Stay tuned … I’ll share our wall board progress on Wednesday!