As a first-time house owner, I keep learning every day!

Discussion in 'The Pub' started by Tylenol Jones, Jun 1, 2015.

  1. Tylenol Jones

    Tylenol Jones Member

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    We experienced a power outage that lasted no more than 3 secs. Nevertheless, it was enough for our tankless water heater unit to stop working. The power light was blinking red. I turned back on the power only to hear the unit warm itself up, stop, and then more power light blinking.

    I noticed the LCD screen had numbers on it. Online research showed they were an error code for abnormal air pressure. Color me surprised! I had no idea that air was necessary to heat water up with these units. There could be an obstruction in the venting pipe or something else. Instead of calling somebody over to look at it, I watched a YouTube clip on how to open these units and check the filter. Again, new info for me. I had no idea these things had a filter to begin with. Anyway, it was gross and completely clogged. After I cleaned and dried it, it looked like the grill it was supposed to be. Once that was done, the unit powered on normally and we finally had hot water, again. :)

    Next up, we've had a dimmer downstairs that was installed by pros which would buzz constantly unless it was at the max setting. I was bored and read that it could be because the load would be too much for the dimmer. Prior to that, I just thought a dimmer was a dimmer, but not so. Anyway, after I turned off the circuit, I was able to open the box and see that the dimmer was 100 watts short of the proper load. Off to Home Depot. A unit 200 watts over the necessary should suffice, just to be on the safe side. Some manufacturer's numbers can oftentimes be rather enthusiastic (i.e. best-case scenario). Took my time and read the instructions carefully. Tada! No more buzzing! Kind of surreal to not hear that high-pitch whining when the lights are dimmed but it's sooooo much nicer, now.

    It can be challenging, especially since I'm as far removed from being handy as possible but I try what I consider to be tasks that are attainable for my very limited skills. It can be rewarding. One thing's for sure. You're never bored! :p
     
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  2. cj_wattage

    cj_wattage Vendor

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    Wait until you get into renovation projects and find out just how cheap and lazy previous owners have been. Good times.
     
  3. Tylenol Jones

    Tylenol Jones Member

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    Been there, done that. Astounding how the previous owners did next to nothing! Same for the owners before them and the ones before that.

    We've drastically improved the house and the bank's assessment of it reflects that. But what a painful experience that was. Hope to never go through that again.
     
  4. cj_wattage

    cj_wattage Vendor

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    It's almost better if previous owners do nothing rather than do something on the cheap. I'd rather have outdated than shoddy any day of the week.
     
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  5. mge80

    mge80 Member

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    Oh, man. Makes me shudder just thinking about it. :confused:

    We went from having lived in a new construction home that we had built in Seattle to the one out here where we are the third owners. And, even at that, the house was only 7 years old when we bought it. Still......
     
  6. Tylenol Jones

    Tylenol Jones Member

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    Our house is 65 years old. As far as I can tell, an addition to the kitchen was all that was relevant. The rest (windows, furnace, etc) had been done one or two decades ago AT LEAST! Most of the house looked intact from the 70s. The basement was just concrete with stuff scattered all around.

    The previous owner fancied himself a handyman and as such, did a ton of little jobs here and there and incredibly poorly, at that! His chef-d'oeuvre was an A/V cabinet that he made from mismatched pieces of wood he had accumulated over the years. Behind where the TV was placed, he had spray-painted it black. The carpets that were in the basement were at least 20 years old pieces of rubbish. I could go on and on.

    We renovated the entire basement, replaced all the windows, changed the A/C unit, added a bathroom, etc. I got a nice man-cave out of the deal, but that was the most stressful and painful year of my life. Between the massive incompetence by every contractor but one and the incredibly obvious creeps who'd try to swindle you, it was hard to keep my cool. Glad it's all over now but I'd rather stay here than go through that again. In about 3 years, we're considering moving since our family will likely be bigger. But man... I'll definitely keep an eye open for any major renovations the next house is going to need. We'll shoot for zero. lol!
     
  7. spamassassain

    spamassassain Member

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    Sold our 2nd house two years ago and was pretty disappointed at the fact that many expensive rennovations (new AC, Landscaping, carpet, venting out the range hood, new roof) did not seem to add much to the value of the house, although our realtor told us: "it would have been much worse without those things!". But the crackup was that the home inspector found an exterior outlet that was wired backwards (hot and neutral swapped) and had been like that since the house was built in 1967! It had probably been inspected, bought and sold a half a dozen times since then, and no one else found that problem before. An easy fix, fortunately...
     
  8. Tylenol Jones

    Tylenol Jones Member

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    From what I read, it's not that they add value, but rather appeal so you have more of a chance of selling the house or instigating a bidding war amongst many interested buyers.
     
  9. loudboy

    loudboy Member

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    Yup - we built ours 30 years ago and just sort of lived with a lot of stuff that we hadn't done the greatest job on. Now that we're putting it on the market, we're having to take care of all those things...

    By the time we're done, the house will be really nice and then we'll move! <g>
     
  10. BrewDrinkRepeat

    BrewDrinkRepeat Member

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    I live in a house that was built in 1881, and I am about as UN-handy as it gets... :(
     
  11. bigtone23

    bigtone23 Member

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    I have a contract on a house here in the Denver area. It was a fast-paced search, find, tour and bidding war with the the price going way over asking price with the seller selling "as is." The inspection found many miswired or old and loose outlets, an old water heater, a small gas leak and other small things. Most of which I can fix myself. In sum, it's a solid weekend of work and a thousand or so $ to correct everything. If I balked at any of this, the house would have just gone to the next bidder.

    It's a seller's market here with insane demand. Issues that would delay a typical sale are grossly overlooked if not ignored. Glad I'm sort of handy as it would be a fortune to hire most of this work done.
     
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  12. Guinness Lad

    Guinness Lad Silver Supporting Member

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    Not sure if it's a badge of honor or stupidity. I personally think it blows. thank God I can do most anything related to home repairs otherwise I'd have no money at all.
     
  13. Tylenol Jones

    Tylenol Jones Member

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    No idea where you're getting at. Nobody here is proud of not being handy.

    As I said, we all have our strengths. I'll bet you anything there are things I can do that you cannot, but I sure wouldn't call you stupid for not knowing how to do them.

    Perhaps that's the difference between us.
     
  14. Guinness Lad

    Guinness Lad Silver Supporting Member

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    Nothing against being handy, I think it's a great skill to have, my beef goes into politics and the banking system, sorry if you didn't catch my drift.
     
  15. Baxtercat

    Baxtercat Member

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    Wait till you have to root out the kitchen sink outflow the full length of the snake.
     
  16. ACfixer

    ACfixer Member

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    Home ownership is fun IMO. Yeah it can be a little hard on the wallet at times but it's a challenge that's really satisfying when met.

    Don't be afraid to get some tools and ask questions and search You Tube. There's a wealth of info for the ambitious.
     
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  17. Johnny Moondog

    Johnny Moondog Member

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    I have found that I can fix nearly anything - I just often do it wrong a couple of times first.
     
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  18. Yer Blues

    Yer Blues Member

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    I've been sitting on stuff for awhile even though I have the $. I think I'm ready to move forward here.... drywall work, new floor (wood tile looks nice), and then appliances. Then I'll get a pool in 3-5 years.
     
  19. Jamalot

    Jamalot Member

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    I also had to eat alot of previous owner amateur DIY crap to get my house.
    We signed the P&S the inspection came back with a bunch of DIY malarkey to fix. We asked, they balked. They had received a higher offer in the interim and wanted us out.
    ... Im still fixing the malarkey, but all in all it was a good deal.
     
  20. kcprogguitar

    kcprogguitar Member

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    There's plenty of things I can fix on my house, built in 1957. There's plenty of things I have no business getting close to. Those, I hire out instead of tackling a project over my head. Lesson learned the hard way, four houses ago. Electricity is way outside of my wheelhouse. I can do simple plumbing. Pretty handy at most cosmetic things, but I wouldn't tackle refinishing a hardwood floor. Know your strengths. Hire the rest.
     

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