Heating up

Yep, my radiators are finally working! (Item 1 on the Punchlist.) But this wasn’t quite as easy as 1, 2, 3. First I had to hook up all the radiators. I bought a spud wrench to do this in case the fittings were loose. And it’s a good thing I did because the plumber (or more likely his idiot helper) had one of them cross threaded and it wouldn’t go on. My dad said “I hope it’s the radiator fitting and not the pipe.” And horrible images of re-soldering things flashed before me. Luckily, it was the fitting and he had left an extra one behind.

Then I had to reconnect 4 PEX pipes that the chimney people had cut. And so I joined the West Philly Tool Library and was able to borrow the tools I needed to do the job! This is amazing and I highly recommend the place to anyone in the area.


Then we pressurized the system. But the water seemed to keep flowing in and gurgling up longer than it should have. Turns out one of the radiators wasn’t tight and the water was running down inside a wall. Thankfully, it wasn’t a repeat of Chad’s Tears Falls, but it meant a little bit of screaming, depressurizing the system, and very anxiously refilling it. And tightening up several radiators throughout the house. Big sigh. My bathtub still has a pile of wet blankets in it.

And then we got it on but the radiators weren’t heating up evenly. We decided to flush out the system so we opened the valves to fill the system and just let water flow through. And then I caught 2 valves that hadn’t been opened and finally learned how the control valve works. When it opened like a mini hot water fire hydrant all over my groin. I screamed. But actually the water wasn’t all the way hot yet. Anyways, it’s done!

Then there were some other important things that happened. My dad made this nice cardboard cutout for me.


What’s it for? The sink! We got this hole cut last week. I still need a faucet and I guess a drain, though sometime soon I’m getting a free garbage disposal. Note: this is an undermount sink, so we have to rig it to make it work with a laminate countertop. But they’re temporary anyway.


Speaking of which, remember how they needed to be shimmed up, braced together, and screwed down?


It’s nice to have scrap wood.


And I glued the leftover edge pieces on. So now I think I have the best $50 countertops I could have possibly gotten. They still need almond caulk to hide those seams.


And while I had the Pex tools I took care of some other plumbing things. The terrifying pipe that could have destroyed my kitchen is now gone. And the capped lines for the kitchen sink have shut off valves on them. I’m all set until I decide to live high and get laundry appliances.


All those pipe fittings were in my basement from who knows when. I’m going to use whichever ones work for my sink, and then you see those bar codes? I’m gonna wash them off and just see if I can return them for store credit. Would I call this honest? No. But there might be 15 dollars for me in there!


4 thoughts on “Heating up

  1. Mary Elizabeth

    I think you will enjoy the radiant heat. That tool lending library sounds fantastic! What a great idea. The public library in my former town lent the usual books and movies, but also tools and artwork. One of my neighbors borrowed art prints for her new house for a period of six months, thinking she would brighten up the walls temporarily while she shopped for her own art. Then when she returned the prints, she found some she liked equally well, so she borrowed a new set for another six months. She called it her revolving exhibit. After about 10 years, she had still not bought any art. She liked changing out the stuff on her walls better than investing in anything permanent.


    1. Chad's Crooked House Post author

      This library doesn’t get public funding so there is an income-based membership fee. I also got a hoodie with mine. The rotating art thing sounds great. I’d definitely add picture rails if I had that option.



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