Monday 16 July 2012

Plumbing first fix and second hemp wall

My plumber Len made a great comment about the house "I like the design, but not for the plumber." The house had two bathrooms at opposite ends of the house and the kitchen is not near the bathrooms either. The town water connects to the house at the the opposite end to the water tank, and the toilets and washing machine are all connected to rainwater from the water tank. The water and LP gas pipes all run between the ceiling and roof and then down the walls, where possible they will run down the internal walls which are not hemp, but there are not many internal walls in the house.

The water pipes are all PEX (cross linked polyethylene), but where sharp bends are needed, such as going out  through the wall to the water tank, the pipes are copper. Len, my plumber, also lagged all the pipes that are going through the hemp walls. When I asked why he used the thick black lagging around the pipes, his reply was that he had it sitting around in his garage for a while, it being the type of lagging used on solar hot water systems, but when he ran out of the black he will use a thinner green lagging, like used for hot water pipes, for the rest of the pipes that go through the hemp walls.

Lagged pipes running through what will be a hemp wall
Pipes coming out through hemp wall to and from water tank
Gas (yellow) and hot and cold water pipes running to kitchen
While on site I also did a second test hemp wall. On further inspection the first test wall I did was slightly bowed out in the centre on one side. I am not sure if this was caused by the formwork being bowed or from over tamping. So for the second wall I checked the formwork was straight using a level as a straight edge and checked the wall as I put the hemp in to make sure the tamping did not bow the formwork. After the lesson of the first wall I also made sure that I tamped the corners and other areas around the spacers. The result was a better wall on my second test section. I continued to put up formwork and as a further precaution against bowing in the centre I put an extra spacer and coach screw in the centre of each sheet of formwork and to prevent creating difficult areas to tamp I put the spacers and screws further in from the corners.   

Two test sections of hemp wall done and formwork moved up
This section of wall was made with one mix
I have also made peace with the surveyors after they did not carry out the house set out survey properly. They refunded me the extra cost I had to pay for the extra concrete piers and have offered to do a final survey at no cost. This final survey is likely to be necessary to prove to council that the house is still with in the required set backs, even though it is not in the location specified on the Council approved plans.

25 comments:

  1. The plumbing system looks great. Using cross linked polyethylene pipes is definitely smart since these pipes offer multiple benefits. For instance, polyethylene pipes are very lightweight. This means installation is going to be pretty easy. Also, the pipes are highly resistant to corrosion and abrasion, and this means you won’t have to worry too much about having broken pipes jacking up your water bill in the future.

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  2. How’s your plumbing system? I hope that these pipes are still doing well. Polyethylene pipes are known for its flexibility, strength and durability. You just have to make sure that your pipes are not exposed to direct sunlight to avoid corrosion and damage.

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  3. It does look great, Bibi! Aside from the advantage that you've said about polyethylene pipes, they can also resist corrosion and they’re flexible. With this you don't have to worry about the pipes swelling or dissolving, when using solvents to remove the debris inside your pipelines.

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