General Information

1. Does the contractor have liability insurance? If something goes wrong who will cover your loss. I heard of a roofing problem in the summer of 08 they tore off the roof and installed a new roofing system. It looked good it didn’t leak, but when the roofers were tearing off the old roof they inadvertently unlocked the furnace flue pipe 8’ below the roofline. When the flue pipe was re-shingled into place the pipe was 1/2 on and 1/2 off the lower pipe venting carbon monoxide into chimney chase and ultimately into the house attic. They didn’t find the problem for 5 months, thank God no one died. When Natural gas or LP gas is burned it gives off carbon monoxide and a lot of water. The water leaves the furnace at about 350 degrees; at this temperature it’s steam being forced into a cold attic with a lot of cold surfaces. When the steam touches a cold surface it changes to water or ice. In this case about 2 inches of ice crystals on under side of the roof decking, on the trusses and on the surface of the attic insulation.  A quick calculation looks like about 200 gallons of water frozen in the attic. Looking at this job after the facts all the insulation in the attic has to be removed the roof sheathing has to be checked for soundness and may have to be replaced as well as the sheetrock ceiling. You might need new flooring also if the ice melted before you removed it, because it will follow the wall stud cavities to the main floor and under your carpets, or cupping you hardwood flooring.
This is only 1 thing that can go wrong; there are many other situation I have heard about.
2. Does the contractor have worker compensation insurance?
If person falls or get hurt in any way while on your property (grass, sidewalk, inside your house, etc.) you’re at fault, unless the contractor has workers compensation insurance.

Rules for hiring a contractor:

General Information
1. Does the contractor have a state license to do the type of work needing to be done?
2. Does the contractor have liability insurance? If something goes wrong who will cover your loss.
3.  Does the contractor have worker compensation insurance?
If a person falls or get hurt in any way while on your property (grass, sidewalk, inside your house, etc.) you’re at fault. Unless the contractor has workers comp. insurance.

4. Make Sure All Subcontractors and/or Any Person Coming Onto Your Property Has Legal Workers Compensation and Liability Insurance.
5. Does this person have the brains to pull off this type of job?  Watch out there a lot of cons out there calling them contractors only wanting to separate you from your money.
6. Can he/she prove what is being said in writing; a contract that protects you the Homeowner?
7. A lot of people have go good intentions but no knowledge or life experience to draw from.
8. There are 3 classifications of quality of work
A.  Poor and well below sub standard workmanship
B.  Just Average on workmanship
C.   Excellent work- any worker just above average ends up excelling to excellent static because of the person himself, I’ve seen this time and time again.

9. 2nd Classifications of motives.
A. Money is a good motivator
B. The lack of money is a poor motivation
C. Lack of time for said job or out of on contracts personal bills
D. The only job available this one, actually scores just above average
E. Actually caring for his work and the client.

Now is the contractor your hiring going to hire subcontractor with substandard work or money problems? Remember this your project is to be a work of art not a novel of science fiction.

Septic systems and how they work

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Raw sewage (black water) flows from the house to the first of 2 septic tanks. The weighs are trapped in this tank where they brake down. Once the liquid drains 2 a 2nd tank and some heavies or sediment was able to leave the first tank the 2nd tank catches it. When the liquid leaves the 2nd tank its now call gray water ready to the drain field.

picture-83.jpgWhen entering the drain field the gray water runs through the lateral pipe to each of the drain beds equally. Each bed has 4″ pipes with about 2 -1″ holes every 6” allowing the gray water to spread into the river rock. Where the drain field does its work is not in the rock but on the edge of the rocks and the meeting of the sand a 1/8″ membrane is formed that eats the bacteria out of the water.

Once your drain field is installed do not hurt or damage the edges of the sand and rock bed of your drain field.

Blunders-wet basement

I was called to a house in the summer of 2003; the homeowners built the house.
They called with a problem of water in their basement. When I got there, they had a new swimming pool in the basement. The county required a perk test done the property.

This was to tell which type of sewer system is required.

  • In ground standard.
  • Mound system.
  • On this lot because of high level of ground water a mound system was required.

    When it was time to build about 3 months later being a dry summer they dug 3 1/2 feet below the drain field system, to set the footings.

    The next 2 years were dry. But the spring of 2003 was a couple of wet months above average rainfall that spring and they had 3′ of standing water in their basement.

    Saved about $20,000.00 on construction fees, and lost about 26’x 42′ area in a lower level or lost about $54,600.00 resell value.

    Saved about $20,000.00 on construction fees, and lost about 26’x 42′ area in a lower level or lost about $54,600.00 resell value.