One of the big wildcards on our build has been a possible delay in natural gas hookup preventing us from moving forward with critical steps such as drywall and flooring.
Persistent monitoring of the Texas-based natural gas install company helped ensure our project didn’t slip. Murphy did have to rent a powerful kerosene “jet engine” heater to warm the house during the drywall mudding phase, but the furnace will be able to do its job once the hardwoods arrive on site.
It is critical that the flooring be properly acclimated to the temperature and humidity expected under normal living conditions before it is installed to minimize shrinkage or expansion after the fact. A stack of freezing cold, bone-dry wood laid down inside an unheated house will expand and possibly buckle once the heat kicks on and the humidity rises to normal levels.
The gas company spent an entire week working on our small dead-end street. As it turned out, the gas line ended just before our property line, so the remaining houses on the block would have had to pay extremely high prices to get gas service installed. They took advantage of the install at our house to complete the trunk line down the rest of the block, opening the door for several more upgrades in the near future.
Of course, the install was, uh, ripe with opportunity for juvenile humor. Please notice that I resisted the urge to title this post something like “We’ve Got Gas!” I wasn’t, however, above exchanging sophomoric jokes with one of the Murphy brothers via SMS.
At one point, the installers spent several hours digging a trench on either side of the “green room” porta-potty. They expertly tunneled a conduit and gas pipe underneath it, but all I could think about was what would happen if they knocked the outhouse into the pit where men were working–and just how crappy that would be.
Aaaaanyway, the job is done. All that is left now is for the ducts to be vacuumed out and the furnace can be run. Soon there will be nothing standing in the way of installing the hardwoods.