Winterization for 2020

Day # 184

November 17. 2020 – Just a very short post today. I traveled to the Cot-Taj-Mahal this morning to perform the 2020 winterization. This includes draining down the water, and winterizing the toilet and drain traps.

Everything went as expected. I used the shop vacuum to suck all the water out of the pipes and I loaded up the toilet and drain traps with anti-freeze . Winterization complete… We should be good for the winter.

Sometime next season I will be replacing the existing CPVC water pipe with much more temperature tolerant PEX water piping. I think I’ll still have to drain but I won’t have such a risk of a pipe burst if a little water gets left in the system over the winter.

We’ll see…

Two Hose Bibbs for the New Porch

Day #157 & 158

August 29th and 30th, 2021 – Since we built the new porch onto the front of the cottage, we’ve been without the capability to hook up a hose. This weekend the goal is to install two readily accessible hose bibbs along the front of the porch. I’m combining two work days into one post to provide better flow.

I am using PEX tubing for the first time. It has a higher burst strength and is better suited for our situation than CPVC pipe.

First I rigged up two mounting boards for the sillcocks. I mounted one at each end of the porch. Nothing fancy yet. We still have to put siding on the outside knee wall so these may have to be adjusted in the future.

Hose Bibb

Mounted Hose Bibb
One hose bibb at the west end of the porch.
Mounted Hose Bibb
One hose bibb at the east end of the porch.

Next I rolled out the 3/4″ PEX tubing. The porch is over 60 feet long and there is on piece of pex tubing from hose bibb to hose bibb. It is definitely a challenge to work with when you are by yourself. It keeps wanting to roll back up on itself.

Pex Tubing Roll
PEX tubing ready to roll out.
Pex Tubing
PEX tubing stretched out along the front of the porch.

Underneath the Porch

Once the tubing was connected to the hose bibbs and secured up under the porch I made the turn back towards the pump house. With PEX tubing you can use these 90° bends in place of elbows (image below).

Long Pex Run
PEX tubing under the porch and the hose bibbs connected.
Pex Tubing
PEX tubing run back to the pump house from the front of the porch.

Back at the pump house I turned off the electric to the well pump and opened the faucet in the bathroom to relieve the pressure in the system. Once the water stopped flowing from the faucet I knew that it was safe to cut into the existing CPVC piping.

Expansion Tank
Expansion tank and CPVC connection inside the pump house.
Cutting open the CPVC piping to drain the water.

Once the existing CPVC pipe was out of the way I connected the PEX hose bibb run to the pump house expansion tank and then to the remaining CPVC supply piping.

Pex Tube Connections
Connections at the pump house.
Pex Tube Connection
Connection at the old CPVC piping and the new PEX tubing.

I double checked all my connections and fired the pump back up. The system came up to pressure, the pump stopped and voila there were no leaks! The image below is on the east end of the porch.

Hose Bibb and Hose
Finished hose bibb at the east end of the porch.

This image (below) shows the hose connection at the west end of the porch.

Hose Bibb and Hose
Finished hose bibb at the west end of the porch.

Next weekend is Labor Day Weekend. Folks will be coming in so there will be no work, just celebration. See you back in a week or so.

Kitchen Sink Drain Line & New Windows

Two New Kitchen Windows

Day #80

July 13, 2019 – Yesterday I ran out of daylight before I could get the kitchen sink drain line completed. This morning I checked the slope and alignment of the piping that I had roughed in. I still have an 1/8″ per foot slope to the tie in point.

After I glued everything together I installed the galvanized pipe supports and double checked the slope. Everything looks good. Now that the kitchen sink drain rough in is complete the porch decking can continue.

Kitchen Sink Drain Line
Gluing up the kitchen sink drain line.
Smoking Pipe
Smoking drain line installation.
Completed Drain Line
Completed drain line with cleanout.

Before the deck installation continues, we felt the installation of some of the new windows would minimize the chances of any breakage. Two of the rough openings are ready. One above the kitchen sink….

Kitchen Sink Window
New window above the kitchen sink location.
Exterior - New Kitchen Sink Window
Exterior view of the new window over the kitchen sink location.

…. and one along the side of the new addition. It didn’t take very long at all to put these in place. They are leveled, fastened and taped off.

New Kitchen Side Window
New window in the side wall of the kitchen addition.
Exterior Side Wall Kitchen Window
Exterior view of new window in the kitchen addition side wall.

The third new window also gets installed in the side wall. Before we can set it, I need to remove the old existing window and re-frame the opening to the correct size and height. This is a future project.

Today was a pretty productive day. We finished the kitchen sink drain line rough in and managed to set two of the three new windows. Tomorrow I will continue the Trex decking install.

Hurricane Ties, New Windows & Drain Piping

Day #79

July 12, 2019 – Today is another miscellaneous work day. I have hurricane ties, that I purchased from Fasteners Plus, to install on the first porch roof section. Thankfully, I made it all the way to the cottage with the three new windows without any breakage…so there’s that. Before I can continue anymore Trex decking I have to install the drain line for the kitchen sink.

First up, the Hurricane Ties. They are easy to install and help prevent lateral movement and uplift from strong winds.

Hurricane Ties

Porch Roof Framing - Hurricane Ties
Porch roof framing

I was able to unload the windows buy myself without breaking anything.

New Windows
New windows safely unloaded.

After the hurricane tie installation and the window unloading I started the drain line installation. I did a quick take off of the material and headed out to Lowe’s to purchase what I needed.

Plumbing Supplies
Gathering plumbing supplies at Lowe’s.

Back at the cottage I started the drain line. I am basically working between two fixed points. The underside of the floor framing at the kitchen addition, and the existing tie in under the bathroom. I began by putting in the drop at the kitchen sink.

Kitchen Sink Drop
PVC drop and 90° sweep for the kitchen sink drain.

With the drop in place, I cut aligned and glued an elbow at the tie in.

Drain Tie In
Drain tie in point under the bathroom.

Working between these two points I laid out and blocked up the pipe to the proper pitch. I was hoping to get 1/4″ per foot slope but I was only able to get the minimum, an 1/8″ per foot.

At this point I was running out of daylight so I decided to complete the drain line tomorrow, in the morning.

Sewer Piping Repair

Day #10

June 4, 2018 – Today I got all the new pipe and fittings sorted and laid out. I finished digging up the existing sewer piping. Inside the bathroom I removed the toilet. Outside I started the sewer piping repair.

Tomorrow I should be able to tie in the new piping to what remains of the existing sewer lateral.

We sized up the rotted out bedroom window/door panels. Took another trip to Lowe’s to get studs, plywood and a window for the replacement work.

Once again had dinner at Wingman’s.


Sewer Piping Repair
New plumbing pipe and fittings.


Sewer Piping Repair Trench Excavation
Trench excavation for existing sewer piping.
Bathroom Toilet Removed
Bathroom toilet removed.
Rotted Windows
Rotted out window/door panels to be removed.
Harley's At Wingman's
Admiring the nice Harley’s at Wingman’s.

Plumbing Supplies

Day #9

June 3, 2018 – Today we watched a Gray Catbird mother count her chicks, went to the Lowe’s to get some plumbing supplies, checked out Spuds McKenzie’s long lost cousin, Lewistown Louie and had dinner at the Wingman Brew-N-Que. Not a very productive construction day.

Tomorrow I’ll start the sewer piping repair.

Gray Catbird Nest
Momma Catbird counting her chicks.


Plumbing Supplies
Plumbing Supplies


Lewistown Louie
Lewistown Louie guarding his beer stash.


Wingman Brew-N-Que
Special drink at Wingman Brew-N-Que.

Sewer Piping

Day #8

June 2, 2018 – Today I dug up the sewer piping from the bathroom and discovered that the 4 inch elbow coming from the toilet waste had a crack in it. Also discovered that the bathroom sink is on it own 4 inch drain lateral.

I was hoping that the sink drain and toilet waste piping came together somewhere but that was not the case. I dug out from the cottage 12 feet and they did not meet up. 

Rather than dig all the way to the septic tank we’ll install new 4 inch schedule 40 pvc piping and tying them together outside the edge of what will be the new porch foundation. I hope that this will hold up well into the future.


Sewer Piping Cracked Elbow - Toilet Waste
Cracked Elbow – Toilet Waste


Sewer Piping Drain & Waste Laterals
Separate 4 inch sink drain and toilet waste laterals running parallel.


Sewer Piping Drain & Waste Laterals
Separate 4 inch lines for the bathroom sink and the toilet.

Tomorrow we will have to make a trip to Lowe’s for sewer piping supplies.