Saturday, July 27, 2013

Marvin Windows is Causing us Disappointment

Marvin Windows, the manufacturer of our windows and door for our project has been somewhat of a letdown for us. Joe said that it's rare to have any sort of problems with their products but we've encountered two issues that have added considerably to the completion time of our addition. The first being the dent in the window framing that I'd written about earlier and the most recent being a defective sill along the bottom of the door leading to the deck. The sill is supposed to void rainwater out some vent holes in the base of the door's framing but it's not working and when it rains the water backs up and leaks onto the floor inside the porch. Joe said the Marvin Window representative told him he's only heard of this happening one other time.

With the tile floor next to go in inside the sun-porch, the leaking door threatened to put a halt to any further work in there. We couldn't afford to risk having more rainwater seep in and cause any sort of damage to the tile work that was about to be done. Joe came up with a temporary fix that allowed us to press on. A heavy downpour of 3/10 of an inch of rain in less than 15 minutes Sunday morning proved to be a good test. The temporary waterproof fix for the door did the job!

Joe asked the Marvin Windows rep to resolve the defective door for us expeditiously but I hold out little hope that they will. They were supposed to have rushed a replacement window to us to rectify their first 'mess-up' and that took over a month. So, this is where the blog comes in handy as I voice my dissatisfaction with Marvin Windows and their lack of quality control and upload my experience to the net for others to read about. Are you listening Marvin Windows?

Bryan set up shop in our garage earlier in the week and began readying the floor in the porch for tile. The process is much more involved than I would ever have imagined. His crew arrived at 9:00 sharp Thursday morning and after going over their individual roles one last time they got busy laying down the self-leveling floor compound.

It's a time-critical process that allows so little room for error because the compound begins to set up after just 4 minutes. Bryan had spent easily two days prepping the floor and laying out the thin, low-voltage wires across the entire floor that will provide heat for the room. One of his biggest concerns during the cement pour Thursday morning was that the wires not be ripped out by a dragged foot from their anchored positions. He had a glue-gun at the ready in case a fix needed to be made on the fly. He also had another drill waiting in the wings in case the one being used for mixing the compound went belly-up. He was leaving nothing to chance.

I was off from work this past week and made a point of finishing the remaining landscaping around the deck. It's a job I'm really glad to have behind me.

The focus for the coming week will continue to be the tile floor in the sun-porch and possibly finishing up work on the deck. We're waiting for the gates to arrive which will be placed at the top of the stairs and will allow us to let the pups while away their day out there when it's not too hot.

And we'll also continue to wait on Marvin...

Monday, July 15, 2013

Week 11 of Our Project

The majority of Joe's time last week was spent building the pergola. It was no easy job but all of his efforts payed off because it looks great and we're all very happy with it. I know he enjoyed building it but I think he's glad to have the job behind him.

Joe had fun asking people looking at his handiwork, "how many rafter tails do you think there are?"  I guessed way low and so did Jeff. Joe counted 116 of them. Keith came by and Joe posed the question to him. Little did Joe know that Jeff was behind him giving Keith the exact number with his fingers. Keith looked up, surveyed the structure and shot back, "hmmm...115?" Joe couldn't believe it! "That's pretty good!" Haha...too funny!

I mentioned in my last post about the window Joe needed to move along the back of the house to make for a better transition for the railing to tie into the side of the house. We'd hoped to have the window moved a full 12 inches but because of some unforeseen vent-ducting in the way Joe was limited to only 6.25 inches. He cut some new cedar siding that Jeff painted before installing a pseudo post which appears to be embedded into the side of the house that the railing will tie into. It's going to look and function just fine and we're pleased with how it turned out even if it wasn't ideal.

Jeff finished painting the interior and exterior of the porch in addition to caulking all of the joints in the pergola and painting it. It really looks nice.

The project continues to make steady progress toward completion but because of some scheduling conflicts with Joe's tile installer work will come to a standstill for a couple days during midweek this week but not before Joe finishes the deck and railing which he began putting down a couple days ago.

The pups have been eyeing their new deck. One key thing we'll need for them out there is a new water bowl. That will be the crowning touch!

Sunday, July 7, 2013

I say "Purgulah", you say "Pergola"

Week 10 and lots of stuff is beginning to come together now.

Jeff will be done with the interior painting of the porch today freeing up the space for Bryan to come in and do his tile work although I don't think he'll be able to begin work until Thursday due to his schedule and other work commitments. So many contractors in the area have had their schedules pushed back at least a week or two because of the wet spring we've experienced.

We had one 'oops' moment this week when it came time to erect the pergola. The Azek composite deck material we'll be using comes in lengths of 12, 16 and 20 feet. We'll be using 20 foot lengths but that length results in the far right vertical beams of the pergola falling in line with the outside edge of one of our family room windows. It's something we could live with but ideally we'd like to have a setback of maybe 12-18 inches so the post isn't so visible from inside our family room looking out. Keep in mind, in the photo to the left there will be one more shorter post situated between the one closest to the house and the window which will be used for the railing. It's that post which was troubling us most.

What to do?

We mentioned our concern to Joe, somewhat worried that maybe he'd think we were being too picky. He didn't think so. He agreed that it would look better to not have the pergola post imposing on the window the way it is. Joe came up with really the only option available to us and that's to move the window over in the direction of the other window; something neither Tammy nor I had considered.  This solution works really well for us all and I can sleep better once again.

The pergola is quite labor intensive requiring calking of all the seems before it gets painted. It's also labor intensive because of all of the calculations Joe has to make to get it to assemble correctly. It's not a kit. I believe the plan is to have it fully built in the next few days so Joe can begin work on the decking.

We're coming into the homestretch now and that's nice to know but there will still be a lot that remains to be done with respect to furnishings and such.

Video from the past week...