New house update – plumbing, HVAC, electrical, and fireplace

It’s been over a month since I’ve blogged about the new house and you’re probably wondering what the heck is going on. Honestly, not much… it’s kinda slow going these days. Well, I say that..but since the last update we have had plumbing, HVAC, electrical, and the fireplace installed. Which is actually a lot, it’s just not the most fun stuff to share pictures of or blog about.

Not that I’m going to let that stop me or anything.

So the first thing to go in (nearly a month ago) was the fireplace insert.

blog about building a house

It’s this one, a wood burning fireplace with a gas starter. Also, it’s huge…the top of that black part is as tall as I am. When it’s all said and done the limestone will cover all the black metal, and the hearth will come up level with the bottom of the opening (we wanted it to be chair height).

The other exciting thing that went in is the bathtub in the kids bathroom.

Mirabelle soaker tub

If you can see past the construction mess, it’s actually a pretty cool tub. It’s made by a company called Mirabelle (it’s this tub, but we only paid $550) and even though it looks huge it’s actually a standard size tub. Because of the way it’s designed it holds a ton of water and will actually cover more than the back of your knees during a long relaxing soak. Not that it will often be used for that, it’s mainly for washing kids. We have a regular short sided one in the boys bathroom now and water goes all over the bathroom every time they bathe. They get crazy in there, they can’t even help it. (Because trust me, I’ve tried to tone down the crazy. There’s no stopping it.)

Here are a few other things that have been installed…

First, the hot water heater.

gas powered tankless water heater

Yes, its tiny. It’s a gas tankless (or on-demand) heater, meaning it doesn’t store water, it just warms it as it passes though. It’s made by Rinnai…and that’s pretty much all I know, since Adam was the researcher on this decision.

Also the HVAC (which stand for heating, ventilation, and air conditioning) is in.


That is the air handler portion, stuffed in a eave over our master bathroom.

The electrical started going in last week, here is the breaker box going into the office nook (which is the command center for the house).

breaker box

Here you can see all the house internals over the laundry room.

plumbing, HVAC, and electrical

The red and clear tubes are the PEX tubing (plumbing, which is an alternative to copper), then you have the HVAC ducting and the can lighting.

Here you can see the HVAC over the kitchen…kitchen HVAC and stuff

And the plumbing for the kitchen sink…

smaller kitchen window + plumbing

and the master bathroom sinks.

master bathroom plumbing

We haven’t been just sitting around watching them work though, here is Adam and his older brother putting up the barn wood siding on the bump out.

Ranchwood Siding

I’ll dig into the siding in another post, but I’m loving how it looks.

putting up the RanchWood siding

Here is another one of Adam’s brothers installing a door frame, which had to be done so the cornice crew could finish putting up the siding and trim.

door hanging

And here is Adam’s dad teaching my boys how to use tools…

helping papa put in a door frame

…and the proper way to install a door frame.

helping hang doors

Most recently Adam has starting installing the low voltage wiring, here is my dad and brother helping him.

low voltage

Or rather, here is my dad and brother teaching Adam how to install low voltage wiring. God bless large families, especially those that are chock full of helpful, hard-working men (and boys).

While I haven’t been doing any of the grunt labor, I have been busy cruising the internet and local building supply stores, daydreaming about all the finishes I want to use. I started to include them in this post….but it got reeeeeally long, so I’ll make that a post of it’s own.

In other news, the paint crew started today! I’m super excited to get the pretty stuff going, and paint is the first step. I ended up going with Shoji White from Sherwin Williams and can’t wait to see it up on the house!


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  1. So exciting to see your progress! We had an extra deep standard size tub when we remodeled in our old house and I loved it! It was so nice to take a deep bath and have all my parts covered instead of half my body in the water. Can’t wait for the next installment!

  2. Great progress! It may not look like much, but everything completed means that much closer to the exciting part. Your boys are so serious and cute…but where are the baby pics??

    1. I know….Nov. 20th self imposed deadline came and went. Are you on Instagram? There a some one there that might tide you over till I can get out a post chock full of baby pics. There is a link at the top with my social media buttons, I think you can see the pics even if you don’t have an account.

  3. I hope you have a way to get that air handler out of the spot it’s in when it comes to the end of its life. (and the new one in!) It seems that the labor on these systems keeps getting less and less capable/skilled. When we changed ours out a couple of years ago, we moved it to a main floor closet for easier maintenance…and the HVAC guys STILL managed to fall through the ceiling doing that! (Weirdly, I had to argue and argue to get it moved…well, they got to pay me for the damage they did to the ceiling, and it’s not noticeably loud on the main floor at all.)
    Also, in a hot-weather-climate, electricity bills will be much less if the system is in conditioned space, so I’ve always wanted to insulate the roof (expanding conditioned space to include the attic) so I didn’t have to move the ducts.
    Love to see those PEX supply lines, it is the way. to. go!

    1. Well…I didn’t really think about getting it out in the future. I don’t image it would be easy. Originally it was supposed to be in the main attic, but once we realized how usable that space is we banished it to the eave. On a good note though, while its not in an air conditioned space, we are having the whole house, including the attic, spray foamed. Supposedly the attic should’t get over 80 degrees…the builder says we should be ale to store chocolate in there.

  4. Ashley, I’ve been trying to figure out where I should post this….you’ll see why in a bit. I decided to just reply to this rather than send you a direct note, because I think some of your readers might get a kick out of it. I sure hope you aren’t the jealous type. :-) “Why?”, you ask. Well, that would be because I dreamed of Adam.

    No joke!

    It gets better.

    We were together. Without you.

    And it gets even better!

    We were in a sleeping bag. Together.

    Ah, perhaps I should explain, cause clearly, I’ve got some ‘splainin’ to do.

    You had the kiddos with you, and unless I’m confused on this one tiny point, I think you were dealing with a picture frame at Michael’s. Baha, yes, back to that problem. I think that portion of the dream might be because I have been looking at frames for a standard size print , so maybe I was thinking about frames and I thought about your recent frame odyssey.

    Adam and I were in the new house, Walls were up, but no interior framing. Must’ve been cold because, well….Adam and I were sharing a sleeping bag. !!! I KNOW!! Hey, it wasn’t zipped up, that’s something isn’t it? Right? Right?? Oh, my dawg, we weren’t working on the house all. Maybe we were tired? We were just lying there, comfy as can be as if it was the most normal thing ever. Until the front doorknob rattled and we realized you were home. We looked like a couple of meerkats on alert. Both sitting halfway up, both propped on an elbow, shocked look on both of our faces.

    Crucial point here: we were fully clothed. Thank heavens, cause Adam would’ve been scarred for life if I’d not been!!

    And the other crucial point, nothing had happened. It wasn’t one of THOSE kinds of dreams!

    I laughed and laughed and laughed some more when I woke up. I don’t know either of you, although I’ve been subscribed to your blog forever. I had had a glass of wine (okay, probably two) a couple of hours earlier, so can I Blame It (On The Alcohol)? I may have a depraved mind, but that’s only because of lack of sleep and a few too many concussions, and it has only led to brain fog and a tendency to laugh at things like Will Ferrell movies.

    I know, I’ll blame it on the Ambien. That’s my excuse and I’m sticking to it.

    I’m laughing again, just thinking about it. So totally random and waaay out of character for me, even in dreams. I’m usually dreaming of things like finding myself in advanced calculus class in my flannel pajamas about to take a final exam. And of course, I’m totally unprepared, a math phobe and seem to have no idea of how to get out of this test.

    No dreams about guys, even “Hey, Girl” guys who wear socks with sandals. (See, I have followed you for a long time!)

    Happy Holidays to you both, and my most sincere apologies to poor Adam!

    1. Hahaha, that’s quite the dream! Luckily neither Adam or I are the jealous type, so dream away :) It’s the socks and sandals that got you isn’t it? No woman in her right mind can resist a man in socks and sandals. I read Adam this comment and he just smirked and said “Well I AM dreamy, it’s about time somebody noticed.”

      Merry Christmas to you too Carla, and thanks for sticking around for so long!

  5. It’s so cool to see everything come together. I think my favorite part of when my home was being built was when the drywall went up and they put in the countertops, plumbing, and cabinets. That’s when I could really imagine it being our home.

  6. Is that water in your bathtub? That’s strange. Were the plumbers testing the pipes before they finished the install? By the way, your project looks great.

  7. I love the tub you chose for your kids’ bathroom. The only tub in our apartment right now is in our master bath and it’s a jetted tub. It’s so deep and has a pretty thick edge, so it’s almost impossible to bathe my daughter without getting myself soaking wet! I’d love a tub like that when we build, which I’m hoping will be in the next year or two. You mentioned you only paid $550 for your tub. Did you do anything to get such a good deal on it?

  8. I’ve been wanting to figure out how to get the plumbing in my basement figured out. There is a lot that goes into it though and we aren’t sure how to go about getting it all figured out. This article helped though and I feel better about getting it done.

  9. Hey great share,,,
    The plumbing business is growing, and will continue to grow as technology becomes more advanced. Plumbing is perfect for those of you who are people pleasers, and work to your fullest potential. The better your work ethic is, the better your business will be, and the more financially successful you can continue to be

  10. Plumbing and electrical can be some of the hardest things to do properly, so it’s good yours is all in with little issue so far. Seeing as how this is an older post, I assume you probably already have the house done, or at least close, right? Hopefully you didn’t have to experience having to deal with anything too bad, like a burst pipe(“knock on wood” if your not done yet).

  11. Hey Great Share,,,,

    Great! This can be one of the most helpful blogs I have ever come across on this subject.I think it’s just very good.Hope to see more stuff from your side.

    Keep sharing….!!!!

  12. Similarly, know how to shut off water to sinks, toilets, washing machines and water-using appliances like the refrigerator’s icemaker. Should they misbehave, knowing the location of the shut-off valve will save the day and a lot of wet cleanup.

  13. Looks like your house is really coming together! I’d love to learn more about the tankless water heater. I know they are becoming more popular. Thanks for posting!

  14. You’re right about the amount of work it takes to get plumbing, HVAC, and your other accomplishments complete. You also have a strong point about these tasks not being the most fun things in the world to exact.

  15. Hi , just found your blog , hows thar water heater working out for you all , we’re considering going with a tankless , thanks

  16. Hey Ashley. This is another great post … it’s awesome to have such a big family like yours where you have skilled man to help with the work, you are lucky :)

    On plumbing it’s really one of the things that you should not be afraid of spend on, it really has to be done properly and by qualified professionals, after all you don’t want to have to tear down walls and floors couple of months after you finished the house to discover leaks and whatnot …

    It’s looking great !

    1. Using passive solar design to heat and cool your home can be both environmentally friendly and cost effective. In many cases, your heating costs can be reduced to less than half the cost of heating a typical home.

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