Back in the summer, I had my heating contractor look over my boiler with high hopes he could just repair it and I could squeeze a couple more years of life out of it. When you take on a old house project with lots of questionable areas...one learns to just bite the bullet. My contractor took one look at that rusty old box and said "I am afraid if I loosen just one bolt, the whole thing might just crumble into a heap". He wasn't far from the truth. Prior to my possession, squatters lived in the house. They lived in deplorable conditions- feces and urine all over, maggots in the refrigerator, heat the house with portable kerosene heaters and put foam board insulation between the window panes to try to keep the heat in. When I walked through the house the first time, we were walking over clothes, massive amounts of furniture, covering our noses and squinting to see in the dark. One of the first things I did was open the windows and took the foam board out and what took my breath away- the house was HUGE and natural light was abundant, even if they had lived in a cave.
So, the plan was to start work on the boiler back in November before the cold hit hard. As all well laid out plans in house renovation land goes...well...that plan took months to come to fruition. By then, all of the radiators had been detached to make way for new framing, pipes had been removed and cleaned up and by the time the heat work started, the project went from a simple connecting of a new boiler to a full replacement of everything except the room radiators. My contractor tried to convince me to upgrade to new ones but I refused...I wanted the old radiators to stay with their old house charm. "The news one are more efficient". Well, with the new insulation and a highly efficient boiler, I won't notice too much of a difference- I am restoring an old house not building new. So, he listened and the radiators stayed.
For 2 weeks, I stopped in almost daily to monitor the progress and it was exciting! Then one day, I opened the door and felt it..."The heat is on!!!" and it was toasty warm, a really nice contrast to the cold outside. This is the first time this old house has been warmed from the inside in years...and she smiled.
Catskill Simple Living
Started by a Family and Consumer Science teacher with an interest in housing and interior design, Catskill Simple Living started as a way for her combine her interests and share them with new friends.