Garden Suite Photo Journal | yegardensuites

Garden suite photo journal

Ever wondered what a Garden Suite build looks like from start to finish? Well, we've got you covered.

 

This page follows the Garden Suites journey of David Campbell, an Edmonton resident who set out to build a suite in 2016. Follow the week-by-week process to learn about what it takes to build a suite!

Week 1-Demolition & utilities

moving Gas line

Demolition 

utilities

Last week I had the gas line relocated.  You can’t build any type of residence over a gas line so it had to be moved.  Atco had it done in about a half a day, but it was pricey at $2800!  Here is the new gas line. They directional drilled it from the alley following the fence line. I won’t be installing a separate meter so a secondary gas line will run from my existing meter on the house back to the garage.

Here is what the back yard looked like on Saturday.  It had an old single car garage way up by house.  The new garage suite will go at the far end next to the alley where it belongs.

This mini-excavator made quick work of this garage!

My services all share a common trench.  The sewer and water lines are on the lowest level.  I cored a hole in the foundation wall just above the footings for the sewer and water line to pass through.  Eventually the slab of my house will be cut open to tie the new garage suite sewer line into my main line.  I considered bypassing the house and tying into the main sewer at the street but that had two big downsides: First I had a lot of landscaping and sidewalks along the side of the house that would have been damaged and secondly it would mean a second water meter charge which is about $40 per month. I put the lines as low as possible and just to be sure I wouldn’t have any problems with freezing,  I insulated with a layer of polystyrene and ran a loop of pex pipe that can be tied into my in floor heat if necessary.  The second layer is my electrical wire (I took this as an opportunity to run my power underground and get rid of the unsightly overhead wires), the new gas line that goes from the house to the garage and two empty PVC conduits.  These conduits are for running any future cabling to my house. Right now that could include phone and cable but also could one day run fiber optic or whatever other type of cable I might want.

I’ve finished the excavating. I’m using an 8 inch thick frost wall that is 4 feet deep. It will sit on an 18 inch wide strip footing – That’s the next step!

Week 2-Footings & Foundation

footings

foundation wall

We placed the concrete using wheelbarrows directly from the truck.  We could have used a concrete pump to make it easier but I didn’t think it was worth the $600.  We will use a pump for the foundation walls.

I’m using insulated concrete forms for this project.  This is one of my favorite building products  These blocks go together just like lego!  The final product is 8 inches of concrete compete with rebar between 2 layers of 2 1/2 polystyrene insulation.

Here I am pumping the concrete into the forms.  This project is accessed from the alley where there are a lot of overhead power lines so we can’t use the boom on the truck.  It’s best to have a few people on this day as a three inch line full of concrete is pretty heavy to drag around. 

Here the footings are formed and the rebar is sitting in the forms.  As the concrete is placed the rebar will be pulled up to its proper position 1/3 up from the bottom of the footing.

Here Jeanette is troweling the walls to produce a nice flat building surface.

Week 3-backfilling/landscaping

Back filling

Re-grading

This week I was concentrating on back filling and compacting the excavation and on landscaping.  I did a poor job of taking pictures along the way so you will have to use your imagination!  Compacting is pretty simple but it is important to use clay for back filling and not top soil.   The clay is compacted in lifts of around 2 feet so that you don’t have problems with settling in the future.  I stripped and saved the topsoil before I did the excavation so I didn’t have to have any trucked in.

I decided to re-grade my entire yard and re-sod.  It was a lot of time and work but I thought I might as well do it all at the same time.  I bought my sod from a landscaper who had bought too much (how you end up with 5 pallets extra I’m not sure!)  But I only ended up paying 10 cents per square foot which would be about 1/3 of retail price.  Fall is a great time for sodding as it is not too hot and so it doesn’t dry out too fast.

Here is the framing package for the main floor which I will be working on over the next week.

Week 4-Main Floor Framing

framing

house wrap

Finally I get to build something that isn’t getting covered by dirt!  Here you can see the first couple of walls standing and another one ready to stand in the foreground.  The best way to get a square building is to build and sheet the walls laying down and then stand them up and fasten together.  My neighbors kept coming by and commenting on the “nice floor I was building”

Thanks to Geoff, Munro, Melissa and Jeanette who all took part in the barn raising.  Do you think Geoff is holding that wall up or just leaning on it?  I’m not sure!  The green sheeting that you can see is fire rated.  It is basically OSB that is painted with gypsum and is used on the sides that face the neighboring lots.  In new subdivisions the green side faces out, on infill projects it faces in.

I like to put on the  house wrap before I stand the walls.  Not only is it faster but that way you have a nice weather tight building as soon as you get the roof on.

Next week I’ll start on the floor system

Week 5-floor system

floor sheeting

Here is the floor system for the suite.  I’m using open web floor trusses for this project.  These are the gold standard for floor systems, they cost a bit more but have several advantages.  Because I have a cantilevered balcony I wanted something more substantial than the standard I-joists.

Here you can see the main beam (the orange one).  It is a triple ply laminated veneer lumber that is 16 inches deep.  It carries a load bearing wall above without having to have any posts in the garage.

It was nice to have the skid steer for lifting materials, it made easy work of the floor sheeting.

Week 6-second story framing

This week I got going on the second floor walls.  Usually I will build all the walls for  whole floor and stand them all at once.  One this project there isn’t enough space to build all the walls at once so I have to build half, stand them and then build and stand the rest.  That is a little less efficient as it means Geoff has to get conscripted twice.  Notice the rake walls (end walls) are higher than the side walls, this will be important later when I build the roof overhang.

All the exterior walls are now built and ready to stand once I get my pesky overhead power line out of the way.  The electricians will be installing my new electrical service next week and EPCOR is coming to remove the line on November 4th.  I’m going to stop framing for now and finish off some of the seasonal work such as my garage slab and parking apron before it gets too cold!

Week 7-Garage floor

Here's the base gravel all leveled out and compacted.  The next step was plumbing ground work.

If it is all done right you get a nice green sticker like the one below.

I’ve insulated the floor with 1 1/2 inches of rigid foam and taped the seams.  This will keep the heat from my in-floor heat from going down into the ground.

 

OK concrete time!

You can see the in floor heat lines. Jeanette gets the fun job of moving a full load of concrete via wheel barrow.

Below I’m using a bull float to level the concrete and push the aggregate (gravel) down into the slab so that it ends up smooth.  Once it sets up enough to walk on I use the power trowel to give it a nice smooth finish.

Week 8-parking pad

I took some time off to go on a bit of a holiday so all I’m going to talk about this week is the parking pad.  I chose to do exposed aggregate just to make it a bit nicer – this will be the front entry to someone’s home after all.

Here I have the sand placed and compacted and the rebar in, I’m  ready to start placing the concrete.  There was 3 of us for this pour and that was definitely better than when we did the garage slab just with two.  I had covered the area for two nights previously with a small heater just to make sure that the sand wasn’t frozen.

Here we are about 3/4 of the way finished placing and screeding the concrete.

Once the concrete was all placed I used the bull float and a hand trowel to get it nice and level.  The next step was to apply a concrete retarder.  

Concrete retarder is sprayed onto the top of the concrete, it stops the top 1/8 of an inch from setting.  After about 6-8 hours you end up with concrete that you can walk on but that the very top layer is still wet.

It was just above freezing so we covered it in again and put the heat on.  Once it was set (about 9pm) I used a pressure washer to wash away the top layer of cement paste (the bit on top that didn’t set because of the concrete retarder).  I had lights under the tarps and heat so it was a pretty comfortable work space.

It’s hard to see in this picture but all the aggregate (little rocks) are now visible.  After a few days I stopped heating it and took the tarps off.  Just in time for the snow!

Week 9-roof framing

This first photo shows all of the roof trusses sitting on the walls somewhat near their final position.  We lifted them to the second floor with the skid steer and then lifted them onto the walls by hand.  I’m using 14 inch deep parallel cord trusses to create the vaulted area below.

1st row of sheeting on.

Here it is with the sheeting on except for the access hatch that I have left.  It is a lot safer to get onto the roof from an access hatch from the second story than to climb a ladder up two stories from the ground.  I will fill in this piece of sheeting when I am almost done shingling.

Next week is roofing and windows!

All the roof trusses standing and nailed into their final location.

Here are my skylight openings.  We are using skylights to get light into the entry/ kitchen area instead of windows to provide increased privacy to my neighbor on the South side and also for my own yard.

Week 10-roofing & windows

These are 35 year architectural shingles.  I ordered the materials from Roofmart and specified roof top delivery.  The next day the shingles were two stories up and I was set to start.  I left the skylights loose for easy access to the roof and will do the final install once the exterior finish is complete.

This is a cool shot showing how great the view is from the balcony.  This will eventually end up enclosed in a privacy screen as a compromise with my neighbors so there won’t end up being much of a view at all.

Here I’m applying the blue skin weather stripping before we put in the windows.

Here is the lower side with the roof jack for the bathroom fan and the main plumbing stack.  Note my rope and harness!

The windows are in, it went incredibly smoothly especially  when you consider the height and the size of this upper window.  It will provide plenty of light into the suite.

I’m falling a bit behind with my blog so I’ll try to post a few posts quickly.  Next week is wiring!

Week 11-electrical & stairs

My electrical service was done back in the fall, now we are doing the electrical rough in. One thing to watch out for is that the rules change as the building code is updated.  The new code came into effect in November 2015.  You have to follow the code that was in effect when to took out your building permit so I actually fall under the old code as my building permit was issued back in September.  One example of changes to the code is that now all bedrooms must have there own smoke detector where until now it was common practice just to have one in the hallway outside the bedroom.

When building a garage suite you can choose to have an entire new electrical service installed with a separate meter.  The advantage of this is that the tenant is then responsible for paying their own electrical costs.  But it is a bit more expensive as there is then two distribution fees (one for the garage suite meter and one for the house meter)  I chose to just have one meter for both buildings and I will just charge the tenant a small monthly amount to cover the extra power usage.

Here are the interior stairs.  Most projects use prebuilt stairs as it simply isn’t worth the time and money to build them on site.  Better to have them built in a factory by a specialist and then installed by the framer. (These stairs were made by Glenora lumber, they were ready 1 week after I ordered them and cost a bit over $700).  The stairs have a winder at the top (two stairs that make a corner) and then the straight run in the picture.  I was putting these in myself and they weigh about 300 lbs so I had to put some thought into how I was going to do it safly.

Then I placed some 2 by 4 lumber to guide the stairs as I tipped them into the opening.  Next I rotated  them into position and nailed them in.  I was amazed at how well it worked! I didn’t take any pictures of them in place but I’ll add one next week.

I need to finalize the materials that I’m going to use for the exterior finish so that I can order them.  We have struggled a bit with this as we want to balance having a nice quality project while controlling costs.  (also we will eventually be re-doing the exterior of our house to match or compliment whatever we use on the garage  suite).  

If you have any suggestions feel free to leave a comment with your suggestion. Next week I’ll be insulating and starting on my boiler system for the in floor heat. Also my dad tells me that my Uncle Bob noticed that I was falling behind on my blog posts, so I would like to dedicate this post to him.

Week 12-insulation

These are the rigid vents that provide an airspace between the insulation and the bottom of the roof sheeting.  It is important to use these for vaulted ceilings because if you don’t you will have problems with ice damming.

Electrical devices such as plugs and switches are put in plastic vapor hats and then these hats are sealed to the poly with tuck tape.  A good practice is to seal the opening for the wire with acoustical sealant (the black messy stuff in the picture)  P.S. the only thing that I know that is effective at cleaning this stuff is WD40.

Some areas cannot be adequately sealed with traditional insulation and poly.  This is the elevation change between the bedroom (low) side and the living room (high) side.  The only way to properly seal this is with spray foam.

Another pesky area is the rim joist between the first and second floors.  I’m using open web floor trusses which are pretty much impossible to seal without spray foam.  It cost a fair bit (I used about $600 in foam for this project) but it is the only really effective way.

Next week is plumbing.

Week 13-plumbing

This week is the plumbing rough in. Here are my water distribution lines, as you can probably guess, the red lines are the hot and the clear is the cold.

This is the main plumbing stack where all the individual drain lines come together.  I framed the bulkhead and chase around after the plumbing was done.  It will all get enclosed in drywall.

Here is the tub that I put in place when I was framing, now it is all hooked up.  The space on the left is for the washer and dryer.

That’s it for this week, next week is the boiler and in floor heat system.

exterior walls

plumbing

Week 1-Demolition & utilities

moving Gas line

Demolition 

utilities

Last week I had the gas line relocated.  You can’t build any type of residence over a gas line so it had to be moved.  Atco had it done in about a half a day, but it was pricey at $2800!  Here is the new gas line. They directional drilled it from the alley following the fence line. I won’t be installing a separate meter so a secondary gas line will run from my existing meter on the house back to the garage.

Here is what the back yard looked like on Saturday.  It had an old single car garage way up by house.  The new garage suite will go at the far end next to the alley where it belongs.

This mini-excavator made quick work of this garage!

My services all share a common trench.  The sewer and water lines are on the lowest level.  I cored a hole in the foundation wall just above the footings for the sewer and water line to pass through.  Eventually the slab of my house will be cut open to tie the new garage suite sewer line into my main line.  I considered bypassing the house and tying into the main sewer at the street but that had two big downsides: First I had a lot of landscaping and sidewalks along the side of the house that would have been damaged and secondly it would mean a second water meter charge which is about $40 per month. I put the lines as low as possible and just to be sure I wouldn’t have any problems with freezing,  I insulated with a layer of polystyrene and ran a loop of pex pipe that can be tied into my in floor heat if necessary.  The second layer is my electrical wire (I took this as an opportunity to run my power underground and get rid of the unsightly overhead wires), the new gas line that goes from the house to the garage and two empty PVC conduits.  These conduits are for running any future cabling to my house. Right now that could include phone and cable but also could one day run fiber optic or whatever other type of cable I might want.

I’ve finished the excavating. I’m using an 8 inch thick frost wall that is 4 feet deep. It will sit on an 18 inch wide strip footing – That’s the next step!

Week 2-Footings & Foundation

footings

foundation wall

We placed the concrete using wheelbarrows directly from the truck.  We could have used a concrete pump to make it easier but I didn’t think it was worth the $600.  We will use a pump for the foundation walls.

I’m using insulated concrete forms for this project.  This is one of my favorite building products  These blocks go together just like lego!  The final product is 8 inches of concrete compete with rebar between 2 layers of 2 1/2 polystyrene insulation.

Here I am pumping the concrete into the forms.  This project is accessed from the alley where there are a lot of overhead power lines so we can’t use the boom on the truck.  It’s best to have a few people on this day as a three inch line full of concrete is pretty heavy to drag around. 

Here the footings are formed and the rebar is sitting in the forms.  As the concrete is placed the rebar will be pulled up to its proper position 1/3 up from the bottom of the footing.

Here Jeanette is troweling the walls to produce a nice flat building surface.

Week 3-backfilling/landscaping

Back filling

Re-grading

This week I was concentrating on back filling and compacting the excavation and on landscaping.  I did a poor job of taking pictures along the way so you will have to use your imagination!  Compacting is pretty simple but it is important to use clay for back filling and not top soil.   The clay is compacted in lifts of around 2 feet so that you don’t have problems with settling in the future.  I stripped and saved the topsoil before I did the excavation so I didn’t have to have any trucked in.

I decided to re-grade my entire yard and re-sod.  It was a lot of time and work but I thought I might as well do it all at the same time.  I bought my sod from a landscaper who had bought too much (how you end up with 5 pallets extra I’m not sure!)  But I only ended up paying 10 cents per square foot which would be about 1/3 of retail price.  Fall is a great time for sodding as it is not too hot and so it doesn’t dry out too fast.

Here is the framing package for the main floor which I will be working on over the next week.

Week 4-Main Floor Framing

framing

house wrap

Finally I get to build something that isn’t getting covered by dirt!  Here you can see the first couple of walls standing and another one ready to stand in the foreground.  The best way to get a square building is to build and sheet the walls laying down and then stand them up and fasten together.  My neighbors kept coming by and commenting on the “nice floor I was building”

Thanks to Geoff, Munro, Melissa and Jeanette who all took part in the barn raising.  Do you think Geoff is holding that wall up or just leaning on it?  I’m not sure!  The green sheeting that you can see is fire rated.  It is basically OSB that is painted with gypsum and is used on the sides that face the neighboring lots.  In new subdivisions the green side faces out, on infill projects it faces in.

I like to put on the  house wrap before I stand the walls.  Not only is it faster but that way you have a nice weather tight building as soon as you get the roof on.

Next week I’ll start on the floor system.

Week 5-floor system

floor sheeting

Here is the floor system for the suite.  I’m using open web floor trusses for this project.  These are the gold standard for floor systems, they cost a bit more but have several advantages.  Because I have a cantilevered balcony I wanted something more substantial than the standard I-joists.

Here you can see the main beam (the orange one).  It is a triple ply laminated veneer lumber that is 16 inches deep.  It carries a load bearing wall above without having to have any posts in the garage.

It was nice to have the skid steer for lifting materials, it made easy work of the floor sheeting.

Week 6-second story framing

exterior walls

This week I got going on the second floor walls.  Usually I will build all the walls for  whole floor and stand them all at once.  One this project there isn’t enough space to build all the walls at once so I have to build half, stand them and then build and stand the rest.  That is a little less efficient as it means Geoff has to get conscripted twice.  Notice the rake walls (end walls) are higher than the side walls, this will be important later when I build the roof overhang.

All the exterior walls are now built and ready to stand once I get my pesky overhead power line out of the way.  The electricians will be installing my new electrical service next week and EPCOR is coming to remove the line on November 4th.  I’m going to stop framing for now and finish off some of the seasonal work such as my garage slab and parking apron before it gets too cold!

Week 7-Garage floor

concrete

plumbing ground work

Here's the base gravel all leveled out and compacted.  The next step was plumbing ground work.

If it is all done right you get a nice green sticker like the one below.

I’ve insulated the floor with 1 1/2 inches of rigid foam and taped the seams.  This will keep the heat from my in-floor heat from going down into the ground.

 

OK concrete time!

You can see the in floor heat lines. Jeanette gets the fun job of moving a full load of concrete via wheel barrow.

Below I’m using a bull float to level the concrete and push the aggregate (gravel) down into the slab so that it ends up smooth.  Once it sets up enough to walk on I use the power trowel to give it a nice smooth finish.

Week 8-parking pad

I took some time off to go on a bit of a holiday so all I’m going to talk about this week is the parking pad.  I chose to do exposed aggregate just to make it a bit nicer – this will be the front entry to someone’s home after all.

Here I have the sand placed and compacted and the rebar in, I’m  ready to start placing the concrete.  There was 3 of us for this pour and that was definitely better than when we did the garage slab just with two.  I had covered the area for two nights previously with a small heater just to make sure that the sand wasn’t frozen.

Here we are about 3/4 of the way finished placing and screeding the concrete.

Once the concrete was all placed I used the bull float and a hand trowel to get it nice and level.  The next step was to apply a concrete retarder.  

Concrete retarder is sprayed onto the top of the concrete, it stops the top 1/8 of an inch from setting.  After about 6-8 hours you end up with concrete that you can walk on but that the very top layer is still wet.

It was just above freezing so we covered it in again and put the heat on.  Once it was set (about 9pm) I used a pressure washer to wash away the top layer of cement paste (the bit on top that didn’t set because of the concrete retarder).  I had lights under the tarps and heat so it was a pretty comfortable work space.

It’s hard to see in this picture but all the aggregate (little rocks) are now visible.  After a few days I stopped heating it and took the tarps off.  Just in time for the snow!

Week 9-roof framing

Roof sheeting

This first photo shows all of the roof trusses sitting on the walls somewhat near their final position.  We lifted them to the second floor with the skid steer and then lifted them onto the walls by hand.  I’m using 14 inch deep parallel cord trusses to create the vaulted area below.

1st row of sheeting on.

Here it is with the sheeting on except for the access hatch that I have left.  It is a lot safer to get onto the roof from an access hatch from the second story than to climb a ladder up two stories from the ground.  I will fill in this piece of sheeting when I am almost done shingling.

Next week is roofing and windows!

All the roof trusses standing and nailed into their final location.

Here are my skylight openings.  We are using skylights to get light into the entry/ kitchen area instead of windows to provide increased privacy to my neighbor on the South side and also for my own yard.

Week 10-roofing & windows

shingles

windows

These are 35 year architectural shingles.  I ordered the materials from Roofmart and specified roof top delivery.  The next day the shingles were two stories up and I was set to start.  I left the skylights loose for easy access to the roof and will do the final install once the exterior finish is complete.

This is a cool shot showing how great the view is from the balcony.  This will eventually end up enclosed in a privacy screen as a compromise with my neighbors so there won’t end up being much of a view at all.

Here I’m applying the blue skin weather stripping before we put in the windows.

Here is the lower side with the roof jack for the bathroom fan and the main plumbing stack.  Note my rope and harness!

The windows are in, it went incredibly smoothly especially  when you consider the height and the size of this upper window.  It will provide plenty of light into the suite.

I’m falling a bit behind with my blog so I’ll try to post a few posts quickly.  Next week is wiring!

Week 11-electrical & stairs

electrical rough in

electrical metering

stairs

My electrical service was done back in the fall, now we are doing the electrical rough in. One thing to watch out for is that the rules change as the building code is updated.  The new code came into effect in November 2015.  You have to follow the code that was in effect when to took out your building permit so I actually fall under the old code as my building permit was issued back in September.  One example of changes to the code is that now all bedrooms must have there own smoke detector where until now it was common practice just to have one in the hallway outside the bedroom.

When building a garage suite you can choose to have an entire new electrical service installed with a separate meter.  The advantage of this is that the tenant is then responsible for paying their own electrical costs.  But it is a bit more expensive as there is then two distribution fees (one for the garage suite meter and one for the house meter)  I chose to just have one meter for both buildings and I will just charge the tenant a small monthly amount to cover the extra power usage.

Here are the interior stairs.  Most projects use prebuilt stairs as it simply isn’t worth the time and money to build them on site.  Better to have them built in a factory by a specialist and then installed by the framer. (These stairs were made by Glenora lumber, they were ready 1 week after I ordered them and cost a bit over $700).  The stairs have a winder at the top (two stairs that make a corner) and then the straight run in the picture.  I was putting these in myself and they weigh about 300 lbs so I had to put some thought into how I was going to do it safely.

Then I placed some 2 by 4 lumber to guide the stairs as I tipped them into the opening.  Next I rotated  them into position and nailed them in.  I was amazed at how well it worked! I didn’t take any pictures of them in place but I’ll add one next week.

I need to finalize the materials that I’m going to use for the exterior finish so that I can order them.  We have struggled a bit with this as we want to balance having a nice quality project while controlling costs.  (also we will eventually be re-doing the exterior of our house to match or compliment whatever we use on the garage  suite).  

If you have any suggestions feel free to leave a comment with your suggestion. Next week I’ll be insulating and starting on my boiler system for the in floor heat. Also my dad tells me that my Uncle Bob noticed that I was falling behind on my blog posts, so I would like to dedicate this post to him.

Week 12-insulation

These are the rigid vents that provide an airspace between the insulation and the bottom of the roof sheeting.  It is important to use these for vaulted ceilings because if you don’t you will have problems with ice damming.

Electrical devices such as plugs and switches are put in plastic vapor hats and then these hats are sealed to the poly with tuck tape.  A good practice is to seal the opening for the wire with acoustical sealant (the black messy stuff in the picture)  P.S. the only thing that I know that is effective at cleaning this stuff is WD40.

Some areas cannot be adequately sealed with traditional insulation and poly.  This is the elevation change between the bedroom (low) side and the living room (high) side.  The only way to properly seal this is with spray foam.

Another pesky area is the rim joist between the first and second floors.  I’m using open web floor trusses which are pretty much impossible to seal without spray foam.  It cost a fair bit (I used about $600 in foam for this project) but it is the only really effective way.

Next week is plumbing.

Week 13-plumbing

plumbing rough in

This week is the plumbing rough in. Here are my water distribution lines, as you can probably guess, the red lines are the hot and the clear is the cold.

This is the main plumbing stack where all the individual drain lines come together.  I framed the bulkhead and chase around after the plumbing was done.  It will all get enclosed in drywall.

Here is the tub that I put in place when I was framing, now it is all hooked up.  The space on the left is for the washer and dryer.

That’s it for this week, next week is the boiler and in floor heat system.

Week 14-heating

boiler system

The heating system is a boiler with in floor heat for both the garage and upstairs levels.

You may remember this picture from back in the late fall.  You can see the insulation and the tubing for the in floor heat that was put in before we poured the garage slab.

Here is my boiler system in place and ready to be tested.  This boiler is a few years old but in great condition.  The city wants me to have a gas fitter re-certify the boiler because it is not new.  They gave me that shiny red sticker to keep until I do!

Here are the pumps and valves associated with the boiler system.  I’ve got one heat zone for the garage level and two heat zones for the floor above.

This is a heat recovery ventilator.  It exchanges stale air from inside with fresh air from outside while using the exhaust air to warm the incoming air to save energy.

Here you can see the in floor heat lines in position below the upstairs floor.  The metal plates you see are heat transfer plates.  They hold the tubing in position and transfer heat from the tubing to the floor above, making the system more efficient.

Next week is exterior finish!

Weeks 15/18-exterior finishing

It seems like it took me forever but the exterior is finally finished!  This is the view from the alley.  I chose to use a mixture of Hardie Panel and Hardie Plank.  The dark colour is the Hardie Panel and the metal trims are called EZ trim.  I ended up choosing to use the Hardie products because I wanted a more up-scale finish than vinyl and I liked having the extra fire protection that the Hardie products offered.  They are made of fiber cement and are cut easy with shears or a special blade in a skill saw.

This is the back where it faces my yard.  We used two different colours to break up the large blank face on this side.  The suite level has no windows on this side to maintain privacy in my yard.  My plan is to have ivy cover this entire side.

This is the north side.  It is hard to tell from the picture but this whole side is pretty much obscured by trees (a giant willow and lilac).

This is the South side.  I chose to use the dark paneling on the chimney to make it more of an architectural feature.

Next week will be the vinyl deck for the balcony and hanging drywall.

Weeks 19/20-drywall & finishing

I’ve had some good progress the last couple of weeks.  I subcontracted out my drywall, got my garage level primed and painted, garage doors up, lights and plugs up and even built some shelves.  All that I have left on this level is to put up the garage door openers and a few small odds and ends.

Upstairs is all taped and ready for primer.  This weekend I’ll be priming and doing the built in shelving in the linen closet and the walk in closet.

Finished!

Well I’m finally done! Here are some photos of how it turned out. 

A huge thank you to David Campbell for sharing this valuable resource with us. 

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