Support the Arts

Mandy\'s avatar

  If you haven’t checked the seal around all your windows and cleared out your gutters lately, go do that. Right now. We’ll wait!

We’ve had a real run of bad luck with our house lately, the worst and most recent being wood rot below our front door – which is right below where my art desk usually sits in my room! It’s stabilized for now, at least.

I’ve been meaning to rearrange my furniture anyway…

Fox\'s avatar

Labor Day Weekend. I was supposed to be welding an exhaust back together. Instead I can’t even get the manifold bolts to let go (Yes, I’ve tried every possible recommendation that exists–you just have to keep repeating them after letting it soak in penetrant) and this is all after I find the worst damage I’ve ever seen in this house on the very last day of my two weeks of ‘vacation’.

20 comments on “Support the Arts

  1. Before anyone asks, the desk is right over the three joists most affected by the two studs around the door with the sole plate/OSB/rim joist water damage.
    They’ve been shored up so they’re not going anywhere, but should still be replaced.
    I’ll do it eventually, but after everything else? I need a damn break. The house needs cleaned. We need something resembling sanity around here.
    The current joke is that I’m never allowed to take a vacation again if this is what happens when I do…

  2. We just had a very similar problem at my place as well, though it was our back door leading out to our deck. The scary part is that the floor was also pretty badly rotted, and if it had collapsed, it have fell right on top of where my grandfather sits in his recliner. Thankfully we got it all replaced and fixed before anything bad happened

  3. I’m SO glad my house is brick and mortar. With concrete ceiling on the top floor. 90 years and still Ok ecxept for the roof which was partially removed by some angry Americans in the mid 40s

  4. I hope the house has been reasonably cheap. The houses here are usually from bricks. The house that my grandfathr built in 1925 is still good. Still the first roof tiles. Onl
    y the rooms are quite small. For my parents its ok though.

  5. I will never, ever, ever buy a house. Y’all homeowners are crazy. I’m sure it will work out though. You’ll find somewhere to put your tools, I promise.

    1. I know homeownership is wiser from a financial perspective, but I will say I was much happier when I was renting…

  6. Thanks for sharing this via the comic. Funny presentation as usual. Just wanted to say that I appreciate your efforts. I’m gunna go back to lurking now.

  7. I hear misery loves company, so maybe whining about my car will make Fox feel better.

    I needed new fuel lines on my ’72 Oldsmobile. The original steel lines had long since rotted away, and whoever was last under there decided zip-tying rubber lines to what was left of the old ones was good enough. Sure, it worked, but that is so horrifyingly the wrong way to do it.

    And yet, having now done it… more correct, I can’t say I blame them too much.

    The problem is the steel lines run INSIDE the c-channel of the frame rail, and the open side is all but covered by the floor pan. As far as I can tell, the correct way to replace everything would be to lift the body from the frame. Needless to say, I don’t have a lift, nor did I feel like spending three grand to get one, and so option B: buy approximately every 1/2 inch wrench in existence and use two or three of them per bolt until everything finally comes out. By far the most “fun” was the bolt now on top of the frame rail, still buried under the floor pan, and further hidden by the lower control arm of the suspension.

    But! In the end, the old lines came out, the new ones went in (… more correct), and I believe Fox will find a way with the exhaust manifold.

  8. Only four days since uploading before I got to see this one. That’s an improvement!

  9. I feel your pain, for my own house was also built with speed in mind and very little on 25 years down the road. So yeah, all the window frames replaced, kitchen had to be remolded due to floor being dry rotted and a half dozen other things that has turned a 2 week project into a Herculian Tale of strange men with power tool running around the place, making sure that there will be a place later on.

  10. That doesn’t look too bad! Certainly not fun though. We just had to replace roughly 14′ of sill and joist along the exterior wall of our house, under and next to the door. Cut back about 1′ in from the edge, put in some temporary supports, and replaced everything. Good luck!

    1. I wish it was just a sill and joist. They only require temporary walls on one floor, and only jacking it up half an inch. This has a rotten sole plate and king stud in addition to the header joist. Significantly more work ripping off 12′ x 15′ of siding, insulation, and disassembly of an exterior load-bearing wall. (You can’t get the sole plate out otherwise.)

  11. If you end up having to remove mold hit it with a cheap glue spray first so the spores won’t spread and you don’t inhale them

  12. Given what you said about leaky sills, etc. I’d suggest using
    pressure treated lumber on all repairs of that sort.
    You’ve got my sympathy,bud. Good luck.

  13. Isn’t this the sort of thing covered by homeowners insurance? Though, after being without a kitchen for over a month, I can’t really recommend letting insurance handle everything. Maybe just let them pay for specialists to handle the tricky parts. (Some things, especially structural work, are best left to pros).

    NO SINK, no counter or cabinets. Thankfully, oven, fridge, and microwave are still usable. If you’ve ever thought dining out for every meal would be fun, I can tell you it gets old very fast, even with insurance reimbursing for meal costs.

    1. Unless you’ve a specific exception in your policy, wood rot is basically excluded from policies nationwide. The idea is that wood rot requires numerous exposures to water over extended periods of time. Insurance is designed to deal with “sudden and unexpected” damage. So anything hit by wood rot is believed to be something that should have been prevented by maintenance, thus putting the onus on the homeowner. Doesn’t matter if the damage was completely hidden from the homeowner and only being caused by two small holes recessed above the top of the front door–only caused because the trim there was wood, not the impervious fiberglass everywhere else we thought was up there too–and difficult to see.
      So, yeah, an FYI to all homeowners: Ensure your exterior is completely sealed. Wood rot will not be covered by insurance.

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