16,851 reputation
14086
bio website gregmaclellan.com
location Canada
age 33
visits member for 4 years
seen 12 hours ago

Professional software developer, with several years working on industrial control and monitoring systems. Slowly remodeling parts of my house.


Jan
30
comment How much space do I need between rafter ties?
Consult an engineer! The potential cost of not doing so is your house (or a substantial part of it, anyway) collapsing. Pretty sure insurance won't cover any claim that begins with "Well, I removed some joists from my ceiling..."
Jan
27
comment Can I run the cord for plugged ceiling lights through the attic?
You absolutely can not do it the way you're describing. NEC 400.8 Uses Not Permitted (ref. Extension Cord) Flexible cords and cables shall not be used for the following: (1) As a substitute for the fixed wiring of a structure (2) Where run through holes in walls, structural ceilings, suspended ceilings, dropped ceilings, or floors (5) Where concealed by walls, floors, or ceilings or located above suspended or dropped ceilings
Jan
19
comment Wiring to split one circuit for ceiling lights in multiple rooms?
To meet code (NEC 2011 404.2(C)) you'll also need to have a neutral at each switch, which means either running power to the switch first, or using a /3 wire between the switch and light. If you're not touching the wiring between the switch and light, you may get away without this, but it would be best to ask your local inspector. For more info, see this question.
Jan
17
comment Do I have to cover the entire floor while painting a ceiling, or can I simply cover the floor in the area I'm working?
If your floor is something you could easily clean paint from, then you could probably just get away with piling any furniture in the room in the middle and covering it, so long as you clean any drips fairly quickly (so you don't step in them and track them around). If it's something like carpet, or you're a very messy painter, the time and cost to put down some poly film or builder's paper will easily be worth it.
Jan
14
comment Is beeswax ok to use to keep a screw tight?
The legs are held with screws, or with nuts and bolts? The couple tables I can remember assembling (including the one in my kitchen right now) has a bolt sticking out of the table that goes through a hole in the leg, which is then held on with a wingnut. If you don't know what I mean, perhaps you can take a picture of the connection under the table.
Jan
14
comment How to get both sides of 1/2 inch water pipe into a new coupling
I'd also add to this: Step 1 - try to avoid this situation. Beyond the technical aspect of physically connecting pipes, plumbing has a bit of an art to it in terms of figuring out how to assemble everything, which you can really only learn through experience. Things like which sections to assemble on the floor before putting into place; being able to use an elbow as a hinge to connect a piece in place; leaving extra space between a wall, or not attaching pipes to walls until everything is in place.
Jan
10
comment How do I connect a WiFi thermostat to my furnace's primary control?
Updated my answer based on OP clarification of terminals in use.
Jan
7
comment How can I install a vanity over this unfortunate plumbing?
Based on your photo from underneath, you don't even have to go through any joists, so it should not be too bad to route the lines up next to the vent (where the drain line enters the wall now). I would still cut out a rectangular section of the floor boards in this space to do the work from above (from the wall to the joist underneath), then patch it back up with a piece of OSB/plywood.
Jan
7
comment How can I install a vanity over this unfortunate plumbing?
You should really not be using the bathtub drain as a vent. Are you sure this comes from the bathtub? Ideally there would be a separate vent line (there should be one for the bathtub above). Any chance of tying into the vent line from the bathroom upstairs, assuming there is one?
Jan
6
comment How can I modify a flooring transition so that perfectly fits the two surfaces?
I think the direct answer to your question is "Yes, you can buy/modify/create transitions between different heights of flooring." As I suspect that is not really useful to you, I think you need to ask a more specific question, and perhaps exactly explain (dare I say: with pictures) what you tried that presumably didn't work and caused you to ask in the first place.
Jan
6
comment How do I install transition molding between my new hardwood and existing tile floors?
This is a very elegant fix. I particularly like that there's no additional rise above the hardwood height.
Jan
6
comment How can I install a vanity over this unfortunate plumbing?
You can run the lines through the joists to get into the next bay, if necessary (or even to come up in through the floor in a better place). Just keep in mind the guidelines for holes in joists, and that you might need a right-angle drill.
Jan
5
comment Temperature control when I can't affect either airflow or thermostat
Renting means it's probably not worthwhile for you to invest much money in changing what's there, if you're even allowed to (probably not). Maybe you should consider alternative means, such as an electric oil-filled heater for the bedroom, and then just turning down the main thermostat at night.
Jan
5
comment wonder why my cable have this split on?
Please attach your comment using the "image" button in the editor here. You've posted a link to something that is not accessible (except to you).
Jan
5
comment Do I need to remove existing drywall before framing an interior wall?
@bib I would definitely never do both the top plate and edge through just drywall, at least one needs solid framing to anchor to. On an exterior wall though, and if there are already joists that are easy to anchor to, this method is much simpler and the wall is as strong as any other wall in the house (well, stronger, if the rest of the house uses 3/8" drywall :) )
Jan
5
comment How does one fire short staples into hard wood?
What's the application?
Jan
4
comment How do I fish a wire into an existing electrical box?
"2-pole" specifically means two separate switched conductors - as in, both hot and neutral are being switched. That is extremely uncommon and thus unlikely. Since there are two switches, there is likely more than one wire now, correct? Can you explain everything coming in and going out? In most cases of having 2 switches, there will be a neutral at the switch location, which will allow you to wire your new switch. A picture (labelled, if possible) would probably help a lot.
Dec
19
comment Exhaust fan leaking from elbow joint connected to the ceiling
In addtion to @Ecnerwal's answer, it's also possible, if it's installed badly and the outside vent is bad/broken, that driving rain could be making its way in. Likewise, water leaking down from an eavestrough or something else could be flowing inside. These of course are all other major issues that we'd need more information to solve. Is it only happening during rain, or after you use the vent after a shower/etc? Can you take any pictures of the outside vent or the pipe from within the attic?
Dec
19
comment How do I replace this switch with a timer?
Where is the other switch that controls the fan, and what would you like it to do? I actually just did this exact conversion in my house. The other switch is downstairs near the thermostat, and the fan is in an upstairs bathroom in the middle of the house (so I presume it's meant to act as a "whole-house air exchange"). I wired the switch in parallel so the timer works normally, but the switch downstairs overrides it and it stays on as long as the switch is on. Some timers do have the ability to be put in 3-way configurations with other timer switches, however.
Dec
17
comment how to remove a tiny screw that won't spin?
There are many questions about removing stripped screws (Thanks @NiallC.). If anything this is a duplicate.