Posts Tagged ‘Solar hot water’

A busy, busy day chez Dave

August 21, 2013

Wednesday, 21 August 2013

Nothing happened today on the deck reconstruction project.

That’s the only thing that didn’t get some action.

First was Charley from AT&T, who replaced the power supply for my U-Verse service. Especially during the heat of the day, it has been sounding AC failure alarms, which gets pretty annoying after a while. While we talked, Charley checked my service and told me my bonded pair VDSL2 loop length was 3200 feet, so I guess 18 Mb/s is about as good as I could expect. Well done, thank you Charley.

Three men from Alten Energy showed up next, to put the solar hot water panels back up on the roof, now that the roof rebuild project is complete.


But I took the first pictures of the day after the Carpeteria crew had stripped the old carpet from the family room and put down a new pad. Quite a different perspective!


They unrolled the new carpet on the driveway to measure and cut it approximately to size.


The solar panels have been lying on the ground, so it was easy to give them a Scotchbrite scrub before putting them back up. When the face is clean, we can actually see the dozen or so pipes for water running along the axis, bound together with copper heat-collecting plates.


Rather shocking, really, to see bare plywood in an otherwise finished setting. The stairs carpet was wearing through at the nose of the treads, which was the factor that finally got us into the carpet replacement project.


We’ll get another look at all of this from the ground, but here’s the view from the second story roof. The two on the ground wrestle the solar panel into place at the foot of the ladder, and attach a pair of rope slings to it.


The panel is pulled up along the ladder by those two ropes, but the crew numbers only three, and one of the men on the ground has to get onto the roof. So he and his buddy stand the panel upright, and he scrambles up the ladder.



A minute later, hauling on the rope.


The panel appears over the edge.


First order of business is to remove the two rope slings.


The panels had to be brought up into the area where they will ultimately be installed, so they need to be stored over on the other side of the roof until all of them are up.



While all this was going on, the Hi-Tech termite guy showed up to treat a bad case of subterraneans. He went around the house drilling holes in the concrete, discovering that this house was built with 3000 psi concrete, rather than the conventional 2000 psi spec.


Frankly, I’m glad this mound was raised by the drill, and not by the termites!


I promised another look at the solar panel lift process. Here we see the ground crew getting the panel into place.


Attaching the ropes.


And one of them scrambles up the ladder, while his buddy prevents the panel from crushing him.


Now the roof crew pulls it up, assisted by the third man on the ground. Well, he’s no longer on the ground, exactly.






Still drilling holes in the concrete.


The carpet guys have laid out the carpet stripped from the bathroom, upside down, so they can use it as a template for a rough cut at the new carpet.


We now have all four panels on the roof. Here’s how we install the one closest to the edge. I don’t think I would volunteer to walk backward toward a second-story edge, carrying maybe 80 pounds of the load.



Holding their loads with one hand, the standing two attach it to the wall bracket.


After a little sealant, a little leveling, a little lag bolting, we are ready for the second panel.



Slurping toxins into the soil beneath the concrete. May the termites enjoy them to the fullest.


The upstairs hallway is beginning to look real.


Four panels installed, and the plumbing project under way.


The day is getting along. Those shadows are from trees on the far side of the neighbor’s property.


Not too bad.


All it takes is money!