Thursday, 6 November 2008

The Porch Door And Energy Saved

About 18 months ago I had new doors fitted in the living room. One leads to the kitchen, the other to the front porch. They’re pine doors but because they’re extra wide, they had to be ordered and cost a good deal more than their slim counterparts (rather like clothes for the fuller figure costing more than those for skinny chicks - a problem I had for years!).

Anyway, the door to the porch has never been right. To start with it closed but was clearly warped. The guy who fitted it assured me it would go back once it settled though and I believed him. It didn’t. It got worse. It got so bad that the door wouldn’t even shut anymore. And what’s more, he hadn’t even used the right number of screws in the hinges. Talk about cowboy!

With my gas bill going through the roof, the knowledge that using up resources unnecessarily and me being a proper little frozen fish finger who shivers at the slightest draught, I knew that I had to have something done about it. Cold air was coming in and warm air was going out and that just ain’t good. I lived through last winter like it but I certainly didn’t want to live through another with all that heat being wasted. It would be waste of both money and resources, not to mention how much it hurts me to freeze!

Enter Kyle.

During dinner on Tuesday I mentioned the door and how something needed to be done about it. Actually, I more than mentioned it. Fed up with the draught that was blowing through and after trying unsuccessfully to shut it (I always try even though I know it’s a no go) I kicked the damn thing and called it a few unsavoury names. Kyle, my daughter’s ‘gentleman friend’, decided at that point that he was going to fix it. And fix it he did.

As soon as dinner was over, he had the toolbox out, the door off and was fixing the dodgy hinges. Then he started chiselling away at the door itself, determined that no matter what, that door was gonna shut!

The result isn’t particularly pretty. There’s are bits missing along the lower side edge where he’s had to chisel them away (I don’t have a plane) but it shuts and that’s what matters. And it saved me a lot of money buying a new one and having somebody fit it, and what’s more, the wood will be used for a good few years more before it eventually becomes firewood.

Things don’t have to be perfect to be good. The door has character now and it does the job it was intended to do. All is well :)

Sharon J


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Anonymous said...

draught excluder for the bottom where the bits are missing? you could even do one that's sort of in the shape of a backwards 6 (in cross section)... the idea is that you use upholstery tacks to attach the top of the 6 to the door, so that the draught excluder moves with the door when its opened/closed. that way if you had the draught excluder on the living room side and you went out through the porch, for example, it would close behind you, and maintain what little heat is in there. it won't work with all doors, but should work with some. If you like i can let you have a photo and instructions, its not hard to do if you're at all handy with a needle, and if not, then i'm sure we can jerry rig something using an ordinary draught excluder.

well done to Kyle!!


Kirsty said...

it feels good when you finally get something like that done. Especially now with the cold coming and the gas prices rising.

I found some old fashioned velvet curtains that were the perfect size for our living room. My OH screwed his nose up at them and said he didn't like them, but I put them up anyway (the others needed washing anyway!). The difference they make is unbelievable. So I agree, even though they might not look perfect doesn't mean to say they can't be more then up for the job. And actually they don't look that bad at all my dh says!

Sharon Rose said...

Hi there-your knight in shining armour! Seriously, its great to make do, especially if you've someone on hand to be able to do these jobs that you just can't do yourself. Pleased for you!

Lizzie said...

Curtains and snakes! Thats what we do. Big heavy curtains hanging on pole over the outside doors. Snakes, stuffed with old knickers because I dont wear the perfect stuffing of tights,lounging along the bottom of the door. No draughts sneak by me!


L-Jay said...

I live in Norway now, but I always felt the cold more in the UK. I guess it didn't look as cold as I thought and so wouldn't rug up as much as I should have to go outside. The British weather seems to sneak up on you - right when you least expect it ;)

neimanmarxist said...

ah, function over form! the frugalite mantra!

Teena said...

Well...Kyle you just scored brownie points!!! WTG, I can't imagine how cold it is in UK but have heard stories from Mrs Greening of Gavin. Brrr! Does it help warm your cockles if I say it was 34oC at my house today with all day humidity of 76% ? Crikey it was sticky, blistering hot day today.

Sharon J said...

@ Kethry. Thanks for the advice. I'm not entirely sure I know what you mean but I don't think we need a draught excluder as the door isn't hacked away to the point where a draught is coming through (and isn't even visible from the living room side). I'll get back to you if I discover that I do need one though :)

@ Kirsty. The gas we were using was ridiculous and I'm sure a lot of that was down to that bloomin' door. I did think about getting a curtain but it wouldn't be practical at the front door and wouldn't have helped at the porch door while it was half open the whole time.

@ Sharon Rose. He was my hero that night :)

@ Lizzie. I love the idea of stuffing a snake with knickers!

@ L-jay. Y'know, I've always said the same. I do think it's partly down to the air being generally drier during winter in Norway but there's definitely an element of how we dress involved too. In Norway you know it's gonna be cold - here we tend to keep hoping it won't be.

@ Neimanmarxist. Indeed :)

@ Teena. Did you say that deliberately to make me envious? Can I come and spend the winter in Oz, please?

Teena said...

Sharon....hun your welcome to come to Lettuce headquarters ANYTIME that you're in OZ. Love to have you

Sharon J said...

Thanks, Teena. Australia's a long way off so visiting would cost a lot both financially and environmentally so it'd have to be for a least a month to make it worthwhile. Somehow I can't see that happening. If it ever does though, I shall definitely look you up :)

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