Wednesday, January 5, 2011

Storm Door Job

The past four days have been spent installing storm doors. I got several Larson doors to take advantage of the energy tax incentives. The doors are solid, heavy, and overall quite nice. It’s been a long time since I bought my previous storm door. I’m sure the blood drained from my face when I stood there in Lowe’s looking at the doors and their attached price tags. The last aluminum door I bought was about $25. They now start near ten times that and run to $2,000.

The installation instructions were very good except for how to install retaining trim on full-view glass doors. Those instructions are somewhat less than zero on a ten-scale. I can’t believe I spent several hours, literally, trying to get the retainer trim installed. I tried to contact Larson for guidance, and I guess they’re still in holiday mode. I got no answer by either phone or e.mail yesterday, but they did e.mail back this afternoon to say it is their busiest time of year. I finally decided to go for broke, but it worked. I lubricated both the door edge and trim with Vaseline, and then drove them in place with a mallet, hammering all around the door within a quarter inch of the glass. I expected to hear shattering at any second, but all’s well that ends well. The only casualty was a finger when I ripped the fingernail back trying to pry the retainers in place. That’s giving my typing a bit of a fit today. There are just a few more steps to finish the last door, and today should wrap it up. I’m generally pleased with the doors and hope they’ll make a long-term impact on heating costs.

In the late afternoon, we took a ride down to a nearby lake to see what the ice situation is. The area ditches are frozen over, but the lake is clear. The local prairie dogs were active as usual throwing big clouds of dirt into the air as they continue their ongoing excavation.

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