Ask This Old House

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Season 8 Show Descriptions

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Episode #826, Season 8 of ATOH
Plumbing and heating expert Richard Trethewey helps a homeowner replace his leaky outdoor faucet… more
Episode #825, Season 8 of ATOH
General contractor Tom Silva helps a homeowner repair a wobbly newel post at the bottom of a staircase… more
Episode #824, Season 8 of ATOH
Landscaping contractor Roger Cook visits a nature center to learn how to attract many different species of birds… more
Episode #823, Season 8 of TOH
Landscaping contractor Roger Cook shows a homeowner how to use and maintain string trimmers… more
Episode #822, Season 8 of ATOH
Landscaping contractor Roger Cook helps a homeowner revive a damaged lawn… more
Episode #821, Season 8 of ATOH
Host Kevin O'Connor and plumbing and heating expert Richard Trethewey head to Virginia to help a homeowner replace his old, electric water heater with a heat pump water heater that uses much less electricity… more
Episode #820, Season 8 of ATOH
Plumbing and heating expert Richard Trethewey and general contractor Tom Silva head to Detroit to help a homeowner remodel her kitchen with new appliances… more
Episode #819, Season 8 of ATOH
General contractor Tom Silva helps a homeowner replace the broken sash locks on his vinyl windows… more
Episode #818, Season 8 of ATOH
General contractor Tom Silva helps a pair of homeowners in Houston, Texas install crown molding in their bedroom using an innovative fastening system… more
Episode #817, Season 8 of ATOH
Plumbing and heating expert Richard Trethewey heads to Tampa, Florida to help a homeowner cool off his garage workshop with a ductless air conditioning system… more
Episode #816, Season 8 of ATOH
Landscaping contractor Roger Cook helps a homeowner conserve water by installing an innovative rainwater collection system… more
Episode #815, Season 8 of ATOH
people picking out a sink in a home store

Original Air Date: Week of 01/14/2010

Plumbing and heating expert Richard Trethewey helps a homeowner update the look of her bathroom by installing a new vanity cabinet, countertop, and sink. Then Richard, along with general contractor Tom Silva, landscaping contractor Roger Cook, and host Kevin O'Connor ask, "What is it?" Afterward, Tom and Kevin discuss several different types of wall insulation and how each is installed.

Replacing a Bathroom Vanity

Richard helped a homeowner replace an old, outdated-looking vanity in her master bathroom. First, he disconnected the supply and drain pipes and removed the old vanity cabinet, laminate countertop, and sink. Next, Richard and the homeowner went to a home center, where the homeowner selected a new vanity cabinet, a new granite countertop with under-mount sink, and a new faucet. They then returned to the house where Richard rerouted the old copper supply pipes to fit inside the new vanity. Next, he drilled two holes in the bottom of the vanity for the supply pipes and cut a notch in the back to accept the drain pipe. Richard also cut an opening in the side of the vanity to accept an electrical outlet that had been installed in the old vanity. Next, Richard soldered shut-off valves onto the pipes and fastened the cabinet to the wall. Richard then fastened the new granite countertop and sink to the top of the vanity, made the supply and drain connections to the sink, and the installation was complete.

Where to Find It?
Richard installed a new vanity cabinet, granite countertop with under-mount sink, and faucet.

Vanity: Gallery Newport White 36" x 21" x 33.5"
Countertop and sink: Pegasus, Black Granite
Faucet: Kohler Forte Brushed Nickel

All four items were purchased at:
The Home Depot
800-553-3199

What Is It?
The guys try to guess the intended purpose of an unusual-looking product.

Where to find it?
Richard showed an ECOlightâ„¢ Water Powered Shower Light.

It is manufactured by:
Osram Sylvania
800-842-7010

Wall Insulation
Up in the loft, Tom and Kevin discussed different types of exterior wall insulation and how they're installed, both for new construction and retrofit situations. The materials included liquid spray foam, recycled denim batts, fiberglass batts, blown-in fiberglass, and cellulose. Installation of vapor retarders over insulation was also discussed.

Tom showed Kevin a variety of materials used for insulating exterior walls, including:
Fiberglass Batts (faced & un-faced), blown-in fiberglass and liquid foam (open & closed cell).
Manufacturer: CertainTeed Corp.
800-233-8990

Recycled denim batts
Manufacturer: Bonded Logic, Inc.

Blown-in cellulose
Supplier: Kamco Supply Corp. of Boston
781-938-0909

Additional assistance provided by:

Anderson Insulation (installers of several insulation types)
706 Brockton Avenue (Route 123)
Abington, MA 02351
800-472-1717

Joseph Lstiburek, building scientist
Building Science Corp.
30 Forest Street
Somerville, MA 02143
Episode #814, Season 8 of ATOH
General contractor Tom Silva helps a homeowner dress up an old fireplace by installing a new mantle and marble hearth… more
Episode #813, Season 8 of ATOH
Plumbing and heating expert Richard Trethewey heads to Tampa, Florida to help two homeowners repair their broken water softener… more
Episode #812, Season 8 of ATOH
Landscaping contractor Roger Cook helps a pair of homeowners improve the appearance of an unsightly concrete retaining wall… more
Episode #811, Season 8 of ATOH
General contractor Tom Silva and host Kevin O'Connor show how to build and install new laminate kitchen countertops… more
Episode #810, Season 8 of ATOH
more
Episode #809, Season 8 of ATOH
Landscaping contractor Roger Cook visits Harvard University to learn about their new organic lawn-care program… more
Episode #808, Season 8 of ATOH
General contractor Tom Silva and host Kevin O'Connor build a basic picnic table using common framing lumber… more
Episode #807, Season 8 of ATOH
This episode is all about saving energy at home… more
Episode #806, Season 8 of ATOH
Landscaping contractor Roger Cook joins plant expert Carrie Kelly at a nursery to learn about container gardening.… more
Episode #805, Season 8 of ATOH
General contractor Tom Silva helps a pair of homeowners install a new siding glass door… more
Episode #803, Season 8 of ATOH
Landscaping contractor Roger Cook travels to Baltimore, where he helps transform a small urban backyard into a pleasant outdoor living space… more
Episode #802, Season 8 of ATOH
Host Kevin O'Connor teams up with an electrician to install a home intercom system. Then Kevin, along with… more
Episode #801, Season 8 of ATOH
Landscaping contractor Roger Cook kicks off our 8th season by helping a homeowner build a cozy campfire pit...… more
Episode #804, Season 8 of ATOH
General contractor Tom Silva helps a homeowner install new aluminum gutters and downspouts. … more