Trades and Suppliers
We had a great team of construction trades and we can highly recommend any of the companies listed here. We started construction in April 2020 - just when the Covid pandamic began. We were really worried that our construction site would be shut down before we could finish, or that there would be other major impacts to our project. Luckily, nothing serious like that happened. All trades worked safely and followed Covid rules, nobody ever showed up sick, and we didn't hear from any company that they had any case of Covid among their employees.
We were also lucky with starting early in the pandemic, before the prices of a lot of construction material skyrocketed and supply chains were so disrupted that it was even difficult to get some supplies.
Here is a list of our key trades involded in our construction:
- Drain Doctors: Darryl played a key role in making our new home possible at all. After we bought our property, many neighbours, the Municipality and some septic companies told us that we wouldn't be able to subdivide our lot because the soil in our area is not suitable to fulfill the septic requirements for a subdivision process. Darryl proved all these people wrong. He helped us in fulfilling the necessary requirements and also built our septic and drainage systems afterwards.
- Smalltown Carpentry: Andreas and Jaroslav were our main contractors and the "backbone" of our whole construction project. Their talent and flexibility was amazing - they did everything from building the foundation, ICF walls, over framing to the finishing work.
- Churchill Timberworks: have worked with Randy for many years on various Ecolog projects for my customers. This time, I didn't rely on his skills in building log homes, but in building and designing our SIP panel walls, roofs and, of course, all timberframe structures in the living room, entrance area and carport.
- Subzero Heating: Nolan and his team tackled the task of installing our somewhat unusual heating and cooling system. While many HVAC companies deal with air-to-air heatpumps, there are only a very few companies who have experience with air-to-water heatpump systems. Luckily, Nolan was also able to supply our Chiltrix heatpump, tanks and FCUs, as this was my preferred heatpump system.
- Westview Power took on the challenge of making electrical wires invisible in SIP panels and timberframe posts and beams. Andrew's team was very accomodating to all of our "special needs" (like my home automation hobby).
- FBM Plumbing installed all our plumbing. While most of our plumbing requirements were straight forward, they did an excellent job in transforming our antique sewing machine into a functional vanity.
- SVI Interior installed our drywall. Nick's team took on the challenge of working around and behind the timberframe structure in the living/dining room.
- Westeck Windows in Victoria was our supplier for all windows and the patio door. They were not the cheapest window supplier, but based on research, we believe their product is superior to many other companies. They were also very accomodating in providing all the detailed energy efficiency numbers that were needed during the planning phase for my energy modeling.
- Dan McGrade was our excavator guy. He can really do magic with his excavator. People call Dan when they have excavation tasks which are very difficult or nearly impossible. Our project was probably on the "easy" side of the scale for Dan.
- Comsense Kitchen Cabinets: Marty and his team built our dream kitchen and accomodated many "special" wishes, like a pull-out meat slicer drawer and turning a "regular" microwave into a built-in microwave.
- Nick Rota installed all our tiles and did an excellent job. He also provided a lot of helpful advice when we were struggling in making tile related choices.
- Lake Life Hardscapes & Masonry: Dave worked like an artist installing the irregular stone veneer for our basement walls. Also, a few months later, he transformed our whole property from bare dirt into a beautifully landscaped surrounding yard with gardens.
- P.W. McCallum Roofing provided out metal roof. Their workmanship was put to a hard test (and succeeded) during the torrential rain in November 2021 which flooded many areas in BC.
- Riddell Contracting installed our south facing vinyl deck with metal and glass railings. Curtis also built my vision of a glass covered protective bbq area.
- Energy Advisor: I have worked with Niels from Enerlytics for many of my Ecolog customer projects in modeling and improving energy performance. I was very happy that he took on this project, and that he led us in achieving Step 5 Energy Step Code performance.
Out woodstove is a
Pacific Energy ALDERLEA T5 Classic LE
and was installed by South Island Fireplace & Spa in Duncan. Pacific Energy is located in Duncan as well, so we got not only a very energy efficient and good looking stove, but also a very local one.
Most appliances were supplied by Trail Appliances in Nanaimo, where we still had a good selection of appliances at the beginning of the Pandemic. Service in their show room was very professional and knowledgeable, making it a pleasure to shop there. Here is a list of the major appliances for our home:
- Washer: LG WM3500
- Energy efficent heatpump dryer: Samsung DV22N680
- Wall oven (installed in kitchen island): Fridgidaire FGEW3066UF
- Counter depth fridge: LG LFCC22426S
- Induction Cooktop: Fridgidaire FPIC3077
(This wasn't our first choice. Our initially ordered cooktop arrived broken, and then we had to take whatever was available in stock - and it turned out to be a much better cooktop.)
- Dishwasher: LG LDT5678
- Downdraft fan: Kitchenaid KXD4630YSS
It was quite challenging to connect a 10" vent to get this fan to work efficiently. Nolan's team from Subzero Heating did a great job on this challenging task.