Author Topic: Building our house in the Philippines  (Read 90887 times)

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Re: Building our house in the Philippines
« Reply #450 on: May 20, 2011, 04:07:50 PM »
Wow ,.. Colin,.. looks amazing ,... hats off to you and your wife,.. good taste and I hope its all worth the wait !!

Soooooo jealous

Great encouragement to others thinking of a self - build.

Jonny

Thanks Jonny  ;D.

It has taken a lot of money heartache and sleepless nights to get this far. In the past I have recommended that people live on the site, supervise everything and buy all the materials. I would now like to modify that by saying ‘think twice or more before deciding to build here’. We have learned a lot and are trying to pass this on, but you will still have people taking advantage of you as a foreigner. We are very happy with our house now but it really has been stressful. We have gone through three contractors and an adviser, and although out present contractor is very good, he is now dragging his heels a bit. He spends a lot of time on all the nice finishing touches, but not on essentials like connecting up the water and electricity. Bing had a go at him this morning and when we went there lunch time there were at least six men working on the water pressure system. Bing has just gone out to buy the parts needed by the water company to move the meter and connect it up to the house.

I will post some more later about the problems we are having with the occupancy permit.

Colin

Offline BingColin

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Re: Building our house in the Philippines
« Reply #451 on: December 21, 2011, 10:58:01 AM »
Part 41

There has been a large gap in my house posts, but all the missing information is in the section of my website here:  http://thephilippinejournal.wetpaint.com/page/Our+future+home . It contains all the photos that have been removed from my earlier posts plus a lot more.

We lost a lot of money due to devious builders and had to cut into our medical savings to get the house finished to a point where we could move in and save paying rent. We then had the dirty kitchen built so that the maids and any workers could cook and eat outside the main house; this now allows us to lock up the house when we go out.

All building work will now be on hold while we both try to rebuild our medical savings and very slowly make improvements to the interior. The large eye level oven and cooker hood for the nonexistent island unit are still in their boxes as are most of our belongings. We are just shuffling them around to get them in the right room for when we get some storage cupboards built. It is also important to get a security wall built around the property with wrought Iron gates etc, but the approximately 260 metres could cost us around P0.5M and will have to be done in stages.

Colin

Offline clbattles

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Re: Building our house in the Philippines
« Reply #452 on: December 21, 2011, 11:13:56 AM »
Colin thanks for the update...sorry to hear of your building problems

Offline BingColin

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Re: Building our house in the Philippines
« Reply #453 on: December 22, 2011, 10:04:40 AM »
Part 42

I was asked by a member of another forum about the benefits I found from using the 3D panels. I thought this could be of interest on this forum. This is my much modified reply to him.


We used the 3” for the walls with 6” (with some 2”) foil enclosed glass fibre for the second floor ceiling. Also a lot of attic ventilation.

There are certainly benefits in using the 3D panels, but they are difficult to quantify. As well as the insulation, the house was designed to be largely one room deep, in an open location and with a partial ‘U’ shape to help funnel any moving air. The house is reasonably cool, and goes from 26°C during the night up to around 28°C by midday and this is with all the windows open (this compares to over 30°C in our rented property). It does climb up to over 28° later in the afternoon. In theory, I should close the windows as the temperature rises outside but would then lose any outside air movement. The house is very cool at night and we often don’t even need to use a fan.

We use very little aircon, only occasionally a .5hp in my study which is the only room with windows in one south facing wall. I am getting some problems with the sun shining through these windows during the ‘winter’ months so I need to fit blinds here. I also use a 19” CRT monitor which throws out a lot of heat. We have not lived here for the hottest part of the year so may need to use more aircon then.

It is important to remember that often the biggest discomfort comes from high humidity and not high temperatures but an aircon will help to reduce that.

Our rented place was a conventional uninsulated bungalow surrounded by other property. We used the aircon there as little as possible but our electricity bill was around P7000 a month. Our house here is twice the size and a lot more comfortable and our electricity bill is only P3500.

There is a bungalow opposite us, about the same total floor area, built with hollow blocks and I imagine no roof insulation. It is very hot and uncomfortable inside.

If the sun strikes a hollow block wall it does get warm on the inside whereas ours remain cold.

Colin

Offline dutch expat

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Re: Building our house in the Philippines
« Reply #454 on: December 22, 2011, 11:40:28 AM »
Thank you for the additional info Colin. May I ask you how you hang up heavy things on the wall. Do you use special plugs or..  ??

Offline BingColin

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Re: Building our house in the Philippines
« Reply #455 on: December 22, 2011, 05:42:16 PM »
If you are thinking of the 3D panels, they have thick wire mesh spaced about 1/2 inch from each side then at least 1 inch of rendering. The aircon people hung heavy units on them without any problem, I believe they used standard rawbolts.

Colin

Offline BingColin

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Re: Building our house in the Philippines
« Reply #456 on: January 28, 2012, 12:11:56 PM »
Part 43

I post details of my house build on here with the hope that others can learn from my mistakes. Here is a problem we encountered while applying for a residential permit.

While our house was being built, our ‘adviser’ arranged for a 37kwh transformer to be installed. He said it would be necessary for the roof welding. Not knowing much about the way things work here, I did not realise that this was far too large (and expensive). When the house was completed and we arranged for the electrical inspection, we discovered that this transformer had never been used and the supply was from the original temporary meter on a pole further down the road (with wires running across several empty lots). Our electrician had run the drop wires down the garden ready to be connected, but we were told that they were too small for use with the larger transformer, even although they would have been adequate for our normal needs, and a lot larger than the ones used for all the welding. We also had to buy a digital meter rather than use our existing standard meter; this also had to be installed inside a metal case.

It is standard here to pay a deposit of the average of three months bills, but we had to pay a deposit of P35,000  until we could show the first three months bills. These averaged at just under P4000 so we finally got a rebate of P30,000. Also our ‘commercial’ meter has a multiplication factor of 40, so initial they were only going to charge us for 10 units instead of 400. We were also paying a few pesos for the temporary meter that had been disconnected.

Colin

Offline trevor

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Re: Building our house in the Philippines
« Reply #457 on: January 29, 2012, 01:36:42 PM »
Colin, so you are stuck with a transformer which you do not need. We also had to buy a transformer which was needed because they were using more than one welder at the same time. Cost us P65000. for a used transformer. Without the transformer the incoming voltage would fluctuate from about 175vac to about 200vac depending on the load usage by other users. With the transformer the supply remain steady at 220vac.
What i notice the welders were doing was using the welder to burn through and cut the steel by turning the current very high. This cost us a lot of welding rods. I was not too happy with that. They did not have a acetylene torch to cut the steel. Well i guess that is the way they do it here.
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Offline Gray Wolf

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Re: Building our house in the Philippines
« Reply #458 on: January 30, 2012, 02:22:44 AM »
My take on it is they probably ask themselves, why have another piece of equipment (heavy, awkward oxy/acetelyne tanks and torch) when we can just use the \"that\'s the way it\'s done here--good enoug--it hasn\'t killed me yet\" method stereo-typical of Pinoy thinking.   ;D

  
Louisville, KY USA

Offline BingColin

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Re: Building our house in the Philippines
« Reply #459 on: April 30, 2012, 05:04:09 PM »
Part 44

I have just made some changes to my website http://thephilippinejournal.wetpaint.com/ , mainly cosmetic, the photos look a lot better with a black background. If anyone has been reading through the previous posts in this series, you will notice that all the photos are missing; these can be found on my web site.

We are only making minor changes to the house until we have rebuilt our emergency medical savings and can pay for some more work to be done. It doesn’t help that all the school fees for the children of family members are due soon, and we have now had to put that aside.

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Re: Building our house in the Philippines
« Reply #460 on: April 30, 2012, 09:52:03 PM »
Hey Colin. Any chance you could employ a de-humidifier to control some of the humidity or would it be a frugal effort? I would imagine though that the house would have to be fairly tight to help control humidity then.  ???

Offline BingColin

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Re: Building our house in the Philippines
« Reply #461 on: May 01, 2012, 07:25:15 AM »
A dehumidifier works the same as an aircon but returns the hot air into the room; not what you want in the Philippines. I use an aircon more to reduce the humidity than just for cooling. I often put the aircon on in my study, it will only reduce the temperature by about 2°C but the room is a lot more comfortable. You can see the effectiveness of the dehumidifying by the amount of water that dripped by the unit. Some of the larger cabinet type aircons do have a humidity control as well as for temperature.

You need to seal and insulate a room very well if you want to avoid large electricity bills; a single hollow block wall and plywood ceiling is not enough.

Offline Lee2

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Re: Building our house in the Philippines
« Reply #462 on: May 01, 2012, 12:48:20 PM »
Using a dehumidifier with a vent added to its exhaust, to put the hot air outside the house does work well, and does not fight against itself. I have not been able to find a dehumidifier here in Cebu but I have not worked too hard trying to find one since I would have no easy way of venting the heat out but there is way too much humidity here and I often find myself sweating even with the aircon on or have to freeze to not sweat. Next trip I am going to look for a dehumidifier and possibly vent it out in the CR ceiling or somehow out the sliding glass door if at all possible. That will be my next project.
:) Happily married since 1994 & live part of the year in Cebu and the rest in S. Florida.

Offline BingColin

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Re: Building our house in the Philippines
« Reply #463 on: May 01, 2012, 04:39:46 PM »
I don’t understand how venting the output from a dehumidifier could work. Most dehumidifiers have one input and one output. The input air from the room is passed over the cold expansion coils to take it down below the dew point to extract the water. The cold air is then passed through the hot compressor coils that take it to just above the input temperature. If you pass this air outside the house, you are passing the dry air with it. If you separate the cold dry air from the output hot air, then you have made yourself an air conditioner.

The aircon units that can control the humidity are a lot more complicated, they will take the air down to the required humidity which may then be very cold, then feed a controlled amount heat to it from the compressor coils to bring it up to the required temperature. This is just my simplified interpretation on the way they must work.

Offline Lee2

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Re: Building our house in the Philippines
« Reply #464 on: May 01, 2012, 07:10:59 PM »
Thanks Colin for the explanation, maybe my idea does not work as well as I thought.  ??? I have one in Florida in our home but use it with our aircon on.

When I use our dehumidifier in Florida, I am able to set the aircon temp 2 degrees higher and we are just as comfortable, so humidity seems to be the problem and venting out the heat does not make the aircon work as hard but maybe it is not working as great as I think it is.  
:) Happily married since 1994 & live part of the year in Cebu and the rest in S. Florida.

 


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