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Back To Basics

Episode 4


The purpose of the BBQ area was to bring the kitchen outside and utilise a covered porch, which previously had no use.

The French doors link the area well with the indoors. The ply wood panelling give the area distinction and touch of the dramatic, and the mosaic gives us a practical easy to clean work space and the BBQ, our cook top.

This means that one can char-grill 365 days of the year, undercover, giving this boring old deck a clever, space saving new purpose.

When laying mosaic tiles its vital that you start with a flat surface.

Mix up your adhesive as per instructions on the back of the bag, when you are ready to start laying tiles. Do not leave adhesive to stand to long otherwise it will dry up.

Wipe away excess adhesive from tiles with a wet cloth, as it will set, dry white and look terrible.

Once set you can start grouting, the adhesive will take 24 hours to dry.

Mix the grout up according to the instructions, unless using pre-mixed, and apply using a rubber trowel or similar tool, pushing it into the gaps and smoothing it over and off.

Using a different coloured grout is a nice contrast to your tiles.

We have chosen to use weatherboards to back the plywood feature wall as an extension of the existing cladding.

Start from the bottom and line your first weatherboard, in our case in line with the bottom weatherboard of the house.

Make sure the weatherboard is cut to the correct length and is level.

Then work your way up, lining up the bottom of the next weatherboard 32mm below the top of the last.

When nailing off each new weatherboard make sure the nails only pierce the top weatherboard.

Tip: Before you put up your weatherboards sand the edges, it will give you a better finish and your painter will love you for it.

Plywood panels
To give personality to our BBQ area we chose to have a wall of plywood panels. Having taken dimensions of our wall, we divided the area into logical divisions then cut our plywood accordingly, leaving a 15mm gap between panels. This is called negative detailing.

Negative detailing is when you deliberately expose the background and leave a gap between panels and therefore adding extra dimension.

Plywood panels are secured with using both nails and liquid nails.

By sanding and staining the deck we have given it a "Hardwood look" at a fraction of the cost of expensive hardwoods.


We could have patched our roof, which may have extended its life by a couple of years, but long term it was more cost effective to replace.

This is not a DIY job you should hire a professional roofer, but you can make the professionals' job easier by keeping access ways clear, ensuring children are kept away, and offering the roofers a cup of tea!

Make sure your roofer is a member of the roofing association.

We chose to go with the Colorsteel option. Colorsteel is pre-painted steel, the paint has been oven baked on and so will last longer than most post painted systems.

Some people choose zincalume, which is the cheapest option, but there's no colour choice, so if you want to paint it you have to prime it first, and it requires two topcoats.

The other option is using pressed metal tiles, which is far more labouring intensive and expensive both for materials and labour.

On average a roof should last 30-40 years.

To maintain your roof in tip-top condition you could get it professionally waterblasted once a year, this is particularly recommended if you live by the sea.

Roofing is definitely not a DIY job, but you can assist the pros by keeping access ways clear, keeping kids away and offering the workers a nice cup of tea.

The cost of a zincalume roof would have been $6652.10. It has a 2 year guarantee

Some people opt for zincalume as it is the cheapest option. Remember though it must be primed and painted with two topcoats.

The more expensive option was colorsteel at $8389. Colorsteel has a 15 year warranty for paint defects and a whopping 30 year guarantee against corrosion.

80% of people choose long run colorsteel, for it's economy, convenience and great choice of colour

We didn't quote for pressed metal tiles as they are more labour intensive to lay and more expensive to buy.

The spouting
Our Original PVC spouting has expanded and sagged over the years and is not worth fixing. As this is not a DIY job we went about getting quotes to replace our spouting and downpipes with Colorsteel, Copper and PVC.

We are getting the professionals into do this job, as it is specialised. It is important you get the alignments of the brackets and the low and high points accurate, otherwise your guarantee will be invalid.

We chose to go with the Coloursteel, as it will match our Colorsteel Roof.

Colorsteel spouting lasts 20 years plus with proper care and maintenance.

It comes in a choice of 16 colours with downpipes in complimentary colours to your spouting. As Coloursteel comes in continuous lengths there's no sagging, splitting or separation of joins. 

Copper spouting offers the same reliability as Colorsteel but could last up to 40 years with proper maintenance, it is a soft metal and dents easily it costs more than PVC or Colorsteel. PVC spouting has a life expectancy of about five years and it comes in one colour, white.

If you want to make savings you can take down the original spouting prior to the new spouting being fitted, this could save you up to $3.00 a metre. You can use PVC downpipes with your Colorsteel, or cooper spouting as a cost saving.

If you are going to be painting your house, paint the facia boards prior to your new spouting going up.

Spouting and downpipes tips
To re-spout with PVC we were quoted $2212.92.
PVC spouting will look it's best for about 5 years, and comes only in white.
Colorsteel came in at $2280.37 and Copper was $3524.62

Colorsteel comes in a choice of 16 colours with matching downpipes and comes with a 10 year guarantee provided it is cleaned every 2 years.

If you have a lot of trees overhanging your spouting you should fit leaf screens

Colorsteel spouting needs to be regularly cleaned, as the tannin in leaves will cause rust.

Do not use a metal brush on Colorsteel as this will scratch the paint and may cause rust.

Quotes and estimates: An estimate is only an approximation of what the estimator thinks the job will cost. A quote is an explicit promise, which you should get in writing.

The fall height is measured from the eves to the ground.  As our roof is less than 3m high (2.95m) our roofers did not need protection from falling. (A bump rail is required when above 2.0m. Note: This is only for completed roofs.)

In episode 4, all shots expose the rafters/beams of the roof, which are visibly scene, as roof is completely off allowing our roofers access to beams/roof for support.

OSH saftey guidelines

Construction: Footwear shall be able to adequately protect the employee's having regard to the sort of work being carried out. Usually only steel capped boots or shoes will do this. In episode 4, one of the roofers is walking around by the back of the garage in sneakers - this is not a construction area.

The wearing of correct footwear to grip the roof surface is of paramount importance. The ability of a surface to provide a secure footing will vary depending on the roofing material, environmental conditions and the type and the condition of the roofer's footwear. For the correct type of footwear in good condition on a clean dry surface, the following is a guide giving the steepest pitch that will provide a secure footing.

- Powder coated, concrete or unglazed roof tiles. 30 degrees pitch

* Our house's roof has a pitch of 25 degrees (-/ )

3 metre rule
Each employee on a walking/working surface with an unprotected side or edge, which is 3 metres or more to a lower level shall be protected from falling by the use of a guardrail system, safety net system, or personal fall-arrest system. On completed roofs or where persons are kept more than 2 metres from the edge by a bump rail, edge protection may be unnecessary.

Manukau City Council
Peter Sparrow (building inspector) believes to the best of his knowledge that the pitch on our roof is approximately 25 degrees.

Roofing Association
As our roofers had done their hazard ID, they where not exposed to a fall of 3 metres or more, therefore no requirement for edge protection or a fall restraint system was needed.

Auckland Commercial Roofers
Brendan (director) insures that his roofers did a hazard ID check before commencing work and that they followed the roofing guidelines set out by OSH.