Day 30 – Retaining walls complete, power pole, concrete piers and plumbing

8 12 2012

Our retaining walls are now done – they were done by 30 Nov and only took 3 days of work. You can see from the photo that the wall on the left hand side is hard against the boundary.  However, the one on the right is away from the fence to cater for the easement.



We also noticed some drains (?) connected to pipes coming from behind the retaining wall.  I assume these are the ag pipe to aid the removal of waste water and thus reduce the pressure placed on the wall.  If drainage is not placed at the base of the wall there is a strong possibility that the wall can be jeopardised and weaken the wall structure and a “blow out” can occur resulting in the wall being buckled or even worst knocked over .


Other work that has been done include the drilling and pouring of the concrete piers to help stablise the slab to stop the house shifting from its intended position.


A power pole has been erected with a meter box which will be hooked up to our underground power pit that we organised back in January.  Power will be required for the frame stage.  It seems the plumbing is also done – most of the pipes sticking up from the ground are within the house/slab boundary.


We spoke to our Site Manager during the week and he expects that the boxing of the slab base and the pour should happen next week.


Electricity pit not yet hooked up to main power supply

14 01 2012

In my last blog post, we said

In reality it took Jemena, the local electricity distributor, 26 working days to get the pit installed.

However, it seems that the electricity pit work has not completed.  Not only does the footpath need to fixed up properly with concrete, but the power line has has not been hooked up to the main supply on the pole opposite side of our street as evident by the power cable end hanging loose.  I wonder when will this be done?


Electricity Pole

Power cable end

We have an underground electricity pit

11 01 2012

We didn’t want an overhead power line to our house, so we got an underground electricity pit installed.  Most new houses built in an established area will have an electricity pit included in their contract (if one does not already exist).

We submitted the application for the underground pit on 9 November.  We received the quote to install the pit on 30 November and we paid it the same day.  The pit needs to be installed near a property boundary with the neighbours and we requested the pit to be installed on the side where the meter box would be installed to make connection up to the house easier.  Just prior to Christmas, the power pit location was marked out on the footpath.

Electricity Pit Marking

And yesterday (11 January) we noticed that the underground electricity pit was installed when we visited the site.  When submitting the application for the pit, we were advised that it takes 20 working days from date of payment for the pit to be installed.  In reality it took Jemena, the local electricity distributor, 26 working days to get the pit installed.  Given the slowdown of work during Christmas holiday period, we think they installed it in a reasonable timeframe.  Overall it took 2 months from application to completed installation.

The power poles are on the opposite side on our street and the Jemena field officer who inspected the site determined it required 17 metres of cabling to complete the works.  The cost to install the underground supply, including the service pit and cable was $3392.

We went for 3 phase supply to cater for our future needs.  As technology becomes more interwoven into our lives, our power consumption will increase.  Furthermore, we are looking forward to turning our house into an icebox during the hot summer months so we will be installing a central ducted refrigerative cooling.  A normal 80A single phase supply will provide 19.2 kWe maximum.  So single phase supply could be overloaded when most things are operating (lights, fridge, tv, computer gear, central aircon unit etc) causing the fuse to blow.  This has happened to some friends of ours, especially during the summer months when the air con unit is running.

It is recommended to get the electricity pit installed prior to the builders starting work because 1) it will be cheaper to install 2) will save you money on building site costs as the builder doesn’t need a temporary power pole for the site works.  Here’s a blog post by another Metricon home build, Tim & Tina, about this.

Installed underground power pit