Sprouting Up

Aaahh, spring has arrived in Colorado…or at least it seems that way on a bi-weekly basis. One week sunny and hot, the next cold and wet.

As promised, in the previous post a look into how the framing has been going. We have brought on, J & D Builders from Greeley to help us out, and we are really enjoying working with them.


Profile view. The Kitchen area has trusses on. The garage is being sheathed for the second floor.


Tilting up walls. These guys have had no problem working with our double wall framing system.


Looking out the Dinning room window, that tiny person was placed there for scale. The homeowners wanted big windows to really capture the view they have of the buttes and Horsetooth Rock from the North side of their home.


Jason and Bryan standing in the Kitchen.


Looking out from the Kitchen into the rest of the first level. The “tiny person for scale” is standing in the Master Bedroom. The beam is situated over the Living Room.


Here our scale model is standing under the beam and in front of her is the wash room and access to the garage. There are high ceilings throughout. The beams and columns for this project are Beetle Kill Pine, milled from The Forks Lumber Mill, whom we used for the Nederland Home.


Here’s a look into the wall cavity. Soon we will be dense packing a whole semi load of cellulose into these cavities. One the ground is our vapor barrier. Just as on a roof, we must maintain a dry environment for the durability of our materials and the house as a whole.


Scale Model standing in the Garage. Above the garage will be bedrooms.


Here’s a look at some amazing custom made brackets we had done for the home from Charles Lefkowitz at, Sculpture and Functional Metal Work. We will have an upcoming post with more photos of the brackets we are using.



There last two photos are of the column brackets, one from the side, and one from the front. These brackets are giving structural stability and a very modern and industrial look to the home.


That Brindle Look

Have you missed us? We’ve been busy but have some exciting update posts on the way to show just how things are progressing!


We’ve poured the concrete floor, and remaining walls on our Loveland site. We had some really strong winds Tuesday while we poured the walls, making for a lot of fun with the pump truck and hose. The following day was much calmer and hotter, and we started bright and early. The pour went smoothly, thanks in part to great team work from everyone and having a good pump operator…and a tiny person to keep everyone  in check!


Hammer-Wielding Tiny Girl Boss

The slab is going to be stained, and to give it a nice look, we’ve burnished it. The slab is also fitted for radiant floor heating.


Quinn (above) stripping forms where the outdoor fireplace will be. The concrete was poured in several locations with the board formed look, giving it a rustic and also modern feel. 


Later in the afternoon, we began stripping the foundation forms and Jason started making saw cuts the following day.


In the next post, we will be showing off how the framing is going. We’ve had a few stall days due to rain (and snow) but it’s moving along and we can’t wait to post about it!

The Day no one said Cheese.

Yesterday we poured 1000 sq. ft. of garage floor concrete. That might explain why no one said cheese, or “oh it’s you…again…” or “hey, hold my drink and watch this”… Everything went pretty well, except for the weather, which couldn’t decide if it was going to be sunny or cloudy with rain…or sunny with gusts of wind..or… And then there is the tale of two cement truck drivers-one who was on par with hand gestures and one who wasn’t… In the end, it all worked out and we got the work done!!IMG_4308IMG_4318IMG_4320IMG_4323IMG_4326IMG_4332IMG_4340

Strip, Backfill and Pour (repeat)

We’re still working on the foundation at our Loveland project. We’ve completed the footings, poured the walls and next week we start pouring the floors, beginning with the garage. Things are progressing quickly.

Last week we removed the forms on the larger back walls.IMG_4262IMG_4267IMG_4275

Did we forget to share photos of the wall being formed?? Of course we did!! So hey, why not add them now, because this wall really does deserve some attention…and they were already edited for a post but just like the missing pairs of socks after a run in the dryer…well…

Looking good, right!! We agree, it is.


Custom dog door. Lucky dog.


Custom kid in dog door. Lucky kid.


Bryan, working his Bobcat magic and backfilling the foundation!

While Bryan backfilled, Eric, Jason and Quinn sat around in chairs…I mean placed chairs down under the mesh…for Monday…yes that is what I meant.



At the end of the day we had a strategic meeting for Monday’s main event: the garage pour.


Cheers to the weekend!!

Dirty Thoughts

How often do you think about your septic system? I mean really think about it, dive into it, somewhere between the top layer of fats and oils and the bottom layer of solids and consider just how important it is to our health and environment.

First and foremost, your septic tank is more than just a waste holder, it’s a biological wonderland. Just the word “septic” refers to an anaerobic bacteria environment for decomposition. Bacteria from our bodies, our food, and products we use all end up in the tank playing a role in the decomposition of the wastes we “flush”. As we all remember from biology class, anaerobic bacteria work without oxygen.  In the septic tank then, anaerobic bacteria are working to get rid of nitrates that would otherwise cause algae blooms in the water shed. We have seen how disastrous an overabundance of nitrogen in water can be. One particular example is the dead zones in the Gulf of Mexico caused by fertilizer run off in the Mississippi river. Nitrogen found in the fertilizers (along with other chemicals) have caused algal blooms on the surface of the water, removing the oxygen in the water that is important for plant and animal life. We are talking specifically about nitrogen in water, and not nitrogen in the soil, and even more specifically about issues with industrial agriculture.

Looking inside the septic tank, one would see three developed layers: fats & oils, water, and solid waste. As your household waste enters the tank a series of bacterial processes occur to break down whats coming in. Fats, oils and solids are not broken down by the bacteria in the tank and are known as sludge. Sludge stays in the tank and has to be pumped out. What the bacteria does breakdown is added into the water that makes up the middle layer, and is then sent out of the tank into the drain field. The drain field is comprised of gravel, coarse sand or plastic chambers, and pipes. As the “clarified water” is leeched out, it runs across a filtration surface and is further separated and broken down by aerobic  bacteria found naturally in the soil. These bacteria work to finish breaking down waste and destroy pathogenic organisms that could cause serious health problems. This is why septic system design and implementation is so heavily regulated.We depend on our septic systems to function properly so that we have safe, clean water for human and animal consumption and agricultural purposes; and so that our land does not become a health hazard or worse: inhospitable. The picture in my mind is like something out of Mad Max, people with extra or missing limbs/organs or serious health problems and land that can’t support life.


Last Friday, the septic tank for our Loveland site was delivered. Check out some of the photos below:




We’ve Gone Insta!


Here at Harrington Construction we believe that social media platforms are a great resource. As we continue to grow as a company we are trying to spread the word about what we do, why it’s great and why you or your parents, bothers, sisters, cousins, neighbors…any and everyone, should consider building a sustainable and efficient home! So check us out on Instagram, and follow along for spontaneous pictures of what we are up to!


Footed and Foxy

Footed and Foxy…oh lala. Moving into February has us running around like hens in a hen house being chased by the foxes (foxes being jobsites). We’ve poured the footings on our Loveland site, and have been installing the Fox Block and getting things ready for the second part of the concrete pour: the floor and walls. We have some pretty tall walls on the south side of the house, which will make pouring lots of fun, luckily everyone on the crew looovvveesss working with concrete. As our Loveland site continues progressing, we are also moving forward with a residence site in Berthoud, and working out structural details for a project in Fort Collins. There’s lots happening here and as the weather warms up and the sun stays out just a little bit longer each month, we are getting ready for Spring, thawed ground and lots of action!


A few locals checking out the site…they disappeared once the work started happening, probably out of fear of being volunteered to help…


All hands, in mud…errr on deck.


Pump up the jam, pump it up…


Tiny person, brought for motivational cheering…stopped being useful once a bag of Cheetos presented itself as viable snacking option.


A quick look at the Fox Block, being installed, check back for more fancy stacking later!

2015 Highlights

As 2015 wraps up we have been looking back on a year of innovative projects, great clients, and plenty of excitement at Harrington Construction. The past 12 months have been highlighted by remarkable performance results of newly occupied homes, and the opportunity to meet the challenge of new builds with their own demanding criteria. Here are few of the accomplishments that make us proud while creating expectation and momentum going into 2016.


In late 2014 we completed a Passive House build in Fort Collins. Since the day that the client moved in, we have eagerly anticipated real world feedback on energy consumption. Based on the energy modeling completed in the design of the home we knew it would perform well. After a year of use we got the numbers.  Here is how the performance checked out:

Home: 2700 Square foot  – Passive House

Total annual energy consumption: 3504 kwh (no on site energy generation)

Average Monthly Utility Cost: $29.96

Ultimately, the total energy consumption of the homeowner (Heating, cooking, computers, etc.) came in below the Passive House requirement for just heating and cooling. When compared to the Passive House requirement that does include total consumption the homeowner is 8x under the allowable usage.

The most unique build of our year was in Nederland, Colorado. The home draws design inspiration from the historic mining structures that are scattered throughout the mountains of Colorado. Dramatic height, large beetle kill timbers, and the Cor-Ten steel roofing are a few of the stand out features of the home. However, we shared the client’s desire that these details did not come at the expense of energy performance or comfort. We knew we had met that goal when we heard from the homeowner at the end of November. Simply put, the heat had not kicked on yet. Nederland sits at an elevation of 8200 feet. The fall is short and the winter is harsh. The strategic insulation, meticulous air sealing, and passive solar design is keeping their home warm, while the continuous Energy Recovery Ventilation system is keeping the air fresh.



Most everyone agrees that there is appeal to a home that costs little operate and sets a high standard for year round comfort. It is easy to assume that homes that can accomplish this kind of performance must come with an extreme cost premium. That is why we met the challenge of our project in Berthoud, Colorado with such enthusiasm. The home features triple glazed windows, a super insulated and air sealed wall assembly, and a fully ducted Energy Recovery Ventilation system. Finishes include solid slab granite counters, solid alder cabinets, and full tile shower surrounds. All of this performance and high level of finish was built for $124 per Square foot. We were thrilled to deliver a project at this price point.



2016 is set up to be an outstanding year at Harrington Construction. We are currently getting underway on multiple fantastic builds that feature architecturally driven designs with a commitment to energy performance. We are excited to continue to push ourselves to deliver custom homes that are truly at the pinnacle of Performance, Comfort, and Value.

Happy New Year from Quinn and the rest of the Harrington Construction Team.

Keeping it Natural

During the process of building a house, a certain amount of disruption to the natural state of a site is inevitable. That is where restoration of the natural habitat becomes important to many builders and homeowners.

On our Loveland site, the homeowners want a yard with grass for their children to play, but they also wanted to keep much of their site looking as if it had not been disrupted too much by construction. Much of the area is wild grasses, and we turned to a local company in Greeley to help us replant with native grasses from that area.

Pawnee Buttes Seed Inc.  established themselves in 1998 with the belief that a seed company should be doing more than just selling grass seed. They developed grass mixes that are found in particular areas, so that say a person who had their pasture catch fire in Eastern Colorado and wanted to replant, could actually get a seed variety that is specific to that location. They have worked with oil companies in Northeast Colorado to replant the areas that have been used for well sites (Pawnee Buttes Seed of Greeley). They have also developed seeds specific to wildfires in Colorado. The process of replanting an area isn’t as simple as tossing out seed and calling it good. It can take several years to reforest an area burned and you can read about it here: Colorado Wildfire Restoration.

Loveland Update


Something we have really been appreciating is our interactions with our clients on this project. We are working with a husband-wife team, and the wife comes by the jobsite twice a day to walk and look over things, and talk about what is going on/where things are at. We’ve really enjoyed that as questions or concerns are thought up they are also addressed right away and the project continues to flow smoothly as we are all working together. Positive job site and client relationships are important to us and make our work easier and more enjoyable.

2015-12-07 11.26.08

Our house pad is almost complete, we’ve got a secondary pad site for a shop also being cleared out. Next up on our list is to start preparing for the foundation work. We are looking forward to trying out a new system for the foundation, using a three in one product that serves as foundation footing material, foundation drainage and radon collection.

Loveland Pano

Here’s a view looking out from the back of the property, it really is a beautiful site!

Pretty soon we will be starting the site work on another project in Berthoud and we are also looking forward to a cutting edge project this spring (the client really wants to push the envelope on building performance) that will be in Fort Collins. As always we are grateful for the folks that are interested in what we are doing and want us to be a part of building their home!