The Zen of Plumbing
By kissmeneckkim on November 05, 2011
I had a positive plumbing experience once...just once, and it was enough to give me a false sense of bravado. A hemmoraging shower faucet was dissected, followed by research and a trip to the hardware store and then successfully reassembled...viola...without leaks. The entire process took away at least 8 hours of my life, but I felt like Tom Hanks in "Castaway" when he finally made fire. I wanted to climb to the rooftop and scream, "I have made water flow again in our shower...aaayiiiiiiii!" One little glitch...I had somehow reversed the hot and cold, so our brains had to do a reversal for the next few months until we finally hired a professional to remodel our entire bathroom. That experience shall be revisited in another blog for another time. Let's just say that the exploding shower head and no water until 4 in the afternoon Thanksgiving day shall never be forgotten.
Today I had another chance at Plumbing nirvana. After not being able to remove the antique (aka crappy old) faucet handles to replace an obvious obsolete washer I decided to replace the entire faucet. Helpful hubby insisted on helping. I was a bit leary since we often don't do well on joint household projects; especially those involving old pipes and leaking water. He also has been nursing a sore shoulder and reinjuring it on a weekly basis. My past degree in P.T. has been of no help, but again, that is fodder for another tale.
The self-help books and included directions made it look so easy. Merely loosen a few connections, squirt on some caulk, tighten, and you're ready to go. Easy peasy. I had the turning water off part down. The loosening was another matter. Connections had apparently solidified over the centuries and there was no loosening. First trip to Ace Hardware--miscellaneous tools that husband thought might work (ignoring my advice to ask someone for help). After much cussing, I finally managed to loosed the iron grip on the cold water side and things were in pieces. Assembly and caulking went smoothly. Drain lever...didn't fit without sawing shorter with a hacksaw due to our weird sink configurations. Luckily discovered that old parts fit and pieced back together. Tried water. Worked. Little leakage on cold water side. Tightened more. Still leaked. Took apart and discovered remnants of washer in nuts. Another trip to the hardware store. Hubby returned with huge orange plug that looked nothing like the old washers. No go. Another trip to another store. No washers but new water hoses. Didn't fit. Another trip to a different hardware store (Ace and Fred Meyer are now on Hubby's black list). Return with water hoses and connections that fit. Meanwhile, I finally throw some dinner together along with two tall martinis.
At dinner, Hubby informs me that he had to use the towel to sop up the NEW leak...somehow the drain mechanism is malfunctioning (e.g. leaking) after our numerous exertions under the sink today. The drain plug and various new parts (that we thought we could put off since the other one seemed to be fine) are waiting for a plumbing zen experience...tomorrow.
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