Tone-in-oz just doing it anyway

Sunday, August 15, 2010

Accomplishing small tasks and the satisfaction

14 August

Leaks and money.
I do not really like spending money when I know I can do something around the house myself for less than getting it done for me. Plus, I did it. I am not a really big DIY fan, but some house maintenance is just too expensive. I have some Scottish genes in me too.

After summer this year, the leaking gutters around the veranda finally annoyed me so much that I was going to replace it, before winter. Since we moved into the house the guttering had had small holes, but not enough for me to bother fixing it, as we were in a drought, and any free watering of the vegetation I call a garden, and others weeds, was good enough for me.

But now it was getting so bad that the sky had a line through it next to the bullnose veranda, and I was worried that whatever moisture we got may ruin the flooring. And it looked bad.

A week later and it was complete, all done by myself. Replacing the old crappy guttering was not too cheap, but cheap enough. The posts needed dry rot cut out and raised so no pooling of rain water occurred anymore. The tools in the garage were rotated and the ladder well used. The pry bar was heaven sent. The last guys to install the guttering never thought it would have to be removed, the buggers. Now a paint job is required when the steel has had some weathering.

An acid bath had not unblocked the pipe.
Two weeks ago, shower water flooding the path outside finally gave me the irrits.

Once again, the DIY gene was at me. Off to the the hire guys up the road and back with a sewer rooter, or rotor rooter, what ever the name was, it was a dirty name for a dirty tool.

I knew exactly what had to be done. Again. Seems like every year or so, the bathroom plumbing outside had to be unblocked. I blame the council planted swamp trees, not my Plain Tree, Apple Tree or The Grape Vine.

The first time, it was the councils turn. A new sewer pipe from the road to the fence. Then it was $150 bucks for two guys to spend twenty minutes playing in the backyard unblocking the pipe. A few years later it was my turn, removing the rest of the old pipes from the fence to the path. Then it happened again. Right. Hire a tool. Eighty bucks. Great.

But it happened again. Another trip down to the tool hire. Fixed it and was back less than an hour later. The guy at the counter could not print out the receipt, so a freebie! This time, after I had cleaned out the roots, he took the deposit of forty bucks as the full payment! Wow. Love that place. The shower is now pleasant again, and the path dry.

Noises in the kitchen
Yesterday I was determined to do more than the usual (yet again).

Morning break time presented an opportunity.

I rolled the refrigerator out and took off the back to catch the noisy motor in action. For at least the last few years, the ‘fridge had been annoyingly loud in its corner of the kitchen. A few months ago I rolled it out, and thought that the fan motor needed bracing to stop the knocking sound, so loud it interfered with conversation. That fix did not keep the noise down very much. I asked some people what they thought. “New fridge”, ”New Condenser”, “How old is it?”. Hmm. At least the floor was clean in the corner.

Obviously a two thousand dollar ten year old fridge should not give up the ghost like that!

So yesterday, off with the back cover of the fridge again. Tapped the axle of the fan motor. Movement. Wobbled it to see if bearing were loose or tight. Loose.

Rang the electrical appliance fixer-uppers; “Nah, just washing machines”, and “Yeah? New motor? About forty dollars, call out will be another forty five.”

So I pulled out the offending sound-maker and called back to the second guy, who helpfully said, “Type? Dunno? Bring it down?” Dang- no replacement in stock to take away? And what about the food? Bugger it. “Okay, see you in a bit.”

Ten minutes later, thirty dollars less with a second hand reconditioned clockwise turning motor that had installation instructions but no plug just wire joiner twister things in my hot sweaty hand, I set out to fix the fridge.

Well, it was a bit more than that. My glasses kept falling off as I was on my knees peering into the bottom of the fridge, and the wires had to be cut, the fan swapped from the old motor and the motor put the right way in and the wires joined, screws screwed in, etcetera etcetera, and it all made my back twinge and whinge and hurt. I plugged the cord in, sat back and switched it on, with my fingers crossed.

Bingo, little bewdy worked. The floor had had a second clean in as many months and I could read the paper in peace over brekky.

In conclusion: All Missions accomplished under budget and with deep satisfaction. Next mission?

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