Saturday, June 7, 2008

Home Repairs - Nothing Is Easy When You Have My Luck

So I finally got the spare bedroom painted. Took about 4 weekends of my spare time. That is okay - no hurry here. It looks pretty good. I also took up the old carpet today, and when I saw the old floor underneath, I figured I'll have to sand it, then refinish it. That will not be the easiest thing to do, but not too hard.

Of course, with a house it is one thing after another. About a week or so ago, I tried to change the handle on the upstairs throne. As my luck and ineptness would have it, I broke the side of the toilet tank doing so. Luckily for me above the water line; but it is ruined. It needs replacing, but it is so old I cannot find a match. So after a week or week and a half of it being usable but broken, I took off the tank and tried to line up a new one. No go. So that left me with needing to replace the whole toilet and tank. Okay, I took off the old toilet too. Then there it was a major problem, at least for me who am no plumber. The brass flange to which the base of the throne attaches is cracked. It seems the knuckleheads who put in my new bathroom 14 years ago placed the tile floor atop the old tile floor. When they left the hole for the toilet, they made it too wide. Instead of the flange having floor under it to support it, they attached the flange to the drain pipe and left the edges of it in thin air. Well the toilet and floor must have settled causing the brass flange to crack. I imagine I could just put everything back atop it, but all the books I've read and advice I have been given is to have a new flange installed. While I am sure this would be a major job for me, I am hopeful it will be easy for the plumber I am calling on Monday. My guess though is it will be a major job for him just to remove the old one without cracking the drain pipe. I can only hope they get it done easily and inexpensively. Then I can put in the new toilet myself, or maybe may as well have them do it since that job will take all of a half hour more at most.

I have to say, it really sucks because all was going well, in fact better than I had expected, until I saw the crack. I had thought it would be tougher to do under normal circumstances, but replacing the loo would actually have been an easy job if there were no surprise problems like the cracked flange. Oh well, a house is, I suppose, a pit into which to throw money. I just wish I had the money. If it was not for my own personal black cloud following me around, maybe it would be less expensive. As it is though, I really am getting better at doing things around the homestead despite this most recent screwup.

I had other things to keep me busy today too, like moving the paving stones from under my oak tree. The tree is coming down next Wednesday. I was supposed to have it down weeks ago but the tree service guy never showed up. I got a new guy, at almost double the price, and he still is less than all the others I have called except for the bum guy who did not show. Then I did some spraying for ants/termites. Hopefully I don't have any in the house, but I sprayed all around it for a protective barrier. Those carpenter ants and termites can be nasty even in a brick house to what wood there is, especially the beams.

Now I am going to go out and do some gardening. The broccoli is coming in nicely, the lettuce has been unused and thus wasted by the wife, the cabbage looks good, and the tomato plants have been better in previous years. If I am lucky I'll find some ripe strawberries. Only had a few last year, but this year they are coming in strong. As for the pepper plants Mimi, the latest mutt in the house, dug em all up. I am learning, sprayed some hot pepper sauce in the garden and the digging sure has subsided. Next time though only on the soil as it really ruined some of the leaves on some of the plants.

Later for you.

All the best,