Sunday, March 14, 2010

Beck 1, Quasi broken washer via clogged P-trap - 1

My clothes washer was not completely spinning the water out of the clothing.  I'd set it back to spin and the clothes would get spun out ok.  I kept an eye on it and this was a recurrent problem.  I also noticed that the old cement utility sink that the washer drains into, emptied slow.  I tested it.  Yes, extremely slow.  But eventual.  My diagnosis was that the washer wasn't the problem. The water was backing up into the washer's drain house not allowing the water to fully drain from the washer.  

I started with the drains.  Cleared out some lint.  Ran boiling hot water down the drains to clear out any detergent residue.  Poured in liquid Drano and let it sit for an hour.  Rinsed.  Nada.  Clogged up.  Time to go in boys. 

Brandishing one big red, monkey wrench, I put all my CrossFit physique had to loosen those bushings.  But I got it. Oy, now I know why plumbers are big; they've gotta be strong to get everything loosened up.  Sure enough, big ol' clog in the P-trap.  Yeah, it was lint and everything else.  Ew.  Gratifyingly unclogged it.  But now the bushings don't want to work.  Cross threading commences. Patient unwrenching, wrenching, crossthreading.  It wasn't working. I swear I couldn't NOT crossthread it.  I had to replace the whole P-trap.  Grrr. 

It's 10pm and the kids are in bed.  I can't leave them in the house alone. So I'm stuck with an open drain.  It's just wrong to leave it like that.  It demands a run to home depot. I'm goal oriented!  Luckily my stash of stuff from rehabbing this place 10 years ago revealed a part that would fit with reused parts from the old P-trap (this is the old plumbing portion of the house after all.  It's not Jerry-rigged nor McGyver'd mind you.  It's just creatively solved).  I got it to a point where it didn't leak.  Or so I thought.  

I was feeling victorious after suffering thru manual labor, gross extractions, copious kid interruptions and a parts-related mini-panic.  Feeling brave, the next step was to do a load of wash!  Smart girl that I am, I ran a small load.  I put a bucket under the new P-trap.  Listening for the deluge, I ran downstairs to find that the new P-trap was indeed leaking.  Fortunately into the bucket.  Irony is that I could dump the water from the bucket that caught the drain leakage, into the sink from where it just came - without any leaks.  The P-trap can handle water from the tap, but the deluge from the washer was too much (this is an extra small load too).  

So I call it a night, only to find that the cold water on the faucet is now leaking.  Grr.  Nice brass bushings, coated in years of tarnish come off,  I apply some teflon tape, reattach and viola! Fixed for now. 

Tomorrow is another day.  One where I find a handyman or plumber to solve this problem, correctly. 

In the meantime, I have an awesome battery operated crescent wrench that loosens and tightens with a the push of a button.  Unfortunately I couldn't use it in this application.  But I'll be fixing up the girls' bikes in no time.  Good tools are fun (except the human variety).

I'm calling it a night.  11pm.  The girls are still up.  I'll be seeing Midnight tonight after all is said and done.  Hopefully soon after it will be with my eyes shut.

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