Friday, June 05, 2009

Home Maintenance

Last week the power outlets went out in our master bathroom. It had happened once before, and I found that flipping the switch on the circuit breaker panel off and on again seemed to reset them. So I went out and did that. This time it didn't work. Grr. Luckily, we have another bathroom upstairs in which the outlets are fine, and neither of us use the bathroom outlets regularly. As soon as we can afford it, we'll get an electrician in to fix them.

Then, Monday morning, Eric's shaver burst apart while he was cleaning it... and he thought he saw a critical piece fall into the mostly full garbage. Ooops. He was unable to fix the shaver that morning, and asked me to look for the piece while he went shaggily to work. I put on some gloves and went through just about the entire bag of garbage, finding nothing that looked like it belonged to a shaver. So I took a closer look at the shaver itself. I noticed a small metal piece jammed deeply into the side, and grabbed a pair of tweezers and pulled it out. It was the joint, the piece Eric thought was missing. I rehooked it (with some difficulty) and snapped the thing back together. It worked perfectly. Whew, no need to buy a new shaver! I just wish I'd looked at the shaver before going through the garbage.

Monday afternoon I decided to take a warm bath. As the tub was filling, I realized it was a muddy red color. I checked the water in the sinks. Hot water: muddy red. Cold water: clear. Uh-oh. Hot water heater problem! I exercised my Google-fu and discovered that it was probably just normal build up in the water heater tank. So, when Eric got home I bullied him into helping me rig up the hose to the water heater tank to give it a flush. I checked carefully... there are two types of water heater cleanouts that homeowners can do (and should do regularly) themselves. What we were doing was just a flush: attach a hose, open the spout, let the water run until it is clear. The second is a drain, when you turn off the water to the heater, then drain the entire thing, then refill it. The flush is what folks should do at least once a year (some pages said twice a year). In any case, after the flush, I went upstairs and ran some water. It took a LONG time, but eventually the hot water ran clear. Whew. No need to call the plumber.

Our yard still looks awful, and we don't have any money for any sort of landscaping this year. I still need 70 feet of fencing for the back to keep the neighborhood kids out when I start my gardening. The temporary fences (complete with "No Trespassing" signs) are working to keep people from cutting across my yard, finally. The kids still wander up to my porch and peek in my window for no apparent reason, but at least they aren't making a trail in my yard. I think we'll get more respect from the neighborhood once the yard is landscaped somehow. Until then, people seem to think no one lives here, despite the Norwegian flag and my comings and goings. *sigh*