A gang of appliances

Yes, they’re ganging up on me. In the last week, five of my appliances got together and decided to revolt. First the washing machine, then the toilet stopped working (fortunately, not my only toilet). Consoling myself with Netflix, the DVD player stopped, just refused, to give me any quarter. Thankfully, my multimedia laptop was up to the job – a small victory. In retaliation, I put my washing machine up on Freecycle, because the problem with it seemed pretty serious. Maybe there would be a handy-person out there who would want to fix it… Heading to bed, I found that my bathroom sink had decided to chip – just all at once – the enamel chipping off, leaving unsightly black spots. Even the sink was in on it!

Having what seemed like a serious reply to my washing machine ad, I decided to show them all what would happen if they didn’t behave. Over came a very nice handyman and his friend with a truck, and off they went with the washing machine. Peering back behind it, into the mysterious spaces where you never want to look if you can help it, I found that the dryer, too, was rebellious. The exhaust hose was all disconnected! Which might explain why there was far more lint than there should have been in that space.

Sigh… I hasten to point out at this point, that this is not my fault. This is not my house. Or rather it is, but these are not my appliances, but those I inherited when I bought the house. Perhaps that explains why they don’t like me, though the DVD player should know better. It could be that they overheard me talking about replacing the electric stove with a gas one, and tried to teach me a lesson. Well, we’ll show them who’s boss around here… sorta.

The internet was my next stop. I knew exactly what washing machine I wanted – the exact same one I had in my old house. Ordered that from Sears, check. Did some research on DVD players – this one has been the weak link for a while, since I bought a new HDTV to watch movies on, but the DVD player was just an inexpensive normal one that doesn’t do HD. Blu-Ray, here I come. Ordered from Amazon.com, check.

Now for the trip to the hardware store to do the stuff I have to do myself… moan. A little bit more internet research to find out stuff that probably every guy on earth knows, like how to disconnect a recalcitrant rusty washer hose that the installers insist you get off before they come, and how to replace a toilet lever, and what parts I need to replace the dryer duct. Having my little list of stuff together, off I go to Ace Hardware.

It’s been kind of a lot, fitting this into an already extremely busy week. I get there, and suddenly am exhausted. I stand in the store like a deer in the headlights, searching the cleaning aisle for WD40, having no idea where it would be :D (It cleans rust off right? It should be in the cleaning aisle…) I must have looked lost and confused, a typical female entering the handyman lair for the first time. Still, I don’t protest when a very nice young store clerk leads me around to find everything. I peer at the toilet handles for a while, not remembering AT ALL whether the lever is on the front or the side, details, details. I choose, hoping it will be right (it was). I even buy a tool (gasp) for getting the hose off the spigot once the rust is removed. Home with my purchases, I kind of arrange them around the house where they go, saving the actual use of them for later, when I get the next burst of adventurousness :D

Still, I get tired of not being able to use my toilet, so that one gets tackled first. This turns out to be ridiculously easy, and I am heartened. Put the lever through the little hole and attach the chain, no problem! Flush. Yay~! Or so I thought… until I go to bed. Which is when I notice that the toilet is flushing itself every half hour or so, waking me up. But of course, I’m half asleep and have no idea how to fix this, so I keep going back to sleep. In that mysterious middle-of-the-night way, some information must have filtered up from the unused mechanical part of my brain, which informed me at 2:30 in the morning that this might be a very easy fix, simply a matter of moving the chain further up the lever (like if it was pulled a little too tight and a tiny bit of water was getting in there). Up I get and move the chain, and go back to bed. Some time later I realize the water is still running, rushing really, and I can’t leave it like that. Up I get again, figuring maybe I’ll just disconnect it so I can sleep :D But now I realize I’ve put it too far up the lever, and it’s not closing at all. There’s one place in the middle that looks like it will work, and it does, and finally, blissful sleep. Apparently the toilet, at least, has forgiven me.

Today, I figure I had better hurry up and tackle the washer and dryer before the Sears guy comes on Sunday. Spray WD40 on the hose connection, check. That will get dealt with tomorrow. Now, the dryer. Hmm…. just how do you attach these things anyway? Little plastic strips are supposed to hold the hose to the duct, but it’s obvious after only a bit of testing that this will result in exactly the same outcome I had before. Fortunately, I also bought, TA-DA! duct tape, lol. I always thought that was kind of a cheesy way to attach things, but hey, it works. I’m not going to have another chance to get back there easily, so I HOPE it really works.

Time to go get my new DVD player out of the box. That, at least, was designed to work with my model of TV, and this I feel more comfortable with. I even bought the right cable to connect it with. So I’m sure that will go well. Right? The washing machine is on Sears… not touching that and glad they’re doing it. Maybe things will start to feel like they’re back to normal around here soon. I hope.

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2 thoughts on “A gang of appliances

  1. Lisa Hunt says:

    My appliances had an all-out revolt this fall with dishwasher, washing machine and hot water heater all deciding to poop out within the same three week time frame. The plumber even told us that the hot water heater had caught on fire and it was lucky for us that it somehow extinguished itself before growing into a destructive conflagration. Throughout the appliances- breaking-down ordeal, I kept thinking “One step forward and two steps back.” It was turning out to be an unexpected expensive season! But then I thought about the irony of three appliances deciding to seize functioning at the same time. It was as though they had anthropomorphized and planned their collective demise. The probability of such an event seemed rather rare to me…until I read your story! Thanks for sharing. I’m impressed with your resourcefulness in the face of a rebelling toilet too!

  2. coppermoon says:

    I’d say I hope you’re not contagious but I think I’ve already had this problem- these troublemakers never show up in single rebellions but in gangs of 3, 4, 5. I applaud your ingenuity and determination in dealing with these hard cases. Now we know who to call…..

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