Sunday, March 08, 2015

DIY and the dripping faucet

Couldn't catch the drip in the photo
We live in a world of acronyms, probably due to texting, but I am always slow to figure them out. A colleague would write LOL to me for months before I knew what she was saying. The latest I figured out is DIY, and then I realized it didn't apply to me at all! I never have been much interested in DIY projects--turning everyday items into cute little things they were never meant to be, all the amazing things you can do with empty thread spools or a batch of corks (I save them but don't know why) or even toilet paper rolls (Sophie eats them, given a chance). A few of my grandchildren have sad examples of my forays back into the art of knitting; a very few pots in my kitchen cabinet are remnants of my pottery days (broke one recently and I really was sad about it); thank goodness, my macramé attempts have all vanished. Thee days my creativity is limited to writing and cooking. Those two keep me plenty busy.
But I used to think it was my responsibility to DIY with some household repairs. I think at one point I could even take a u-joint apart and unclog it--now I use poisons that I resent or a baking soda recipe that I found online. Wonder where I put those directions? And since my children have forbidden me to climb, I wait for a tall person to come along and change some light bulbs. Lately I've been waiting for Christian to empty my recycle bin--if it gets heavy, I'm unsure of my balance crossing the porch. I have to ask myself carefully if this reliance on others is a symptom of aging or laziness--either way, I don't come out smelling like a rose. Almost in defiance, I emptied the recycle myself this morning.
This train of thought was prompted today by the fact that my kitchen sink faucet won't quit dripping. The sound is like water torture,  and I have nightmares about my water bill. But I was sure I could fix it. Sailed into the hardware yesterday to ask for a washer, only to be told they came in all sizes and I should bring the whole unit at the end of the faucet with me. Last night in a fit of determination, I unscrewed it, cleaned out some gunk, put it back together again, and was amazed at how forcefully the water flowed--I'd forgotten the little filter. So I did it all again. Screwed it on as tightly as I could. Still drips. Now I don't know if I did it wrong or just didn't get it back together tightly enough--or I really do need a new washer. Good thing Christian is coming for supper.


Anonymous said...

Ummm, she said gently, a u-joint is part of a car. I think you mean a trap, the u-shaped pipe that is part of a drain. I have never changed a washer, though I have done other plumbing. Putting in a new washer requires turning off the water and doing exotic things to the fixtures. Beyond what one might laughingly call my expertise.

Jim once installed a hand held shower in a bathroom when we lived on Medford Court. The first time someone used it, water cascaded down the chandelier on the room below. I called a plumber. Jim did not speak DIIY.

Sally Jackson

Judy Alter said...

I guess you proved once and for all that I don't either. Oh dear, plumbers are expensive. Are you sure about that u-joint?

Anonymous said...

Yes, I'm sure. Len changes washers, so it can be done by regular humans. Just not me!


Judy Alter said...

Called the plumber. Contractor diagnosed over the phone that I probably need a whole new unit. It's old, and we've "saved" it before.