Thanks to the loverly weather we’ve been having in Iowa, our house is having some plumbing issues. The subzero temperatures caused the supply line pipes to our downstairs tub to freeze, but fortunately not burst. Unfortunately, when they thawed a bit it freed up some of the years of lime/calcium/crud in the pipes. The build-up then broke a thingamadoodle inside the faucet causing the water to run without stopping.  Naturally this is in the tub which didn’t like to drain.

My wife found this out when she got home and started calling various plumbers. But none of them could get to the house right away and the tub was in danger of overflowing. Luckily one of the plumbers she talked to recommended a drain cleaning service which was able to get out to the house and within an hour got the tub draining better than I’ve ever seen it drain.  So one potential problem was solved but the running water was still going. For extra fun the drain guys convinced my wife that we had a busted pipe in the wall.

After they left, she was eventually able to get in touch with a plumber who could come out. But we had to agree to pay an after-hours fee of$175 to get him there and since we were concerned about the pipes, we agreed. When the plumber eventually got to the house, he confirmed what I thought when I got home (no busted pipes). He had to kill the water to the entire house to shutdown the water to the tub and then got to work.  He found the broken thingamadoodle, but didn’t have a replacement in his truck. He left to try getting one from a hardware store but that store did not have the part either.

He said the company he works for required him to charge us the $175 for coming out plus $119 for the work he already did plus $2.69 for an “environmental fee”. He then told us he would try tracking down the part and coming back the next day, on his own time so he wouldn’t have to charge us another $119 to complete the work.  Unfortunately he called us the next day to say nobody appears to have the part and we have to special order it.

*sigh* Ain’t home-ownership grand?

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4 thoughts on “Plumb Fun

  1. Yeah, if you’re not rich or handy, I say home-ownership is overrated. Not hearing (or being heard by) people on the other sides of your wall/floor/ceiling is nice though. I GUESS it’s worth it…probably.

    1. Oh, it’s definitely worth it (especially after 10 years in an apartment). It’s just a lot of money/work and sometimes you just need to kvetch about it.

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