September 13, 2005

The Household Appliance that Ate My Weekend

I installed a dishwasher on Saturday, Sunday and Monday.

Yes, that is exactly what I mean. It took me that long. Look, I’m not terribly handy. I never have been. Up until I moved into our new house my tool collection consisted of a half-dozen mismatched screwdrivers and a pipe wrench that to this day I have no idea how I got. Hell, I got a C in wood shop back in 7th grade, and I’m pretty sure the teacher gave me that out of pity.

I’ve gotten marginally better through the years. My father-in-law is supernaturally handy and taught me some things. I’ve helped him install ceiling fans and change car brakes and such. I was very much the assistant in such endeavors, but I’ve gone from completely incapable to marginally talented. After arriving in the new house, said father-in-law took me on a tool-shopping spree, helped me install a new fence (that was FUN) and left me to my own devices.

Now, it must be said that my own father is somewhat handy. Not totally handy though, unlike father-in-law, my Dad is of the “just shove it until it works” school. He also has far too many memories of me screwing something up, or setting myself on fire –a gross exaggeration, I merely burned myself with a soldering iron. But, Dad and I decided to tackle the dishwasher. The new house came with a lousy old dishwasher that didn’t work. Ensie and I –well, mostly Ensie- picked out a new fancy model. We listened to my father insist that he and I could install it, and decided to forgo the installation charges.

This was a mistake. On Saturday –mind you we initially thought this would be a 2- hour job- we managed to get the old dishwasher out of the house and onto the deck. It’s still there. We weren’t lucky enough to find flexible pipe from the old dishwasher, the old dishwasher had been connected with copper pipe and the cabinets set on top of it. We didn’t have the right length of flexiable pipe, so I had to get an extension. We didn’t have the right connections…. It was a mess.

By the time Ensie came home on Saturday, the dishwasher was in place, but the not totally hooked up and we had sprung a leak. Don’t ask me how…

By the time Ensie came home on Sunday we had the dishwasher running. Everything worked. We thought. No, my lovely wife had the temerity to ask me why our fancy new dishwasher refused to drain. I had no idea, but she managed to find on the Internet something about a “knock-out plug”. It wasn’t even part of the dishwasher. It was on the garbage disposal. Our brand new disposal that the former owner of our house just installed in his freakishly sloppy way. So, I ended up taking the garbage disposal apart -that was FUN too- and well, knocking out the knock-out plug.

So now we have a fully functioning dishwasher. I also have the satisfaction of doing a job myself. Plus I have the knowledge that it’s just easier to spend the 70 bucks.

My wife’s version of the story in two parts, here and here.

Posted by Frinklin at September 13, 2005 11:32 PM | TrackBack
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