Friday, December 3, 2010

I Kick Ass at Starting Projects

About two weeks ago, our washer decided to stop draining water.  We have a home warranty, but of course we hadn't paid the "upgrade" fee to get our washer and dryer covered in the policy.  I knew we'd either have to troubleshoot it ourselves, or call out a repairman.  It was right before Thanksgiving when it happened, and right after my knee injury, so we had a lot of other things on our mind.  Finally, this past Wednesday night, I decided to go assess the situation.  Meezy had previously taken all the clothes out of it and dried them, so it was just water that had been sitting in there for two weeks.  (It was still rather stinky).  He was playing poker that night, so I was attempting this on my own.  Our washer is upstairs, which is not the best location for someone suffering from a broken kneecap.  I grabbed some tools and hobbled my way up there.  First, I knew I really needed to get rid of that standing water.  A pitcher was too big to fit in there to scoop out water, so I had to resort to a plastic cup.  I pulled a plastic storage tub up next to the washer and scooped the water into it, one plastic cup at a time.  Yeah, that was kinda retarded, but it was the best I could come up with at the time.  Once all the water was out of the washer and in the tub, I had to figure out how to dispose of it from there.  The tub was too heavy and large for me to carry it, so I used the pitcher to scoop water from there to take to the bathroom.  I poured some down the sink in the guest bathroom and watched it just sit there.  It didn't drain.  WTF?  That problem was just going to have to wait.  One thing at a time!  I resorted to pouring the rest of the water down the shower drain instead.

Once that process was done, I used my googling skills to get some advice on how to troubleshoot the draining problem.  I pulled the washer out from the wall, unplugged it, and checked out the drain hose.  I had to take it apart in a couple of places, and use the pitcher to catch the water that came out when I removed it from the machine.  I took the hose to the bathroom and ran water through it just fine.  There didn't seem to be any blockage in it, so that wasn't the problem.  Next I checked the lid switch.  There's a piece attached to the lid that sticks out, and when the lid is closed, it depresses a little switch to let the washer know that it is closed.  That signifies it's okay to start the spinning and draining.  The switch looked like it was being depressed correctly, at first inspection.  I plugged the machine back in and turned the knob towards the end of a cycle.  I started it up, saw it fill up with a little water, and then just stop.  Hmmmm, maybe that lid switch wasn't really working correctly!  I opened the lid, and took a screwdriver and manually depressed the switch as far as it would go.  What do you know??  The washer started spinning and draining.  That was it!!  I was so proud of myself.  LOL.  Unfortunately, I didn't really know where to go from there.  We either needed to repair the current switch or buy a new one.  I figured that was good enough progress on this project, and Meezy could take it from there!

On to the next issue.  Why wasn't that sink draining?  I opened up the cabinet below it and figured I needed to take apart the drain pipes to see if there was any blockage.  Crap, I needed a wrench for that.  I hobbled my slow butt all the way down the stairs and back up again.  I unscrewed the pipes and found some pretty nasty crap in there.  It was like a mixture of mud, hair, and goodness knows what else.  I cleaned them out as best I could, and then started putting them back together.  Hmmmm.  That one elbow wasn't lining up as perfectly as it did the first time.  Hmmmm.  That one adaptor isn't screwing on with as tight a seal as it had the first time.  I turned the water on just slightly and, as expected, there was a drip.  Dang it!!  At least I had gotten rid of the blockage though, right?  I figured that was good enough progress on this project, and Meezy could take it from there!

As you can see, I'm pretty darn good at troubleshooting an issue.  I can figure out the problem if I spend enough time on it.  That's apparently as far as I can take it, though!  My wonderful hubby was home last night, so he jimmy-rigged the current switch on the washer and got it back in working order, and then reassembled the drain pipes back together with no leaks.  I'd say we make a good team.   

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