Me

Water heat saga concluded?

So finally, someone has come and replaced my water heater.

The first guy who looked at it back in October could only plumb in a new heater, not do the carpentry and electrics. So I tried kitchen fitters on Checkatrade and one came out and reckoned he could do it. But first he had to source a new water cylinder. That seems to have taken the time. He got back to me the beginning of last week to say he'd found a company that made them to order and he came round to take some measurements. He then ordered the cylinder and had it delivered to my house. It arrived Monday.

Meanwhile, the leak was getting worse. This week when working upstairs on my computer I could hear the cold water tank in the loft gurgling as it constantly refilled to top up the hot water tank. I hadn't heard that before.

This morning he and his son come out to do the work. This involved removing the cupboard doors and a false drawer. Then they had to empty the tank which they managed without too much mess. I think they siphoned it out, at the same time sucking up as much of the water on the floor as they could so as not to be working in a puddle.

Then, out with the old, in with the new. Connect the pipes and electrics, and replace the cupboard. It looks as good as new. And the water is heating up and not pooling on the floor. It must have taken between four and five hours all told. Also posted to Dreamwidth. There are comment count unavailable comments there so far.
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    Handel's Messiah
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Me

Students

Many of the houses in my cul-de-sac seem to be student shares.

Yesterday afternoon I was in the kitchen making a cup of tea and I could hear a rhythmic thumping sound through the wall. There has been a lot of maintenance work going on in that house - a student house - so I thought at first it was that. But I could hear voices apparently chanting in time to the beat.

I sat down to watch a film I'd recorded off Talking Pictures but after about fifteen minutes the doorbell went. It was a young woman I recognised as living next door. She was apologising in advance. They are actors next door, she said, and they were about to practise their fighting and there could be a lot of screaming.

As it happened, I actually heard nothing more from next door after that. The stairs act as a buffer between my living room and the dividing wall. But it later occurred to me that this could be a great plot for a TV crime show. A group of criminals use the cover of being actors to explain away the sounds of someone being murdered. She was even wearing a mask. Also posted to Dreamwidth. There are comment count unavailable comments there so far.
Me

The water heater saga continued

Well, a plumber finally came out to look at the old water heater. It looks like he's going to replace it, but there are options.

It's likely the sink unit will have to be dissembled to get to the old heater. It's a fitted kitchen, which means getting a carpenter to cut it off from the worktop and then putting it back.

Getting a water heater that produces enough water for a bath might also be a problem. (I hate showers.)

He's going to get back to me with some options. Might be able to start work next week.

Meanwhile, it's mops and old towels on the kitchen floor. Also posted to Dreamwidth. There are comment count unavailable comments there so far.
Me

Water, water, everywhere (cont.)

So, by lunchtime today, no call back about the leak in my kitchen so I phoned the company who had come out to look at it. They said that the job had been referred back to my plumbing insurance service, Home Serve. Home Serve has a very long wait time on their phone line and when I finally got through I found my policy does not cover water heater replacement.

Going back to the first company, I find that they are contractually obliged not to do repair work privately having just been given it by Home Serve. So I've been phoning around plumbers on Checkatrade to find one who is not booked up for a fortnight. One guy even said he was about to leave the country for a week. The lengths some people will go to avoid coming here.

One guy, when I sent him pictures of the old heater, said he'd never seen something so antique and refused to touch it.

Two others are still got get back to me.

Here are pictures of the old heater:


https://photos.app.goo.gl/kG79uVjNavaFd1pGA

https://photos.app.goo.gl/QGgUDTEUDvDJGRPF7 Also posted to Dreamwidth. There are comment count unavailable comments there so far.
Me

Water, water, everywhere

So last week I noticed a water seepage coming out from under my kitchen sink. At first I though it might be that the outlet from my washing machine had become blocked - I've had that happen before - but it has got worse this week, long after I last ran the washing machine.

So I called out the plumber and he's just been here.

There's a water heater under the sink and he took one look and said, "Your element's leaking".

That water heater was in the house when I moved in 25 years ago and the bottom has got very corroded. Looks like the whole unit will have to be replaced. He passed it back to head office and marked it an emergency.

Until then, its mops and towels to contain the leak. The alternative is switching off all the water to the house. Also posted to Dreamwidth. There are comment count unavailable comments there so far.
Me

Amazon oddity

I sometimes get questions passed to me by Amazon about a product I've bought, often clarifying a problem a customer, or prospective customer has. One item I bought recently has caused several questions so I was not surprised to see another one this morning.

Until I read the question:

"Anyone know how to get the diy setting on the remote to work? it doesn't let me adjust any rbg levels after pressing either of the diy buttons."

The item in question is an office chair. Also posted to Dreamwidth. There are comment count unavailable comments there so far.
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    confused confused
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Me

Note to self

After allowing a sandwich toaster to heat up, if you then want to move it, use the handle. Do not try pushing it on the side with the flat of your hand. Also posted to Dreamwidth. There are comment count unavailable comments there so far.
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    in pain
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Me

A chain of events

So, all my neighbours seem to be building extensions. I live in a cul-de-sac and my back garden abuts onto a house in the main part of the street. The owner has built an extension that extends towards my back garden.

A couple of weeks ago my satellite receiver stopped working. No satellite signal. I called out the engineer (I have repair insurance on the box) and he confirmed my suspicions. The extension was now blocking the satellite signal. The dish would have to be moved.

The upper half of my house is tile, not brick, and there is no chimney, so the only place a dish can be installed is on the lower bricked part. It was on the brick shed that extends into the garden. The guy reckoned I'd get a signal putting the dish on the wall of the house between the living room and kitchen windows. He started tapping the wall to mark where to drill and suddenly ran screaming into the house. There were lots of wasps about.

Next to the spot where he wanted to drill is an old hook. There used to be a washing line attached there but that snapped many years ago and I have a tumble dryer. There was a hole in the wall next to the hook and wasps were streaming in and out. I had a wasps' nest.

Turned out the engineer had a wasp phobia. So he found another spot for the dish, away from the wasps, still on the shed but nearer the house - at a height where I can walk into it if I'm not careful.

I was tempted to let the wasps be, but I realised by the white flecks on their mandibles as they left the hole that they were eating away the cavity insulation. I looked on Checkatrade and there's a local company called The Wasp Guys. Sounded like just the people I needed.

A wasp guy turned up this morning. Very efficient. He suited up in a protective tunic with hood and mask and stuck a spout in the hole and started shooting powder into it. This made the wasps very lively, but they do seem to have now stopped. He reckons that should have killed the queen and wasps don't like re-using old nests. If they are still active after a couple of days, they'll come back for free. Also posted to Dreamwidth. There are comment count unavailable comments there so far.
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    relieved relieved
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Me

Impressive Thunderstorm

The Sky box was receiving no signal for at least ten minutes, which is not too unusual, but I've never seen St. Johns Road look life a river before. The main part of the road, not the cul-de-sac I live in.

Useful word in the unusual words column in the latest Radio Times: petrichor - the smell produced when rain falls on dry soil. Also posted to Dreamwidth. There are comment count unavailable comments there so far.
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    enthralled
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