This past week, despite temperatures in the Ville being in the upper 90’s range, Kelly and I were desperate for a little heat.
Don’t get me wrong, the weather was definitely too hot. And our air conditioners, though they believe they’re the Little Engines That Could, cannot quite cool the entire house. Despite our best efforts, the house was a bit on the Toast side of things.
The problem was not in the house, or outside of it. Oh, no. The problem was with the pipes.
Early last week, there was a busted pipe. We found this out not because there was water everywhere. Quite the contrary. The water was off. We came home and tried several different things; the shower, the sink, the dishwasher. Nothing. So Kelly called and got it turned back on and found the source of the leak–and pipe in the utility room, which apparently was gushing water and more or less flooded the room.
After the water was turned back off, it was another day or so before anyone could go out and fix the pipes. Once that happened, I took a shower and we rejoiced in the water flow.
The next day, however, Kelly’s shower turned a bit frigid. And by ‘a bit’ I mean she had approximately two seconds of warm water and then nothing but ice-cold. She took what we can probably assume was the fastest shower ever taken (by her) and then jumped out. When we both got home from work, we tried a couple different things. I ran the shower for almost ten minutes trying to get it warmed up. The dishwasher was run. I think we may have left a sink tap on for a while. Of course, nothing worked. This was Wednesday of last week.
I took one ‘shower’ in the cold water. It was roughly forty seconds of torture; I rinsed myself down (splashed water on my arms), washed my face (while standing at the farthest corner of the shower), and then got out and ran my hair under the sink so I wouldn’t have to stand in the spray. I think I got hypothermia. It was one of those days where, no matter how warm it gets outside, you can’t quite seem to get sufficiently warm–all because of a shower in ice water.
By Friday, we had had enough. I called my dad (my Mr. Fix-It) and he came out and tried for about twenty minutes to get the water heater from ‘misbehaving’ to ‘functioning’ with no luck. After his attempts failed, we called the landlord (granted, she had known about this for a couple days; we were just hoping that my dad would fix it and no one else would need to expend energy).
She sent over our neighbor, who helps with the lawn care and a couple other things and is a great help. After Peter (unsuccessfully) fiddled with the heater, we all threw in the towel and, on Monday, called a plumber for the second time in a week.
The water heater, it turned out, had been completely drenched in the Pipe Breakage of ’14, and a part had to be replaced. The plumbers did it super quickly and, after they left, I stood in the bathroom and ran warm water just for kicks. It was nice.
So after nearly a week with no and/or freezing water, I am happy to report our water is now sourced from Natural Hot Water Heaters and not Snow of the Alps.
Good heavens. Those pipes.
For now, we’re just hoping nothing else got drenched and has yet to be noticeably malfunctioning. We’re hoping that everything is now in Working Order and will remain so for the rest of…well, however long that house stands, but at least as long as Kelly and I are occupants. Seriously, we really have no idea how to fix things. We’re hopeless.
But really good at calling a plumber.