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Now I remember [message #94402] Wed, 08 September 2021 21:45 Go to next message
gofar99 is currently offline  gofar99
Messages: 1650
Registered: May 2010
Location: Southern Arizona
Illuminati (4th Degree)
Hi Everyone, A bit lengthy, but amusing way I spent the last two days.

I remember why I like electronics and not plumbing. Electricity, it seems likes to stay inside the wires and circuit components with few (like RF) exceptions. Water, however IMO does not seem to want to stay inside pipes or fixtures. I'll explain. Two days ago I discovered that the float inside one of our toilets would not completely shut off. This is generally considered a simple fix. So, I went to the hardware store and bought a pair of replacement float assemblies. We have two bathrooms so it seemed wise to replace the other one as both were of the same vintage. So far, so good. Got home and shut off the supply valve on the one that leaked. I flushed the toilet. Then I started to disconnect the float assembly. For those of you that have never done this it is a hand tightened nut on the bottom of the water tank. Something I didn't check (not enough light to see inside well) was how much residual water was still in the tank. It really didn't take very long to find out. It contained about 3 liters that promptly flooded the floor. It got the rugs, a shoe rack and me all at the same time. After controlling the mess I replaced the assembly and checked the level in the tank. Not enough. It required removal of the assembly to adjust the height as the fine adjustment screw did not raise the level sufficiently. Nothing is worse than a commode that won't flush well. Embarassed Yuck. OK, this time, I used a bucket to catch the residual water. Everything was happy after I re-installed the assembly. Fine, with excess confidence,I moved on to number two. Very Happy It is much less accessible. That is it is in a horrible location. The shut off valve was "cemented" open by the hard water and would not budge. I applied some Liquid Wrench and loosened the handle retaining nut a little. It moved and shut off the water. Aware of the previous issue with water, I put a large pan under the tank when I removed the float assembly. It went well and was back together in minutes. As I was patting myself on the back I discovered the shut off valve was leaking. Crying or Very Sad I spent over an hour trying to get it to stop. No luck. Worse, the closest hardware store was now closed. I left the pan in place and hoped it would not overflow as this is the bathroom my spouse uses. I figure you all can envision how that would play out. Confused The next morning I checked the main house water shut off to see if it was operational. Yes it was and I had the long handled wrench it needed. Off to the hardware store to get a new valve. Naturally it would be a brand that no one stocks in town. A replacement was in stock though. At this point my luck started to change for the better. Even though the shut off valve is attached to the feed pipe with a "compression" fitting I did not have to cut it off and replace it. I canjust see how that would go. The old fitting worked fine in the new valve and the connection to the tank fit as well. Water now stays in the pipes and fixtures like it is supposed to. In the time it took to do all this I could have built a small amplifier and the electrons would not be nearly so problematic.

Good listening
Bruce


Good Listening
Bruce
Re: Now I remember [message #94404 is a reply to message #94402] Thu, 09 September 2021 09:34 Go to previous messageGo to next message
Wayne Parham is currently offline  Wayne Parham
Messages: 18148
Registered: January 2001
Illuminati (33rd Degree)

Oh, Bruce, I feel your pain. And I hear you - that kind of stuff isn't my favorite either. Especially after it has sat awhile and the valves won't budge. And even worse - Now days, the replacement parts aren't as good as they used to be so nuts that used to be metal are now made of plastic and are easier to strip. All-in-all, just not an enjoyable thing to fix, but necessary.
Re: Now I remember [message #94438 is a reply to message #94404] Thu, 16 September 2021 13:01 Go to previous messageGo to next message
Rusty is currently offline  Rusty
Messages: 627
Registered: May 2018
Location: Kansas City Missouri
Illuminati (1st Degree)
That is why plumbers charge so much I reckon. A simple thing can cascade into an overblown project. Full of expletive's. Hope you changed your shut off to a ball valve type. They're suppose to be less prone to build up of minerals. They say you should open and close your shut off valves once a year of so. But who remembers. I have hard water where I live too and have a leaky shut off valve whenever I shut it off. Which ain't completely either. I need to get it replaced. It's no DIY though. The shut off from the street is about 6 ft. down and needs a special rod to turn it off that only the city and plumbers have. I'll have to pry open the wallet instead.
Re: Now I remember [message #94439 is a reply to message #94438] Thu, 16 September 2021 20:55 Go to previous messageGo to next message
gofar99 is currently offline  gofar99
Messages: 1650
Registered: May 2010
Location: Southern Arizona
Illuminati (4th Degree)
Hi, The tool is available from most hardware stores. I got one a few years back and it was not costly. I would expect the current price to be in the $30 range. It is a simple thing. Long handle with cross bars for leverage and a forked end to place on the valve control. Just don't be to rough on the valve or you might damage it. They tend to get stuck a little but are long lasting and durable.

Good Listening
Bruce
Re: Now I remember [message #94441 is a reply to message #94439] Fri, 17 September 2021 12:26 Go to previous messageGo to next message
Rusty is currently offline  Rusty
Messages: 627
Registered: May 2018
Location: Kansas City Missouri
Illuminati (1st Degree)
Doggies! I did not know. Thanks.
Re: Now I remember [message #94442 is a reply to message #94441] Fri, 17 September 2021 21:41 Go to previous messageGo to next message
gofar99 is currently offline  gofar99
Messages: 1650
Registered: May 2010
Location: Southern Arizona
Illuminati (4th Degree)
If you can weld .....(I can't) you can make one out of scrap stuff. A 3-4 foot long rod with a "T" handle and two flat pieces of steel about 1 inch square welded to the other end with a gap of about 1/2 inch between them. Crude..but then the real ones are too.

Good Listening
Bruce
Re: Now I remember [message #94447 is a reply to message #94442] Sat, 18 September 2021 10:39 Go to previous message
Rusty is currently offline  Rusty
Messages: 627
Registered: May 2018
Location: Kansas City Missouri
Illuminati (1st Degree)
Yeah I can weld. With solder. But that's out of my scope of limited knowledge and skill base. But mucho gracias for the thought. Of all the trades, I think plumbing would be the most taxing to deal with in a service type perspective. I really enjoy Richard Threthewey of This Old House. He makes it seem the respectable trade it is. Like Rodney Dangerfield always said, "No respect".
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