Wednesday, August 6, 2014

I Hate Laundry Rooms

"I Hate Laundry "Rooms" is what the wallpaper in our laundry room says.  I thought that was a silly wallpaper to have in a laundry room and wondered why the previous owner would have put it up. Shouldn't she have been happy that she had a laundry room?  So many of the houses we looked at didn't even have a laundry room. They all had hookups in the garage. Be thankful for that laundry room.

Then we hooked up our appliances.

Part I: The Great Washing Machine Debacle
The first thing we noticed was that the washing machine wouldn't sit close to the wall due to the hookups.  It stuck way out into the room where we couldn't open the door all the way.   We still have traditional "old school" appliances - no over sized front loading wash here. All we could figure is that washer/dryers were much, much smaller in the 70's when this house was built.  So we decided to call a plumber to move the connections higher and/or put them in an inset box so that we could get the washer closer to the wall(allowing for the door to open).  The plumber arrived and quickly told us that it would buy us a little room but that they wouldn't get as close as we needed it to without kinking the hoses.  He also said we would have to get someone to come in and do sheet rock work after since they would have to cut a big hole in the wall to get to the plumbing. Estimate for everything $900. We decided that it's not a huge priority and would figure something else out. He suggested that we could move them against the other wall in the room to allow the door to open.  Sounds great except that we would just need to get longer hoses, get a longer electrical cord(or install a new outlet), and longer connections for the dryer. Plumber then gave us a bill for $120 for his time that we did nothing but give an estimate and an alternative idea.

So we moved the washer/dryer to the other wall. We had an electrician install a new outlet(luckily he was schedule to do some other work anyway). Luke set about to find the longer hoses.  Found one but not a long enough drain hose. So we tried to connect two together. That test ended fast when the connection wouldn't hold under the pressure of the water.  A wet, wet mess.  So then we ordered a drain hose that was specifically made to extend the original drain hose.  Success - kind of! The connections wouldn't seal due to a ridged end piece on the drain hose(made to seal into the wall connection). so water leaked. Less of a wet mess - but still not desirable.  Luke is one determined man, so he worked and worked on getting that ridged end piece off. Finally it worked! Hoses successfully sealed together.  Luke's work is holding up well.

Part II: The Dryer
When the dryer was hooked up and tested, we immediately smelled a burning smell. That couldn't be right. We tried turning it on numerous times - same smell.  We had the people that connected it upon move in come back to test their work. Maybe they had done something wrong and could fix it. They got the same results and told us that it was probably a clogged duct that needs to be cleaned. We had noticed that it vented out the roof instead of out of the side of the house, so we thought maybe it was a design problem along with a clog.  So I'm thinking at this point - no wonder the previous owner had a clothes line in the back yard!  (AND NO WONDER SHE HAS THIS CRAZY WALLPAPER!)So we unplugged it thinking we had a major fire hazard on our hands.  First, we thought big and were just going to have the work done to take the vent out underneath or on the side of the house. But then we thought maybe we should have it properly diagnosed before spending all that money. Repairman came out.  He tinkered around with it, asked some questions, and then said that it probably was just some lent that ended up on the heating element during the move that burned off when we first started it.  He couldn't find anything wrong with it, and the burning smell was gone. Ok great! Money well spent to hear nothing is wrong. I guess it was good peace of mind anyway.

So, after a month in our house, we were finally able to wash AND dry clothes in that crazy laundry room of ours. The door opens and shuts just fine. Luke is my rock star on getting the connections working properly and not giving up.

Interestingly enough, a neighbor came by to meet us and said that all the neighbors he knew  had the same laundry room issue of not being able to close the door if the appliances were hooked up as intended. And everyone he knows did the same thing we did(move the washer/dryer to the other wall).

Now, I know why that owner put this wallpaper in. But after being without one for a month, I would like to change it "I'm grateful for my laundry room". Or maybe I'll just leave it as is so I can remember the month-long soap opera.