May Contain Blueberries

the sometimes journal of Jeremy Beker

A misadventure of sanitary proportions The toilets in our house have been getting annoying. There has been an increasing tendancy for them to not stop filling after they have been flushed. No overflow or mess, the flapper inside just doesn’t drop back into place when it has let all the water out. So today, I put on my plumber hat and decided to fix them.

Trip 1. Go to Lowes and buy new parts.

I am basically replacing all the moving parts in the toilet. This involves taking the tank off of the bowl which isn’t hard it just exposes areas normally not exposed to the light of day. Crevices on toilets are a bad idea. Toilets should be completely round, no edges, no corners, and definately no crevices. Life would be better. I am sure that is a patentable idea.

The removal (and cleaning of aforementioned crevices) all went quite smoothly until I turned the tank over to unscrew the ring that tightens the drain and flapper assembly onto the tank. This required a wrench that could open about three inches. I didn’t have anything anywhere close.

Trip 2. Go to Ace (which is closer than Lowes) and get 16” Chan-nel-lock pliers.

With this new tool, the ring came off just fine and I was able to attach the new parts to the tank and replace the tank on the bowl. Just one thing left to do, reattach the water to the fill valve and we are all set. Jeremy is foolishly lulled into a sense of accomplishment at this point.

I need to put the new compression nut onto the old water pipe. The old one comes off, but the new one doesn’t fit. I fight with it for a while and then try using the old compression nut. But it is a different size and doesn’t quite fit (which results in water squirting out when you turn it on. Water is supposed to stay in the toilet; Not acceptable.)

Trip 3. Return to Ace prior to our haircut appointment for new water pipe. The ones they have don’t look right and I left the old one at home. Trip aborted.

Interlude 1. Get hair cut, go grocery shopping. Come home. Plant Clemitas in the back yard. Get eaten alive by mosquitos. I swear they were just waiting in their little homes during all the rain we have been getting and came out today shouting “Paaaarty!”

Trip 4. Return to Lowes with old pipe for comparison. Get new pipe.

Now I have what I need. The final installation goes wonderfully. First bathroom done, two left.

The installation in our master bathroom went quite well even though their is alot less space. Inserting one’s head in between the wall and the toilet is not exactely what I recommend as a “fun” activity for every weekend (aka “becoming intimate with your toilet for fun and profit”). We keep a pretty clean household, but I found a few areas we missed. They are clean now. Thanks for asking.

At this point I have put off doing the last bathroom until tomorrow. It is the smallest and I am sure I will have to attempt all sorts of contortions to get everything done, but I have the process down and it should be good (he tells himself).