A Plumbing Tale

There are two things Paul won’t attempt to do around here. Electrical work and plumbing work.

He will knock out a window and install a new one (which he did recently in the bedroom and will soon do in the upstairs loo) but he won’t go near an electrical or a plumbing problem. Smart man. I have to agree with him in that regard.

So, recently we had a plumbing problem. Actually two. We ignored both of them for way too long. The first one was a drippy kitchen faucet. It’s a fancy-shmancy Kohler faucet with one lever for the water turn-on. Front for cold and back for hot. I love that faucet. You can see it here:

First Tomatoes 7/23/05

So, it leaked. For years it has dripped. I have had to keep a sponge underneath that lever in which I would cut a half-circle so it would fit nicely up tight against the base of the faucet. What a pain.

So that’s one problem.

The next plumbing problem was our garbage disposal. Since we’ve lived here, we have had two of these, in 24+ years. Both InSinkErators. The most recent one was giving me fits. It would either not work at all and I’d have to wait for Paul to come home to fiddle with it and get it to go, or it would work but would be so darn loud it sounded like a jet airplane taking off in our kitchen.

That prompted a call to our plumber, Bill.

At first I just called him about the drippy faucet. But when he was here, he couldn’t fix it and had to call Kohler and get them to send (free of charge, BTW) a part that he thought might solve the problem. I told him I’d like him to install a new garbage disposal when he comes back and that I would order one then and call him when it arrived.

I found what seemed like a perfect garbage disposal. A new version of the InSinkErator called the “Evolution Septic Assist 3/4 HP Household Food Waste Disposer.”

We have a septic system and I thought this would fit the bill. And all the reviews said it was easy to install.

Yeah, right.

So that came by post fairly quickly, I called Bill, and he came to the house quickly, as well. He put the new part into the faucet but it did not stop the drip. It still leaked, only worse than before! I had to keep a little dish AND a sponge underneath it to catch the water every time we used it.

Bill also took one look at the new disposal box and told me it would not fit and it was the wrong style. I needed a “batch feed” kind, not one that you turn on with a wall switch, which we didn’t have. So after freaking out quietly for a few minutes, I asked him if he could get me one like we had, only newer, and install it that day – and he said he would. And he did, again very quickly, I might add.

He phoned Kohler again and told several people about my drippy faucet, and they told him that was a common problem with that model and that they’ve ironed out the bug and the newer model is much better. But they offered to send some little parts that would fix it, again free of charge to us. I was to call Bill back when they came in.

The next day they arrived by FedEx. I called Bill and back he came on Saturday to finally fix the drippy faucet.

*** The next time it leaks, we are buying a whole new faucet. ***

And the new garbage disposal is super. You can harldy even HEAR it when it’s running. I don’t know how they can make it THAT quiet! I love it. And my faucet doesn’t leak now!

The big problem I have now is that I own two brand new garbage disposals – one is intalled and one is still in its box. I need to return it, and I will need to PAY to ship it back and I will have to forfeit 15% of the cost of it for “re-stocking” charges.

Anybody want to buy an “Evolution Septic Assist 3/4 HP Household Food Waste Disposer” at a discount price?

I have notified the company I bought it from three times and so far I have not heard back. I’m sure they don’t relish having an item of that size returned, but I will persevere.

The moral of this story is:





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3 Responses to A Plumbing Tale

  1. wayne says:

    Did you include the president and the regional director of the disposal company in the letter? Keep after them and apply firm, implacable pressure. They should waive the 15% restocking fee and also the shipping cost. Be polite but firm and do not let up until you prevail.


  2. Rhubarb says:

    My father was a plumber and electrician. He always said he hated to work on something when either the person had tried to fix it himself or it was pre-installed by some other plumber. Just let me do the whole job, start by purchasing to finish by cleaning up, he would say. So I agree with the sentiment in your entry today.


  3. Sandy says:

    wow…i think you might be right…let them buy it.


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