Sunday, 9 March 2014

In which I act like a dumb blonde

I arrived in Asda's car park not very long after ten this morning and was astonished at how full it was, especially since the store had opened only at ten o'clock.  At least, that is when I think they open on Sunday mornings.  It was not that I wanted to do any shopping, but they have cash dispenser machines which are the nearest to us and I needed to ensure I had enough cash to pay the plumber when he finishes the job, which I hope won't be too much longer now.

I blame it all on the Old Bat (of course).  I was  quite content to leave the landing floorboards squeaking.  In fact, because I have long known where to tread so as to avoid making the boards squeak, I had almost forgotten that they do so.  The trouble is that the Old Bat shuffles and is unable to avoid the squeaky bits - and she complained that SOMETHING MUST BE DONE.  That was a couple of weeks ago but, give her her due, she hadn't mentioned it again so I can't say she was nagging me.  All the same, yesterday afternoon, after I had spent time digging the garden, I got out the tools.  It was easy enough to lift the carpet, drill a hole in each one of the offending floorboards, insert and tighten a screw in each hole and replace the carpet.  I think it probably took me longer to find the tools than it did to do the job.  A was checking something on the computer when the OB called out that there was water dripping through the kitchen ceiling.

I had been over-confident.  I was quite sure I knew where the pipes ran under the landing and that there would be no problem inserting the screws where I did.  It's easy enough for you to say it - and I know I should have checked, but I really didn't think I needed to.

I managed to find a plumber willing to turn out early on a Saturday evening but I had punctured one of the heating pipes.  Now our central heating was installed back when 10mm pipework was the norm - and the plumber had nothing he could use to repair our pipe.  He left things safe, promising to send one of his men to a supplier who is open on Sundays and the guy is due here any minute.  Meanwhile, I spent three hours mopping up and we finally ate some time after 9.00pm.

Luckily, I am able to shut off the water to the heating separately so we still have water for tea and coffee - and flushing the toilet and showering - but if we want hot water for washing up, that means boiling a kettle.  Also luckily, the temperature has risen nicely so we have not frozen.

Next time I will remember - measure twice, cut once.  Or, check it's OK to insert a screw there!

Now, where is that plumber?


The Broad said...

Poor you! It could be worse -- it could have been a gas pipe -- which a builder's assistant managed to do when we were having a set of stairs installed.

joeh said...

Was the pipe right against the floorboard? Did you use an extra long screw? I don't think I would have checked either.

Must be a really old house, those old houses are always full of surprises.

I hope the squeak is gone.

Jenny Woolf said...

I hate to say it but it's the oldest mistake in the book. (i bet you are glad I wasn't standing right next to you and saying that when you punctured the pipe. ) But you could rightly respond that old houses are full of all kinds of stuff that shouldn't have been installed there in the first place.

Brighton Pensioner said...

Joe: No, it wasn't a very long screw, just that the pipes are only just below the floorboards - and the house isn't that old, built in 1947.

And Jenny, the plumber told me he gets more call outs for that reason than any other, so at least I'm not the only one!

Brighton Pensioner said...

And now there's a different squeak!

Sarah said...

My ex did exactly the same thing - drilled right into a heating pipe which then leaked through to the kitchen right on to the new boiler we'd just had put in - I think that was one of the lesser DIY mishaps he had ...