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*this* John W. Hays' take on things and experiences

Runaway Chores

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The last few times we ran the dishwasher, we found some wetness on the floor in front of it. Most recently, it turned out to be a lot more than just some wetness. We had a leak.

Fearing the worst, I hustled downstairs to check the ceiling. The dishwasher is located above our storage room, which has a finished ceiling. There was a light stain on one of the tiles. Curses!

We have some history with leaking dishwashers. In our previous home back in Eden Prairie, the leak went undetected for a long time, because it was located in the drain hose. Mice had chewed a hole in the plastic hose and the leak was not visible from the kitchen.

My fear was that it had happened again, and I prepared myself for pulling the dishwasher to look behind it. I didn’t really want to tear into that project, so I decided I should make sure the drain wasn’t blocked by debris, first. The only problem with that plan was the fact that I didn’t know how to gain access to the drain.

While I was sitting on the kitchen floor, peering at the inner workings of the dishwasher, I got a close view of the nasty buildup of gunk that had accumulated around the edge of the door and on the gaskets around the door. Could it be?

I gave them a thorough cleaning. While I was on the floor peering under the appliance, I got a scary view of places that never get cleaned. We have a cat, so areas that don’t get cleaned become an incredible mass of cat hair, which then becomes a super absorbent net that catches dog hair.

DSCN4449eCyndie got the small shop-vac for me and I started cleaning under kitchen cabinets. Cat crawl spaces. While I had the vacuum and was lying on the kitchen floor, she suggested I clean under the stove and the refrigerator, too. I couldn’t argue with that logic.

I pulled the drawer from beneath the oven and found enough items to feel like an archeologist discovering an ancient tomb. I had to ask Cyndie whether they were from us or the previous owners. She said it looked like a little of both.

After the stove, I moved on the refrigerator. Again, my first thought was, we own a cat. Those coils should be cleaned about 10-times more often than we are accomplishing. It was nightmarish under there. While I was grunting over that project, Cyndie started giving the oven a heavy dose of scrubbing.

DSCN4450eI asked permission to remove some screws so we could get to the space between the windows in the oven door. There was a cobweb in there that has bothered me for a long time. Soon, we had all the kitchen appliances in pieces, and we were cleaning nooks and crannies that have probably never been cleaned before.

Delilah was incredibly patient with us, as we toiled away the entire evening on this runaway series of cleaning chores, though she failed to mask how forlorn she felt over being neglected the whole time.

While we were busy dealing with the mission creep of the oven door and the refrigerator coils, the original problem of a leaking dishwasher appeared to have gone away. After cleaning the gaskets, we put it though a test run while we worked away in the kitchen.

There was no sign of any leaking whatsoever. Problem solved? I will be keeping a skeptical eye on it for the foreseeable future.












Written by johnwhays

February 17, 2016 at 7:00 am

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