Underneath It All

I am not really a handyman, but for the past several months I’ve had the urge to fix. I’ve attempted to fix things that I normally wouldn’t think twice about hiring someone else to repair. For example, I replaced a car battery, changed our front and back door locks, and fixed a leaky faucet. I know, I know, I’m not rebuilding a car engine, but for someone like myself who is not mechanically inclined, these are quite surprising feats.

As I’ve mentioned before on Janella.com, we bought a new washer and in dryer. They both initially worked great, but the dryer stopped doing a great job in drying several weeks ago. By going through the troubleshooting steps in the manual, we figured out the problem was with the dryer exhaust hose. The hose connects from the back of the dryer, runs underneath the house, and exits through the side of the house.

No Rock-Paper-Scissors-Lizard-Spock here. Lucky me, I get to go under the house! The last time I was under house was four years ago. It was an unpleasant experience. I think I may still have a few scrapes from that last adventure. As a kid, going under the house was fun. When we had plumbing problems that required someone to go under and check on “the pipes”, I readily volunteered. Of course I was much smaller and slimmer back then. But now as a larger and more phobia-straddled adult, going under the house is not much fun. It was also once fun to climb up to the roof of the house to watch the Fourth of July fireworks. Now the only reason I go up on the roof is to clean the gutters before the next rainfall.

For this trip down below, I was intent on being prepared or as best prepared as possible. I bought a pair of coveralls at Sears (on sale!). I also bought a pair of hardy knee pads at Lowe’s, in hopes of counteracting any beating my knees might encounter. In hindsight I should have also purchased gloves, as my hands can take quite a thrashing under the house as well.

To make a long story short, with my wife’s help, we were able to replace the dryer hose and fix the problem. The dryer once again works as advertised! I know it’s not rocket science, but it just goes to show that all it takes is a little research and hard work to fix certain problems around the house. I’m not sure where this “urge to fix” has come from – perhaps from all the DYI shows on television. But with the help of the Internet, with all of its self-help websites and videos, you can do almost do anything. I don’t think I’d tackle rewiring the house, but as for the smaller jobs, leave them to me.

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