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Monday, March 19, 2012

Why Aren't Things So Simple?- Adventures With A Washing Machine

Nothing goes according to plan, and nothing on earth is ever as simple as one might expect, and certainly not in the case of the new washing machine. I explained in the last blog that our landlord arrived yesterday with the new machine. He came with two young lads, presumably with the intention of using them to lift in the new washing machine and then take out the old one. Which they did. Nobody seemed to have the first idea how to actually disconnect the old machine from the water supply. As you may or may not know there is generally always a pipe which you connect to the water supply so that the machine will fill automatically from the house mains and another tube which takes the water OUT of the machine during it's operation. The landlord had absolutely no idea where the stop-cock was in the house so as to turn off the supply. Carol had to go next door and ask a neighbour, as all the houses along this road are identical. It turned out to be behind a panel in the downstairs toilet. Which was a surprise as we didn't know this. I really would have expected our landlord, of all people, to have known this sort of detail.

It was only the start of our problems. Unfortunately.

The young man who set up the washing machine didn't really have the first idea what he was doing. We left them to get on with it. After all, it was the landlord's machine and we were quite happy to watch them work. But the young man had absolutely no concept of which tube went where. Anyway, it was eventually done and they left, taking the old machine outside for the Council to collect (which reminds me that I must contact them on Monday morning so that the refuse collection department can take the  old machine away. It is now defunct so it's better for it to go for recycling.)

So, with the washing machine plumbed in and operating (or so I thought) I put in a load of washing.

Then the problems really began.

The cycle seemed to take a very long time to complete. Surely a wash cycle in an automatic washing machine should take no more than an hour? Or so I would imagine. It was still going around 2 hours later. It then went into the final spin, and I was upstairs when it began, and thought to myself, 'good, at least we'll have some clean clothes at long last.' I came downstairs in the middle of the spin and the machine had moved out at a 45-degree angle from the work surface. Not what you expect to happen. I thought at first that Carol had pulled out the machine, but it seemed unlikely. The machine then went into full spin mode and it was getting faster and faster. It was really getting dangerous.

We had to stop the thing somehow or other and so we pressed the 'off'' button which got the spin cycle to slow down and eventually stop. We then discovered that the tube that brought the water into the machine from the mains supply was leaking badly, so we had to attempt to shut off the water. But no amount of effort would shut it off completely and there was a really bad drip coming from the connection, which meant we had to put the washing-up bowl under the connection to collect the water. We had to empty this several times as it filled up really fast. Also, we attempted to turn off the water supply at the stop-cock, but this would not shut off completely. Of course, all this meant that we couldn't do any washing up, or have the central heating on, flush the toilets, have shaves and so it went on. All this because that incompetent person thought they knew how to fit the washing-machine.

As a further result of all this, the machine has torn the floor-covering when in it's fastest spin-mode.

We learned, having attempted to stop the drips, that when they came to plumb in the machine they didn't remove the restraining bolts in the back of the machine, which are there to prevent the drum from revolving and causing damage during transit and hadn't set up the feet so that the machine was level. It's a wonder we didn't have serious damage to the machine as a result of all this, even a fire or the machine exploding.

Anyway, we have been without running water since Saturday late afternoon, the kitchen is in a mess because we can't use any water and I've been told by the rental agency that they must contact the landlord before they can rectify all these problems. So it's likely to be a couple more days before a competent plumber is called out to do the work required.
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