I have mentioned once or a thousand times during the course of this year about my issues with home appliances. It seems as if every time I turn around something else decides to die a horrible electrical death. Recently the refrigerator bled out (oh it was only water) all over the kitchen and into the dining room (I hate GE Profile so much). Prior to that the oven had given up and we were reduced to using the microwave (which wasn’t bad really). At the time I had an injured shoulder and couldn’t pick up anything to get it into an oven anyway. The air conditioning went out during a very hot spell (naturally) and to get the best deal and the energy tax rebates we went ahead and replaced the furnace (it was a disaster waiting to happen anyway). Today I actually made the final payment on the furnace/air conditioning.
I was feeling so good about not having that high amount of debt for the furnace/ air conditioning hanging over my head that to celebrate (I know, I’m strange) I decided to help Devoted Spouse by taking my turn at doing a few loads of laundry. He was busy with other home maintenance issues and I didn’t want to bother him. I can get the laundry baskets bounced down two flights of stairs without spilling much more than an errant washcloth and errant washcloths are a favorite of EmmaLou so everyone is happy.
After 3 loads of laundry and the associated trips up and down two flights of stairs, I was really feeling my oats, so to speak. I got a little too excited – laundry-wise – and decided it was time to wash the coverlet off our bed. Now this is not a heavy comforter, just a lightweight cover, but it is somewhat large. Went through the wash cycle with no problem. Went through the dry cycle with no problem… sort of.
I went down to the basement to check on whether or not the coverlet was dry and at the foot of the stairs I smelled something burning. Oh crap – I’ve smelled that aroma before — it’s a burned out motor and it had to be coming from either the washer or dryer. Crap, crap, crap. I got to the laundry area and the washer was just humming along doing its thing happily unaware that right next to it, its mate was dying a horrible slow death. I unplugged the dryer and called to Devoted Spouse.
He came downstairs with appropriate dryer tools in hand. He pulled the dryer away from the wall, took off some of the back panels, rummaged around a bit, and the smell was still that of burning machinery. I decided then and there I didn’t want him to try and fix it – it needed a decent burial; it was 12 years old and had fought the good fight.
So off to the Big Orange Box of Toys (Home Depot) we went and being the smart consumer I am, I did a pre-emptive strike and bought not just a dryer but its matching washer, too. These aren’t the big hummers you see advertised on tv — we don’t generate that much laundry, and frankly I don’t need a steam function on my dryer. That’s why God made Dry Cleaners. But they still run about $800 each. Crap. There goes that Mac I wanted to buy.
What irks me is while these are high energy machines, we don’t qualify for the tax credit because the state of Ohio is just now dickering around with the paperwork with the Federal Government to figure out how to go about this process. So we get the energy benefits, but no tax credits. Grrrr…stupid bureaucracy.
So, let’s tally this up for 2009 – a new furnace, new air conditioning, a new water softener, a new stove/oven, new refrigerator, new washer, and a new dryer (we bought a new dishwasher in late 2008 so that doesn’t qualify even though it was pricey). All told, almost $12,000. That’s alot of money for one year. But the good news is I won’t have to put out that kind of dough again for a long time hopefully.
On the other hand, there is a hot water heater lurking in the basement and I can hear it whispering and plotting…it’s up to no good…I just know one of these days I will wake up to cold water coming from the bathroom shower and a flooded basement and realize I should have replaced that water heater the day before…sigh…
Appliances…can’t live without ’em…can’t find a trebuchet large enough to fling them where the sun don’t shine…