Oh yes. Again.
At least there’s no water damage this time. For those of you who haven’t followed my life closely over the last few years, let me fill you in on some details.
In 2006, there was a very nasty windstorm in the Seattle area dubbed the “Hanukkah Eve Wind Storm.” It happened in December and power was knocked out in the area. We were out of power for seven days, which turned out to be a blessing in some ways, but that’s beside the point. Our house is built on a hill and has a fancy footing drain that takes water from the front of the house to the back when it rains heavily. This drain failed because it was plugged with blackberry vines, and the sump pump in the basement had no power to take care of the water as it slowly filled that floor. We had eight inches in the basement. The cold weather prevented mold from growing as we waited for power to return so we could use blowers to dry things out. We had to replace the carpeting, the furniture, the computers and repaint the walls.
A year and a half ago, the kittens were in the laundry room late one night playing with the laundry room sink faucets. The sink is directly above the library. I woke to the sound of pitiful kitty cries and a sense of displacement to the waterfall sounds within the house. Let’s just summarize by saying water flows in strange ways when it travels from one floor to the next–the water missed the musical instruments and most of the books in the library. And I had a new-found appreciation for how USAA insurance jumps in to help.
These things don’t sound so bad when I look at them, but at the time they were pretty darn traumatic. Then, we had the issue with the Water Association insisting we put a second water line up to our guest house. Fine. We paid for it. Then we had this leak in the system that ended up with $1000 water bills for months on end before we could figure it out. Great. We hired a company that empties the water lines and fills them with a gas and walks around with special stethoscope to listen for the leak. Another chunk-o-change, and we experience our first “regular” bill of $30 a month. That’s been fixed for a while now.
The water we get from the street has almost zero pressure. So, we have a pump on each service that provides us with pressure. It draws the water from the street up to the houses and pushes it through so that we can fill a glass of water in a few seconds rather than, say half a minute.
Now, I finally get to this week’s water woe. They are adding a road behind us and the water district had to rebuild their lines up an adjacent street. To do so, they turned off our water. They didn’t tell us exactly when they were going to turn off the water, either. We knew, vaguely, that it would happen and the first time it was off it was for about half an hour. Then, it went off for a whole day. When the work was done, our pumps started doing some strange things. It started with the first pump to the guest cottage. Then the pump to our house…and now both of them are cycling non-stop even when we are not running water at either location. Sighs.
The plumber is sure it’s due to the fact that grit was somehow introduced into the system during the road work. Still, it’s a huge pain to have to repair and replace the water pumps. At least water seems to be our main bugaboo on this property. Not like we have to worry about…say…changing light bulbs.