Wednesday, April 25, 2012

House Repairs

This week, I've been busy attending to various repairs required around the house. We have lived in this present house for a little over four years. The wear and tear has started showing. Is it normal for houses to start giving problems so soon? I'm not sure as this is the first house we own that we are living in. Before this, we lived in an apartment, and another house which E owned had been rented out and subsequently sold. Could it be that the construction quality is bad and materials and fittings provided inferior? Or are we just unfortunate? I believe it is a combination of both.

So far, we have fixed an internal waterpipe leak in one of the bathrooms, replaced a tap and pipe fittings for a sink, rectified the waterproofing of our car porch roof, replaced several door knobs (three incidents of being locked in), exterminated and treated the house for termites, and unclogged a few toilet bowls.

On Monday, we got a so-called roofing specialist to fix our roof which had been leaking when it rained, creating wet patches on our top floor ceiling, and if the rain was heavy, water dripped onto the floor.  Hopefully the problem has been rectified. It has not rained heavily these few days for me to find out.

Last Sunday, while I was showering, the water pump that creates the pressure to distribute water within the house short circuited. It tripped our power supply so we had no choice but to switch it off.  For the past few days, we had to shower with low water pressure until today, when I went out to purchase a brand new pump, and called the plumber to install it.

Next, we will need to fix or rebuild the dividing wall outside that we share with our next-door neighbour. Our driveway has a slight incline and I believe the foundation had not properly set when they built the wall. So over time, the lower part of the inclined shifted further downwards, causing cracks on the wall.

Another item that needed attention was our outdoor water filter. During the recent service, the technician discovered that both the pressure gauges were faulty. As he didn't have spare ones with him that time, he had to come back another time to replace them. A week later, I noticed that one of it was not functioning, despite it being new. I had to call them and get it replaced again.

All these calling and making appointments and juggling my schedule to accommodate the various service providers has kept me busy this week. It's a good thing that C's football practice at school has taken a temporary break as the mid-year exams are looming. This means I don't have to go to school to supply her with an afternoon snack and change of clothes and fetch her home later than usual.

Tomorrow, the plumber is returning and this time, to fix a problem with a leaky cistern for one of the toilet bowls. He couldn't do it today as he didn't have the spare parts and it was too late in the evening by the time he finished installing the water pump upstairs.

Within these three days, we have spent over RM4,000, mainly to fix the roof and replace the water pump.

Sigh, in such times I wish I have Handy Manny around -- a friendly, trustworthy, reasonable handyman who can fix everything with a smile and a kind and generous spirit. The ones we usually meet have dollar signs in their eyes, blow a lot of hot air, promise the sky and moon but deliver (unmentionable)...

Speaking of Handy Manny, I remember when C was younger, we used to enjoy watching his cartoons, singing and dancing along to the catchy theme song.

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