Monday, February 06, 2006

Home maintenance follies

Subtitled: "Everything takes longer than it takes."

The little countertop microwave that I'd had for ages finally zapped its last zap last November. No big deal - it was cheap when I got it twenty years ago. So I look at the counter space it took up, and I look at the unused space over the stove, and I have the brilliant idea to get an over-the-stove microwave for the next one. So, in November, the little dead microwave goes in the dumpster, and days are numbered for the old hood over the range:

So I browse through Consumer Reports as I always do, and go over to Home Depot online and buy a new over-the-stove microwave with delivery and installation (~$300). In a couple of weeks, the guys come over with the new microwave, unbox it, take out the old vent, and stop cold. Nope, won't touch another thing. We need a new electrical outlet wired into the cabinet above before they will do anything, even though there are two outlets already adjacent to the stove which have worked just fine for the microwave in the past.

So we call the electricians, wait another couple of weeks, and they finally come and have to run a complete new line from the fuse box through the kitchen ceiling and then finally we have a new outlet inside the cabinet. Which is useful for plugging in the microwave and exactly nothing else. Another $500.

Meanwhile the new microwave is sitting on our counter, where we are using it daily, and it occupies all but about the front 2 inches of counter space. We call the Home Depot guys back, and after another couple weeks they return to attempt a re-install. Except they come in, drill two holes, hit cinderblock (which is between every unit as a firewall) and refuse to do any more, saying they're not allowed to do anything with the cinderblock. They walk out. Naturally, they do NOT provide us with one of their consumer (dis)satisfaction surveys they're always prompting us to fill out at other times.

So we search and search for an independent contractor who will do the job, and wait another 6 or 8 weeks until they come over. Meanwhile we have almost no counter space and have resorted to using the stove as our only free piece of counter.

FINALLY, today, after 3 months, and another $100 (yes, that's a total of $900), we have success:

Hooray! A fully-installed microwave, AND a big new piece of free, unused, empty countertop!

I'm in housewife nirvana. I think that means it's time to make some Jell-o Jigglers for my kids.


Flatman said...

Congratulations...that didn't take long...! :)

Cliff said...

Lesson learn in life..the simplest thing is the hardest thing to do.

Solution? Make everything complicated ;)

TriFeist said...

Very pretty! Microwave's HO!

Fe-lady said... ain't ever just plain EASY is it???
I am ready to gut my kitchen soon for a remodel, but just plain scared to start!

Dawn - Pink Chick said...

Its always so nice to reclaim counter space!

mipper said...

nice! counterspace... you can never, ever have enough. i'm still waiting for the day when i won't run out of it. ;) the new set up is gorgeous.

Bridget said...

If it makes you feel any better, in October we had a little flood in our kitchen that ruined our new flooring and some of the cabinets. Within days the flooring was removed and soon our insurance agreed to pay to repair everything. All we had to do was decide about any changes we wanted. Well, it's February, I still have no dishwasher and the flooring in the kitchen still isn't installed. Someday...

Dianne W. said...

From Monty Python: "And it all makes work for the working man to do..."
It's awesome to have an END to the cycle of work! I'd love my m/w to be mounted under the cupboards, but I'm afraid of what that may start!