Wednesday, August 5, 2009

Outside and Inside

Man did our grass need a trim. The lawn was nicely manicured before we bought it, but it has been awhile now. We decided to get a reel mower (commonly referred to as an "old" mower) for a variety of reasons. For one, its a lower initial investment as well as lower maintenance costs. It's better for your grass (scissor instead of rotary cut), and we can safely leave it in the basement without the fumes bowling us over. Of course, no gas required, better for the environment, and a good workout. The downsides? It's a tool, not a machine -- effort is required. Luckily, our yards are not very large. I'm expecting this will be the "hardest" mow, since the grass was a bit of a jungle. See the picture!

We also decided to tackle the back line of our property. It is ... overgrown. I got back in the brush and chopped, and Lindsay was in our yard pulling it out. It was actually kinda fun. I'd say we are about 50% done with removing gross stuff. Then we're gonna add 1) a privacy fence 2) our own plantings 3) both. I'll post something on the final result.

Stupid drain stopper wasn't working so good. Basically, it doesn't open as far as it should. As you can see from the picture, its basically a little lever. You push it down to make the drain stopper come up. Since it wasn't coming up far enough, I pulled the cover off and played with it some. Originally I thought it was rusty, but I think the real issue is that its too long for where the drain hole is. My solution was to move the drain up on the tub and screw it down. I'm not sure if that's a permanent fix -- I guess we'll see. If it annoys me again, I'm taking that sucker out.

Stupid garbage disposal wasn't working so good. Every time I would run it, it would seize up and quit. This time I finally took it slow and figured out the real issues. Before I go much further, here's the rundown on garbage disposals:

1) Water goes into a little cup with holes along the bottom edge.
2) The motor runs little cutting things that spin along the bottom edge of the cup.
3) If the motor gets too hot (ie gets caught on something), the circuit breaker will trip.
4) If the circuit breaker trips, you can't reset it right away -- gotta wait for the motor to cool down.
5) You can use an allen wrench to spin the motor from the bottom.

So to fix one that's stuck on food, you stick an allen wrench in the bottom and spin the blades. If you can make a complete revolution, you've fixed it! Reset and run. Unless you have a little plastic button in it. In this case, you keep fixing it and it keeps breaking. Why? Because that thing doesn't flush away, nor does water break it down. I finally tracked it down today, dislodged it from a hole, and pulled it out with my hand. Voila -- fixed!


  1. That lawn mowing makes you look like a real man.

    -Shane Donnelly

  2. You should try a toilet plunger on the disposal!
    I cover mine in a plastic bag for sanitation.
    Along with the allen wrench trick, it works wonders!