Sunday, February 12, 2012


Scott and I both come from places where water softeners were never used. There was no need.
The water is naturally soft where we come from. So we came to this house knowing nothing about water softeners. Apparently they need to be replaced(expensive) or maintenanced (also expensive) about every 12 years or so. Ours is probably that old, and in fact, we think it's as old as the house which is more like 18 years, and since we knew nothing about water softeners, we didn't know much about how to care for it besides what the previous owners mentioned in passing which was to put salt in every 2-3 months. So, every two to three months we'd add one bag of salt and call it good. I think we were running what was left of this water softener, into the ground.

Our softener started leaking over the past month. I talked to some people around here about who they liked and trusted when it came to water softeners and got a couple of recommendations. I've gotten kind of scared of having workers come into my home because of a recent bad experience when we had some air duct cleaning guys over. They were worse than car salesmen. And to me, that means they're really, really bad. Anyway, that's another story.

The first place I called came out to our house and tested our water, which was really, really hard(not good), and checked the pressure which was really, really high(also not good) and then upon peering into the tank where we put our salt, besides seeing that the water level was way too high, he also announced that it was empty. Empty, I thought? Really? But look at all that water. Apparently the water doesn't count. And it's not supposed to be that high. The salt should have been that high. Then I took some time to ask him a few questions and I learned a lot during our appointment. He said we needed a new water pressure regulator and either a new water softener or we needed to put all new stuff on the softener tank we already had. Both options were really expensive. He left and a couple of days later I called the other company I'd heard about. They said we needed the same stuff, but the price they quoted us was several hundred dollars less! Happy day! It was still expensive, but this way we wouldn't be using all of our tax return on this repair, just part of it. So they came in and within a few hours the old, leaky one was out and the new one was in, and the water pressure regulator thing was also put in. Scott just had to make a new, bigger wall panel covering to cover the hole in the wall where they put in the pressure regulator. Yay for tax returns!

the new water pressure regulator

Here's the new softener. I should have taken a picture of our old one. It looked pretty terrible compared to this one.

Now onto our second repair. My treadmill got a hole on the belt. When the belt rotates while I'm walking, it makes a really loud noise and shakes a little because the piece on the belt that's torn, sticks out and is catching on something else underneath that I can't see. Anyway, we thought we'd have to dump it and be without a treadmill for awhile which made me really sad because I use it everyday, but we knew since we were getting a new water softener system we really shouldn't do both and the water softener takes precedence. Now, remember how I just got stitches? One day this week I was on my elliptical thinking about how much I'm already missing my treadmill(the elliptical is sure getting hard with my continual weight gain) and then I got distracted and started thinking about my stitches and the thought came to me, 'I wonder if I could stitch up my belt?' I got one of my more heavy duty needles, and some plain old thread(though I might buy a stronger kind in the future if this doesn't hold) and I sat down and stitched it back together. Even though the hole wasn't huge, it took me a long time to stitch it back up because it was hard trying to get my needle through the material on the belt. But I finished and I've used it a couple of times since without any noise or shaking! Wahoo! Let's hope this holds up for awhile.


Casey said...

Would duct tape work for the hole? I don't know much about treadmills, but it seems like if the hole isn't too big it would work.

Elisa said...

You know, I actually did try duct tape first. It stayed on for about 5 rotations before it peeled off!

The Horne's said...

Good work!!

Kimberlyn said...

There is some tape like duct tape, called gorilla tape. It's amazing and would probably stay over the hole. We stuck a few pieces on my in laws driveway to mark the basketball lines and it stayed on for over a year and a half. If you ever want to try some if the stitching doesn't hold, let me know and I'll bring some over, or you can buy a roll at Walmart for like $10.

Elisa said...

Kim, that tape sounds pretty amazing. I'll have to pick some up. So far, the stitches are still in tact but it looks like there's another tiny hole starting near this other one so maybe I'll go pick up some gorilla tape and try it out.