Today's topic is fixing stuff before throwing it out, if possible. I think there's some catchy phrase for this concept, a la Reduce! Re-use! Recycle!, but I can't think of it at the moment. The idea is pretty basic: if you can, fix something before you throw it out only to buy another one to replace it.
Today's example #1 is the shower curtain. The shower curtain's a few years old. It was in pretty good condition except for a) a few tiny holes that don't affect its usage and that I'd be hard pressed to find if I had to and b) about half of the shower curtain ring holes had ripped. Especially the ones on the end, which does affect how well you keep the water in the shower and off the bathroom floor. Typically, one would buy a new shower curtain and, I confess, I have done that in my more frivolous past, but no more! I've signed on with that Dyson guy: 'I just think things should work properly.' Amen, brother!
And so with the shower curtain, I think, 'Why aren't they designed in such a way so that the holes last as long as the remaining 99.5% of the curtain?' It's like throwing away your winter coat bc a couple of buttons fell off. So, a while back, I had read about somebody who put grommets (I really like the sound of that word, for some reason) on his shower curtain. Also a while back, I bought a grommet kit. I (well, Kevin did most of the work, but I did the all important jump starting of the project!) recently got around to putting the grommets on the curtain. No before pictures, but here's a picture afterward:
So I fully expect this thing to last a good long time. I dunno if I'll keep it that long bc, as you can see from the circa late 1960s/early 1970s wallpaper, the bathroom is in dire need of a makeover and the curtain may not work in the new look. But it will last until that new look comes along (which will probably be a good long time) and perhaps beyond for someone else.
Example #2 is the dishwasher rack. I do have a before picture bc the dishwasher (which is a portable one) was leaking and we were thinking about selling it/giving it away so I took pix to email/post somewhere. But then I decided to look into repairing it. I think Kevin thinks I found the necessary part and fixed it myself, but actually I called a local appliance repair guy (Kevin used to read my blog at work, but it's behind a firewall now, considered 'entertainment' or 'non-essential' or something like that, and for some reason he never reads it at home so, bottom line, he doesn't read it anymore and so my secret is safe with the rest of the world). I paid $70 for the guy to come out, figure out the problem, clean out some gunk. When the part came in, I paid $110 for the part, but he didn't charge me anything more for the second visit to put it in. So $180 to fix it.
But it did still have these rust spots and the tops of many of the prongs were rusted. I bought this uber goop stuff fixed a bunch of the rusted spots and caps. Before:
It's kinda hard to see the rusty areas in the above picture. After:
I would like to get more caps and do most, if not all, of the remaining ones. So, for about $190 (plus $10-$20 for more caps and goop), it will be fixed. For now.
It might develop some major problem that would preclude fixing it v. buying a new one. Decent new ones go for about $500. And I have to say that I have zero complaints about this dishwasher. It has been a real workhouse for over 10 years; I forget when we got it; maybe 15 years ago now. And, since the kitchen is in even more dire need of a makeover, I'm happy to just have this one last until then (whenever that is). For two people, we manage to run it almost every day, sometimes twice in one day. We do cook and bake a lot at home and Kevin does manage to use the maximum number of pots and pans when he's in the kitchen. We do use real plates (from thrift stores and old ones we had) for the cats bc they seem to do better with them versus paper plates. It was more important when we had cats that took their medicine in their food; the medicine stayed in the food until the food was gone and didn't get absorbed into the paper plate. Plus, although we are washing the plates in the dishwasher, we're also not throwing out tons of paper plates. And the paper plates end up everywhere! They slide all over the place...under furniture, only to be found months later...and they flop over easy...onto carpeting. Ick.
Well, I gotta go get ready for work. Ciao, bellas!