Among the chores I did this evening was hook up our new dryer. Er, our new new dryer. Well, technically our new new new dryer. Maybe I should back up a bit here and start at the beginning.
I'm not sure if I covered this in LJ, but our dryer recently quit working because it forgot to quit working. atara put in a load of wet clothes and set it to its auto cycle on a Sunday, and when she went downstairs for something on Wednesday it was still running. Fortunately she'd set it on low heat, so we didn't have a fire on our hands, but that was apparently enough to kill the heating coil. I set to work disassembling the dryer to see if it was the coil, or maybe the thermal fuse that had gone, but on further discussion we decided that even if it was one of those, that still left us with the problem of a dryer that didn't want to shut itself off when it was done. There is a term for dryers like that: fire hazard.
We did some tentative shopping for replacement appliances, and in the mean time atara began hanging clothes in the basement to dry manually. One of the delays in replacing the dryer was that we could not agree on whether to replace just the dryer, or get a matching washer/dryer set. She was leaning toward the former, but I favoured the latter. There was nothing wrong with the washer, per se, but I reasoned that it made more sense to just replace the set rather than alternately replacing the dryer and washer as they wore out in turn. Plus there is something aesthetic about having them match.
Eventually we roped in a friend with a truck and picked up a used dryer that she'd got a lead on through a co-worker. We hooked it up, and it worked fine with the exception that it tended to blow the breaker after drying one or two loads of laundry. This dryer could charitably be called a beat up piece of shit, so we assumed it was probably on its last legs. That belief seemed to be confirmed when it stopped producing heat a couple of weeks after we bought it. Great. Now we had a working washer, and two broken dryers in our basement.
When we were out shopping that weekend, I dragged atara into Sears to look at their line of appliances. They typically have pretty competitive prices, and the one out in our end of town usually has a fairly broad range of appliances to choose from. We found a decent mid-ranged, high-efficiency set that were on sale and seemed to fit the bill nicely, so we ordered them. Part of what swayed us was that they promised delivery later in the week.
They delivered them right on time. Unfortunately they delivered the wrong dryer. Worse, it was a dryer a few models lower than the one we had paid for. I immediately called their help centre, and the frazzled but helpful girl at the other end promised that they would set things right for us. She said to go ahead and use the dryer they had sent us, and they would call us no later than Saturday with an update.
I called them again Saturday evening and got a different girl. She repeated what the first had said about using the one we had until they could arrange a new one, and she promised that unlike the first girl, she would actually order a replacement for us. A week later when we had heard nothing further, atara called them again to politely say, "WHAT THE FUCK?" She got a slightly different story, but the person at the other end again promised to get things rolling for us and told us to call back if we didn't hear from them after 2-3 days so that they could escalate the problem.
In the mean time, the new dryer didn't work. It made all the right noises and tossed around clothes, cats, and whatever else went into its drum but it wasn't pushing out any heat. We quickly figured out that the problem with the previous dryer had not been with the dryer, but with the circuit. It was late Sunday at this point, and I was flying out to Calgary early the next morning, so we had a very short window in which to get it fixed. I took a picture of our breaker box and drove up to Home Depot. I showed my phone to one of the helpers on the floor, pointed at the breaker box and said, "I need one of these in 220 volts."
I brought home the new breaker and had atara hold a flash light while I tore apart our breaker box and replaced the faulty breaker. Fifteen minutes later we had a happy dryer that pushed out heat. I had a happy wife who had a working dryer, and she had a happy husband who has clean underwear that's not stiff from hanging on the line.
The day before yesterday Sears showed up with our new new new dryer and hauled away the old one - and that's what I was hooking up this evening.
Oh, and for the record, it works.