February 21, 2007

Ending The Nomadic Life

We finally got to sleep in our own beds last night, as the plumbers worked quickly to replace our failing polybutylene piping. Originally, we asked them to get one bathroom working for us so we could stay out of the hotel last night, and they agreed to have one running by noon. Instead, they put two men on the job and finished installing the new pipe by the time I left the office. We still have a few holes in the wall -- I'll post pictures later -- but the plumbing is in and working fine.

We did not install copper as I originally intended. Instead, we went with PEX, a more proven plastic technology that has been in use for 30 years and has not had the kind of problems that PB has. Copper would have cost about three times as much and would have taken at least twice as long. The PEX is manufactured by a local company, Uponor, and has a 25-year warranty. If I have a problem with it, I can tool down to Apple Valley and find the manufacturer. The plumbing company highly recommended it especially as a replacement. We'll see.

For this job, I used Benjamin Frankling Plumbing, which is one of the sponsors of my radio station, AM 1280 The Patriot. They did a very nice job, and their plumbers took a lot of time explaining the issues and options to me. They did more than a professional job; they did a personal job. I've also had a great experience with State Farm Insurance, which does not cover the plumbing but will take care of all the damaged walls in the house from the break and the replacement. They have walked me through the process carefully, calling me a few times just to make sure that everything is progressing well for us.

Finally, I appreciate those CQ readers who have hit the tip jar over the last couple of days. I'll send notes out later this week, but the donations over the last couple of days have covered the hotel bill, which the insurance didn't cover. The First Mate and I both appreciate it. Also, thanks to those who tipped us off to the Spencer settlement on the PB piping, both this week and last summer. I think we may qualify, and if we do, we could get all of the plumbing expenses reimbursed. I'll let you know.

As I told a co-worker yesterday, I must have been on vacation -- we stayed at a hoteil, I had to rent a car, and we spent thousands of dollars! This is one vacation I'm happy to see end.


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