So I saved this household probably a couple hundred bucks by replacing not only part of our under the kitchen plumbing BUT a few bathroom tiles as well. Me who can’t even change the light bulbs before I came to the US. Since then I have fixed the toilet bowl thingies, painted our foyer, changed those tiny fluorescent light thingies (which were a pain and thought was going to be the death of me), balanced our old ceiling fan blades, assembled Evan’s crib, assembled our phone stand, installed window shades etc.
I grew up in a house of Mr. Fix-Its. My father and 2 brothers can fix anything from cars, sugarcane trucks, tractors, household appliances, computers (except for my dad), bakery equipments, carpentry etc. Then I got married to Tom, son of a personal injury lawyer, whose father wouldn’t even let him hold gardening tools that were sharp. Plus Tom can’t follow an instruction manuals even if his life depended on it. He’s the think-outside-box kind of guy, which is an asset in his work but not with anything that requires more than a 3 step assembly.
What I realized with my latest repair is that hardware stores sell stuff that caters to DIY (do-it-yourself). I especially like ACE Hardware Store because their personnel are a lot more helpful compared to Home Depot and Lowes. The ACE store here in the U.S. are so much smaller compared to the ones in the Philippines, almost has a mom and pop feel to it, which is a good thing because the customers are given a personal treatment. I was even able to ask them to cut the bathroom tiles to a customized size without charge and without me buying anything (I brought the tiles Tom purchased on a different day).
But before I try to repair things myself, I would research about it online and see if it’s doable, then I go to the hardware store to ask more questions. It’s funny how my conversation went with an ACE personnel. ACE Guy: “Is your husband going to do this?” Me: “No, I will.” ACE Guy: “Do you know how to use it?” (indicating tub of grout). Me: “Uhm… I read about it.”
Well, I did it. Them. Both bathroom tiles and kitchen pipes – in one night. Take that Mr. Handyman (and your $45 an hour rate)!