Plumbers and other workmen

  • I have had more plumber calls in these 5 years in Argentina than in 30 in Italy. I have no idea why it is such an issue here.

    In the apartment where we are living right now, they made a sort of plateau below the sink to give more slope to the drain. However, if I use too much dish soap, the foam will pour outside of the plateau!

    Also, we have a small kitchen and a sort of kitchen island in front of it, very long, connected to the wall. (not free standing like a proper island).

    This Island just had a granite top, very good looking, but was completely bare at the bottom. The previous owners put there empty bottles, the vacuum cleaner, the bucket etc. all in plain sight.

    When we moved in, we needed appliances (a dishwasher and a washer-dryer) and not only we realized that the island's top was about 3 cm too low to fit standard appliances, but also that unlike all other units in our building, they forgot to put the drain below the island.

    So we had to call a plumber to come up with a solution - imagine this: you have a kitchen against the wall, with the sink and its drain. In front of it, the kitchen island with a missing drain. We just needed a 50 cm pipe from below the island to below the sink but there was not enough slope. However, below the sink, the fitting was already with to inlets (one from the sink, connected, the other for the facing washer, capped).

    So our plumber said we had to do a pipe around the whole kitchen, actually two pipes: one for the inlet and one for the outlet. He did all the plumbing with those plastic pipes that are fused together at the fittings/joints. Except that no water was coming out. Of course, it never occurred to him to try if it was working before cementing the pipes inside of the wall...

    He said, instead, that maybe the paper clog he put while working (and forgot in there) needed to melt and that it was just a matter of time. He said to keep the water valve open, so that the water pressure would work its way inside of the pipe. But the pipe was barely dripping, never getting to a full flow required to connect appliances. So he said to try and suck the pipe... We blow jobbed the pipe for a week like two morons, but the water was still non existent. After much attempts to get ahold of the plumber, we convinced him to come back and have a look at it.

    Finally, he had to tear down the wall again and found out that the paper clog had cement debris inside... he forgot to take the plug out when he soldered the piped. FFS!!!!! :cursing: :facepalm:

  • Whenever possible I like to do all the plumbing jobs myself, not just because of the cost, but because it's satisfying. However, every time I need to change the tap mechanisms for open/close on the kitchen taps, I have shut down the water at the main stop cock, close all valves in the roof to let the entire system drain away. That's because there are no shut off valves under the sink to isolate the taps, as you can see from this photo.

    I could fit a valve to the non-lead pipe (the lead one needs to be replaced urgently), but I need to work out a way to do this first without flooding the place. It's all a bit ad-hoc really.

  • That guy sounds incompetent serafina. :thumbdown:

    I only mess with things I'm confident in being able to fix or know my messing with it won't make the situation any worse....things like air locks in taps. Done a few of them which saved calling the plumber in. Our plumber is a hell of a nice guy and stays not far away so even when he's busy he'll pop in on his way home if it's something simple that needs fixed. He charges next to nothing for small jobs and his prices for big jobs are very reasonable.....his work has always been top quality.

    Anything electrical or gas related I refuse to touch.

  • Yesterday Gaston our 'gardener' informed us through a WhatsApp he would no longer be doing work for us . He accused the missus of working him too hard which was making him nervous.....she said it's because he's K supporter and she told him what she thought of the K's when he last came. ^^

    I had already suspected he wouldn't last as he didn't look like someone who was used to doing a bit of grafting. We used him out at the countryside place and paid him the hourly rate he requested. Whenever we took him the mother in law would come along with us and Nazarena her carer was happy to give him a hand as she likes doing that sort of stuff. She said he was lazy and told us yesterday he's more used to tidying up small postage stamp size gardens for the elderly.

    I thought at first he was an okay chap...he looked more like a mature student than a garden labourer right enough. He's in his thirties and has never had a proper job. Wife is a cleaner and they have two kids. He got his new local authority built house when the K's were in power.....say no more. ;)

  • UK Man , has he worked for you long enough that you are caught up in having to give him exorbitant severance pay? Or does that apply only when someone is fired?

    No he just used to come on and off for a few hours during winter when his elderly clients, like their gardens, were hibernating. Working in black no doubt so he didn't miss out on getting any benefits.