Our $980+ Water Problem in our New House

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Houston, we have a water problem. Over a month ago we shared our BIG news, that we bought a new home and will be moving a little later this year. If you missed that big news you can catch up on the details of the new house here.

We told you that this is a very old home and that we have some work to do before we move in. If any of you have taken on a home improvement project you know that things can go wrong. Things will go wrong. Well, it’s already happened!

Turning on the water

The home we bought was built in 1890-1895 time frame but it had the great fortune of having residents that really cared for the home over the years. One long time owner seemed to have a tendency for the finer things in life. He had installed running water to both of the garages on the property.When we bought the home, it had been vacant for quite a while and the water, gas and electricity had been shut off. We worked with the village office in town (who were so overwhelmingly friendly it made us smile) and had the utilities turned on.

Jim is so well rounded in his knowledge, he made sure that everything was in working order. We hired a local business to come in and fire up the boiler (which was new in 2014 – hooray!). We have never owned a home with boiler heat so we wanted to be sure that it was running correctly.

Anyway, Jim also made sure the water was running to the faucets in the bathrooms and the kitchens. Nothing leaked…which was another sigh of relief.

Water, water and more water

Well…..the garage was the problem area.
garage 2
The water running to the garage faucet was not turned off. Sometime between when we had the water turned on and when we realized the problem, the hose in the garage burst. Water was not only flowing to the garage, but running. Unbeknownst to us water was running full force into the garage for a long time. Weeks.

Here is a video of the water problem, just after Jim discovered it.

Once we discovered the issue Jim immediately turned off the water. When he opened the door he estimates about 6″ of standing water. It took a while but with effort, he did get the water out of the garage.

water after

A costly situation

That day he took a reading of the water meter. Since we are not living in the new house and have really only used water to flush the toilet, it was safe to say 99% of the water usage since we took ownership was from the garage. When he visited the village office and supplied the reading they determined we had over 155,600 gallons of water wasted during the couple of weeks time frame. At our current water rates, that means a bill in excess of $490 + at least that same amount in sewer fees on top of that. The kind person at the village office did say we could write a letter explaining the mishap to the sewer committee and ask for the sewer portion of the bill on those wasted gallons to be waived. We did do that, and to our delight they agreed. This saved us a whopping $490 or more. What a blessing, and another sign from the universe that we are making the right decision by moving.

We’ve decided to laugh about this water problem, because there is really nothing else we can do. Mistakes happen. DIY failures and mishaps happen. It’s part of the adventure we have signed up for and sharing this with you is part of our commitment to be transparent. Honest, real life DIY! Hopefully this shows you that not everything about this journey is roses and cupcakes.

Stay tuned for more of our crazy life adventures and the BIG move updates.

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