Friday, November 22, 2013

Life on my own #46: Troubleshooting, part two

As promised! The box came, the part was ripped from its little plastic baggie packaging -- because, what other way is there to unwrap those things? -- and I had before me a thermostat thing, a fuse thing, a couple screws and a couple bendy-things that get stuck onto wires. Oh, and a teeny little wire with the bendy-things already stuck on.

(Hint: Bendy-things are connectors. I'm pretty sure.)

And yesterday, when I  descended once again into the belly of the house -- that is, the basement -- I was armed with a new tool!

It's practically a requirement of every DIYer that new tool equals glorious elation. It's like giving a new fancy pen or a pretty journal to a writer. (Please don't ask how many journals I have waiting for me....)

My tool, you must understand, was something called a "crimping" tool. Number one, the word "crimp" makes me think of crinolines and primping. Therefore, it must be a tool for repositioning the wires in my hoopskirt.

Maybe not.

So, this crimping tool looks about like a pair of pliers with a few holes stuck through it. I know how to use pliers, I think to myself. This can't be that hard.

Then I look at the bendy-things. And back at the crimping tool. And spend half an hour with my friends Google and YouTube finding "how to use a crimping tool."

Turns out, most connectors don't look particularly like the bendy-things I have, and so the crimping tool isn't used the same way. Back to square one. Oh well, I'm sure I can figure this out...

Step one: Remove old thermostat and fuse. Easy peasy.

Step two: Install new thermostat and fuse. Since I'm pretty handy with a ratchet thingamabob, this was easy, too.

Step three: Snip old connector (bendy-thing that's already bent) off a wire and crimp on the new bendy-thing.

Step three and a half: Drop bendy-thing when it's almost secure.

Step three and three-quarters: Start over with crimping the bendy-thing.

Step three and four-fifths:  Squeeze the bendy-thing onto the wire with all your might. Isn't that such a fun phrase? "Do it with ALL YOUR MIGHT." It's biblical, but it might have come from Lord of the Rings, too.

Step four: Reconnect a few wires onto their matching terminals. Note: Don't cross 'em. You'll be sorry. Second note: I didn't cross them, don't worry.

Step five: Plug in for a quick test run before you reinstall the back cover.

Step six: Do the hand-jive when you see the heating element finally glowing again.

You know what the sad part was? I started the repairs so late, I didn't have time to put a load of laundry in to dry fully before I had to go to work.


Abby said...

are you of the sect that avoids using the dryer while not home or while sleeping?

Sarah said...

After seeing the inside of my dryer, I am now! Heating elements running unattended seem a little bit dangerous... or maybe I'm just paranoid.