Saturday, May 24, 2014

Digging up the East Lawn

Most of the East part of the backyard has been dug up and rebuilt -- Zone 2, the North bed, the raised garden, the South bed.  So there is a small part left, between the stone wall and the path.  With the Monkey Grass moved out into Zone 2, it is now clear to be dug up and rebuilt.

 Standard stuff.  We start digging, putting the dirt in a pile behind us, and the rocks out to the driveway.  I need to get up to the rock wall all the way to the section near the raised garden.  Parts of this have been dug up before (like the small section right next to fence, and the part over where the Monkey Grass was).

There was an old sprinkler line that kept getting in the way, so I tried to dig along it, to get it out.

This actually seemed like a reasonable line to split the area around the base of the Monterrey Oak tree on the one side, and the more ordinary lawn section next to the rock wall.

And digging next to the tree produced a large number of rocks.

But with a lot of prying and some jack hammer work, I have most of those out, down to "bedrock".

Working on around the base of the tree, I can extend the digging all the way to the section that was dug up when I was extending the water supply over to Zone 3 in the South Bed.

 and then clearing the dirt off the top of this rock shows one very large rock that needs to come out, to lower the rock level and allow plants to grow.

This is mainly an issue of using the jack hammer to fracture the large rock into smaller pieces that I can pry out and roll out to the front.  Split off the one end.

That leaves two larger pieces, plus a lot of rocks the size I can handle.  The rocks are moved out to the front curb.

 And we then break up one of the two pieces.

Leaving just the one piece.

 Which is also broken up into smaller pieces.

And all of these are taken out to the front, leaving a big empty hole to fill back in with dirt.

And with a lot of rock out at the curb to be picked up.

Refrigerator Failure

Back in December 2012, we got a new refrigerator.  About 4 May 2014, I notice that the new fridge was not creating ice effectively.  After trying to see if there was a setting to fix this -- are we just using too much, too fast for it to keep up? -- I stuck a thermometer in and found that the freezer was at 15 degrees, while it was set for 0 degrees, and the main refrigerator compartment was at about 45 degrees (instead of 37).  So I called for a repairman.  I figured it had a freon leak and would need to be fixed and recharged.

The repairman came on 8 May.  Apparently this model (WRF989SDAM00) was special, so he called Whirlpool and spent about an hour and a half on the phone with them.  Somehow he put the fridge into a diagnostic state and then could get it to run internal tests and display the results on the display.  When he finished, he said "it's no longer my problem; Whirlpool will get in touch with you", and left.

Since Whirlpool did not get in touch with me by the next day, I called them.  The customer service rep found the internal file on this (1-1261232732) and said that the repairman has determined it was "unrepairable", but it would take 24 to 48 "business hours" for them to determine the problem, but they would call me back by Tuesday at the latest.

Come Tuesday (13 May), and no call, I called again.  They were having trouble assigning it to an "Exchange Team", but would call by Thursday (May 15).  Since it was a fridge, this was a "priority" issue for them.

Linda expressed concern that they were going to replace one unrepairable  refrigerator with another unrepairable refrigerator, since, as near as we can tell, the problem was a design problem, not simply a manufacturing problem.

Come Thursday (15 May), with no call from Whirlpool, I called again.  This time the customer service rep said that it had been assigned to an Exchange Team, and would be exchanged.  This would be done by J.B. Hunt, a trucking company.  They would remove the old fridge, and install a new one.  This could take 7 to 10 days, but they would call once they had the new fridge.

On Monday (19 May), J.B. Hunt called, and said they would be here on Thursday (22 May), but would call on the previous Wednesday to give me a 4 hour delivery window.  And true to their word, they called on Wednesday and said they would be here between 5:45 pm and 9:45 pm on Thursday!

So I spent Thursday digging in the backyard.  When I came in for some tap water (no fridge, no ice), my daughter asks if they were here yet.  I explained that they would not be there until 5:45 at the earliest, and she says "Oh.  No.  They called and said they would be right over now."  She had neglected to mention that to me.  And they showed up about 3 pm, took out the old fridge and put in the new one, and left by 4pm.  They took off the doors to make the fridge thin enough to come in thru the garage.

We were missing one of the plastic bins for the left door, but I called Whirlpool back and they said they would FedEx a replacement by Tuesday (Monday being Memorial Day).

In the meantime, the new fridge is cooling, and freezing, and making ice. 

Looking it all over, this is model WRF989SDAM02.  So it's possible that they have modified the design (hence the 02 instead of the old 00 in the model number), and maybe this will work better.

How do we prepare for 2 weeks without a refrigerator?