Swimming with O Rings

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Several years ago, one of my dearest friends since childhood wrote a delightful book, Swimming to Italy.  (It is available on Amazon.)  I was searching for a title for this blog, and hers immediately landed in my mind.

As I’ve noted numerous times, my new life has taken me thousands of miles from my comfort zone.  While I’ve come to understand more about home repairs than I ever wanted to know, I’ve managed to utilize my research and study skills in a plethora of new ways.  In fact, I find it curious many of my friends contact a schlep like me about appliances, plumbers, and cabinet refinishers.

Last week, however I was rocked with a new lesson.  The saga began with a leak in the automatic pool chlorinator.  (This is a wonderful device–under $100– that eliminates the need for rubber ducky floating around the pool.)  The pool repair guy diagnosed the problem–the cap needed a new O ring.  After it was lubed and installed, the leak stopped.

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Two days pass and the repairman returns.  The pool motor is surging.  Really, this is a high-end motor, less than 5 years old.  “I think I should just backwash the filter, and your problem will be solved.  You do it regularly, right?’

“Rarely.  I can get the valve down, but I’ve not strength to pull it up.  Even my uber-strong cabana boy has difficulty helping me.”

Pool guy backwashes and decides to take the valve apart.  “No wonder it was so difficult to pull up.  Look at these O rings.”

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Now, there were three more, bad O rings in the plunger valve.  Repair done.  New O rings.  All is…NOT well.  The motor surges again, which for you novices means too much air in the lines, which causes the motor to rev like a hot rod at the starting line, which causes blah, blah, blah.

Again, the pool guy returns to diagnose this new problem–another worn-out O ring!  By now, you are as bored as me about TMI and O rings.  Little circles of rubber with very important jobs.  Who knew?  Who cared?  Yet given the critical necessity of their position in the circle of life, perhaps we should all invest in a company that manufactures O’s!

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