The Curmudgeon, the Wuss, the Dumbass, and the Survivalist

The Curmudgeon:

For quite some time our clothes dryer has been on the fritz. It’s supposed to turn off automatically when it’s finished drying, but, like a politician, it keeps droning on well past its usefulness. It only does this once in a while so I employ the classic method of just checking on it a lot when I use it. Recently it added a second issue. Intermittently, and for no reason, it would just turn off with the clothes still wet. As a proper Curmudgeon I went on a rant about how a brand-new dryer should last much longer than this. That’s when I realized it was over 15 years old. I accept that appliances in the past lasted for all eternity but 15 years is definitely not brand-new. Even though no one but the laundry room heard my rant, I formally retract it.

The Wuss:

With no plan in mind I descended upon the laundry room with a random assortment of tools. It’s my customary opinion that when something is broke you can’t make it worse. (I realize this is incorrect but shut the hell up.) I presumed the problem was somewhere in the electronics because that’s where the problem always is. But then I started thinking about integrated circuit boards and how I’d rather be drinking beer and how shit just breaks nowadays and why should I swim against the current? I threw my arms in the air, said “fuck it”, and didn’t even try to fix it. Two days later we bought a new dryer.

The Dumbass:

We wrestled the new dryer into the laundry room and I set out disconnecting the old one. Dryer vents are always filled with lint and it’s gross. Planning ahead I’d bought a new dryer vent hose. When I removed the old dryer vent hose I found a bird’s nest! I’d just solved the mystery of the dryer that wasn’t drying. I also had the fun of chasing a little brown bird all over the room. (I got the bird out of the house without injuring it but the eggs and the nest were trashed.) I tossed out the old dryer hose and had to accept the fact that I’m such a dumbass that I hadn’t checked obvious weaknesses before dropping a few hundred dollars on imported Chinese consumer goods. I suck!

The Survivalist:

In modern times the proper American thing to do is throw shit out. I can’t do it! If two is one and one is none it just seems to make sense to keep both dryers. After all I had already paid for the new one (which is awesome) and own the old one (which is a little creaky but generally works ok). Where’s the benefit in tossing a mostly useful appliance? So I installed them both side-by-side. If there’s ever a zombie attack on clothes dryers I’m gonna’ rock the world!

I also did something pretty cool with the installation. I have regular AC circuits and I have funky hippie high-tech AC circuits that the power company shuts off at times of peak load. The Faustian bargain behind this is that the peak load circuit is cheaper electricity. I love me some warm clothes on a bitter winter day… precisely when the power is likely to be off. So I never put the dryer on that panel. Since I had two dryers, I installed a new 220V outlet on that panel and will run the new slightly more efficient dryer on cheaper power. How cool can you get? One dryer runs on cheap eco-electricity and that will be sufficient for 90% of our needs. The other one is a backup that is guaranteed to operate even at times of peak load (unless I’m attacked by another bird nest). If I go totally mad I suppose I can run both at once.


So there you have it, my Curmudgeonly four stage process to evolve from a broken dryer to a dual redundant system. Now if you’ll excuse me I have to go chase birds out of my dryer vents.

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About Adaptive Curmudgeon

I will neither confirm nor deny that I actually exist.
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8 Responses to The Curmudgeon, the Wuss, the Dumbass, and the Survivalist

  1. abnormalist says:

    So, I have a larger family (by todays paltry standards)
    Me, Wifey, and 4 rats of various rug stages.
    this leads to a large amount of laundry. Being the geek I am, I did the math.

    It takes 30 min to wash one load, and approx 90 minutes to dry the same load.
    We average approx 5-6 loads per week.
    the last load needs to be in a dryer and running before laundry can be considered “done” for any state of done. If its not in the dryer, then its going to be washed again cause it got forgotten about.
    6 loads of laundry is a lot.

    In a two dryer format, the 6th load can be in a dryer at 4 hours. Breakfast to lunch and you’re “Done” with laundry on a Sunday leaving the rest of the day for munchkins to fold/sort and you to go fishing.

    Single dryer, and your load six goes in the dryer at 8.5 hours, or Wednesday in the real world. Screw fishing, you’re lucky to get a drink by this point.

    two dryers are a level of achievement to be proud of!

  2. Anonymous says:

    I was gonna make up some story about how I wear my clothes during summer wet straight outta the washer cuz it’s too damn hot to wear dryer-warmed clothes. But it’s too damn hot to make the effort.

  3. Judy says:

    There was no mention of this, so I have to ask; did you replace the outside dryer vent covers to prevent little birds from nesting in them? Another thought, if you clean everything from the lint trap to the vent cover at least once a year, the dryer runs more efficiently thus saving money for more beer. In my case, more quilting goodies.

  4. jon spencer says:

    Came back home after being away for a few months and there was some serious stink in the basement. Found a dead squirrel in the dryer vent hose. Thought I had better check the dryer fan also, two more in there rotting. Lots of bleach, new vent pipe and a new vent.
    Keep a eye on the mesh in the vent, at times it can plug up with lint and your drying time will increase and the heating coils can overheat and fail.
    At work, the squirrels just about totally blocked a horizontal run of dryer vent pipe with pine cones which then hardened into a solid mass.

  5. blindshooter says:

    Nature is on a round the clock schedule to kill us all. Including our machines!

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