I Might As Well Just Not Even Have Doors

For the second time in as many weeks, the doors had to come off the hinges in my house.

The washer and dryer were delivered today. Yes, I’ve lived in my house for two weeks sans clothing cleaners. I made sure all my clothes were clean before I moved because I knew the appliances needed to be purchased and delivered, and I didn’t know how long it would take me to find a deal I was happy about, since the credit card statement came before the machines were purchased and, um… wow.

It took until Monday. I got them at a great price from a scratch and dent place, but as is proving the case with almost everything I put in this house, the damned doors are narrow and stuff? Is really big.

Also I wish I spoke better Spanish because I’m pretty sure the delivery people were talking about me and my narrow doors. I can’t be certain, but from the tone, it seemed like something along the lines of, “Check out this chick. Did she realize we’d actually have to get these things inside and down the steps? Does she have any brain at all?”

Note to self: find delivery people who speak French.

The first order of business, after taking the front door off the hinges, was getting the first machine up the three front steps, into the house, up two more steps and through the whole first floor without cocking up the hardwood. I feel bad when I lift nothing, but watch the floor like a hawk while low-income men labor mightily to supply me with hundreds of dollars worth of goods. So while I tracked the wheels of the handtruck with my eyes, these two guys – neither of whom were terribly big – grunted, mused, tsked and talked to each other in a language I don’t know, trying to figure out how to round the corner to the basement stairs and then get the machine down them.

Made it by centimeters.

Also made it without fulfilling my second fear (after cocking up the floors): having a man crushed to death by a washing machine in my home.

Because as hard as it is to get the machine in, it’s even harder when there’s only one guy, who now has to get the machine over the dead guy.

Then they had to take the door to the laundry room off the hinges. Now, I ask you: who builds a house in which it’s difficult to get the laundry machines into the laundry room? The front and back doors have an excuse: the house is 100 years old on the outside. But the laundry room doorway is only three years old, and I see no reason for it being so narrow. Again, made it by centimeters. With the washer askew, the one guy started hooking up the hoses to the water lines. The hot water line leaked. I offered a helpful “uh-oh.” He muttered in his native tongue – which was not Spanish – and then said in English that he had to get another hose because this was no good.

And then they brought in the dryer. Oh my sweet baby Jesus did this terrify me. Though it appeared lighter than the washer, fairly mollifying my death-by-laundry fear, the guy had previously muttered that he didn’t think it would fit – either stacked, as I intended, or side-by-side. Well, it would in fact not have fit side-by-side, because the electrical panel was in the way. Stupid electricity, always messing things up and never doing any good at all for anybody.

Have I mentioned that I measured? Because I did. So I knew the machines would fit as a stacked set. But since I have also learned that my tape measure changes its stripes at will, I ran to get it and then scored the distance between the top of the washer and the ceiling. Then I ran up the steps and measured the height of the dryer while the guys were wheeling it in.

Phew. It would fit.

Want to see how close it was?

Super-close, people.

They had to unscrew the lightbulb there in the top left. I think there are 1.5 inches between the top of the dryer and the ceiling beams. Seriously, I can barely reach the buttons.

And I bet the guys really appreciated me taking pictures of them while they suffered likely permanent bodily injury from lifting the dryer up to put it on top of the washer. In the dark.

Holy crap. Somehow I had never thought of what it would take to stack a stackable washer and dryer.

But it’s in. I need a vent tube extender (I made up that term – it might be right, I dunno) because the builder’s crew, when they were forced to re-do the venting by the inspector, just yanked the tube out farther instead of extending it, so it’s now not long enough to reach the back of the dryer.

And also? There’s no room for anything else in that room now. The machines sort of lurk at you through the doorway, all imposing, facing off against the furnace and the hot water heater. Like, I can’t even get the laundry basket between the furnace and the washer.

I know.

I really hope they work, because those things are not coming out of there. Ever.

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10 thoughts on “I Might As Well Just Not Even Have Doors

  1. Ah, yes, I feel your pain. I experienced the same anxieties with my washer and dryer, which fit by the merest smidgen. And I had deceded that my rolltop desk would be perfect in the study, and yet it was about 1/8 of an inch too wide to fit through the door – even though both the desk and the door are about the same age. So it’s in the living room. The house won that battle.

  2. Ah! I know what you mean. When we moved into our new house I decided we HAD to have giant curtains on these 14 ft. windows. My sister sewed them. I bought a curtain rod. Then, well, we realized we didn’t have a ladder. My husband ended up stealing, or um borrowing, this rickety one made of 2×4’s from a construction site nextdoor. We had to wrap it in towels to keep from getting tetanus and he only fell about 12 times to the hard floor below. The curtains look lovely, which is good news… because they are staying up there for eternity!

  3. When we moved into our house in AZ, we bought a queen sofa bed for the second bedroom (also known as the grandkids room). When it was delivered, the delivery guys took off the door and tried every angle to get it through. We ended up sending it back. Sometimes I think home floor plans are developed by chimps. It does look you’ll need a step stool to use the dryer.

    • I would have died if I had to send them back. Just so much hassle, plus the embarrassment of not knowing how to properly measure for these things. Fortunately I was spared both. And yes, when I move some day, I plan on putting up a height-specific sign that says “You must be this tall to buy this house.”

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