When Inexpensive is Overpriced – #SoCS

“You’re late again.”

“Sorry, I had to stop at the hardware store and exchange a water supply line.”

“I’m not sure what’s worse, the fact that you’re still doing plumbing or the fact that I’m interested because you previously said you never take stuff back.”

“Wow! That is a conundrum. Might I suggest that you think about that over a glass of wine.”

“Thanks Cheryl. I’ll have a glass of Meiomi, and pour my young friend a Yeungling.”

“Thanks, old man, but make that a Corona.”

“You got it.”

“Now, before I remember that I really don’t care, what caused you to return something to the hardware store?”

“It was defective. After I was done connecting the new sink, the supply line was leaking at both ends.”

“New sink? I though you finished that sink repair weeks ago.”

“Here you go, a glass of Meiomi, seltzer in a snifter, a glass of ice on the side and a Corona who has found her lime.”

“Her lime? I thought the commercial says ‘its lime’ “

“My bar, my pronouns.”

“Fair enough Cheryl.”

“You boys want anything else?”

“I want to be at the tail-end of the plumbing mini-series. I’m trying to figure out if he has any more sinks at home.”

“I can’t help you with that, but let me know if you want some food.”

“So, what gives with the serial sink repair?”

“It’s a sad and complicated tale that started with one leaking faucet in the family room bath, downstairs.”

“So, you can’t just go to Home Depot and buy a new faucet like the rest of your ilk.”

“My ilk?”

“Sorry, like the other do-it-yourselfers. Isn’t Home Depot your go-to resource?”

“No, that’s where this mess started, well, Lowes, but…”

“I don’t follow.”

“About two years ago, I bought a new faucet for that bathroom, at Lowes…”

“…Two years ago? For the love of Pete, how long is this story?”

“Relax. About six months later, we decided we liked it so much, we bought one for my wife’s bathroom.”

“Your wife’s bathroom? How many bathrooms do you have? You have a pretty small house.”

“One full bath, one half bath and the bathroom downstairs.”

“Is that full or half?”

“I’m not sure, it has a shower stall, but no tub.”

“I think that’s…you know, I really don’t care. Is there an end to this story? I feel like I’m in a corn maze.”

“I’ll make it short. The faucet from Lowes started to leak. Lowes didn’t have a new cartridge. The hardware store couldn’t get one. I went to the plumbing supply house across the river.”

“Success? I hope so, because I’m almost done with this wine.”

“Yes and no.”

“Cheryl, can we get a couple of towels to soak up the mess this story has turned into.”

“They didn’t have the part, so I bought two new faucets.”

“This is like hitting yourself with a hammer ‘cuz it feels so good when you stop – but I have to ask. How could they not have the part, and why two faucets?”

“Companies like American Standard make cheaper faucets for Home Depot and Lowes. You can’t always get repair parts.”

“So, you paid a lot more for a new faucet.”

“I did, but it has a lifetime guarantee.”

“OK, but why two?”

“We’ve been wanting to replace the faucet in the master bath. It’s the only one we hadn’t replaced.”

“OK, are we done?”

“Almost. My wife really liked the new faucet in the master bath, and the one in her bathroom started leaking, just like its counterpart.”

“Requiring a third faucet.”

“Yes, but her vanity was old and the drain was a mess, so we ripped all that out.”

“Wait, you started, what, a month ago, trying to buy a replacement cartridge for a cheap faucet and you ended up buying three expensive faucets, and a new vanity and sink?”

“That’s about the size of it.”

“You should have bought the good faucet in the first place; you could have saved a lot of money.”

“Unfortunately, that’s the way it is with a lot of stuff in those big-box stores.”

“Cheryl, can you bring us another round and an order of wings. I’m paying. I fear my young friend is tapped out.”


Once again, this tale from the bar is also in response to Linda G. Hill’s Stream of Consciousness Saturday prompt:

“Your Friday prompt for Stream of Consciousness Saturday is ‘tail/tale.’ Use one, use them both, you decide. Enjoy!”

And, once again, I had to edit the post. Sorry Linda, I tried.

One final note: Don’t forget to check our Cheryl’s page for a touch of beauty.

I’m not going to bore you with a lot of plumbing photos. One or two, and a couple of photos from the installation of the Editor’s Christmas gift (a weather station – yes, I know, romantic). And, some miscellaneous winter stuff.


  1. “Can we get a couple of towels to soak up the mess this story has turned into?”

    LOL! That is a great line, one worthy of a plumbing tale. You are only missing a theme song here to rue the parts of a big box store and praise the day of sink and faucet victory.! Or you could write a dirge about the $$$ you had to spend to fix everything.

    Have an awesome Saturday with the editor and the three tails.

    Liked by 2 people

    • Thanks Mary! I figured if I was going to head down the plumbing aisle again, I needed to let my buddy beat me up for it. The editor reminded me that there is one more sink in my future (a slop sink in the basement) but it has to wait, because I’m not ready to go there again. The worst part was the little jabs from the guys at the plumbing supply house – “home-owner, Lowes, hee hee…” and like that.

      I’ve been watching winter storms all over the midwest – are you guys OK? I mean, I hope you have enough cat food ;-)


    • It’s so nice when companies stand behind their products. I types the model number of my faucet into Lowes and American Standard’s parts lookup page and got a big “Not Found” – I emailed American Standard and nada… Each faucet required a visit to the bar ;-)

      I think, if I were starting out today, I’d consider plumbing as a career. Highly unlikely to be replaced by a robot or an app, and getting to the point where they can charge almost anything. How long can you live without a kitchen sink?

      Liked by 2 people

      • We contacted the local plumbing company who was our initial plumbing contractor. It took us exactly six weeks for an appointment. When the man arrived, he told us they have three trucks outfitted for the repair side of the business but he was the only one because they can’t find two other qualified employees.

        Liked by 1 person

    • Thanks Pam. I think my wife can say “I have people for that” but that would be me. The half-bath needs to be gutted and rebuilt from the ground up, but we can’t tackle that project right now. This was an interim step, but a good one.

      Liked by 1 person

  2. I feel ya. Only thing is, mine always opts for the higher quality item, which explains a lot of often long awaited projects, furniture, etc….the only time I have known him to go consistently with average is the Home Depot Tools becuase they worked great for a long time and he bought several batteries which he kept on the charger for rotation. I’m sure ther is more to this story, but I have my own drinks to mix today and it’s raining-no outside for me today. 😕That vanity looks terrific, BTW. Enjoy your weekend.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thanks Cheryl, and thanks for mixing our drinks first.

      Like your hubs, I normally go for the higher quality thing. But this was a basement bathroom, very little use and I thought I could get away with cheap. Actually, the faucet wasn’t cheap, it was a good brand and it cost a fair amount of money, but not as much as a good one (apparently). I used to always by a faucet and two sets of cartridges at the same time. I should have stuck with that plan.

      The vanity is middle of the road quality, but it looks nice, is reasonably functional and nothing leaks into it – so we’re good for a while.

      Sorry about the rain. Ours will come tomorrow. In the meantime, I need to remove the ice from the sidewalk.

      Liked by 1 person

      • No contest. I’ll take the 57 degree rain over de-icing the sidewalk. We are commenting all the time that these days middle of the road grade products are becoming scarce. It seems to be go big or by cheap, which finally means cheaply made and you will replace often. For instance, my work sneakers. I used to buy decent quality shoes like Champion and Airwalk for a good price there and they last me six months to a year. I notice the pricing is a lot lower on Champion but the quality took a sever nose dive. I bought a pair last year that lasted two weeks before the sole literally came unglued while I was walking. I had to wrap a rubber band around my foot to get through the day! After that I started carrying a spare pair.

        Liked by 1 person

  3. I canNOT seem to get that shine on the ice, even when the sun is bright. Great shot!

    “Is there an end to this story? I feel like I’m in a corn maze.” OMG, I love that line!!! I definitely have a couple of people I could use this with! LOL

    Liked by 2 people

  4. I would have definitely enjoyed seeing a bunch of plumbing photos, tbh, Dan — those are NOT boring AT ALL. Practical/work/DIY posts are my favourite and I’d love to see you go back to doing more of that!

    Also, I’m the kinda gal who thinks a new vacuum cleaner is an awesome gift — so I would certainly give you two thumbs up for the Editor’s Christmas gift!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Aw, thank you Wendy. I bought her a weather station a long time ago. We’ve been replacing bits and pieces but if finally died last fall. This is much newer technology but it all the features she wanted (like an option to dim the display and shut off the alarms). I liked it because the sensor is 5-in-1 so only one thing to install. The old one had four things to install outside. Oh, and I did once buy her a vacuum cleaner 😏

      Liked by 1 person

  5. P-traps, channel locks, and drips oh my ! Glad to hear you survived the projects even if your wallet took a beating. I am beginning to think the rule is what ever the part you are looking for we are out of it. No matter how expensive and quality the original item is. So how many different readings does the weather station have ? And how many do you need to check before determining it is too extreme to go outside ?

    Liked by 1 person

    • You might be right, John. The weather station does: temp & humidity at three locations inside (attic, basement & 1st fl) and one outside – wind speed & direction – rain rate and amount. It also has a lightening detector. It calculates wind chill, heat index, dew point, and it stores history highs lows and averages. It has a predictive algorithm and it’s pretty accurate. It has a solar cell, and it derives sunny/cloudy/partly cloudy from that.

      The main thing is that she likes it. However, since the shaggy red head has to go out, we go out as necessary.

      Liked by 1 person

  6. Oh my gosh, please do not let hubby see this post because he will be going out to run and get a weather station. That man has become obsessed with weather. As for those repairs, home ownership has its good points and its bad. Once repairs begin it seems they just don’t end. We have so many projects that require repairing that if I really looked, I’d be sunk in despair. Oh we know how difficult it is to buy quality parts these days. The name of the game it seems is to make cheap to reap in green. What a shame! We grew up knowing what quality was. Just a brief story to make my point … hubby has been looking for 100% cotton jeans for me and himself. He approached a young girl in sales, notice the word young, and asked if this store had any 100% cotton denim jeans. The girl looked blankly at him and replied, “I never heard of 100% cotton jeans.” Seriously? The younger generation, sadly are not exposed to quality and have NO idea what quality really is. Remember those jeans that were so stiff you had to wash them about 3 times before they felt comfortable to wear? Anyways … that’s my story. The end. Have a great day!! And of course I loved looking at your gallery. It really came down here, as in snow … thinking should I attempt to go for a hike and get some really cool shots? Does anyone want to even see more snow? Big decision here going on ….. LOL

    Liked by 1 person

  7. Great post Dan. I grew up with a DIY dad and hubby is a DIYer. Really like new sink unit. Very attractive, as is your wall tile. I can’t remember any project that didn’t turn out more complicated than it first appeared and didn’t take longer ( waaaay longer) than expected.

    What a neat weathervane!! No doubt the editor is thrilled. Hope it lasts a long, long time.

    Don’t know if that’s Sammy or Sally, but that adorable squirrel ain’t starving!! Lol.

    You get Maddie’s best expressions. Give her a back rub from me. After all, poor girl had to wait for you to rearrange yourself so she could position herself on your legs. 😜

    Ice chopping is the new pastime here, but rain and warmer temperatures beginning today! Yaaaay!!! Hope you and the editor and the hairy kids have a relaxing weekend.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thanks Ginger. The vanity replacement actually went according to plan, except for having to replace that supply line.

      I got rid of the ice today. Now we’re ready for rain.

      Maddie let’s me know what she needs to be comfortable. She likes to be comfy.

      And you’re right, the squirrels around here aren’t starving 🙂


  8. Isn’t it something how one little job opens a can of worms that requires one to also open their wallet? It happens way more than I like.

    The vanity and cabinet look nice though. I like the tile too.

    If the Editor wanted a weather system and you not only gave her one you also installed it…it’s romantic. :)

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thanks Deborah. The tile looks better than it should. That’s the subject of a much more complicated renovation. This was a stopgap measure and it turned out well.

      She does like having a weather station, so I appreciate your assessment.

      Plumbing projects are like pulling a thread.

      Liked by 1 person

  9. I feel your pain! Our kitchen faucet is leaking, The ceramic part we need to fix it, is not in the stores. We are going to have to find them on-line. I just hope it works!

    Liked by 1 person

  10. My husband knows that no matter how small he thinks the job is, he will have to make multiple trips to Lowes. Home Depot is further, so we stick with Lowes. In spite of all your trips, you know you are saving a fortune compared to what a ‘professional’ would charge you. Sammy is so darn cute. Maddie is adorable. And that shot of the iced tree branches is beautiful! Well done, Dan.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thanks Lois. I always joke that every project requires three trips to the hardware store. Doing it ourselves does save a lot of money. In addition, I like doing something that is tangible. I sit behind a desk at work and peck away at a computer. To tear out a vanity and install a new one felt good!

      Liked by 1 person

  11. Tapped out, heheheee! Okay, that is SO true. Those cheap faucets become disposable faucets and that’s no way to live. Some builders use them too, and that’s how Joeys and Jakes learn of these atrocities. Achem. Anyway, good for you, new faucet. Yay!

    Liked by 1 person

  12. Waiting for the plumber to come this very afternoon. Shower faucet broke. Second time in a dozen years…so I guess that’s not soooo bad for the type of products that seemingly have planned obsolescence baked into them.

    Liked by 1 person

  13. Fun as always, Dan. I think Cheryl is quicker on the uptake than I. It wasn’t until I read her comment that I saw the humor in “tapped out” and found it really quite funny.

    Liked by 1 person

Add your thoughts or join the discussion. One relevant link is OK, more require moderation. Markdown is supported.

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.