Tuesday, June 06, 2006

Exceeding Expectations

I am in the midst of one of my least favorite household chore: refinishing the deck.

As far as I can tell, there is no way to explain just how much power-washing a deck sucks to someone who hasn't had to do it to a deck of sufficient size with vertical railing spindles. But trust me, it's no fun.

I did the bulk of the pressure-washing on Sunday, and the plan tonight was just to touch up some spots on the deck that didn't end up as clean as I need them to be. So after hauling the washer up the 16 stairs to the top of the deck, and hooking up all the necessary hoses, I went to be start work and realized that somewhere between Sunday and today, I misplaced the 40-degree tip. Since the pressure-washer I am using is not mine, but a friend's, this was a bigger problem then just delaying my work.

I distinctly recall washing the tip while I was cleaning up on Sunday. But what I did with it after that is anyone's guess.

So I went off to Home Depot to buy a new tip. Since the tip is just a small metal part set in a plastic piece that probably costs less then 50 cents to make in Mexico somewhere, I wasn't expecting it to be all that expensive. In my mind I was thinking maybe 3 bucks, if I bought the same quality as what the washer already had (it is a pretty nice pressure-washer).

After hunting around a bit, I found the power-washer accessory parts in the paint section. There I discovered two problems with my $3 expectations:

1) They only sold DeWalt replacement tips, guaranteed to be 50% more expensive for the name alone.
2) They didn't sell individual tips, just multi-packs of a variety of tips.

So, instead of buying just the tip I needed for $3, I ended up having to pay $15 for a name-brand pack of tips most of which I didn't need.



McBrideFarm said...

Did you just refinish the deck not too long ago? Do you have to do it every couple of years? What a pain.

I don't remember Dad ever doing anything with our deck...?

Steve Eck said...

I did it two years ago, which is about how long it lasts. This is the third time I've done it, in the ~5 years we've been in the house.

Dad used a fancy redwood on the deck, which naturally ages to a nice silver color. So he never had to do anything. It's only after you stain/paint a deck that you have to start maintaining it.