For a long while now, there has been a leak under the sink in the bathroom. I placed a cup under the leak and emptied it almost every day. It was a sizeable leak, but I certainly didn't know how to fix it, and it takes Bear quite a while to figure out that something is wrong enough to need fixing. So Saturday, we set out to Home Depot to buy a new J-pipe for the sink. We'd been experiencing a dip in water pressure, too, so we decided to buy a new faucet for the sink, too. Total cost: $40.
We get the new parts home and Bear goes into the bathroom to install them. He discovers that the wood bottom of the vanity is sagging and moldy from all of the water that escaped from the leak. Upon opening the box that the new faucet came in, he notices that a piece is broken and will have to be returned. He looks at me and says, "We really need a new vanity, hon. We can get it when we exchange the faucet." Sigh. Okay.
Sunday we take my car to Bangor (I have a station wagon big enough to fit the new vanity in). Back to Home Depot we go, this time to exchange the faucet, buy a vanity (complete with new sink), plumber's tape, silicon gel, putty, caulking, and a pack of gum (that's for me). Total cost: $180.
We get everything home, and Bear shuts off the water in the house so he can work. I forget to pee first, so I have to hold it. For several hours. He disconnects the pipes and we pull the old vanity out. Looking at the subfloor where the vanity used to sit, we see not only layer upon layer of slimy black mold, but mushrooms - actual mushrooms - growing. The smell of the mold and mildew is overpowering and for the first time, Bear and I realize this is much worse than we originally thought.
Bear and I had a pow wow at this point. What to do about the floor? Take the whole thing up? With what money? Will bleaching the hell out of it work? Can you sand subfloor? won't that put the mold into the air? In the end, we decide to bleach the floor and let it dry, then put a piece of plywood down to separate it from the new vanity once it is installed.
If only our troubles had ended there....