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when things get done, this makes richard a happy camper

...especially when he speaks of himself in the third person. 🙂

The advantage of living in an apartment is that when things break, you don't have to pay for them nor do you have to fix them yourself.

The blinds I have in my living room broke. At the top of where the string is to raise/lower them, the piece in there cracked and fell out.

A clip underneath my bathroom sink let go, and every time I pushed on the faucet lever to get water out, the sink would move slightly.

Both were fixed today. I have a brand new set of blinds, and the sink clip was fixed. There was barely any wait time, everything was fixed right the first time and that's just plain awesome.

Lastly, I've been noticing a slight detergent odor in my water, and this was the most interesting problem of the lot because I learned quite a bit about how water is delivered to my apartment.

What typically happens in a freshwater supply, such as from a well, is that when you notice discoloration and/or an odor, you filter it. Water filters are cheap, last for a good long while and usually only require replacement once or twice a year. Easy in, easy out, and not a big deal whatsoever. The only annoyance with it is water splashing all over the place when you do it, because even when you shut off the valve there will still be water pressure left in the pipes and filter when you remove it. As long as you're aware you'll get doused a bit, it's not a big deal.

Quick story about water filters:

Back in CT we had the exactly opposite problem most people have with water. First, the water pressure was so unbelievably high it delivered somewhere in the neighborhood of 50 gallons per minute. It's like we were sitting right on top of a geyser, I kid you not. The water itself was almost perfectly soft, but, the pressure was so high that it didn't have a chance to settle properly. The end result was loose sediment and quite a bit of it. So Pop installed a filter. Problem solved.

The reason this is the exact opposite problem of what most people have is because most people with well water install filters because the pressure is too low, and the water doesn't move fast enough to clear out the sediment. Our problem was that the water pressure was too high.

Anyway, moving on..

I live in the City of Tampa, so the water is delivered by them. When I made my call to have my blinds and sink fixed, I mentioned the water odor and told them to check it out.

When the service guy was here, I told him there was probably a filter somewhere outside that needs to be changed, and that was most likely the cause of the slight odor in the first place.

The guy said, "Hey, that's a good idea - I'll ask the service manager about it", did so, then told me later on that there are no water filters for the water delivered to my apartment.

Well, I'll be dipped. No kidding, eh?

So at this point it's the city's problem to take care of. I ring up Tampa Bay Water, but they inform me they're not the people who take care of an issue like that. I wasn't angry about this and was expecting that they would direct me to the proper people to call - and that's exactly what happened.

I was given two phone numbers. One for Hillsborough County and the other for the City of Tampa water divisions.

I called each one. Both had automated systems that told me I'd have to provide an account number to place a service call.


I obviously wasn't the account holder - the apartment management is.

I call the apartment office and told them about the slight odor in the water. Fortunately the girl who took my call at the apartment office said, "Yeah, I've been noticing that odor too!" - which was great because it didn't mean I was the only one who smelled it.

At that point I told them they'd have to place a service call with either Tampa or Hillsborough (or both) because they were the account owner(s) for that water account, and gave them the direct phone numbers I had. The girl I was speaking with said she will definitely be placing a call. And yes, they will. They're good about things like that.

In a nutshell, here's what I learned today:

  1. My apartment complex uses no water filters whatsoever. It's not that they're necessary, but maybe if they were there the odor never would have happened? I guess I'll never know.
  2. In order to report a water problem, it's required to go through management to do it because they're the account holders and not the residents.
  3. I can only assume that apartment management didn't place a service call for this solely (especially considering they were aware of the issue) because they didn't know whom to call - and that's fine. I can accept that because in all honesty it was a pain in the ass to get the proper phone numbers just to talk to the right people.

Things will be set right with the water, of that I'm sure of. The City of Tampa and Hillsborough County do stay on top of this stuff and take all reports seriously.


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