Huston, the door has landed!

With a heave and a ho and - Oh my GOD that thing was heavy.

Ok, lets back the truck up. Mike and I had to get the door last night instead of tonight - if you're local and you're looking out the window, you know why. It's going to be pouring rain and windy all today and tonight. (But Saturday installation day looks good, so we're still a go there.)

First off, we got into an argument on the way there about which exit on which highway the stupid Lowes was off of. But we managed to arrive and shook it off.

An actually very helpful store dude helped us get the door.

When purchasing a big ticket item such as this from a major home improvement mega-mart, you MUST check it before you buy it. Look it over - does it have any dings, scratches, or dents? Is the hardware package and instructions missing? Look at the glass - any hairline cracks? Play with the functionality - in this case, pull the blinds up and down, tilt them. Do they work? Are they in good shape?

If you find this process to be a pain in the ass, just ask yourself - do you want to have to go home, or worse, install the item - only to find out there's a problem and have to uninstall it, take it back, or try and fix it yourself? TRUST ME - I've been there. No fun.

I did have a point to all that, besides setting you all straight on the protocol of the HIMM (home improvement mega mart.) The first door we pulled out looked good, but then when we tested the blinds, we discovered that the left side door blind control was broken.

This makes me nervous that these doors are what we refer to in the industry as "el cheapo." But, here's the kicker to purchasing "el cheapo." Look for a warranty. Most mass produced big ticket items will have 'em now adays. And this one too - 20 years on the blinds. Just keep all your receipts and register your product and if it breaks, call and cause a big stink and they usually take care of you.

My friend Dawn and I thought we should start a company, Bitch Inc, where we call on behalf of our clients cause we're such professionals in causing a big stink with "the man." hee hee!

Back to the Stdoory (the door story):
We had our door all picked out and had a nice store dude helping. Which was great, because it turns out that a steel set of 6' french doors is DAMN heavy! Mike estimated that it weighed about 400lbs.

We also picked out a screen - just $88 more! And that's when the store dude asked if we needed knobs. I looked at Mike - I completely forgot about knobs. So we navigated the door down to the knob aisle and picked out a locking rod knob... that just sounds odd, doesn't it? Sounds like some crazy heavy metal band. And we also got a deadbolt in the same style. Of course, the stupid knobs don't come cheap. The deadbolt was 23 and the other was 40-something. Ridiculous.

So when all was said and done at the register, it came to $900. That was about $100 more than I had figured on, but I hadn't figured on knobs and tax - whatever. It was worth it.

The store dude helped us load it on the truck - not an easy task, and I began to worry about what was going to happen at home with just Mike and me having to get this thing down and off and in the garage. I began to understand why Lowes charged about as much for the installation of the door as for the door itself. This was not going to be easy. Poor Mike. Another impossible task that I set for him...

Now, let me give you all another piece of advice if you think you can just go and get a 6' steel set of french doors too. We own a diesel dually dodge pickup - biggest freakin truck evah. And the doors still hung an uncomfortably big distance off the side of the bed. Any smaller pickup, and the doors would have just flipped over the side of the bed. SO - Beware! Honestly, a van would probably be the way to go for picking up a pair of these bad boys. Not to mention that laying the doors down in the bed actually dug into the trim around the glass a little bit.... at least that can be taken care of with a little putty and paint. No biggie, but just another warning for ya.

So - we take it easy all the way home. Upon arrival we had a little bit of a strategy going on. We backed the truck up to a hill, so we could just stand the door up and walk right out with it. Problem was, there was a long way to go to the garage from there.

We managed to get the door out of the bed all on our own. But here, I became the weakest link. I could only lift it for a step or two before having to put it down and rest for a couple minutes. Though the door had handles on either side, it was top heavy and you had to keep a hand near the top at all times to keep the thing from going over! I was so nervous and kept imagining it falling and breaking.

Mike had the idea to get our little lawn tractor trailer - a small metal box on wheels that you can hook up to your tractor and carry stuff like logs or whatever. He took off the little tailgate and we slid it under one side of the doors. Then, with Mike holding the other end, and me steadying it and guiding the trailer, we slowly made it to the garage. JUST BARELY. The thing nearly went over a million times, I nearly lost it, Mike nearly lost it, I nearly tripped and just barely escaped being run over and crushed....

It was painful and stressful - and to think, we haven't even begun the installation process yet.

Tomorrow we have to pick up wood and some other materials at the DeepHo. And early Saturday morning - if any of you are free - you're welcome to come and help because this is not going to be fun. If we make it to Sunday without injuring ourselves or busting the doors - it will be a freakin miracle.


Rebe said...

Oh! I was so busy enjoying the sunshine, or I would have read your post and offered to help. Here's hoping that you installed the door without a hitch, and in time to enjoy the football game.