Of course, things did not go according to plan.
Here is our parking pad before.
|Right door is us|
When we bought our house, our parking pad was atrocious. It had red brick (not meant to be used as interlocking), bumps all over and a staircase that was close to falling apart. We went in together with our neighbor and had both sides redone as one, including a staircase that served both entrances.
|View from sidewalk on neighbor's side|
It was such a great investment.
|View from our porch|
With the tree being in the way, they had to attack it from the side where the external water connections were. That was my neighbor's side.
The plan was to dig a narrow trench to the side, not touch the water connection (ours was replaced with copper a few years before we bought the house) and replace our shared sewer drain...all without damaging the tree. Until they couldn't find the sewer drain.
|Where are you?|
The guy in orange (above) cracked open the old clay sewer pipe and and readied the old connection for a new one. Then suddenly...
|See the splash above the claw?|
It all went wrong.
Just before I snapped this picture, the geyser shot up above our tree. Immediately, the backhoe operator yelled "Shut it down!" The crew sprinted away up and down our street.
At this point, I was starting to get a little worried. The sewer drain to our house was just cracked open. Where will this water go and why isn't it stopping???
|Everyone important is watching|
The audience (me, Jake, Henry, George, neighbor) watching the action figured something was really really wrong when the guys in the white hard hats (city inspectors) came sniffing around. On their phones.
The hose in the picture above is attached to a sucking mechanism that they dropped in the water. It was working fast, but the water coming in was faster.
I sent Jake & Henry down to the basement every 2 minutes to check for water. I was freaking out.
Finally, the geyser stopped gushing. Our basement was dry.
The water level finally got down far enough for the supervisor to reconnect our water line to the main. It was sheered off at the box connection, so they had a crazy hard time reconnecting it.
After the water was reconnected, they got to work on the sewer connection to the house.
The whole time, I kept thinking, I would sooooooo not go down there. 13 feet deep. Possible caving. Watery sludge mixed with waste. Yuck.
But, they got the new pipe connected and figured a way around the tree.
|New sewer drain|
They ended up digging UNDER the water main on the way to the street...even all the way under the sidewalk. I was impressed by how delicately a backhoe can work.
They put all our dirt back in the hole.
And now our parking pad looks like this.
With any luck, somehow they will get it back to looking pretty again...someday...