20-Nov-2019 (Wed)
Wherein our oven has a tantrum.

The pizza oven had been being a pain in the ass for a while because (it seemed) that the "light the pilot light" button was gummed up, and this cause the oven to occasionally revert back to the low-gas-flow mode used for lighting the pilot, meaning it would suddenly stop being hot enough. Since it holds heat for a long time, this exhibited itself as someone noticing halfway through the night, "Hey, why aren't the pies cooking like they used to?" We had a repair guy come look at it and several times he jiggled the button and said, "There, I fixed it." When we said "that's not a fix" he rolled his eyes and said, "Whatever loser, I'll be back in a few weeks maybe."

And then some time later, it seemed like the thermostat broke, causing it to be on full blast unless we turned it off entirely. So that was fun. So we got a different tech out here, and saw this:

Apparently one of the burners had cracked and was venting more flame than it should have been, which melted a hole through the bottom deck of the oven.

This injury cannot be new, but none of the repair techs we've had through here over the last few years noticed it. Apparently you can't even see these parts of the oven unless you've disassembled half of the thing first. It's a huge amount of work. It's all sealed up and enclosed, you can't just pop off the front panel and peek in.

You're probably thinking, "Wow, you should have been maintaining and inspecting this thing better," and you're right. But I assure you, when we bought this oven brand new in 2015 we asked the manufacturer, "What's the maintenance schedule on this thing?" and they unambiguously said, "Oh, change the stones every couple of years, that's it."

So that's awesome. Maybe their official maintenance program is "wait for it to turn into a geyser of molten steel and fiberglass then buy a new one."

It's mostly fixed now. Some parts have been replaced, and a few more are on order.

We've also been having a slow-motion plumbing nightmare in the DNA Pizza toilet drains because apparently our customers are in the habit of taking great heaping fistfuls of paper towels and flushing them down the toilets. This does not end well. I can't even fathom what they're doing in there. The paper towel dispensers aren't even near the toilets. Why would you grab a hundred paper towels and take them into the stall with you, and whatever it is you're doing, wouldn't toilet paper chafe less? Nevermind, I don't want to know.

So we got some new paper towel dispensers that are the kind where you pull down the handle to get one sheet, instea of the tri-fold "grab a ream or two" variety. Maybe this will help? At least it will slow them down.

Also, "Someone took another of our soap dispenser tops as a trophy" is a thing I have to say on the regular. Whyyyy. Do you put it on the shelf with your empty Budweiser bottles? Punch it in bro.

10 Responses:

  1. Marcos Dione says:

    > apparently our customers are in the habit of taking great heaping fistfuls of paper towels and flushing them down the toilets.

    Maybe they're making 'French thrones', in which you put layers and maybe layers of paper on top of the surface that will touch your butt, 'so as not the get anything contagious'. Then you throw it all in the toilet and flush indefinitely. Interestingly enough, people in France keep making those even when shared bathrooms have paper seat cover dispensers. Tings you learn while taking a dump in another country...

  2. robert_ says:

    One place I worked at put up progressively more angry notices for people to stop flushing paper towels until they finally gave up and replaced them with hot-air dryers. Might that be an option or do you suspect said dryers will also become hipster trophies?

    • jwz says:

      Fun fact, progressively angry notices never work!

      I absolutely despise air dryers (I have literally never used one that didn't deafen me while blowing cold air that left my hands damp anyway) so I hope we don't have to go that route. Also that would be a much more expensive experiment. Power is not already available at that mounting position, and it's more bullshit electronics to maintain.

  3. Dan says:

    Did the tech have an explanation for the deterioration? Where did all that rust come from? That's a lot of damage for something sold as "new" 4 years ago.

  4. cmdr says:

    I would love to just hear more stories about running the DNA Lounge. I simultaneously felt awful you have to deal with this shit but couldn't help from laughing. I'm genuinely sorry humans can be such assholes sometimes.

  5. andrew says:

    Any hope of getting some compensation back from the manufacturer, or is that a lost cause? At the least it seems you might be able to make a case for better instructions or post-install verification of good working order

  6. Lloyd says:

    In line with your philosophy on backups, don't you have two ovens?

  7. Floutsch says:

    Well I lived next to a pub. Same house, neighbor to and friends with the owner, pub and my apartment on ground floor. Was told stories about what things people would flush... not only like toilet papers or paper towels but rags they grabbed from behind the bar, socks, underwear... but one day I came home and my bath was flooded. Turned out somebody flushed a t-shirt and it got stuck before it got into the main sewer line.

    It's probably similar to the saying about cats, "if it fits, I sits". If it physically fits into a toilet, some guest will try to flush it ¯\_(ツ)_/¯

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