Is It a Frugal Fix, or Am I Just Being a Redneck?

I confess I must have redneck blood. When something breaks down, my first impulse is to reach for the duct tape.  I want to fix it without spending money.

As an example, last weekend the van wouldn’t start. David wanted to call a mechanic and I handed him a bottle of Coke. I told him to pour it on the battery terminals.

He ignored me and drank the coke.

We compromised. I had just talked to our oldest son, who inherited my father’s mechanical abilities, and knew he would be driving for an hour so he could talk. My husband called him back and told him what the van was doing and everything he had already tried.

After talking, he went back to the van, took both battery terminals off and cleaned them with a wire brush. The van started right up. (The coke would have worked faster.)

Anyway,  I constantly struggle with my redneck tendencies because they are not frugal!

I have made the most redneck mistakes on my dishwasher.

My first mistake was to spend $100.00 to build my portable dishwasher into my kitchen. What I failed to take into consideration was the age of the dishwasher. Shortly after that, the baskets deteriorated so much that it ruined my silverware with rust spots.

I went to, and made my second redneck mistake. I ordered new baskets, but the cost was over half of the amount of a new dishwasher.  If I had only needed one basket it would have been worth the expense.

Even worse was the “redneck” fix I had tried on the old baskets. I set them on my wooden kitchen table and ended up scratching it. I thought I would pour rust remover over the rusted out ends. I placed the basket over my new stainless steel sink and the rust remover permanently spotted the sink.

The new baskets were installed and I thought everything was good, when the pump started to leak. I did the only frugal fix that I am proud of – I took a plastic turkey platter and slid it under the dishwasher.  Everyday I unload the dishwasher and dump the water out of the plastic tray.

I am protecting the floor as I wait to replace the dishwasher. I actually have a  dishwasher lined up, but we will have to build a cabinet for it, so I am patiently waiting for my husband to work out all of the details.

Mary Hunt at Debt Proof Living, recently wrote about planning for appliance replacement. Please go read her article.

I wish I would have listened to her. I should have replaced the dishwasher in 2007 instead of building it in during my kitchen remodel.

I guess I might be a redneck.


My dishwasher with its turkey platter drip pan.


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