March 5, 2007

The Big Yellow Bus And The Sad Stale Air

My, was I glad to see the big yellow bus this morning. I waved and waved and jumped around and yelled, "GOOD MORNING!!!," and the bus driver called back, "I hear ya." She has kids, too.

Even when it is not the week after a school vacation, I am always grateful for the bus. For one thing, it separates my vinegar firstborn from my baking soda secondborn. For another thing, it puts me outside in the fresh air for a few minutes. Not only does this provide me with an indignant reply if anyone were to ask me, "Didn't you even leave the house today?," it also cleanses my olfactory palate so I am able to notice when I come back inside that my house smells like onions and diapers, and won't someone put a little Febreze Air Effects into the sad stale air?

Speaking of the sad stale air, I think something is wrong with our Vicks warm-mist vaporizer. It percolated away the whole night long, but this morning it was still over half full (normally it would be down to the sizzling scraps), and the room was not very steamy. It did this last night, too. It was a $10 vaporizer and we've had it for several years, so it's no great loss to replace it--but if anyone has any great vaporizer repair stories they're sitting on, this would be a great time to tell them.

17 comments:

nowheymama said...

When this happens to ours, it's either because:
a.) I didn't add salt to the water like I'm supposed to

b.) I haven't cleaned the steam unit in a long time. Ours is supposed to be cleaned weekly, ha ha, by soaking it in vinegar. I just clean it when it stops working.

Swistle said...

Nowheymama-- Is the entire steam unit supposed to be submerged in vinegar, or just the bottom, or...?

nowheymama said...

Here's what our manual says. (I found a copy of it online.)

With steam unit safely unplugged (DUH), soak steam unit in 3 1/2
inches of white vinegar for 10 minutes. (Basically, don't get the electrical cord in the vinegar.)
Then with fingers covering the bottom holes of the steam unit,
add tap water into steam outlet. Cover steam outlet
with finger of other hand, shake vigorously, then empty the
water through steam outlet. Repeat several times
until black particles are no longer emitted and vinegar odor
is gone.
3. Be sure that Steam Outlet, Safety Vents (in front corners of
night-light lens) and Water Intake Holes in bottom of steam
unit are open and not clogged. Poke clean with a toothpick.

Or, go spend $10 on another vaporizer.

nowheymama said...

P. S. I can see that all of your other readers are just *fascinated* with our Vicks Vaporizer discourse.

nonsoccermom said...

I've never cleaned our Vicks vaporizer, but I've found that adding salt to the water usually does the trick. I don't think I've used in in quite some time, though so I'm sure it could stand a good cleaning...

Swistle said...

Nowheymama-- I do notice that we seem to be the only ones discussing it. Perhaps it is not as stimulating a topic as "Mr. Rogers--yay or nay?"

Thanks for the instructions! I think I may have tossed ours. It's weird about the black particles, isn't it? I'm always seeing those floating around in the water. What ARE they? (New fascinating aspect to discuss! Ready...GO!)

Swistle said...

Oh, wait, one more thing: Is the steam unit supposed to be right-side-up in the vinegar? Or upside-down?

desperate housewife said...

Whoa. I have a Vicks steamer thing inherited from my grandparents, but I haven't bought a new filter for it yet. Theirs was disgusting. Is this the same thing you guys have, or something else? If it's the same, I'm getting frightened. It sounds as though the cleaning procedure will slowly consume all the extra space in your brain!

nowheymama said...

Right-side up, so the very top part isn't in the vinegar.

Black particles: mineral deposits? fairy dust? mold?

nowheymama said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
nowheymama said...

Let's try that again.

If you go here: kaz.com
you can find downloadable manuals for all of the vaporizers and humidifiers.

Man, I am lame.

Swistle said...

D.H.-- Mine doesn't have a filter, so it must be something different. It has a plastic, water-filled base, and then a thingie that sits in the top and vaporizes the water.

Black Sheeped said...

After a fiasco of phone calls (what kind of places charges 300 dollars and can't get me in until May or June?) I finally got an appointment for late March. So maybe my angry uterus problems will be taken care of then.

Swistle said...

Sheepie'B-- That comment will be so funny to anyone who isn't reading your blog. They'll be like, "Vaporizer...uterus. I get it."

jen said...

is yours a sickly green color with a black circle top?? and a little reservoir for the vicks goop?

Swistle said...

The base is white/clear, and the top is royal blue. It does have a little resevoir for the Kaz Inhalant. I love the Kaz Inhalant, but I hardly ever use it because I always forget it's in there and then I lift the lid up without thinking about it and I fling oil everywhere. Surely they could have come up with a better design idea than that?

Swistle said...

Follow-up: I did Nowheymama's suggestion of the vinegar treatment, and a whole bunch of black stuff came out. I kept shaking it and more kept coming out, and I think I should do another vinegar treatment.