Installing A New Curb Box

It all started a couple weeks ago when we decided to replace the whole-house shut off valve for our water service, mostly as a precautionary measure since the current valve is old and the handle is missing.  We wanted to make sure it would be functional in case we ever needed to use it … namely, when we install a new faucet for the sink in the powder room we’ve been working to fix up.  So, we called a plumber to have the valve replaced.

In order to do the work, we needed to have the water shut off to the house.  So the city came out to locate the curb box  and verify that it would shut off water to our house to make sure everything was in place for when the plumber came to install the new shut of valve.  It took them a while to find the shut off since it’s located in the bottom of the ravine rather than somewhere near the street, but once they found it, they were able to shut off our water without any problems.  The problem came when the valve broke in the “off” position so that they weren’t able to turn it on again without replacing the curb box, which is buried about 4 feet deep.  Probably the most frustrating part of the whole thing was that this happened at about 2:30 on a Friday afternoon and we weren’t able to find anyone to come out to work on it before Monday, so we spent a weekend with no water service before a plumber showed up on Monday morning with an excavator to dig up and replace the curb box.

Installing a New Curb Box

Installing a New Curb Box

It took the better part of the day for our plumber and the city water department to decide that they needed to shut off another valve that supplies water to our house and a neighbor’s house in order to complete the repair, but the sewer department wasn’t available to clean out that shut off for another few days.  So the plumbers were able to dig up the old curb box, tighten the nut that had caused the old valve to leak, and turn the water back on to our house (without replacing the valve) on their first visit, but it took another week for the city to get the second curb box cleaned out so the water could be turned off and our curb box could be replaced.  The crew came back a couple days ago to finally replace the shut off valve and finish the job.

As of now, we’re back to where we started, with a working curb box, but our original shut-off valve in the house.  The biggest thing we’ve learned from all of this is to never start a project like this at the end of the week.  It’s definitely a relief to have everything back in working condition, but I think we’ll wait a few weeks for the memory of this adventure to fade a bit before we tackle the project of replacing the whole house shut-off valve again.

Filed Under: Home Improvement


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