“@#$%!&,” said my brain.
She was right. There was water on the floor, apparently dripping from the bottom of the stand, so down came the tree to see what I could do.
This year we used lights but not ornaments because of Bones, who’s under a year and might have tried to eat them, so all I had to do was unstring the lights instead of undecorating an entire tree.
I dragged the tree to the porch and took the stand downstairs to find the problem. It’s an older metal stand that had partially rusted through at the center of the bottom. I took the stand apart so all I had left was the dish, and then I scrubbed it clean with a wire brush and, having scraped away additional rust, was left with several tiny holes.
Tree stands are a little expensive, unless you want a poorly made plastic stand that’s liable to tip, and it seemed to crazy to throw away a perfectly good metal stand because of a few little rust holes. I went to the store and bought a can of Rustoleum’s LeakSeal. I’ve wanted to use this stuff ever since I saw the cheap generic version on TV, in that ad where the guy replaces the bottom of a rowboat with a spray-sealed screen door to show it doesn’t leak.
LeakSeal is like spray-on rubber. It dries tight but flexible in a couple of hours and is fully cured in 24. I stuck Gorilla Tape to the outside of the stand, covering the holes, so when I sprayed the LeakSeal from the inside, it wouldn’t spray right through. I gave it one coat, dried it in front of a box fan, and gave it a second coat two hours later. Then I waited a full twenty-four and tested the stand with water. It looked completely sealed and didn’t leak at all after leaving it full for several hours. So I reassembled the stand and put the tree back up.
It’s been a four days now and the stand hasn’t leaked. I’m eager to try this stuff on other leaks and cracks I encounter in the future.
Colonial-American Word of the Day
Apple Dumplin’ Shop: (n) a woman’s bosom
The Infamous Ice Sculpture Collapse