Saturday May 25, 2013
Have you ever considered owning a garage door opener that is able to operate even when the power is off? Image a day or night when you come home in the rain or snow, you push your remote control to open the garage door and nothing happens! Is it broken? No! It's a power outage and the door isn't opening. What a bummer!
Faced with the obvious options of either getting out in the rain to open the garage door manually, which will surely get you filthy, or get out and leave the car outside until the power resumes, you think to yourself there must be a better way! Luckily, you are right, whether you know it or not. There is a solution to this problem and it is on standby, ready to work when the power is off. How nice would it be to have the only functional garage door on the block when the power is off? You would be all the rage on the block!
If you haven't figured it out already, it's a battery-backup garage door opener. This little gem is able to open your garage door when the power fails, allowing you to get the car in or out of the garage in your time of need. Once you own one, you'll be wondering how you ever did without it. Are you ready to learn more about battery-backup garage door openers?
Friday May 24, 2013
Well it's that time of year again for thunderstorms, tornadoes, rain, wind, thunder and lightning. Severe storms cause a lot of damage from flooding rains, to downed trees and power lines to lightning strikes. Lightning strikes cause many dollars of damage each year to homes, appliances, and electronic devices in your home. Surge protection only goes so far for protection, but lightning strikes are a far different evil to deal with.
When I was a kid, it was a usual sight to see lightning rods atop houses, especially in the country where houses were the highest point on a given piece of property. I know we had them on our house and they did the job on grounding the lightning strikes, well, all but one that blew the outlet out of the wall, ruined the TV and took out the VCR. The lightning came in on the coaxial cable, through the TV and blasted everything connected to it. Here's why lightning protection is great to have.
Thursday May 23, 2013
Memorial day weekend at last! The official holiday to kick off the camping season and the kids are ready to get out of school and stretch their legs. What better way is there than to get out into the great outdoors than camping? The fresh air, the birds chirping, the smell of grills cooking, MMM good!
To get to this vacation away from home and the everyday grind, you'll need to ready the camper and make sure it's safe for the voyage out into the camping wilderness. So take your favorite yard games, grill, camping lights, lawn chairs and mosquito spray, for a fun-filled weekend of family togetherness in a campground of your choice. before you leave, here is a must-read camper safety list for you and your family. Now, ready the camper!
Wednesday May 22, 2013
A balanced load. Why would that be important and how would it benefit me as a consumer to have a balanced load? Moreover, why should I even worry about that in the first place? These are all terrific questions and I'll try to explain how balancing the electrical load in your load center (electrical panel) can benefit you in the wallet! First of all, you need to know that there are two different power phases coming into your home. We'll call them phase "A" and phase "B" for simplification purposes. Now phase "A" to neutral has 120 volts. Phase "B" has 120 volts to neutral. The reading from phase "A" to phase "B" is 240 volts. You see, they are different phases and that's how we get 240-volt appliances to run, unlike the 120-volt things like lights, microwave ovens, refrigerators, etc... Let's take a deeper look at how the utility company charges you for their service.
Your power coming into the home needs to be fed from an electric service provider. They monitor the usage of your home's power consumption and guarantee that they will provide you with the peak amount of power you require at all times. To do this, they check the records of your home's usage and bill you on the highest demand factor per billing cycle. Just because you don't use that peak amount of power every day, you'll pay the elevated rate because they have to have that much power available for your use. Think of it as they have reserved power especially for you. Doesn't that make you feel special? Now, consider that it's a hot day and you run two window air conditioners on 120 volts. Now you just happen to have them both plugged into phase "A" and there is a spike in power usage on that phase, recorded at the service provider. Let's say that on that particular day you use a peak of 1,000 kilowatts, on phase "A" and only 500 kilowatts on phase "B". The total consumption would be 1,500 kilowatts. The power company will charge you at the 1,500 KW rate for both legs, betting that you may need that much power on both legs.
Now, as a consumption saver practice, let's say you have 240-volt air conditioners that split the power consumption between both "A" and "B" phases. In this example, the power would be split between the phases. So in the case of unit one, it would use half or 500 kilowatts and unit two would use half or 250 kilowatts. The total consumption would be only 750 kilowatts and would save you half on the bill. Now, consider the peak usage chart at the service provider. They look and see that you only need a peak of 750 kilowatts for the 240-volt air conditioning peak on that day, so they charge you at a lower demand rate, saving you money. Balancing your electrical load can do just that for you and here is how simple it is to balance your electrical load.