5 Essential Products to Help Weather a Winter Storm

"Never put off for tomorrow, what you can do today." That notion, attributed to Thomas Jefferson, is doubly true if tomorrow's forecast calls for a winter storm. As winter rages on, each bad storm brings with it a new round of panic, as folks flood home-improvement centers in search of generators, flashlights, and just about anything else that can help you weather prolonged cold spells and periodic power outages.Unfortunately, the eve of a bad winter storm is a terrible time to shop for cold-climate essentials-inventory tends to be scarce, tensions are high, and you're liable to grab the first items you find and rush home. So when there's a break in the weather, take the chance to track down these essential products tested by Consumer Reports. GeneratorIf you live in an area prone to power outages, consider a stationary generator, which is generally more expensive but can run on on your home's natural-gas supply or on propanefor five to 13 days on a 250-gallon tank.Opt for a licensed electrician, who should connect it to your home's electrical panel using a transfer switch.In our tests, the Kohler 14 RESAL, $3,700, delivered reliable, surge-free power, and was exceptionally easy to use. It's also relatively quiet.For lighter power needs, consider a portable, gasoline-powered model like the Generac RS7000E, $900. It'll run note to 15 hours on its 7½-gallon tank, but you'll need to store fuel for longer outages. Shop Generators on Amazon Snow BlowerIf the allure of easily removing snow from your driveway hasn't motivated you to buy a snow blower, try thinking of it as a safety tool. In a serious winter storm, you'll be glad you've got a snow blower, which can easily clear a path to your car, not to mention make it possible to pull out of your driveway once the plows have passed.To tackle the aftermath of most snowstorms, the two-stage Troy-Bilt Arctic Storm 30, $1,500, makes quick work of snow packed 16 inches high. If you live in a climate with even more serious snowfall, consider a three-stage blower like the Cub Cadet 3X 30" HD, $1,650, which can handle 18 inches of snow or more in a single pass.Shop Snow Blowers on Amazon Space HeaterIf the power goes out and you're relying on a generator, a space heater will let you hunker down in a single room and stay warm while using considerably less energy than an electric heat pump or furnace, both of which heat your whole house. If you heat your home with gas or propane or another heating source, skip the space heater in favor of your furnace. And if you rely on propane, heating oil, or wood pellets and a bad storm makes the roads impassable but doesn't knock out the power, use the heater to stay warm and toasty while you wait for your next delivery.The Dyson AM09, $450, gets top marks (at a top price) for heating a small space, while the far less expensiveLifesmart ZCHT1001US, $90, did a nice job heating larger rooms. Shop Space Heaters on Amazon Chain SawHeavy snow and ice can down branches long after a storm has passed. That's one of the struggles faced by utility workers as they attempt to restore power after a storm. So take a hint from them and buy and use a chain saw before a winter storm hits. Not only will you get to choose from top-performing models, but by being proactive and trimming precarious limbs before a storm, you'll also minimize damage to your home during snowfall and avoid the tedious yard cleanup after.If you've got only a few trees or live on a smaller lot, a battery-powered model like the Ego CS1401, $250, should provide all the power you need. If you've got an outdoor outlet, a corded electric model like the Stihl MS 170 C-BQ, $300, will work nicely and doesn't require charging. For heavily wooded lots with more mature trees, consider the gas-powered Echo CS-590-20, $365, which has a 20-inch bar for downing larger limbs.Shop Chain Saws on Amazon Smoke & CO Alarms and Fire ExtinguishersAll three are safety essentials, but the unusual risks posed by weathering a winter storm power outage make them even more important. Burning candles for light, operating a generator, or using a space heater can all increase the chances you'll need one of these life-saving devices.For smoke and fire detection, the Kidde Pl9010, $200, excelled at detecting smoke and smoldering fires, while the First Alert One Link SCO501CN, $70, is a top pick for detecting carbon monoxide.Ourfire extinguisher buying guideprovides essential information on choosing between models. (We don't test fire extinguishers at this time.)Shop Fire Extinguishers on Amazon More from Consumer Reports:Top pick tires for 2016Best used cars for $25,000 and less7 best mattresses for couplesConsumer Reports has no relationship with any advertisers on this website. Copyright 2006-2017 Consumers Union of U.S.

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Curtains, Rugs, High-tech Bulbs and Other Fall Tips for a Cozy and Cost-efficient Home
As temperatures drop and daylight is in shorter supply, we fight back: We crank up the heat in our homes and turn on lights earlier and earlier. And yet we also want to keep our heating and electric bills as low as we can.Can you keep your home warm and inviting all winter while still conserving energyHere, three home design experts offer advice on how to keep things cozy while minimizing energy use this winter. Their suggestions range from the traditional (there's a reason why your grandmother hung those heavy curtains in winter) to the high-tech, including a thermostat that can talk to your iPad.TRY NEW TECHMaxwell Ryan, founder of the popular home décor website ApartmentTherapy.com, is a designer. John Colaneri, co-host of HGTV's "Kitchen Cousins," is a construction expert who builds and remodels homes.Both offer identical pieces of advice about staying warm while conserving power and saving money: Swap out your old incandescent bulbs (and those swirly compact fluorescent bulbs, too) for the new Cree brand LED bulbs."They can last longer than 10 years and they use 84 per cent less energy than incandescents," Ryan says. "They also are dimmable" and give a warm-looking light - a big change from the energy-saving compact fluorescents."If you do the math on the LED," he says, the bulbs save you so much on electricity that they pay for themselves within a year and then last about nine more years.Colaneri and Ryan also both advise homeowners to replace old thermostats with new Nest brand models. "They take 30 per cent off your bill each month," Colaneri says. "And they look very high-tech and cool to display."Nests are programmable "learning thermostats," which means they track your habits and adjust accordingly. They also connect via Wi-Fi to check weather reports online, and you can control them remotely from an iPad.There is new outdoor technology, as well. On your deck or patio, designer Brian Patrick Flynn suggests adding a new propane-powered space heater. The newest models are cost-effective and stylish, says Flynn, executive producer of HGTV.com's Holiday House."They look like modern sculpture," says Flynn, "and many of them are under $500. To ensure my outdoor spaces stay warm during the winter, I keep modern, 7-foot tall space heaters in my covered outdoor living room. They're on wheels, so it's easy to move them around to wherever people are seated. And once lit, the glass tubes which contain the flame from the propane tank put on a gorgeous show."EMBRACE UPHOLSTERYWarm, cozy upholstery fabrics work on a practical level by holding your warmth when you touch or sit on them. But Ryan points out that they also work visually: A room full of soft, warm fabrics will give you a psychological sense of warmth that adds to your enjoyment.So add thick throw blankets to chairs and sofas, and swap out silk-covered pillows and even lampshades for ones covered in thicker, nubbier fabrics like muslin and burlap.Ryan also recommends using thick curtains in winter. A decade ago, he says, "curtains were considered fusty and old-fashioned and expensive." But with so many beautiful, inexpensive curtains available today, they've become popular again.Besides adding colour or a bold pattern to a room, curtains also block cold air that might leak in around windows. And they muffle sound from outside, which Ryan says helps make rooms feel more insulated in winter."Curtains," he says, "aren't just for your grandparents anymore."The same technique can help warm up outdoor spaces. Flynn recommends Sunbrella's outdoor velveteen fabric for chairs and sofas. He also likes thick, woven blends."Velveteen is amazing for the outdoors," he says, "since it's warm and fuzzy."LIGHT THE FIRECrackling flames in an indoor fireplace can change the feel of a room instantly. And outdoors, they bring a welcome infusion of heat and light on a winter evening."Outdoor fireplaces are increasingly more and more popular, coast to coast," Flynn says. "They're not all that much of an expense like an outdoor kitchen would be."If you're building a new outdoor fireplace, leave ample room for seating. "Many times homeowners have outdoor fireplaces built, but there's only enough room for a small table or two chairs. What's the point, people The whole idea is to gather and stay cozy outdoors," Flynn says.He suggests planning "at least 12-by-14 feet of space around the front of the fireplace to ensure a sofa and loveseat as well as a coffee table and end tables will fit."LAY DOWN RUGSGleaming hardwood or tile floors are lovely in spring and summer. But in cold weather, add a thick rug or swap out a thin one for something heavier. This will not only warm your feet, but also change the look and sound of your space."When acoustics are dampened," Ryan says, "the room feels warmer."An outdoor rug can have the same impact. "Thick outdoor area rugs are made of acrylic/wool blends," Flynn says. "The wool feels great on your feet and definitely locks in warmth."IMPROVE YOUR CIRCULATIONThis last tip, shared by Maxwell Ryan, comes from a conversation he had years ago with home décor guru Martha Stewart. She advised him to run his ceiling fans backward in winter to push warm air back down along the walls of the room.If you don't have ceiling fans, Ryan suggests adding one or two for energy savings and added comfort year-round.
Energy Steps to Take for a Less Pricey Winter
WASHINGTON (Reuters) - Last winter's "Snowmageddon" is not expected to do a repeat performance on the East Coast this year. That's the good news for anyone who pays their own heating bills. But the bad news is that most fuel rates have risen. The resulting bottom line is this: Most people will pay roughly the same amount for heat this winter as they did last winter, the Energy Department predicted on Tuesday. The average household heating costs between October 1 and March 31 will be $962, the Department said. That's just $11 more than last year's total. As usual, people in the Northeast and who use oil or propane to heat their homes will pay the most. The average winter heating bill for oil customers there will be $2,225 this year, up 14.5 percent from last year, the department said in its latest projections. Northeastern propane customers will pay the most: some $2,685 between October 1 and March 31. There are ways to minimize that, and here are a few: Make small improvements - Homeowners have until December 31 to winterize their homes and get tax credits for it, the IRS has said. Items like high-efficiency heaters, water heaters and stoves all qualify for a 30 percent tax credit, up to $1,500. The catch is that the $1,500 ceiling is for 2009 and 2010 combined. If you used it up last year, you're done. Make big improvements - There is a second tax credit that expires at the end of this year. You can also take a 30 percent tax credit if you install a solar electric system, hot water heater, geothermal pump, wind turbine or fuel-cell system. There's no cap on that credit, so it could be a good time to make a long-term investment in saving energy. Call your utility - Many local utilities also offer deals that can cut heating bills. Some give away free programmable thermostats or offer home energy audits. Others offer discounts and rebates on efficient heaters and other appliances. Get a space heater and use it -- Keep your house cool, and use the space heater in the room you're hanging out in. Annual savings? $1,023 if you use electric heat, according to the energy-saving calculator at MichaelBlueJay (www.michaelbluejay.com), a website that offers electricity-savings advice. Consider switching suppliers -- Enter your zip code at WhiteFence (wwww.whitefence.com) to see if there is another energy supplier in your area that charges less, or would cost less overall. Finally, make all of those tried-and-true little moves. Use heavy curtains or shades, close them at night and open them in the morning. Keep the house cool and wear sweaters. Seal windows and doors. Close off rooms not being used. Program the thermostat, or remember to turn it down when you go to bed and when you leave the house in the morning. Pay your heating bill with a cash-back credit card. If you are going to spend $1,000 this year, you might as well squeeze an extra $10 out of it for yourself. That assumes your card offers a 1 percent bonus, and that you pay off your card every month. You can use that $10 to buy some nice hot cocoa, sip it while you daydream about spring, and see if it warms you up. (The Personal Finance column appears weekly. Linda Stern can be reached at linda.stern(at)thomsonreuters.com)
Energy Steps to Take for a Less Pricey Winter
WASHINGTON (Reuters) - Last winter's "Snowmageddon" is not expected to do a repeat performance on the East Coast this year. That's the good news for anyone who pays their own heating bills. But the bad news is that most fuel rates have risen. The resulting bottom line is this: Most people will pay roughly the same amount for heat this winter as they did last winter, the Energy Department predicted on Tuesday. The average household heating costs between October 1 and March 31 will be $962, the Department said. That's just $11 more than last year's total. As usual, people in the Northeast and who use oil or propane to heat their homes will pay the most. The average winter heating bill for oil customers there will be $2,225 this year, up 14.5 percent from last year, the department said in its latest projections. Northeastern propane customers will pay the most: some $2,685 between October 1 and March 31. There are ways to minimize that, and here are a few: Make small improvements - Homeowners have until December 31 to winterize their homes and get tax credits for it, the IRS has said. Items like high-efficiency heaters, water heaters and stoves all qualify for a 30 percent tax credit, up to $1,500. The catch is that the $1,500 ceiling is for 2009 and 2010 combined. If you used it up last year, you're done. Make big improvements - There is a second tax credit that expires at the end of this year. You can also take a 30 percent tax credit if you install a solar electric system, hot water heater, geothermal pump, wind turbine or fuel-cell system. There's no cap on that credit, so it could be a good time to make a long-term investment in saving energy. Call your utility - Many local utilities also offer deals that can cut heating bills. Some give away free programmable thermostats or offer home energy audits. Others offer discounts and rebates on efficient heaters and other appliances. Get a space heater and use it -- Keep your house cool, and use the space heater in the room you're hanging out in. Annual savings? $1,023 if you use electric heat, according to the energy-saving calculator at MichaelBlueJay (www.michaelbluejay.com), a website that offers electricity-savings advice. Consider switching suppliers -- Enter your zip code at WhiteFence (wwww.whitefence.com) to see if there is another energy supplier in your area that charges less, or would cost less overall. Finally, make all of those tried-and-true little moves. Use heavy curtains or shades, close them at night and open them in the morning. Keep the house cool and wear sweaters. Seal windows and doors. Close off rooms not being used. Program the thermostat, or remember to turn it down when you go to bed and when you leave the house in the morning. Pay your heating bill with a cash-back credit card. If you are going to spend $1,000 this year, you might as well squeeze an extra $10 out of it for yourself. That assumes your card offers a 1 percent bonus, and that you pay off your card every month. You can use that $10 to buy some nice hot cocoa, sip it while you daydream about spring, and see if it warms you up. (The Personal Finance column appears weekly. Linda Stern can be reached at linda.stern(at)thomsonreuters.com)
Best EdenPURE 360 Super Climater Space Heater
Best EdenPURE 360 Super Climater Space HeaterBuy Link: CLICK HEREEdenPURE 360 Super Climater Space Heater Product Description:EdenPURE 360 Super Climater Space Heater. With the True Feel Temp Cooling and Heavenly Heat settings, you can lower temps by as much as 15 degrees F and heat up to 90 degrees F with the EdenPURE 360 Super Climater. space heater, heater, portable heater, room heater, whole room heater, electric heater, bathroom heater, bedroom heater, wall heater. Price: 297. 00 USD. Sale Price: 297. 00 USD. The EdenPURE 360 Super Climater Space Heater is certainly that and will be a great buy. For this price, the EdenPURE 360 Super Climater Space Heater is highly recommended and is a popular choice with lots of people.Buy it NowBuy EdenPURE 360 Super Climater Space Heater is a post from: Shop Air Purifiers.'97 Dodge Intrepid heater and shut off problems. Possibly starter problem?The engine continues to run, after you remove the key. This sounds like a remote car starter problem. They shut of the vehicle when you touch the brake(anti theft device). This is where I would start to look,.My hot water heater pilot will stay on, but it is not heating the water. What could this be?If the pilot is not going out then thermocouple is probably good. Could be your burner control or burner having issues. Clean the burner and area around it. Check for rust. If you see excessive rust or moisture then replace the unit. I've spent $75 for a burner control unit for a 8 year old model recently and $20 for a new thermocouple on it a couple years back. Good luck finding parts for a 25 year old unit. I will agree with others here that 25 years is a long time for a water heater. I've replaced a 15 year old unit within the last year at my mom's place through Lowes for under $500 installed. If ours give us anymore problems it will be replaced as well.Should a mini submersible aquarium heater do this?Go to Petco. They have 7.5 Watts heater that are perfect for a 2.5 gallon tank. The heaters are small and very light in weight. Do not put anything greater than 7.5 W or you will fry the fishwhat heater would work best for heating a garage?Do as Gary suggested,, That is your best bet by far... Close off the space, Buy or make partitions or string rods or wires and make heavy curtains, Plus a Delonghi oil filled heater and you will be fineI have an electrci water heater and no hot water, what should I do?Check the breaker in your panel. Find the one for your hot water and turn It off then back on. Also of you have a grey box with a lever near it Turn it to the off position then back up for on.What to do with water heater and water softner when draining water from plumbing?could just be the mineral deposits on the bottom of the water heater. Flushing it may help. Without actually hearing the sound it's making it's hard to be certain. I do not believe the heater is bad tho being only 4 years old. I would suggest looking into a water softenerwhy does it take so long for my tankless water heater to provide hot water to a faucet?distance. the further its got to travel the more it absorbs the ambient temperature of the pipesheater stopped working in my olds again! this would be the third time i have to put in shop?Hi Judy If the fuse controls the fan - try running the fan on any speed but the high speed. As the vehicle ages - the fan motor will develop resistance. Running it on "High" demands the maximum amount of amperage through the fuse and an aging motor will require more than the fuse can deliver? ned If the new fuse did not help then either the motor has failed, a wire has possibly burned off or a resistor had failed?2004 pontiac car overheating and heater not working?2 likely answers A- the thermostat is bad and stuck closed. B- the water pump is shot. Take the thermostat out if overheating stops or just put a new one in $10.(note you wont have a heater with the thermostat out) Still overheating most likely water pump is gone. Now for some other odd ball stuff to check. Collapsed/pinched supply/return hose to radiator. Since you did not say anything about power steering I am guessing that the belt is still on all the pulleys. A quick cheating test is to find the upper and lower radiator hoses. With the engine cold start it let it warm up for about 1 minute. Now grab the lower (supply) radiator hose and lightly squeeze it and have the engine quick revved up to like 4000 rpm (fast on fast off to idle) does the hose feel like it was trying to collapse? Did it feel like it tried to swell up as the speed feel off Yes? most likely thermostat. GL.
Women Want the Office to Be Warmer. Science now Backs Them Up
What's the perfect office temperature?Everyone you ask will have a different answer. For some people, an office climate bordering on frosty is ideal; for others, anything below subtropical necessitates a blanket, fingerless gloves and an illicit space heater.There's no one thermostat setting that will make everyone happy. But in a new study, USC researchers offer the temperature that facilitates optimal productivity.In a study published in the journal PLoS ONE this month, Tom Y. Chang, an associate professor of finance and business economics at the USC Marshall School of Business, and his team looked at how male and female students performed on math, verbal and cognitive tasks at temperatures ranging from 61 to 91 degrees Fahrenheit.The findings : Women performed better at temperatures between 70 and 80 degrees, whereas men performed better at temperatures below 70. However, women were more negatively impacted by colder temperatures than men were by warmer ones.So, if an office manager is looking to maximize workplace productivity, where should the thermostat needle land?"I'm cringing a little bit to say this," Chang said. "75 degrees to me is boiling. That's hot. I'm very warm at 75. But in a gender-balanced office environment, our results suggest that something like 75 degrees might be the optimal temperature to have for optimal productivity." This is not the first time the office thermostat battle has made headlines. A 2015 study published in Nature indicated office temperatures are generally set based on an empirical thermal comfort model from the 1960s, when the workforce was much more predominantly male.In other words: Offices tend to be climate-controlled to men's preferences, which we now know comes at the expense of women's comfort and productivity.A rash of articles about how the office AC is sexist followed, along with a College Humor video cataloging the very real ordeal of "women's winter" in workplaces across America.In rebuttals, the argument was made that this was a dress-code issue , not a thermostat one: Men traditionally wear suits to work, while women's workwear tends to be lighter and more adaptable to the weather. But without meaning to, this new study controlled for that, Chang said: Study participants were students, the vast majority of whom were dressed in weather-appropriate casual clothing. So even when you control for the dress code, men and women still have different temperature preferences.The results came as a surprise to Alison Green, author of the advice site Ask A Manager , who's received number of letters over the years asking her to weigh in on the thermostat wars. She said in the past her advice has been to err on the side of chilly: It's easier to put more clothes on and warm up than it is to remove them and cool down in a professional environment.But hearing the results of the USC study, "now I'm questioning my advice," she said, "especially given the gender divide on this." The Occupational Safety and Health Administration does not have a firm ruling on office temperatures: It advises workplaces to be between 68 and 76 degrees , a fairly wide range. Assuming your workplace isn't dangerously hot or cold - if your employees are risking frostbite or heat stroke, obviously, changes need to be made - Green said managers have some options for helping people acclimate to the indoor climate.Try to allow space heaters or fans if it's safe to do so, she said, and loosen up on the dress code when people are trying to stay comfortable at work. Another option is to rearrange seating, so that the coldest person in the office isn't positioned directly under a roaring AC vent, and the warmest isn't baking next to your sunniest window.In general, she said, as offices across the workforce relax dress-code standards, more people should be able to find clothing options so they can focus more on work and less on the mercury wars. In the meantime, science says to set the thermostat in the mid-70s.
Space Heater Controlled by Digital Thermostat: 5 Steps ...
This instructable shows you how to use an off the shelf digital programmable thermostat to control an inexpensive space heater.Most cheap space heaters have only an analog knob to coarsely set the temperature; even the fanciest models only allow you to set them to turn off automatically after a preset number of hours.This project allows you to set the room temperature according to the time of day and day of the week, giving you much needed flexibility to save energy and avoid waking up to a freezing house! You can save energy by programming the thermostat to lower the room temperature at night, but still get out of bed to a toasty room in the mornings.You will need the following materials for this instructable:- A digital programmable thermostat. I found a used one on ebay for about $15. It is a Bryant and was originally used in a commercial building. Commercial thermostats typically don't have battery backup, something to keep in mind if you plan on moving the heater around and don't want to reset the clock. Commercial thermostats are also typically cheaper than name brand consumer models. Make sure you get one that is programmable, many digital models are not, shocking considering the minimal effort in adding the feature and the energy savings in a typical home!!- A relay with a 24VDC coil voltage and around 700 ohms coil resistance. The contacts should be rated to at least 15 or 20A at 110VAC minimum. $3-$5 at your local electronics surplus store.- A 110V to 24VAC transformer. My transformer was rated at 36VAC, 65mA on the secondary, and maintains about 20VAC under load between one end of the secondary and the center tap. 20VAC seems to be within the input supply range of the thermostat, the exact voltage is not critical. Another electronics store find - $3.- An enclosure, power cord and AC receptacle. I gutted a fax machine power conditioner and got all three for about $2.- Some parts you might already have in your junkbox - a 1k resistor, 1n4001 diode, 100uF capacitor. A terminal strip or some perfboard.- And I almost forgot - a space heater. Mine is a Bionaire MicaThermic Convection Console Heater - about $40 (in store price) at Costco.Read this!!Safety warning:Space heaters typically consume on the order of 1500W, or roughly 15A at 110VAC. All wiring needs to be sized appropriately to handle these currents. Undersizing the wire gauge used or poor connections could lead to a fire! Also, operating a space heater while you are not home is probably a bad idea. I recommend unplugging the space heater before leaving it unattended for an extended period of time. Be safe!Here is a rough schematic of the circuit (also my first experience with Eagle!).Notes:Only the W1 output of the thermostat is used.C is the common terminal, some thermostats may not have this. Mine uses it to power the backlight and digital functions since it has no battery.R is return and completes a circuit with the W1 terminal when the thermostat activates the heater.C1 should be rated 50VDC. The exact value is not critical.The thermostat needs to be on the unswitched side of the relay so that the thermostat always has power. The hot wire should be switched for safety. The ground wire is not shown and just passes through the box from the cord to the receptable. If the enclosure is metal (not recommended) it should be grounded.Assemble the 1k resistor, diode, and 100uF capacitor on a terminal strip or perfboard. The purpose of this circuit is to convert the output of the thermostat, which is AC, into a DC signal to drive the relay. There is a fair amount of flexibility in this circuit - these are just parts I had in my junkbox.The thermostat uses a triac to switch the heater on and off. Triacs only work with AC signals, they can't be used directly to switch DC because they will "latch" on and not turn off until power is removed. The 1k resistor in the circuit ensures that a small amount of AC current can pass through the triac and avoids the latching problem.Assemble the remaining parts and complete the wiring. The thermostat is attached to the top of the box by its original wall-mount with three screws, and can be popped off to make the necessary connections. Be sure to use heatshrink or put tape on all 110VAC connections to reduce the chance of electric shock or shorts!The pinout for the relay can be determined by the diagram on the top of most relays, or with an ohm meter.Before you close up the enclosure, do some preliminary testing. With nothing connected to the AC receptable, plug in the power cord. Verify that the thermostat powers up. A test lamp or small wattage light bulb connected to the outlet should be off.Set the thermostat for heat mode and increase the set temperature above the room temperature as shown. Make sure the relay closes and 110VAC appears at the outlet, or the lamp turns on. If it checks out, test it with a real space heater, and allow it to run at least half an hour on your bench. Turn it off and inspect for any overheated wires or hot components.If everything checks out, congratulations! You now have a digitally programmable space heater!
A True Hero': Good Samaritan Puts Up Dozens of Chicago's Homeless in Hotel Amid Record-low Temperatu
In one of Chicago's homeless encampments, a haphazard collection of tents and flimsy dwellings made of tarps and blankets are scattered among barren trees. Nearby, stuffed garbage bags and beat-up cardboard boxes are strewn about in piles on the snow-covered ground.This tent city adjacent to the bustling Dan Ryan Expressway is where dozens hunkered down to ride out a deadly cold snap that has sent temperatures across the Midwest plummeting to historic lows this week. With temperatures in Chicago continuing to drop, reaching minus-24 Wednesday morning, the city and welfare organizations have been working to keep the homeless population safe, Jacqueline Rachev, a Salvation Army spokeswoman, told The Washington Post in a phone interview late Wednesday.But on Wednesday, the second-coldest day in Chicago's history, one Good Samaritan went beyond donating clothes or blankets - the unnamed person offered to put up about 70 homeless people in a hotel on the city's South Side, the Chicago Tribune first reported."We think it's wonderful that there's somebody out there that has decided to be so kind to provide a warm place and a safe place for these folks to go," Rachev said. "We're thrilled they're safe and warm at least for a few days."Much to the trepidation of officials who have repeatedly implored the public to seek proper shelter and avoid being outdoors, a group of homeless people remained camped in the tent city, relying on makeshift shelters and donated propane tanks for warmth. On Wednesday afternoon, their living situation grew even more dire.One of the propane tanks - which officials have warned people not to donate, citing serious safety concerns - exploded shortly after noon when a space heater was left on too close to it, ABC 7 reported."I was just coming out of my tent, and I heard a boom," Donald Gorobegko, a resident of the tent city, told ABC 7. "I felt the ground shake, then I looked up, I see smoke."Walter Schroeder, the deputy district chief for the Chicago Fire Department, told the Tribune that by the time firefighters arrived at the encampment, the blaze was already out and no one had been injured. But crews did find dozens of other propane tanks, which "escalated" the incident "to a Level I Hazmat," Schroeder said.There were about 150 to 200 propane tanks in the tent city, Maj. David Byrd of the Illinois State Police told ABC 7, describing the environment as "extremely unsafe." After the explosion, the area was closed off, and authorities hurried to find places for the displaced people to go, the news station reported.The Salvation Army, Rachev said, received a call from the city in the early afternoon informing them that group of about 70 homeless people needed to be moved to a warming shelter, and the organization immediately began making preparations for transport.Then, about an hour later, the city called back. There was "no need" to pick anyone up, Rachev said, as "a Good Samaritan contacted the city and offered to pay for hotel rooms instead."Rachev did not know the person's identity or the name of the hotel, but said she believed it was located on Chicago's South Side. She also said she did not know exactly how many people went to the hotel. The Tribune reported that only one man did not go, choosing instead to check into a warming center. City officials could not be reached for comment late Wednesday night."It's a deadly situation for anyone," Rachev said about the extreme weather. "We're thrilled that someone was in a position to be able to do this."While it remains unclear who was responsible for this act of kindness, others in the Chicago area appeared to have the same idea. On Wednesday, a Reddit user wanting to help homeless people shared a post offering to "cover a night at a local hotel of my choosing.""I know it's not much but at least it'll let you sleep in a warm bed and take a warm shower," the person wrote.Another person responded asking if the user wanted to "team up," suggesting that together they could help more people."Bless you for this wonderful offer," one person commented. "You could be saving someone's life. You are a wonderful person for doing this!"On social media, the anonymous donor who paid for the hotel rooms was heralded as "a true hero" and an "angel."
Gas Fireplace Or Space Heater?
Space Heater Fireplace1. What is thermal efficiency water heater?Thermal efficiency is on a Gas boiler what you get out of the boiler in heat compared to what your boiler used EG. A modern Condencing boiler will give you upto 92% efficiency. Where as my old Vaillant Combi boiler 23 years old is only about 78% efficient. So basicly you have to put more gas into the boiler to get the same heat out. Which can cost you a bit more. But the most modern boilers are not as robust and have more technology within them which can go wrong. Plus to change to a more efficient modern boiler would cost me around 1,700. And that buys a lot of gas. So sticking with my old boiler as it's running like a clock and not costing me a fortune as only pay 67 per month for my central heating gas and all the Electricty I use.What is thermal efficiency water heater?2. I just bought a 27 year old car with low miles, what should I check?All fluids need to be replaced; brake, steering, cooling system, transmission, motor oil. Belts and heater and cooling system hoses. Tires of course. You Toy does not have sealed bearing joints, so the suspension system will need a lube. CV and ball joints? All look clean and rust free underweight Motor mounts? Have fun!3. Mazda Miata cabin heaterI suggest posting this question on a Miata forum. You might want to get a car with heated seats.4. Tankless Water Heater?They work on the principal of heating what you will use. When the unit calls for hot water, the burner lights and heats the water that go through coils, cold water in - hot water out. If you have high water use (2 or more people) do not install a tankless. The demand will never keep up. There is a common fallacy with tankless heaters being an endless supply. Sure you are only heating the water when you need it, but if you are doing laundry and washing dishes at the same time, it's not for you and will cost more in the long run. Cost wise, they are 2-3 time more than conventional tank heaters and cost more to install, especially if you get a plumber not familiar with a tankless. Additionally, you will find that most plumbers are not in agreement with the "endless" theory. Hope this helps.5. Do my fish need a heater?Nope... You do not need a heater for goldfish6. GMC suburban heater core ?probably via removing the completed sprint. Carmakers could be compelled to make an exterior heater center, yet they insist on burying it deep interior the sprint. I even have had 2 vehicles .... a Ford and a Jimmy, the two had to take the sprint out.7. Best Sauna Heater | Review of the Electric Gas Wood HeaterSauna was first introduced to Americans by Finns in the early 1600s. Since then, it has been a part of their lifestyles. With the growing number of sauna heaters, you might find it difficult to find the best sauna heater for your sauna room. Read through our reviews to know more. Most saunas today use this type of heater. An electric stove is used to heat the stones. This stove comes with a timer and a thermostat to regulate the temperature of the stones. This type of heater is ideal for an outdoor sauna. It can be also used in an indoor sauna, which has an exterior wall vent. This is the oldest type of heater. Many people are still using this today to get a feel of the traditional sauna experience. This is a good choice for a barrel sauna. This is the newest technology in sauna heating. An infrared sauna heaters makes use of ceramic or carbon heaters. The infrared sauna is not considered by sauna enthusiasts as real 'sauna'. They prefer to call it a 'therapeutic room' than a sauna since it does not produce 'loyly' or steam. This type of heater is commonly used by athletes to help relax their muscles. The first thing to consider before buying a sauna heater is your residence. If you live in the country where there are plenty of woods, a wood-fired sauna heater may be the best option you have. This will cost you less in the long run. If you live in an urban area, it is wiser to have either a gas or electric-driven heater. Unlike wood-fired heaters, these heaters do not create ashes. A gas heater might also be a better choice if your house has a gas heating system or a low supply of electricity. Other things to consider when choosing your heater include the following: This type of heater does not warm up the surrounding air. It can only heat up the surface it is pointing to. Some of the benefits of sauna include the following. Review of the Best Sauna Heater Harvia Manufacturing of Finland made this electric sauna heater, which can heat up 300 cubic feet (L x W x H) 7' standard sauna room. We like this heater's interior and heating elements because they are made of stainless steel. Stainless steel does not rust, which contributes to this heater's Other products in the market are only CE certified, which means they have only passed European's safety standards. Finlandia FLB-60 Sauna Heater is ETL certified, which means that it has passed the US OSHA's safety standards. Another good thing to like about Finlandia FLB-60 Sauna Heater is that it comes with large rocks. So, you wo not have to bother looking for some. This compact mini electric sauna heater from Turku is CE and ISO certified. It is an excellent choice for those who prefer an 110V or 120V unit and to those who have small sauna room. This heater is ideal for use in a 45 to 90 cubic feet sauna room. We like this product's versatility because it can be either used for a wet or dry sauna. This product has a built-in controller, which is great because it is much easier to wire it that way. This electric heater comes with a stainless steel modern design, which makes it a durable product. It can be used for wet and dry sauna, but not with infrared saunas though. Other good features of this product include its aluminum thermostat sensor casing and high grade Teflon coating elements. We also like this product's digital controller, which does not produce any ticking sound. Unlike other heaters, this heater can be pre-set up to 12 hours. This product is CE and ISO certified. This heater features a 100% stainless-steel body, which prevents corrosion or rust formation that can be caused by exposure to elevated temperatures and moisture. This product comes with an extra large tray, which can hold 160 pounds of rocks and eight gallons of water. This capacity turns your sauna into a steam sauna in a short span of time. We also like it's built-in thermal cutout, which protects this heater from overheating. Another good thing about this product is that its sealed combustion heaters do not need flue or gas connections inside the sauna. This wood burning sauna heater is a product of Harvia of Finland, and is a great choice if you have a small sauna room. A unique feature of this product is its dual function. This can be used as a fireplace and as a wood burning sauna stove. We also liked that this heater comes with 2 boxes of genuine Harvia sauna stones. This means that you can start using it once you received it. Another good feature is its stainless steel outer casing, which adds up to this product's durability. This product can work well with accessories like chimney kit, chimney pipe, chimney pipe extension, and water heater. See HOW TO - Installation Of Harvia Wood-burning Stove on Youtube All of the products we have reviewed have quality features, but based on our standards we pick Finlandia FLB-60 Sauna Heater as the best sauna heater. This heater is durable for its stainless-steel casing. This is also the only product with ETL certification, which means it has passed the standards of US-OSHA. We also liked that this heater comes with the sauna stones.
Everything You Need to Know About Space Heaters
Space heaters are one of the most useful tools for keeping costs low during cold winter nights. A space heater enables the user to turn off the heater for the whole house, and just heat one or two rooms at a time. Space heaters are very useful, but it can be hard to decide which type of heater to purchase and use.When purchasing a space heater there are several different criteria to use in decision making before you can choose the best space heater for you. These categories are:- Size- Heat output- Budget- Safety- Temperature- LabelsThe size of the space heater is very important. The larger the room, the larger you want the heater to be. There is a formula for figuring out how many BTUs you need your heater to produce. Multiply the height times the width times the length of the room. Then multiply that number by 3. That number is how many BTUs you need to heat the room effectively. The best space heater for each room will have the right amount of BTUs for the space.When you go to the store to look at space heaters ask someone at the store if they can turn on the heaters for you. That way you can see how far the heat is produced, and how hot the surfaces get. The best space heater models also have temperature control so that you can set a temperature for the room and the heater will keep the room at that temperature. This will save money because the heater will not have to run constantly.Decide how much you want to spend on your space heater. The cheapest space heaters are electric. More expensive heaters are made from propane and natural gas. When you know your budget beforehand then it will be easier to make your final decision. It is also important to check the labels on any heater before purchasing. Try to get a heater that has an energy saver label on it. You also want a heater that has a UL label, which means it has been inspected by the Underwriter's Laboratories. Safety is also extremely important when choosing a space heater. Since the heater will most likely be on while you are asleep, it is crucial that the heater is completely safe. Some safety categories to watch out for are:- Make sure the heater is placed at least three feet from any other objects at all times.- Keep the heater away from water.- Unplug the heater when not in use.- Do not use around combustible materials such as gas, oil, or fires. - Do not use a space heater with an extension cord. This raises the chance of fire.- Keep children and babies away from the heater.The final aspect to consider when purchasing a space heater is design. There are many different designs of heaters, and there are also many different types of heaters. The different heat sources of the heaters have a lot to do with the design. Electric heaters come in many different designs. Some of the most common shapes are square or circular. Propane and natural gas heaters are usually rectangular. They are usually smaller than the electric heaters. Infrared heaters are also usually rectangular or square. Most space heaters are designed more for function than beauty, so there are not very many models that are attractive. Oil space heaters usually look like an accordion. Most original heaters were run by oil.Using the tips in this article should help you determine what the best space heater is for you and your family. Remember to always use the heaters safely and in the way they were built to be used.
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