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Thread: Snowmageddon '21

  1. #211
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    Default Re: Snowmageddon '21

    Quote Originally Posted by turbodog View Post
    No wonder you need a good flashlight... with a bill that low you must never turn the lights on.
    I dunno. My place isnít huge, the furnace and water heater are gas, virtually all my light bulbs are LED... I guess if I ran A/C a lot in the summer that could maybe double it for two or three months a year, but I just donít know how else I could consume much more power. I suppose if you have a lot of square footage to cool in a hot climate that would be a big power suck.

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    *Flashaholic* turbodog's Avatar
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    Default Re: Snowmageddon '21

    Quote Originally Posted by nbp View Post
    I dunno. My place isnít huge, the furnace and water heater are gas, virtually all my light bulbs are LED... I guess if I ran A/C a lot in the summer that could maybe double it for two or three months a year, but I just donít know how else I could consume much more power. I suppose if you have a lot of square footage to cool in a hot climate that would be a big power suck.
    We've got 4 people, a dedicated home office, and mentor robotics teams in the building out back a couple of days a week. But baseload is still significant. We are using nat gas for heat and water heat also.

    Worth noting that our roof was the last to melt off after the storms last week. So others around here either 1) use more power or 2) have crappier insulation???
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  3. #213
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    Default Re: Snowmageddon '21

    Yes, assuming that the sun shines equally on all the roofs and they have similar roofing materials, the difference will be the temperature of the bottom of the roof (the temp of the attic). If people do not insulate well, heat from living quarters will leak up through the ceiling and the attic will be warmer than the outside air and cause the snow to melt. The other possibility is that there is a heat source in the attic that warms the air enough to melt the snow. For example, poorly insulated ductwork running through the attic can dump off heat, or even can lights in the ceiling that arenít insulated well can throw heat upwards into the attic. In a warm place this isnít that big of a deal. Here in a snowy climate if your attic is too warm and the snow is frequently melting even when air temps are below freezing it can be a problem. The water runs down the roof and then when it gets to the overhanging eaves and gutters it freezes since those areas are colder. This can cause ice dams that back up and even work themselves under shingles or do other damage. Ideally you want the bottom side of the roof to be the same temperature as the outside air. Soffit and ridge vents can help create air flow that mitigates warm air against the roof as well.

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    *Flashaholic* Poppy's Avatar
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    Default Re: Snowmageddon '21

    Regarding ice daming:
    When we did my roof, we laid rolled, self adhering, relatively thick "weather shield" or "weather watch" around the perimeter. It comes in 36 inch wide rolls. I don't recall for sure, but I think we may have put two runs of it so that we had almost 6 feet of shielding from ice dams. Above that, to the peak, we used tar paper, and of course everything was covered with shingles. We added a ridge vent too.

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  5. #215

    Default Re: Snowmageddon '21

    Quote Originally Posted by nbp View Post
    I had to look up my usage for comparison as that seemed like a lot. I averaged about 151 kwh a month over the past year. Haha

    Dang that's good! I watch mine on an app that the utility company is connected with. It's not real-time but pretty close, about 6 hours delayed. Gives a nice summary each day of the usage per hour and outside temperature.

    On days when I'm out of town, no AC or heat running, and obviously nothing else except the fridge and maybe a 6w LED outside light, I'm using around 3.5kWh. So that's about 105kWh/mo. Of course I'm never out of town the entire month, so 180-200kWh is the best I can do on a good month. And I'm frugal with the thermostat.
    GOOD TINT!

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    Default Re: Snowmageddon '21

    So to put some numbers to this, and sorry for the tangent...

    My 3mwh is, using 30 days in a month, about 4200w all the time, 24 hours a day all month long.

    That does seem high...

    We are all led/CF lights. My office varies in usage but it's not outrageous: 5 machines & backend networking equipment. The outbuilding is only using power when we are out there.
    This is your life, and it's ending one minute at a time.
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  7. #217

    Default Re: Snowmageddon '21

    Quote Originally Posted by turbodog View Post
    So to put some numbers to this, and sorry for the tangent...

    My 3mwh is, using 30 days in a month, about 4200w all the time, 24 hours a day all month long.

    That does seem high...

    We are all led/CF lights. My office varies in usage but it's not outrageous: 5 machines & backend networking equipment. The outbuilding is only using power when we are out there.

    There could be something pulling a lot of juice without you knowing. I remember when looking at houses and asked for past utility costs. The realtor had a note from the owners saying something like "high utilities last month due to electric heat but heat pump was accidentally turned off". I'm not real familiar with what that is, but an example of how things can sky rocket. Their previous month bills were about 1/5 of that one.
    GOOD TINT!

  8. #218
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    Default Re: Snowmageddon '21

    It does make me wonder about those bills for $5000 of power for five days in Texas though. Even at the astronomical price of $9/kwh, those folks were using over 100kwh a day of power? Is that typical and I am a massive outlier or what was happening there? Is electric heat that inefficient? The prices were absurd, but it still seems like a lot of power. Even at $9/kwh I would use $45 of power in five days. It would be annoying but not panic inducing by any means.

  9. #219

    Default Re: Snowmageddon '21

    Quote Originally Posted by nbp View Post
    It does make me wonder about those bills for $5000 of power for five days in Texas though. Even at the astronomical price of $9/kwh, those folks were using over 100kwh a day of power? Is that typical and I am a massive outlier or what was happening there? Is electric heat that inefficient? The prices were absurd, but it still seems like a lot of power. Even at $9/kwh I would use $45 of power in five days. It would be annoying but not panic inducing by any means.

    I don't know all the details but skimmed a news article yesterday. I think there were all kinds of surcharges and fees added in on top of high prices. I know you can't just give stuff away for free, but this was a unique situation that should have been handled differently. Hopefully a live-and-learn deal so it doesn't happen again.
    GOOD TINT!

  10. #220
    *Flashaholic* turbodog's Avatar
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    Default Re: Snowmageddon '21

    Quote Originally Posted by markr6 View Post
    There could be something pulling a lot of juice without you knowing. I remember when looking at houses and asked for past utility costs. The realtor had a note from the owners saying something like "high utilities last month due to electric heat but heat pump was accidentally turned off". I'm not real familiar with what that is, but an example of how things can sky rocket. Their previous month bills were about 1/5 of that one.
    If that much power was used INSIDE the house... I would not need to run the heat! Will pull the panel cover and throw an ammeter on the individual circuits.
    This is your life, and it's ending one minute at a time.
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  11. #221
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    Default Re: Snowmageddon '21

    Quote Originally Posted by nbp View Post
    It does make me wonder about those bills for $5000 of power for five days in Texas though. Even at the astronomical price of $9/kwh, those folks were using over 100kwh a day of power? Is that typical and I am a massive outlier or what was happening there? Is electric heat that inefficient? The prices were absurd, but it still seems like a lot of power. Even at $9/kwh I would use $45 of power in five days. It would be annoying but not panic inducing by any means.
    I know that electric resistance heating is decidedly energy-intensive. Know more than a few people that barely kept individual rooms above 50F with the mere pair of small space heaters that compact ~2kw generators could run.
    I apologize that this letter is so long; I did not have time to write a short letter

  12. #222
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    Default Re: Snowmageddon '21

    Quote Originally Posted by Chauncey Gardiner View Post
    Thank you for putting my mind at ease.
    "Leak" turned out to be a carb bowl drain screw that was backed out 1/8th turn.
    This is your life, and it's ending one minute at a time.
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    Default Re: Snowmageddon '21

    Quote Originally Posted by turbodog View Post
    "Leak" turned out to be a carb bowl drain screw that was backed out 1/8th turn.
    Is this for the generator that a family member caught leaking gas into a coffee can, and had to fetch water in a bucket?

    I am sometimes amazed at how many people are not at all mechanically inclined.

    I once picked up a 5HP pressure washer off of the curb. I gave the engine a pull, and it had compression, so I figured I'd give it a shot. I discovered it had a leaking carb bowl. Someone pulled the bowl, and stripped the carb bowl drain screw, trying to put it back in. I got out my tap and die set and 1-2-3, it was all fixed.
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  14. #224
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    Default Re: Snowmageddon '21

    Yes on the coffee can. No on the bucket.

    It was hard to tell the screw was loose. Due to vibration the gas leaked out but then clung to the bowl and dripped off ABOVE the place it came from, and on the other side of the bowl. Looked like a leaking bowl gasket. So between that and the engine vibrating some... was pretty hard to pin down the leak. They had already removed the bowl and checked the gasket.
    Last edited by turbodog; 02-26-2021 at 10:52 AM.
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    Default Re: Snowmageddon '21

    Quote Originally Posted by turbodog View Post
    Yes on the coffee can. No on the bucket.

    It was hard to tell the screw was loose. Due to vibration the gas leaked out but then clung to the bowl and dripped off ABOVE the place it came from, and on the other side of the bowl. Looked like a leaking bowl gasket.
    Geee.... who'd a thunk?

    Good thing turbodog was on the job!

    Regarding snowmageddon:
    Ever notice how the stores jump from one holiday to another, sometimes before the first holiday even hit yet?
    Or winter has just begun, and they are already putting out Spring clothing?

    It seems that the weathermen are now getting into the act.
    Our weather temps are 45F - 52F for the highs, and lows are about freezing.
    Not too much snow is in the forecast, so now they are starting to talk about hurricane season... (June to November!)
    Last edited by Poppy; 02-26-2021 at 10:41 AM.
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  16. #226

    Default Re: Snowmageddon '21

    Only 298 days until winter!!
    GOOD TINT!

  17. #227

    Default Re: Snowmageddon '21

    John 3:16

  18. #228
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    Default Re: Snowmageddon '21

    Quote Originally Posted by bykfixer View Post
    Nice that your weathermen, have a sense of humor!
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    Default Re: Snowmageddon '21

    Had to run the a/c today, just slightly. Tomorrow it will run all day.
    This is your life, and it's ending one minute at a time.
    Be prepared for the truth.

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    Default Re: Snowmageddon '21

    I'm curious, regarding water lines inside homes in Texas.

    Do most of the homes with damaged water lines have plastic pipes, or copper?
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  21. #231
    *Flashaholic* turbodog's Avatar
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    Default Re: Snowmageddon '21

    Even with plastic/pex lines, the final few feet going to the hose bib will be a copper section around here. Then there's always some random sections of pipe in the attic. Our HWH is up there.
    This is your life, and it's ending one minute at a time.
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  22. #232
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    Default Re: Snowmageddon '21

    Quote Originally Posted by turbodog View Post
    Even with plastic/pex lines, the final few feet going to the hose bib will be a copper section around here. Then there's always some random sections of pipe in the attic. Our HWH is up there.
    HWH? Hot Water Heater? Do you heat your hot water? Perhaps that's the reason for your enormous electric bill.
    Sometimes I wonder if I've purchased my last flashlight.

  23. #233
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    Default Re: Snowmageddon '21

    Haha.

    We use gas for that. And yes, I do heat my hot water. I've got (2) 40 gallon nat gas heaters in series with bypass valves so I can run from either if the other fails.

    And I'm looking into the elec usage. When we built the house usage was about 1/2 of what we are seeing now.
    This is your life, and it's ending one minute at a time.
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    Default Re: Snowmageddon '21

    Quote Originally Posted by turbodog View Post
    Haha.

    We use gas for that. And yes, I do heat my hot water. I've got (2) 40 gallon nat gas heaters in series with bypass valves so I can run from either if the other fails.

    And I'm looking into the elec usage. When we built the house usage was about 1/2 of what we are seeing now.
    I'm beginning to think I was wrong about you being either Al Gore or J.R. Ewing. Now I'm pretty sure you're Batman!

    A few years back I was attending a birthday party for one of my son's classmates. His father was showing me the addition he'd built. The laundry room had two water heaters. Outside I saw a cold and a hot water faucet on the side of his house. I said - "WOW! You've got cold and hot water faucets outside." He smiled and said - "This is America. You can have anything you want."

    It makes me smile every time I remember his words.
    Sometimes I wonder if I've purchased my last flashlight.

  25. #235
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    Default Re: Snowmageddon '21

    Quote Originally Posted by Poppy View Post
    I'm curious, regarding water lines inside homes in Texas.

    Do most of the homes with damaged water lines have plastic pipes, or copper?
    There is also galvanized steel pipe in houses too that can break as when water expands even pex pipes has to expand with it. I haven't researched how well pex does with freezing but my thinking is that it is flexible and could survive better than metal pipes. I think they also have CPVC pipe too. I just read a blurb on a site that says both plastic pipe types do well with freezing.
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  26. #236
    *Flashaholic* turbodog's Avatar
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    Default Re: Snowmageddon '21

    Quote Originally Posted by Chauncey Gardiner View Post
    I'm beginning to think I was wrong about you being either Al Gore or J.R. Ewing. Now I'm pretty sure you're Batman!

    A few years back I was attending a birthday party for one of my son's classmates. His father was showing me the addition he'd built. The laundry room had two water heaters. Outside I saw a cold and a hot water faucet on the side of his house. I said - "WOW! You've got cold and hot water faucets outside." He smiled and said - "This is America. You can have anything you want."

    It makes me smile every time I remember his words.
    We've got a laundry sink w/ hot water in the garage. I sometimes hookup a water hose to the hot side to wash cars in the cooler temps or to combine with an air nozzle for cleaning small items. It's a nice convenience.

    I've build 4 houses in my life. After a while you get to know exactly what you want in one. I should have added (on my list for the next build) frost proof faucets.
    This is your life, and it's ending one minute at a time.
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  27. #237
    *Flashaholic* turbodog's Avatar
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    Default Re: Snowmageddon '21

    Quote Originally Posted by Lynx_Arc View Post
    There is also galvanized steel pipe in houses too that can break as when water expands even pex pipes has to expand with it. I haven't researched how well pex does with freezing but my thinking is that it is flexible and could survive better than metal pipes. I think they also have CPVC pipe too. I just read a blurb on a site that says both plastic pipe types do well with freezing.
    My experience with pex is that it does not crack.
    This is your life, and it's ending one minute at a time.
    Be prepared for the truth.

  28. #238
    *Flashaholic* Lynx_Arc's Avatar
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    Default Re: Snowmageddon '21

    Quote Originally Posted by turbodog View Post
    My experience with pex is that it does not crack.
    I wouldn't think so as I've abused it and you literally have to cut it to make it crack
    I've used both the metal ring and expansion bands varieties so far and pex will stretch about 50% in diameter and still come back.
    The problem is that there are a huge amount of houses that were built prior to the use of pex and CPVC pipe that have metal piping of some sort and some of that pipe is so old that it has corroded some making for damaged walls that are more susceptible to cracking when the water freezes in the pipe.
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  29. #239
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    Default Re: Snowmageddon '21

    Quote Originally Posted by Poppy View Post
    I'm curious, regarding water lines inside homes in Texas.

    Do most of the homes with damaged water lines have plastic pipes, or copper?
    Having formally and informally toured a number of residential construction sites in the northeast DFW burbs, I can state with some confidence that copper was the choice of builders in the region from at least the 90s onward.
    I apologize that this letter is so long; I did not have time to write a short letter

  30. #240
    *Flashaholic* Poppy's Avatar
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    Default Re: Snowmageddon '21- Aftermath - lessons learned

    In the aftermath of snowmageddon 2021, what were your lessons learned, and have you done anything in preparation, should another similar event occur?

    My area wasn't devastated, but we did get about 22 inches of snow.

    Personally I was pretty well prepared, and things have not changed for me regarding preparation for snow, or a power outage. But it was a good event for me, because I built friendships with my neighbors.

    I have a 10 HP snow blower, and helped 4 of my neighbors, who in turn have helped me one way or another, since, or during then.

    I am looking forward to spending time with them when the weather breaks, sitting around a fire pit, with some wine, and listening to good music.
    My Grand Kids call me Poppy

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