Are Mega Windmills Really Awesome as Big Environment Proclaims?

A two-megawatt windmill is made up of 260 tons of steel that required 300 tons of iron ore and 170 tons of coking coal, all mined, transported and produced by hydrocarbons.

It holds 700 gallons of oil and hydraulic fluid, and just as a car, these need to be replaced every 9 months.

People might fall for the idea that we can merrily run on sunshine and breezes alone, but with a few trillion dollars worth of mythical mega-batteries providing backup for a few minutes, it could spin until it falls apart over and over again and never generate as much energy as was invested in building it.

In fact installing the foundation of a single offshore turbine can consume 18,857 barrels of marine fuel during construction, according to calculations published by Forbes.

Offshore wind farms often have over 100 wind turbines, meaning that building them requires almost 2 million barrels of fuel just to power the ships involved in construction.

“You can’t even construct or operate offshore wind turbines without oil,” Chris Warren, a spokesman for the free-market Institute for Energy Research, explains. “For decades, we have been told that wind, solar, and other so-called ‘green’ sources are the future, and yet these sources remain expensive, intermittent, and unreliable despite government mandates and subsidies. Offshore wind in particular remains one of the most expensive sources of electricity that exists.”

Consider the life cycle of a wind turbine:

🔹giant diesel powered mining trucks and machines dig deep into the earth for iron ore

🔹fossil-fueled ships take the ore to a facility that will use fossil fuels to crush it and permeate it with petro-chemicals to extract the metal from the ore

🔹This metal will be taken in a diesel truck or locomotive to a smelter which runs exclusively on fossil fuels 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, 365 days a year for the 12 to 20 years they may last

🔹There are over 8,000 parts to a wind turbine which are delivered over global supply chains via petroleum-fueled ships, rail, air, and trucks to the assembly factory.

🔹There are 435 million miles of asphalted roads in the world. Wind turbines and solar panels and their raw materials depend on these roads, and the energy to build and maintain them. Roads are how the diesel cement trucks arrive at the wind turbine site to pour many tons of concrete while other diesel trucks carry segments of the wind turbine to the site and workers arrive in gas or diesel vehicles to assemble it.

Turbine being loaded in China for ship transportation.

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Here are more considerations not usually revealed in corporate media, Big Energy, Big Environment and the Biden White House:

🔹Windmills require petroleum every single step of their life cycle. If they can’t replicate themselves using wind turbine generated electricity, they are not sustainable

🔹Not enough dispatchable power, such as natural gas or hydropower, to balance wind intermittency and unreliability.

🔹Wind blows seasonally, so for much of the year there isn’t adequate wind.

🔹The role of an electrical grid is to keep the supply of power steady and predictable. Wind does the opposite, at some point of penetration, it may become impossible to keep the grid from crashing.

🔹Windmills can’t be built without huge subsidies and tax breaks.

🔹The best wind is too high to capture.

🔹Wide-scale US wind power could cause significant global warming. A Harvard study raises questions about just how much wind should be part of a climate solution.

🔹Wind is only strong enough to justify windmills in a few limited regions.

🔹Wind blows the strongest when customer demand is generally the weakest.

🔹Wind Power surges harm industrial customers.

🔹Windmills take up too much space

🔹Wind turbines break down too often.

🔹Large-scale wind energy slows down winds and reduces turbine efficiencies.

🔹Offshore windmills battered by waves, wind, ice, corrosion, are a true hazard to ships and ecosystems.

🔹Offshore wind farms are susceptible to hurricane destruction.

🔹The costs of lightning damage are extremely high.

🔹Turbines increase the cost of farming.

🔹Wind turbines are already going out of business and fewer are being built in Europe

🔹Germany has been spending more for much longer than other nations, and Energiewiende is a huge failure

🔹The quality of wind resources is location specific, with the best locations often found far from the load center where the transmission grid already exists.

🔹Dead bugs, birds and salt reduce wind power generation by 20 to 30%.

🔹Wind turbines are so much more expensive to decommission than construct, they are so often not even recycled. Here is one of hundreds of graveyards:

🔹Decommissioning wind turbines costs as much as $500,000 per wind turbine

🔹Transmission lines need to be much longer than for traditional plants, and are likely to spark firestorms causing billions in damage.

🔹Wind turbines threaten biodiversity in hundreds of protected, key biodiverse and wilderness areas

🔹Operations and Maintenance (O&M) costs are extremely high.

🔹Increasingly high insurance costs from hurricanes, wildfires, tornadoes, defective equipment, untrained personnel and more.

🔹Blades need to be de-iced with helicopters in the winter.

🔹When oil prices rise, the cost of building and maintaining wind turbines rises.

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History, Texas, Pioneers, Genealogy

From award-winning Texas author Cynthia Leal Massey.

What to Know Before You Decide on Buying an Electric Vehicle

Can You Say “Range Anxiety?”

That is anxiety that comes from not knowing whether or not you will be able to make it to a charging station before the battery is depleted.

I talked with several Electric Vehicle (EV) owners and a mechanic to ask about the ins-and-outs of these cars and trucks.

“The first hard lesson I learned about owning an electric vehicle was the inconvenient charging,” Steve, who sold his 2018 model after just two years said.

Steve had to talk his employer into installing a charging unit at his place of work near downtown San Antonio, Texas to ensure he had enough power to make it home, 40 miles away in the Hill Country foothills near Boerne.

“Stop and start traffic on the highways made me nervous,” he explained. “I didn’t get home until close to midnight so I was constantly worried about power at night.”

“If I had it to do over again, I would have spent more time studying, but in retrospect, I can tell you as I experienced constant mechanical and electric maintenance and warranty issues, I changed my mind,” he continued. “When I began to read and hear about Biden’s Green Build Back Better policies, with impending demands imposed by the EPA and other governmental regulating bodies, I had enough. I took a $11,000 loss, but lessons learned, and now I’m relieved.”

“Charging ain’t free,” Ronald, another San Antonio EV owner announced. “I spent about $2,800 turnkey to install a high output (Level 2) charger in my garage. Before that, I had started by running an extension cord and trading the electrical socket back in forth for my kitchen stove and car battery. I couldn’t chance the possibility of needing to drive at night not knowing if I had enough charge in an emergency.”

“For long trips I had issues with ‘range anxiety for sure,” he said. “I’d plan to find a Wal-Mart or someplace to hangout while my car was charging.”

“I have a Mercedes-Benz EQS and get a bit over 400 miles on one charge,” Ronald added. “If I’m driving long distances it, of course, takes me quite a bit longer to get a full charge than those who just fill up with gas and move on.”

To get a real life estimate, using average KWh charging rates from Texas to California, CleverJourneys checked Tesla’s website calculator to compare cost and time between gas and electric charging.

It’s easy to understand why Joe Biden needed to get gasoline prices higher and availability more difficult. Two of his major campaign donors (over $200 million in contributions) profit considerably:

🔹George Soros bought heavily in Rivian EVs stock in Nov. 2021.

🔹Warren Buffet’s trains carry the oil that would have run through Keystone Pipeline that Biden cancelled on Day 1 of his White House term.

390 minutes (6.5 hrs.) charge time. $12 in charging fees + $128 in charge time = $140. At 34 mpg in our Honda Civic, it takes us 48 gallons of gas. At $2 per gallon (before Biden) = $96. At $3 per gallon = $144; 4 per gallon = $192; $5 per gallon = $240 (during Biden)
Charging stations availability. July 2022

Current prices for charging an electric car at Walmart range anywhere from 12 cents to 99 cents per kW across the U.S. Most charge somewhere close to 30 cents.

“It just really depends on which Walmart or place you go to and what type of electric car you have,” Gary, a newly certified service EV repairman, explained. “They usually charge a buck ($1 fee) per charging session.”

Although Walmart and other places have installed superchargers, “it is not good to use them every day or too often,” Gary warned. “Supercharging your car daily can damage your battery health, and wear out its lifespan.”

“There’s a fee if you stay parked after your car is charged. ChargePoint gives you a 5-minute grace period to move your car after it’s finished,” said Gary.. “After that, it charges you 14 cents per minute up to a maximum of $5 per session.”

🔹According to the U.S. Energy Information Administration, the average U.S. household pays nearly 14 cents per kWh.

“An electric car gets 3 to 4 miles per kWh,” Gary stated. “So divide the total miles you drive each month by 3 to get the kWh you would use monthly. Multiply that number by your cost per kWh. The dollar amount you get could be less than what you pay each month to buy gasoline. I think this is why Biden is causing gas prices to go up.”

🔹If someone drives about 1,183 miles per month (Americans drive an average of about 14,200 miles annually), an EV, will use about 394 kWh in that timeframe.

🔹Using the U.S. household average from June 2022 of nearly 14 cents per kWh, it would cost about $55 per month to charge an electric car.

🔹Figure an extra $38.50 per month to charge an electric car at home if you pay the average 14 cents. This is a 33% increase on the average electric bill, according to stats from the Energy Information Administration. 

Prepare to wait.
Truck stop & EV station food.

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🔹Fully recharging the battery pack with a Level 1 or Level 2 charger can take up to 8 hours, and even fast charging stations take 30 minutes to charge to just 80 percent capacity.

LEVELS OF CHARGE

LEVEL 1 is the slowest and requires a regular 120-volt outlet, which you probably already have. Most EVs acquire roughly five miles per hour of charge when using Level 1 charging.

LEVEL 2 is a 240-volt electric circuit required for charging. This is commonly used for major appliances such as electric dryers, water heaters, and ovens. Installing one of these in a suitable location greatly increases charging capacity. With Level 2, most EVs can charge at a rate of about 35 miles per hour.

LEVEL 3 is the quickest charging station on the market, delivering massive amounts of power in a short amount of time. Modern EVs can charge up to 80% of their capacity in about 30 minutes. These should not be used often as it shortens battery life.

Not all DC fast chargers are created equal, as charger speed can vary from 24 kW to 350 kW, and not all cars are compatible with the fastest speeds or come close to their marketed capability in practice. 

CURRENT SAMPLE CHARGING COST (June 2022)

Georgia: EVgo network charges rates by state, and it varies for Level 2 charging. On its website, the pay-as-you-go approach costs 30 cents per minute in Georgia. However, if you’re an EVgo Plus member, the rate drops to 24 cents per minute.

Illinois: Electrify America bills 43 cents per kWh for guests and 31 cents per kWh for paid members; EVGo bills between 22 and 30 cents depending on membership status; those billing rates can change based on location.

Some studies show that you can save around $14,000 on fuel costs if you drive an electric car for about 15 years but sometimes this may not be enough to cover all the hidden costs that electric cars have. Some of these hidden costs that you may encounter could cost thousands of dollars, with a few costing over $10,000.

THE NOTORIOUS BATTERIES

At the heart of all-electric automobiles are batteries — literally, the entire car is designed around them, and they’re the most expensive part of the car.

🔹Currently, all EVs sold in the U.S. come with an eight-year/100k mile warranty. Keep in mind that the average age for a vehicle on the road in the U.S. is 12.1 years. EVs average age is unknown.

🔹At some point the cost to replace the battery is more than your vehicle might be worth — estimates range between $6,000 and $20,000 depending on the model.

“The most expensive repair made on an EV is most likely going to be the high-voltage battery,” Gary commented. “Not anyone can do this type of work and it’s something that should only be done by a trained specialist at a proper repair facility.”

“This is due to the very high-voltage danger as well as maintaining proper repair procedures,” he added. “These replacement parts will come directly from the dealer. There’s just not much competition among parts manufacturers to drive prices down.”

🔹These lithium batteries are benign when compared to Nickel-Cadmium cells or even other automotive compounds like brake fluid. This means it’s considered toxic in our waste stream, and no one is prepared for the volume of used batteries headed to scrap yards.

🔹The EPA reported in 2021 that at least 65 landfill fires were caused by lithium-ion battery waste.

🔹These batteries are extremely heavy with some weighing up to 1,400 lbs.

🔹EVs have a shorter range than gas-powered cars. Most models only range between 60 and 120 miles per charge and some luxury models might make it to 300 miles per charge.

For comparison, gas powered vehicles will average around 300 miles on a full tank of gas, and more fuel efficient vehicles getting much higher driving ranges. This can be an issue when looking at EVs if you take long trips. Availability of charging stations can make AEVs less suitable for activities like road trips.

HIGHER INSURANCE PREMIUMS

🔹According to bankrate.com, the average annual premium in the U.S. for a gas car is $1,655. The much higher EV premiums are mostly due to the high purchase price and the high cost of repairs. 

🔹Steve said he shopped around a paid $2,300 a year for insurance his last year of ownership before he sold his EV.

🔹Electric vehicles will generally cost 25%-40% more than a gas car in terms of the insurance. 

CHILD LABOR & ENVIRONMENT CONTROVERSIES

🔹Modern batteries require lithium, which can only be mined in a handful of countries.

🔹There is much controversy about young children being used to hand dig cobalt out of mines for long hours, 7 days each week.

🔹Once mined, this cobalt is used to produce thousands of small cylindrical cells, each of which must be carefully monitored—no trivial matter.

🔹You must add the cost of environmental and crash protection to prevent battery fires.

VEHICLE REGISTRATION

🔹Finding a vehicle inspection could be a challenge.

🔹A quick search across 12 states from California to Texas to Georgia to Michigan revealed EV registration fees to be between $50 to $250.

🔹This is primarily due to there being a tax on gas that is used to pay for new infrastructure. Many states want electric car owners to contribute to providing the services needed.

Random Notes

🔹Electric cars have a low center of gravity due to the placement of the battery pack, so tires can wear down more quickly than on gas-powered cars.

🔹Some EVs have a powertrain that needs to have its fluid replaced at periodic intervals, such as the Tesla Model S.

🔹EVs are especially at risk of battery issues in high and low temperatures. Cold weather can reduce your range in the short-term, while hot weather can reduce the overall battery life of your vehicle.

🔹Because the battery pack is located in the underbody of the vehicle, corrosion can be more damaging to EVs than to conventional cars. Wash off any road salt and other corrosive materials as soon as possible, and keep an eye out for corrosion on the charging port and other electrical components.

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History, Texas, Pioneers, Genealogy

From award-winning Texas author Cynthia Leal Massey.

See below in comment section

Amusement Park and Thrill Rides Gone Wrong

In September 2021, the High Roller on the Las Vegas Strip suddenly stopped working, stranding about 150 people on the attraction for 90 minutes.

“The High Roller Observation Wheel was stopped during its rotation on Friday night, due to a network connectivity issue involving one of the cabins,” Caesars said in a statement. “Approximately 150 passengers were aboard the wheel at the time. Engineers resolved the network issue within approximately 90 minutes, the wheel’s rotation resumed, and all passengers safely disembarked and received refunds.”

The High Roller raises riders 550 feet in the air and is the largest observation wheel in North America. The wheel takes 30 minutes to complete one revolution and features 28 cabins. 

Although terrified, there were no reported injuries. Las Vegas injuries from amusement type rides exceed 90 per year, but the national numbers are staggering.

In an average year over 9,000 people are injured on amusement park rides in the United States. Theses are statistics from the Federal Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC).

This data represents only injuries serious enough to require treatment in an emergency room. The total number of injuries that occur are even more.

CPSC reported that in 2017, emergency rooms saw 43,405 injuries associated with amusement attractions and rides, for both mobile, like traveling carnivals, and fixed-site parks, such as Six Flags, Sea World or Disneyland.

Click to see Hilarious Amusement Park Rollercoaster Reactions.

When the injuries from inflatable amusement park rides are included, the number of injuries increases by over 3,800. When both moon bounces and inflatable slide injuries are added, it increases by 3,300 and still doesn’t include the number of people injured on public water slides.

Kids often crowd into bounce houses, and jumping up and down can send other children flying into the air too.

The latest numbers indicate about 30 U.S. children a day are treated in emergency rooms for broken bones, sprains, cuts and concussions from bounce house accidents. Most involve children falling inside or out of the inflated playthings, and many children get hurt when they collide with other bouncing kids.

Wind blows inflatable off the ground.

Half of all people hurt on amusement park rides are children. Over 16 percent of reported injuries occur to children between the ages of 10 and 14. Children account for three-quarters of accidents involving a rider falling or being ejected from a ride during its operation.

During a span of three years over 50 people were killed riding amusement park rides. These deaths most often occurred on roller coasters. The second most deaths occurred on whirling rides.

Types of Injuries Experienced

Bumper car rides and others that move people around at a high rate of speed cause many accidents.

Roller coasters also cause many accidents. People often experience a stroke from trauma that occurs to ligaments in their neck. Traumatic brain injuries can happen from high levels of stress put on the brain by excessive speed. Detached objects hitting a person’s head also causes injury.

People experience varies types of cuts, torn ligaments as well as broken bones. Some individuals drown on waters slides and a number of other water rides.

The Cause of Accidents

Many accidents are determined to have resulted from mechanical failures caused by improper maintenance and more.

Rides are sometimes operated incorrectly.

In some cases, a passenger does not follow safety instructions. Accidents happen when a rider stands up at the wrong time, removes safety restraints too soon and more. Some accidents occur because a ride is designed to create a thrill by spinning fast or traveling at excessive speeds.

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From award-winning Texas author Cynthia Leal Massey.

Rust, Paint, Garden, Grease & Other Great Tips

WiFi Signal Booster

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Depending on how old you are, you may remember using “rabbit ears” to get a better television signal. Sometimes the rabbit ears weren’t enough on their own, and you’d have to add some aluminum foil to the ends to boost the signal. The days of using foil to get a better TV picture may be over, but it’s not as obsolete as you might think. Today, you can use aluminum foil to boost the signal from your wireless router.

Adding aluminum foil to a Wi-Fi reflector can help the signal bounce around your home, reaching those otherwise spotty areas.

Greasy Easy Clean-Up

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Hopefully you’re aware that you shouldn’t pour grease down your kitchen drain — hot or otherwise. So, how are you supposed to get rid of your used cooking grease and oil? Pouring it into the garbage can seems like a terrible — and potentially messy — idea.

Luckily foil is here to save the day. Line the inside of a bowl with aluminum foil, and pour the hot grease into it. Once it cools and solidifies, ball up the soiled foil and toss it into your trash can.

Remove Rust, Really

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Tired of looking at rusty metal? If it’s chrome, there’s a quick fix. Just tear off a piece of foil, soak it in some water, and use it to start scrubbing the rusted chrome. The rust will disappear in no time!

No AA? No Problem

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The batteries have died and the only replacements you have in the house are AAA. What to do?

You can convert those AAA into AA by placing a bit of foil at the positive ends before inserting the batteries into your equipment.

Banana Trick

Bananas are such a delicious, easy-to-eat snack. Unfortunately, they also go bad really quickly. After a few days of lying out on your kitchen counter, your bananas will start to brown.

If you need to keep your bananas fresher longer, turn to aluminum foil.

Wrap a small piece of aluminum foil around the stem of your bananas. By breaking off part of the banana’s contact with the air, you can slow the decaying process that plagues these fruits. A little piece of aluminum foil can lead to longer days of ripe, yellow, ready-to-eat fruit.

Good Crust

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Getting the perfect pie crust can be a little tricky. You can account for flakiness and flavor with the recipe, but when it comes to just how golden brown your crust will get, you have to throw yourself at the mercy of the oven. Or will you?

Try out a little-known baking hack using, you guessed it, aluminum foil. Cover your crust in aluminum foil before popping the pie into the oven. This should help ensure that your crust doesn’t burn!

Messy Ice Cream Cone Prevention

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Use aluminum foil to keep an ice cream cone from spilling everywhere. Simply wrap some alluminum foil around the very bottom of the cone, that way any melting or spilled ice cream drips into the foil instead of the floor… or

Funneling

Wrap foil around paper cone.

Need a makeshift funnel? No worries. Grab your trusty roll of aluminum foil and fashion a funnel out of that. It’s surprisingly easy.

Foot Foil Relief

Wrap a foot in aluminum for one hour to see what happens. There are several benefits to wrapping your feet in foil. It can alleviate aching joints, it soothes pain caused by burns and it is a great solution against fatigue. Another fun trick is keeping your foil in the freezer before you use it on your body to not only help with fatigue but swelling as well.

Home Made Stylus

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Need a stylus in a pinch? Before you fork over $10 to $30 for one, try making your own. It’s quick and easy. Just wrap the tip of your favorite pen in foil, use a bit of tape to secure it, and voilá!

Garden Protection

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If you’re looking for a way to keep insects out of your vegetables, mix some aluminum foil strips in with your mulch. Seriously. Also, you get the bonus benefit of the foil reflecting light back into your plants.

Door Knob Paint Protectors

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When painting doors, be sure to wrap your doorknobs in aluminum foil. When painting a door, or even surrounding walls, paint drips are inevitable. By wrapping your knobs in foil, you can keep them clean and paint free

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From award-winning Texas author Cynthia Leal Massey.

Goettle HVAC and Plumbing services are located in Phoenix, Tucson, San Antonio, Austin, Las Vegas areas as well as regions in Southern California.

Locked Inside a Freezer, But What Happened Was Priceless

I Love Lucy

In the early 1960s, I recall watching Lucille Ball getting locked in a freezer on her legendary comedy program “I Love Lucy.” Somehow that episode stuck with me into adulthood. As Director of Facilities Management at HEB Food/Drugs in Texas for over 25 years, I had heard of people being locked in freezers, but was thankful it never occurred in our stores, warehouses or manufacturing plants.

We made sure all walk in freezers had interior opening mechanisms and checked/maintained them frequently to prevent a catastrophe. When I served as President of the Professional Retail Maintenance Association, we emphasized the importance of prevention in design, procurement, training and maintenance.

Although they are rare, instances of workers sustaining an injury or losing their lives as a result of being locked in a freezer do occur. These types of accidents are extremely dangerous, especially if the trapped employee is unable to call for help or must wait until the next day for aid.

Obviously, victims are primarily at-risk of suffering from exposure to cold. Hypothermia occurs when a person’s body temperature drops significantly below the normal level of 98.6 degrees fahrenheit. There are three basic levels of hypothermia:

  • Mild hypothermia, which occurs when the core body temperature lowers to between 93.2 degrees and 96.8 degrees fahrenheit;
  • Moderate hypothermia, which begins to take place when the core body temperature drops to between 73.4 degrees and 89.6 degrees fahrenheit; and
  • Severe or profound hypothermia, which takes place when the core body temperature drops to between 53.6 degrees and 68 degrees fahrenheit.

A person suffering from hypothermia will usually begin to feel lethargic and fatigued well before reaching the severe hypothermia stage. Victims may become confused and disoriented and may also exhibit slowed breathing or speech as well as a loss of feeling in the hands and feet. Once a person’s core temperature has reached severe hypothermia levels, he or she is at a high risk of cardiac arrest and death.

Workers could also suffer from breathing in carbon dioxide, which is emitted by dry ice and can be fatal. Exposure to refrigerants, which function as cooling agents and include chemicals, such as chloroform, carbon tetrachloride, and methyl chloride can also be dangerous. These types of chemicals are toxic in large quantities and can also lead to oxygen deficiency, especially when in a small place.

Even workers who are not trapped for a significant amount of time can sustain injuries. For instance, brief exposure can cause frostbite, which occurs when a person’s skin and underlying tissues are frozen. Generally, the lower the temperature in the freezer, the more quickly frostbite is likely to occur.

Locks on exterior are a definite no-no.

Frostbite is also more likely to affect the extremities, such as the feet and hands, which can be especially dangerous for victims who are also suffering from hypothermia and so have lost feeling in those areas. Frostbite usually takes the form of reddened skin with gray or white patches, numbness, and blisters.

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From award-winning Texas author Cynthia Leal Massey.

Cold Weather Car Hacks: Herd It Through the Grapevine

Foggy Windshield Fixes

During the winter months, fogged-up and frosty windshields can be a constant issue. To quickly eliminate the fog without creating a mess of smudges, use a chalkboard eraser! It works really well, and it’s easy to store in your glove box or center console.

Another tip for dealing with a foggy windshield is to make sure your car’s air recirculation is turned off. The air in your car is already humid, and humid air contributes to windshield fogging. Use the fresh air intake option instead, which will pull in dry air from outside. The dry air will help take care of the fog in no time!

winter car hacks

Fog-Proof Your Windshield

While the tips I mentioned above will help you get rid of fog on your windshield, there are also ways to prevent fog from forming in the first place! Here are a few you can try:

  • Smear shaving cream on the inside of your windshield, then wipe it off. You’ll leave behind a thin layer of shaving cream, which contains some of the same ingredients as commercial defoggers.
  • Fill a stocking or sock with kitty litter and leave it in your car overnight. The litter will help absorb moisture that would otherwise collect on your windshield.
  • Before you turn your car off in the evening, open the windows for a few seconds to let the cold, dry air in. This dry air will help dehumidify your car overnight.
  • Don’t leave water bottles or other drinks in your car overnight. The moisture from them can contribute to a foggy windshield.
winter car hacks

Keep Socks In Your Glovebox

Having a pair of socks all ready in your car can be especially useful during the winter! You can pull them on over your shoes if you ever need to push your car out of ice or snow. (The socks provide a little extra traction that makes it easier to find your footing.)

Another way to use socks is to cover your wiper blade overnight! Just raise your wiper blades and slip the socks over the ends. The socks will help prevent ice from forming on the blades, which will make your de-icing process much easier in the morning.

winter car hacks

Fix For Frozen Wiper Blades

During the winter, make sure to fill your car with washer fluid that is rated for cold weather. It can help melt the ice that’s clinging to your wiper blades in the morning. It can also be a quick way to defrost your whole windshield if the ice is thin enough!

winter car hacks

Impromptu Ice Scraper

Can’t find your ice scraper and need to get going? Grab a plastic spatula from your kitchen, or use a plastic card from your wallet! (It’s best to use a card that you don’t mind losing, in case it accidentally snaps while you’re scraping the ice.)

Windshield Parking Hack

Let Mother Nature defrost your windshield for you! If you can, park your car facing east. This ensures that your windshield will get a bit of extra warmth from the sun as it rises in the morning. Your wiper blades may be able to take care of the remaining frost—no scraping required!

Thaw Frozen Car Doors & Locks

For frozen locks, try heating your key with a match or lighter. Gently push it into the lock to melt the ice. (Just be careful not to burn yourself!)

Another option for thawing frozen locks is to use a drinking straw. Just aim the straw at the lock, and blow air into it. The heat from your breath will start melting the ice, and you’ll have that door open in no time!

And finally, you can use hand sanitizer to fix frozen doors and locks. Just rub a layer of hand sanitizer over the frozen area and let the alcohol melt the ice.

Prevent Frozen Doors

Sick of having to unstick frozen doors? Prevent them from freezing in the first place with a bit of cooking spray. Just spritz a bit of it where the door seals. This acts as a “waterproofer” to prevent water from seeping in and freezing your door shut.

Keep Side Mirrors From Freezing

Prevent side mirrors from freezing overnight just by covering them up! Use a plastic shopping bag, a ziplock bag, or whatever you can find to slide over the mirrors. Tie the end or keep it in place with a rubber band, and your mirrors will remain ice-free overnight!

winter car hacks

Fast Headlight Fix

Having bright, working headlights is especially important during the dark and snowy winter months. If your headlight covers could use a cleaning, just cover them with a layer of toothpaste. Let it sit for a minute or two, then rinse the toothpaste off with warm water.

This toothpaste treatment will help remove the film on your headlights so they shine more brightly. It’s a quick and easy fix that’s much cheaper than buying a special headlight cleaner product!

Get Un-Stuck Fast

Keep a bag or two of heavy cat litter in your trunk on snowy days. It will help add weight to your car, which can help give your tires a bit more traction in the snow and ice. And you can sprinkle the litter under the tires if you get stuck! This will give your tires something to grip onto and improve your chances of getting out of that snowbank.

Another useful tip for getting your car out of a snowbank is to use your floor mats. Just lay them down in the snow in front of your tires. They’ll provide more traction for your tires and help you get your car moving. (Just don’t forget to pick them back up before you drive away!

Make A Winter Emergency Kit

Weather can be unpredictable during the winter, so it’s a good idea to keep emergency supplies in your car just in case. Start with a spare outfit that can keep you warm if you happen to get stranded. Follow these steps:

  1. Unzip a winter coat
  2. Put a thick pair of socks, long underwear, hat, gloves, scarf, and snow pants inside the coat
  3. Zip the coat up and stash the outfit in your trunk

You should also keep additional supplies in your car that could save your life in a winter weather emergency. Here are a few suggestions:

  • Flashlights
  • Warm blanket
  • Charged battery pack for your phone
  • Hand and foot warmers
  • Bottles of water
  • Energy bars

Now that you have these helpful tips, you’ll be able to face many winter driving challenges with confidence!

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A Novel Insect Repellent and More Aluminum Foil Tricks

Herd It Through the Grapevine #6

Insect Repellent

Take note campers and RVers!

Household insects like to hide in dark, creepy places. If you search long enough in your kitchen cabinets, you’ll probably find a few unwelcome visitors. While using shelf liners is a common practice to keep your cabinets clean, aluminum foil is the best shelf liner of all.

Aluminum foil reflects light, which in turn drives away all the creepy-crawly creatures. By lining your cabinets with aluminum foil, you’re creating an environment where no insect wants to live. You’ll keep your kitchen safe from scavenging critters and you’ll keep your cabinets tidy and dust-free.

Frying Eggs Trick


If you’ve always struggled to fry the perfect egg, aluminum foil might be the solution. We learned the value of this from camping. Before frying your egg, measure out a strip of aluminum foil over the pan you want to use. Then, line the inside of the pan with the aluminum foil, pressing down to make sure it conforms to the shape. Once that’s done, fill the aluminum foil with oil and heat the pan.

Cracking the eggs directly into aluminum foil will keep them from sticking to the bottom of the pan. You’ll be able to easily flip and turn your eggs, ensuring they reach the right level of done-ness before taking them out of the pan. Plus, clean up is so much easier! When you’re done cooking, simply ball up the foil and throw it away—no soap needed!

Grease Catcher Trick

Greasy dishes are always a treat, especially if you make them yourself. But while cooking your feast, you’re always faced with the problem of what to do with the leftover grease after your dish is done.

If you toss it down the drain, it can create serious issues in your plumbing line. Instead of risking clogging your pipes, turn aluminum foil into an instant grease catcher.

When your dish is done, line a bowl with aluminum foil and pour the oil inside. Using aluminum foil allows you to quickly get rid of the grease, without forcing it to stick to your dining ware. When the grease cools, simply ball up the aluminum foil and throw it away. It’s that easy.

Stove Burner Protection

Cooking some things on the stove can end with a splash, spill or big disaster. Food gets in the burner and can even damage the stove when it gets on the inside.

To prevent that is, I cut out a piece of aluminum foil paper and line the burner with it. This prevents food from getting on the inside of the stove.

Remember, everyone should know this, aluminum foil cannot go in the microwave, so I always advise anyone that before you put something in the microwave check to see if it has aluminum foil in it. 

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FAA Launches Voluntary Reporting Program for Safety Office


Since 1998, the risk of a fatal accident has decreased by 94 percent.

WASHINGTON – The U.S. Department of Transportation’s Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) has launched an additional way for its engineers, safety inspectors, systems safety specialists and other aviation safety employees to report safety-related issues and concerns.

Information shared and submitted via this new system will be used to validate or verify an aviation safety concern, identify the root cause, and determine the appropriate corrective action.

The Voluntary Safety Reporting Program provides those who work in the FAA’s Aviation Safety organization the ability to report confidentially any safety concerns without fear of punitive action.

The FAA’s Aviation Safety workforce is composed of about 7,400 professionals who provide oversight of airlines, manufacturers, maintenance providers, aviation medical practitioners and flight crews.

“We can never be satisfied with the status quo when it comes to safety, and the free exchange of vital information is a cornerstone of safety and continual improvement,” said FAA Administrator Steve Dickson. “We want our employees to know that when they speak up, they can be sure someone is listening.”

Since 1998, the risk of a fatal accident has decreased by 94 percent. Voluntary reporting programs have been integral to this reduction of risk by identifying and resolving issues before an accident occurs.

The new Voluntary Safety Reporting System mirrors other successful safety information-sharing programs across the aviation industry.

The new Voluntary Safety Reporting Program is in addition to several reporting programs already available. FAA management worked closely with union leadership representing Aviation Safety employees to structure the new program to encourage the sharing of safety information by all parties.

“The more we can continue to encourage people to report, the more we can influence the safety in the system,” said President of the National Air Traffic Controllers Association (NATCA), Paul Rinaldi, whose union represents engineers and other Aviation Safety employees.

In addition to supporting the FAA’s commitment to transparency, the continued development of voluntary reporting programs addresses congressional requirements for the FAA.

An open, non-punitive and confidential reporting system allows the agency to address safety sensitive issues that may otherwise have gone unnoticed due to fear of repercussion.

“The Event Review Team will leverage subject matter experts to evaluate the safety issue and provide a recommendation on corrective action and will continue to monitor the issue throughout the process,” said Mike Perrone, President, Professional Aviation Safety Specialists (PASS), a union that represents many of the FAA’s technical workers.

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From Atlas Rockets to Protecting the Statue of Liberty: 40 Ways to Use WD-40

Herd It Through the Grapevine #6

Long before WD-40 was a household name and a can resided in practically every home across America, it was an obscure product invented for a singular purpose.

Back in 1953, Norman Larsen, founder of the Rocket Chemical Company, created WD-40 for the Convair aeronautical company to protect the SM-65 Atlas missile–the American military’s first operational intercontinental ballistic missile.

In order to reduce its weight, the Atlas had a very thin steel skin and even thinner steel balloon-style fuel tanks. It was critical to protect the skin and the paper-thin steel fuel tanks from corrosion and WD-40 accomplished that task by both displacing water molecules on the metal and penetrating into the pores of the metal surface.

Although the SM-65 Atlas missile was briefly put into service, as a nuclear missile platform it was, thankfully, never deployed as such. After retirement as a military missile system in the mid 1960s, the de-weaponized Atlas system had a long and fruitful career as NASA’s launch platform of choice–sending countless satellites, the Mercury missions, and the Gemini missions into space.

Although we know that WD-40 is comprised of compounds like hydrocarbons and petroleum, the formula of WD-40 is a trade secret and the product was never patented in order to avoid disclosing the formula.

WD-40 Uses

‘Water Displacement’ Compound.


1.      Protects silver from tarnishing.


2.      Removes road tar and grime from cars.


3.      Cleans and lubricates guitar strings. 


4.      Gives floor that ‘just-waxed’ sheen without making them slippery.


5.      Keeps the flies off of Cows, Horses, and other Farm Critters.


6.      Restores and cleans chalkboards.


7.      Removes lipstick stains.


8.      Loosens stubborn zippers.


9.      Untangles jewelry chains.


10.    Removes stains from stainless steel sinks.


11.    Removes dirt and grime from the barbecue grill.


12.    Keeps ceramic/terracotta garden pots from oxidizing.


13.    Removes tomato stains from clothing.


14.    Keeps glass shower doors free of water spots.


15.    Camouflages scratches in ceramic and marble floors.


16.    Keeps scissors working smoothly.


17.    Lubricates noisy door hinges on both home and vehicles doors.


18.    It removes that nasty tar and scuff marks from the kitchen
flooring. It doesn’t seem to harm the finish and you won’t have to
scrub nearly as hard to get them off.  Just remember to open some
windows if you have a lot of marks.


19.    Removes those nasty bug guts that will eat away the finish
on your car if not removed quickly!


20.    Gives a children’s playground gym slide a shine for a super fast slide.


21.    Lubricates gearshift and mower deck lever for ease of handling on riding mowers.


22.    Rids kids rocking chair and swings of squeaky noises.


23.    Lubricates tracks in sticking home windows and makes them easier to open.


24.    Spraying an umbrella stem makes it easier to open and close.


25.    Restores and cleans padded leather dashboards in vehicles, as well as vinyl bumpers.


26.    Restores and cleans roof racks on vehicles.


27.    Lubricates and stops squeaks in electric fans.


28.    Lubricates wheel sprockets on tricycles, wagons and bicycles for easy handling. 


29.    Lubricates fan belts on washers and dryers and keeps them running smoothly.


30.    Keeps rust from forming on saws and saw blades, and other tools.


31.    Removes grease splatters from stove-tops.


32.    Keeps bathroom mirror from fogging.


33.    Lubricates prosthetic limbs.


34.    Keeps pigeons off the balcony (they hate the smell).


35.    Removes all traces of duct tape.


36.    Folks even spray it on their arms, hands, and knees to relieve
arthritis pain. (See picture above).


37.    Florida’s favorite use is: ‘cleans and removes love bugs from grills and  bumpers.’


38.    The favorite use in New York: it protects the Statue of Liberty from the elements.


39.    WD-40 attracts fish. Spray a little on live bait or lures and you
will be catching the big one in no time. Also, it’s a lot cheaper than
the chemical attractants that are made for just that purpose.   Keep
in mind though, using some chemical laced baits or lures for fishing are not allowed in some states.


40.    Use it for fire ant bites. It takes the sting away immediately and stops the itch. 


41.    It is great for removing crayon from walls. Spray it on the marks
and wipe with a clean rag.


42.    Also, if you’ve discovered that your teenage daughter has washed
and dried a tube of lipstick with a load of laundry, saturate the
lipstick spots with WD-40 and rewash. Presto! The lipstick is gone!


43.    If you spray it inside a wet distributor cap, it will displace the
moisture, allowing the engine to start.


44. Ants don’t like it.

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A Special Message From Dodie Dennis (Retired RN)

With 40 years experience as a licensed Registered Nurse on a cruise line, a Colorado ski resort, and in Phoenix, AZ, I did everything from Operating Room to Immunology to all levels of Newborn Care.

Among my favorite jobs was teaching childbirth and nutrition classes. For the most part, I believe whole foods trump supplements. And eating a nutritious diet loaded with veggies, grass-fed meat, and plenty of good fats is the starting point. You certainly cannot supplement your way out of poor dietary choices. However, even with the best diet, there may be a few gaps that we might want to fill to “supplement” a solid diet.

For example, Omega-3 fatty acids are vitally important to our health. Our Omega-3 to Omega-6 ratio should be 1:1 or 1:2. Sadly, the average person’s is more like 1:20. Not only are we not getting enough Omega-3 from sources like grass-fed meats and fish/seafood, we’re also over consuming Omega 6 (e.g. vegetable oils, excessive nut consumption) – a double whammy.

Personally, Jack and I don’t eat enough fish to get adequate Omega-3s due to concerns about toxins, mercury, etc. That’s why we welcome a new sponsor to “supplement” with Green Pasture Fermented Cod Liver Oil (FCLO).

Welcome Green Pasture Products to CleverJourneys

I use the word “supplement” loosely here, since FCLO is really a whole food. Not only that, but it’s also a traditional food with a long history of use. Quite the opposite of highly processed fish oils.

Green Pasture’s website

Fermented Cod Liver Oil is simply cod livers fermented naturally to extract the oils. The cold-processing method maintains all the fat soluble vitamins. Most fish oils on the market are heat processed. What’s worse is that they’re then bleached and deodorized, and since most of the vitamins have been removed or destroyed, synthetic vitamins are added back in.

FCLO contains more than Omega 3’s. It’s also a great source of Vitamin A and Vitamin D, and contains small amounts of Vitamin K2, Vitamin E, and various other quinones.

If you want to try out the amazing benefits of Fermented Cod Liver Oil, or maybe your current supply is running low, we highly recommend Green Pasture.

Green Pasture’s website

They are the only company to supply naturally fermented cod liver oil that we are aware of (and the one recommended most highly by the Weston Price Foundation).

Check out Green Pasture’s website now and tell them CleverJourneys sent you.

In addition to Fermented Cod Liver oil, Green Pasture also sells other products like high vitamin butter oil, coconut oil, and coconut ghee.

Green Pasture’s website

Jack likes Green Pasture because they are an American business that share the same patriotic values we do.

Check them out today! God Bless.

How To Remove Sticky Residue or Stains From Almost Any Surface

Herd It Through the Grapevine #5

Tips, Hints, Secrets & Tidbits From Dodie Dennis

The products below will remove sticky residue.

1. WD-40

2. Peanut Butter

3. Pencil Erasers

4. Margarine

5. Vegetable or Olive Oil

6. Petroleum Jelly

7. Cooking Spray

8. Nail Polish Remover

9. Hand Lotion

10. Furniture Polish

11. Eucalyptus Oil

12. Rubbing Alcohol

13. Tea Tree Oil

14. Hair Spray

15. Baby/Mineral Oil

16. Vinegar

17. Window Cleaner

18. Baking Soda & Water Paste

19. Goo Gone

20. Mr. Clean Magic Eraser

Over 100 Ways to Conserve Water

When it comes to conserving water, small adjustments can have a big impact. Conserve water with ideas from our 100+ water-saving tips.

INDOOR TIPS

KITCHEN

  • #1 When washing dishes by hand, don’t let the water run. Fill one basin with wash water and the other with rinse water.
  • #2 Dishwashers typically use less water than washing dishes by hand. Now, Energy Star dishwashers save even more water and energy.
  • #3 If your dishwasher is new, cut back on rinsing. Newer models clean more thoroughly than older ones.
  • #4 Designate one glass for your drinking water each day, or refill a water bottle. This will cut down on the number of glasses to wash.
  • #5 Soak pots and pans instead of letting the water run while you scrape them clean.
  • #6 Use the garbage disposal sparingly. Instead, compost vegetable food waste and save gallons every time.
  • #7 Wash your fruits and vegetables in a pan of water instead of running water from the tap.
  • #8 Don’t use running water to thaw food. For water efficiency and food safety, defrost food in the refrigerator.
  • #9 Install an instant water heater near your kitchen sink so you don’t have to run the water while it heats up. This also reduces energy costs.
  • #10 Keep a pitcher of drinking water in the refrigerator instead of running the tap. This way, every drop goes down you and not the drain.
  • #11 Reuse leftover water from cooked or steamed foods to start a nutritious soup, it’s one more way to get eight glasses of water a day.
  • #12 Cook food in as little water as possible. This also helps it retain more nutrients.
  • #13 Select the proper pan size for cooking. Large pans may require more cooking water than necessary.
  • #14 If you accidentally drop ice cubes, don’t throw them in the sink. Drop them in a house plant instead.
  • #15 Collect the water you use while rinsing fruit and vegetables. Use it to water house plants.
  • #16 When shopping for a new dishwasher, use the Consortium for Energy Efficiency website to compare water use between models.

LAUNDRY ROOM

  • #17 When doing laundry, match the water level to the size of the load.
  • #18 Washing dark clothes in cold water saves water and energy, and helps your clothes retain their color.
  • #19 When shopping for a new washing machine, compare resource savings among Energy Star models. Some can save up to 20 gallons of water per load.
  • #20 Have a plumber re-route your greywater to trees and plants rather than the sewer line. Check with your city and county for codes.
  • #21 When buying a washer, check the Consortium for Energy Efficiency website to compare water use between models.

BATHROOM

  • #22 If your shower fills a one-gallon bucket in less than 20 seconds, replace the showerhead with a WaterSense® labeled model.
  • #23 Shorten your shower by a minute or two and you’ll save up to 150 gallons per month.
  • #24 Time your shower to keep it under 5 minutes. You’ll save up to 1,000 gallons per month.
  • #25 Toilet leaks can be silent! Be sure to test your toilet for leaks at least once a year.
  • #26 Put food coloring in your toilet tank. If it seeps into the bowl without flushing, there’s a leak. Fix it and start saving gallons.
  • #27 When running a bath, plug the bathtub before turning on the water. Adjust the temperature as the tub fills.
  • #28 Upgrade older toilets with water-saving WaterSense® labeled models.
  • #29 If your toilet flapper doesn’t close properly after flushing, replace it.
  • #30 Use a WaterSense® labeled showerhead. They’re inexpensive, easy to install, and can save you up to 750 gallons a month.
  • #31 Turn off the water while you brush your teeth and save up to 4 gallons a minute. That’s up to 200 gallons a week for a family of four.
  • #32 If your toilet was installed before 1992, purchasing a WaterSense® labeled toilet can reduce the amount of water used for each flush.
  • #33 Consider buying a dual-flush toilet. It has two flush options: a half-flush for liquid waste and a full-flush for solid waste.
  • #34 Plug the sink instead of running the water to rinse your razor and save up to 300 gallons a month.
  • #35 Turn off the water while washing your hair and save up to 150 gallons a month.
  • #36 When washing your hands, turn the water off while you lather.
  • #37 Take 5-minute showers instead of baths. A full bathtub requires up to 70 gallons of water.
  • #38 Install water-saving aerators on all of your faucets.
  • #39 Drop tissues in the trash instead of flushing them and save water every time.
  • #40 Look for WaterSense® labeled toilets, sink faucets, urinals and showerheads.
  • #41 One drip every second adds up to five gallons per day! Check your faucets and showerheads for leaks.
  • #42 While you wait for hot water, collect the running water and use it to water plants.

GENERAL INDOOR

  • #43 Teach children to turn off faucets tightly after each use.
  • #44 See how your water use stacks up to others by calculating your daily water use.
  • #45 When the kids want to cool off, use the sprinkler in an area where your lawn needs it most.
  • #46 Encourage your school system and local government to develop and promote water conservation among children and adults.
  • #47 Monitor your water bill for unusually high use. Your bill and water meter are tools that can help you discover leaks.
  • #48 Learn how to use your water meter to check for leaks.
  • #49 Reward kids for the water-saving tips they follow.
  • #50 Avoid recreational water toys that require a constant flow of water.
  • #51 Grab a wrench and fix that leaky faucet. It’s simple, inexpensive, and you can save 140 gallons a week.
  • #52. We’re more likely to notice leaky faucets indoors, but don’t forget to check outdoor faucets, pipes, and hoses.
  • #53. See a leak you can’t fix? Tell a parent, teacher, employer, or property manager, or call a handyman.
  • #54 At home or while staying in a hotel, reuse your towels.
  • #55 Run your washer and dishwasher only when they are full. You can save up to 1,000 gallons a month.

OUTDOOR TIPS

XERISCAPE LANDSCAPING

  • #56 Use porous material for walkways and patios to prevent wasteful runoff and keep water in your yard.
  • #63 Group with the same watering needs together to avoid overwatering some while underwatering others.
  • #64 Plant shrubs and ground covers appropriate to your site and region.
  • #65 Plant in the spring and fall, when the watering requirements are lower.
  • #66 Avoid planting grass in areas that are hard to water, such as steep inclines and isolated strips along sidewalks and driveways.
  • #67 Leave lower branches on trees and shrubs and allow leaf litter to accumulate on the soil. This keeps the soil cooler and reduces evaporation.
  • #68 Start a compost pile. Using compost in your garden or flower beds adds water-holding organic matter to the soil.
  • #69 Use a layer of organic mulch on the surface of your planting beds to minimize weed growth that competes for water.
  • #70 Spreading a layer of organic mulch around plants helps them retain moisture, saving water, time and money.
  • #71 Use 2 to 4 inches of organic mulch around plants to reduce evaporation and save hundreds of gallons of water a year.
  • #72 Next time you add or replace a flower or shrub, choose a low-water-use plant and save up to 550 gallons each year.
  • #73 Collect water from your roof by installing gutters and downspouts. Direct the runoff to plants and trees.
  • #74 For automatic water savings, direct water from rain gutters and HVAC systems to water-loving plants in your landscape.

LAWN CARE

  • #86 Read the Landscape Watering by the Numbers guidebook to help you determine how long and how much to water.
  • #87 Use a trowel, shovel, or soil probe to examine soil moisture depth. If the top two to three inches of soil are dry, it’s time to water.
  • #88 Set a kitchen timer or alarm on your phone when using the hose as a reminder to turn it off. A running hose can discharge up to 10 gallons per minute.
  • #89 Check your sprinkler system frequently and adjust sprinklers so only your lawn is watered and not the house, sidewalk or street.
  • #90 Minimize evaporation by watering during the early morning hours when temperatures are cooler and winds are lighter.
  • #91 Timing is everything when it comes to irrigation. Learn how to set your controller properly.
  • #92 Look for WaterSense® labeled irrigation controllers.
  • #93 Learn how to shut off your automatic watering system in case of malfunctions or rain.
  • #94 Apply water only as fast as the soil can absorb it.
  • #95 If water runs off your lawn easily, split your watering time into shorter periods to allow for better absorption.
  • #96 Water only when necessary. More plants die from over-watering than from under-watering.
  • #97 Signs of overwatering: Leaves turn lighter shades of green or yellow, young shoots wilt, and sometimes algae or fungi grow.
  • #98 Water your plants deeply but less frequently to encourage deep root growth and drought tolerance.
  • #99 Use sprinklers that deliver big drops of water close to the ground. Smaller drops and mist often evaporate before hitting the ground.
  • #100 Use a rain barrel to harvest rainwater from gutters for watering gardens and landscapes.
  • #101 For hanging baskets, planters and pots, put ice cubes on top of the soil to give your plants a cool drink of water without overflow.

GENERAL OUTDOOR

  • #102 Winterize outdoor spigots when temperatures dip below freezing to prevent pipes from leaking or bursting.
  • #103 For more immediate hot water and energy savings, insulate hot water pipes.
  • #104 Wash your pets outdoors, in an area of your lawn that needs water.
  • #105 When cleaning out fish tanks, give the nutrient-rich water to your non-edible plants.
  • #106 When you give your pet fresh water, don’t throw the old water down the drain. Use it to water your trees or shrubs.
  • #107 Use a broom instead of a hose to clean patios, sidewalks and driveways, and save water every time.
  • #108 Set water softeners for a minimum number of refills to save both water and chemicals, plus energy, too.

Power Outage Tips

Tis the season for more storms and power outages. When the big snow and ice storm of February 2021 hit, we were prepared. For 20 years I was over Facilities Management at H-E-B Food-Drugs stores, offices and their properties throughout Texas and Mexico. Here are some quick tips I learned along the way that can help families stay safe.

Before an outage, create an easily accessible emergency kit with these items:

  • flashlights
  • one gallon of water per person
  • hand-crank radio
  • tool box
  • batteries
  • blankets
  • cash
  • first-aid supplies
  • manual can opener
  • nonperishable food items like granola bars, jerky and trail mix

Install appliance thermometers in your refrigerator and freezer. Doing this will help you tell if your food gets warmer than 40 degrees F—the danger zone for food-borne illness.

Keep the fridge and freezer full to keep everything cold longer. Tuck extra bags and bottles of water into the fridge and freezer to maximize the cold. If you anticipate an outage or receive notice of a planned one, think ahead and set your refrigerator temperature to the coldest setting.



During an outage

It’s a good idea to report your outage first. Then, turn off all appliances and lights that were on when service was disrupted, leaving a lamp on so you’ll know when power is restored.

Keep your refrigerator and freezer closed. Unopened, a refrigerator will keep food cold for about four hours without power, and a freezer will keep food cold for about 48 hours without power.

Turn off the circuit breakers to major appliances. When power is restored, this prevents overloads.



Avoid burning candles as this creates a fire hazard. Stick to flashlights. Even headlamps work, especially for the kids!

Once power is restored, avoid overloading your circuits by turning appliances back on in 15-minute intervals.

We encourage you to be prepared before an outage happens. Create your emergency kit and practice what to do during an outage with your family. Be prepared and stay safe.