UK 13 Amp Plug and Mains Extension Lead Safety Issues

Introduction

The initial purpose of this post was to raise awareness of a UK 13 Amp Mains Extension Lead Safety Issue. I came across it by chance when I landed on the PlugSafe site. I’ve taken the liberty of reproducing their information below and enhancing their picture. Full credit to PlugSafe for making us all aware.

As a consequence of a comment on the initial post I have also included an issue with the safety of 13 Amp Mains Plugs too. Continue reading “UK 13 Amp Plug and Mains Extension Lead Safety Issues”

Condensation Free Bathroom Mirror

Introduction

This post describes how to make a condensation free bathroom mirror using an automatic mirror heater. See the one I made in 2007 here. Look carefully and you will notice the condensation around the edge but not in the central heated area.

Without a heater it would be impossible to use the mirror without first wiping it with a towel. Cold mirrors usually mist over again after wiping.

With an active mirror heater it’s possible to get straight out of a bath or shower and use the mirror immediately.

Continue reading “Condensation Free Bathroom Mirror”

Lighting Charts – Which Lamp Do I Need?

Introduction

We are all trying to reduce energy costs and CO2 emissions by choosing modern alternatives to incandescent lamps. Here are some lighting charts to help you select the best lamp for your situation. Since the decline of incandescent lamps there have been many alternatives made available based on fluorescent tubes bent in many ways to condense a long tube into a confined space.

I had my first Philips SL prismatic Compact Fluorescent Lamp (CFL) lamps soon after they came on the general market back in the 1980’s. I only recently sent my last one to recycling after deciding that even my shed could do better than have one of those long time warm-up devices.

Fluorescent Tubes

In the early days of low energy lighting there was nothing better than the good old fluorescent tube, usually confined to kitchens and garages in the British house. I still had two twin fluorescents in my kitchen until 2015. If you want the room lit without shadows that’s the way to do it. After much searching in 2003 I found some streamlined fluorescents fit for the modern era to replace my old fluorescent ‘chunky boxes’. Unfortunately they went off the market and I struggled to find a decent looking replacement that didn’t cost a fortune. There were some problems with the ones I used. They had a self destruct mechanism built-in. The plastic fixings for holding the wires in place on the frame all deteriorated under the ultraviolet light given out by fluorescent tubes. I replaced them with zip ties but they suffered from the same problem.

Lamp Brightness

To get back to the point of this article, which is to advise on the brightness of replacement lamps, I have chosen to publish a chart by espares lighting chart which seems to relate to the UK/European market and another by ovo-logo which relates to the American market and appears to suggest their lamps emit more light than European lamps, e.g. UK/European 100W ≅ 1300 lumens, American 100W ≅ 1600 lumens (see A USA Lighting Chart). Continue reading “Lighting Charts – Which Lamp Do I Need?”

Bionic Prosthetic Hand For The 21st Century

Introduction

bionic prosthetic hand

I listened to the BBC Radio 2 Jeremy Vine show on 23rd June and heard a great article about a young woman who had been given a bionic prosthetic hand for the 21st century. Her name is Nicky Ashwell and here she is in the following video tweet being interviewed by Jeremy Vine who went on to receive this bebionic logo handshake. Continue reading “Bionic Prosthetic Hand For The 21st Century”

Mira Shower Thermal Switch Replacement

Introduction

This article advises how I have replaced a Mira Shower thermal switch in a MIRA Sport 9kW Thermostatic Shower on several occasions.

Originally I installed a MIRA Sport 9kW Thermostatic Shower as part of a new bathroom and had it tested and certified by a qualified electrician on 1st May 2007. I was very pleased with it and it worked well for three years until June 2010 when it developed a fault.

I found that in the middle of taking a shower the water would go cold for a few seconds and then get warm again. On the first few occasions I wondered if cold water being drawn off by other taps and appliances was lowering the water pressure to the shower and so causing it to operate incorrectly (although the low pressure light was not illuminating). As the days went by the problem got worse and my wife ended up washing shampoo off with cold water. I knew then that I would be in bad books until it was fixed.

I had to determine if this fault could be fixed or if I would have to replace the entire shower unit. For this I needed to take a look inside the shower unit.

Continue reading “Mira Shower Thermal Switch Replacement”

Solar Panel Orientation In The Northern Hemisphere

Introduction

In the northern hemisphere solar panel orientation is unsuitable because they mainly point south. This enables them to generate the most electricity when the sun is highest in the sky and is shining straight down (or as near to that as possible) on the surface of tilted panels. This approach does allow the panels to generate the greatest possible amount of electricity, but not at the best time of day. This is because there are problems connecting intermittent sources of electricity to the grid. It seems midday electricity isn’t required so much as afternoon electricity. (I’m not sure what is required in the morning.)

More Info on Northern Hemisphere Solar Panel Orientation

Find out more detail about northern hemisphere solar panels pointing the wrong way in this article from The Telegraph.

ABCON PostShip Parcel Scales Review

Introduction

I found these ABCON PostShip parcel scales in COSTCO, Derby. They seem to be a parcel shipment person’s dream. They’re great for sellers on auction sites.

NOTE: ‘ABCON’ and ‘PostShip’ are registered trademarks.

parcel scales
ABCON PostShip Parcel Scales

I just found they are the TOP CHOICE in this list of The 10 Best Postal Scales by Comparaboo. — HC, 22nd August 2017

Until I bought these ABCON PostShip parcel scales I had been using my wife’s Salter Electronic (Model No.3007) kitchen scales for weighing packages destined for the mail.

Continue reading “ABCON PostShip Parcel Scales Review”