Tuesday, December 11, 2007

Ice Storm & $96 Blade Fuse

( A repost from old 'Yahoo 360' blog page December 11, 2007)

Monday morning I was really feeling cabin cramp. The house just seemed so confining. So I said I was going just anywhere but here. Road Trip! Well not quite like animal house movie of the 60's but we left even though we had to scrape a bunch of ice off the windshield.

We drove on the Kansas side up K7 thru Olathe, Bonner Springs, Leavenworth, and then to Atchison. This route goes over the Kansas (Kaw in indian) River and ends up in Amelia Earhart's home town. Everything is named for her, here. The streets, the bridge, the airport and so forth. We went to several old town shops and then to Amelia's house, overlooking the bluff above the river. It was a museum but we are not too fond of those, so we passed. And of course the Wal Mart, to see if they had the fabric, we were currently not able to get in KC. They had some of it.

From there we went to St. Joseph on the East side of the Missouri river. Drove all over that town, and realized that the place is much bigger than we knew, from attending the winter Ham Fest there. We were on museum hill were Jessie James was killed. But didn't go into any of the museums. See above. And of course to the Wal-Mart to get some more fabric, that the last one didn't have. I stopped into Menards just because we don't have those, down here in Southern KC. Didn't buy much.

Since this was our big day out, we went to Lone Star back in Overland Park, for supper of steak and shrimp. We went to bed stuffed. Now that would be where a normal blog would just end. Right?

At 4:00 AM, I got up and looked outside. Ice everywhere. It was raining when we were in Lone Star and it went below freezing on the way home. Now it seemed down right cold. I popped on the electric heater on the dresser. And went back to sleep.

9:00 AM coffee and breakfast, now Tuesday, and every thing is ice covered. Temperature was 33 on the back window thermometer. Man its cold in here. A quick check of the house stat and its only 58 inside. Burrr!

So I started to mess with it. Couldn't get the heat to come on. This new house has electric heat pump, over gas conventional as a back up. Or emergency, as the stat calls it. I reset every thing. Cycled the power on all the breakers. Looked at the inside of the furnace, and found a mother board that looked much like a 486 computer. Oh my! Leds flashing codes! Nothing would go!

In this day of specialty computers to run everything, you just give up and call the man with experience, and a test set. So I did.

He came, by 3:00 PM, and exclaimed they were backed up for hours. He read the blinking code as a 24, and looked in his book to find a low voltage error. Right in the middle of the heavily populated board was an ordinary blade fuse. A 3 amp fuse just like in your car. He stuck in a 5 amp, cussed the manufacture (Carrier), and said the fuse was too small for power surges like ice storms.

He messed with all the installer settings on the stat, and lowered the heat pump cross over temp to 30 degrees, and then tested the heat pump. All seemed well.

The bill was $96. $89 was just the service call trip. $7 for the 59cent fuse. His knowledge, Priceless!

So tonight we are not without heat, like a million or so folks down in Oklahoma.

And I still have cabin cramp............

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