Browsing "Electricity"
Jul 24, 2013 -

Generator Exhaust Repair

L and I went into Assiniboia today to try to find some flexible steel tubing to fix my generator exhaust. I also wanted to buy a 20lb propane tank that was on sale at Peavey Mart and L wanted to have a nice meal out.

Charles suggested we try the farm supply places for the tubing. John Deere had nothing. We went to Young’s Equipment where one of my neighbours works and he sent us to NAPA.

NAPA had exactly what we needed. YAY! L thought we were so lucky that I should ask if they might have an air filter, too. YES! We couldn’t believe it!

Feeling jubilant, we went to Peavey Mart and then across the street to the Co-Op to fill the propane tank. There, L and I both had the same notion that the sales discount hadn’t been applied to the tank. It hadn’t. We went back and it turns out the sale wasn’t till Friday. The cashier didn’t bat an eyelash and refunded me the $4 and tax knowing that that was cheaper than loser a customer. Smart girl.

We then went to Nash’s, a Greek restaurant, and had a good lunch. L had ‘New York cut’ steak and I had the chicken pita with homemade tzatziki sauce. We shared baklava for dessert. It was all very yummy and I would like to go back one evening to try their dinner menu.

It was about 3:00 when we got in and L had almost no difficulty in getting the flexible tubing in. And that’s when the flexible tubing on the other side of the muffler gave. CRAP. L looked at the bit and hemmed and hawed and considered MacGyvering it until I could get to an exhaust repair shop. Finally, he decided that the best course of action was to go back to NAPA and get more pipe and more clamps. So we did.

He’s under the rig now getting this new section in.

I can't believe we found a new air filter! The other one was just about black.

I can’t believe we found a new air filter! The other one was just about black.

This is what we replaced.

This is what we replaced.

Shiny new pipe before the muffler.

Shiny new pipe before the muffler.

This section after the muffler snapped while L was working on the other side.

This section after the muffler snapped while L was working on the other side.

Now, I know what y’all are wondering, how expensive has my generator repair been?

Oil: about $4 for a quart of it (a few weeks ago)

NAPA gave us a ‘preferred customer discount’ after L asked for a senior’s discount, so I am putting the full price in brackets after the price paid:

Flex tubing: $3.41/ft ($4.39) x 3 = $10.23
Clamps: $2.10 ($2.26) x 2 = $4.20
U-Bolts (they were out of clamps on the second trip): $1.46 ($1.46) x 2 = $2.92
Air filter: $7.05 ($15.46!!!)

Total before tax at NAPA: $25.86 ($26.84 with tax).

So counting the oil, I’m at just over $30.

The spark plug is good and there is absolutely no reason to replace it.

The only other issue is that the choke isn’t working automatically. I have to manually close it to start the genny and then release the catch so that it will open. Not a biggie.

L suggests that I run the genny regularly until the winter. If I have no issues with it, then I should look at having the brushes replaced. But he doesn’t want me to spend that money now since the genny has sat so long as it would suck for the motor to throw a rod or whatever a month down the road. Smart man.

Oh, and there is the issue of it not starting from the button in the kitchen, which is an electrical and possible electronic issue. I am not going to worry about that at this time since I don’t have an automatic transfer switch. Therefore, I have to go outside anyway to plug the shore power cable into the genny from the inverter or vice versa.

I am going to continue leaving the cable plugged into the inverter as being the default plug in condition. The genny will just be for charging or giving me a boost in grey weather. I look forward to seeing what its gas consumption is compared to the engine.

I’m still reeling from disbelief that my generator is working.

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Electricity, Generator, Technical    10 Comments
May 3, 2013 -

Fridge on 120V Power Update

Since leaving the beach, I had problems with my fridge set to the AC (shore/120V power), both on 30A at an RV park and 15A in a driveway.

I was really short on propane in Shawnee and was growing weary of just how quickly I go through the gas when the fridge is running off it, so I decided it was time to do something about it.

I started by going back over some of my electrical posts from the beach because I had a niggle at the back of my mind. And then I found my post about the salt water corrosion on my battery terminals.

Doh. I went out and cleaned the fridge terminals and connections with a scrubbie pad and an eraser, then turned the fridge on to shore power. No problem in Shawnee on 30A. And no problem in Wichita on 15A. My fridge is also running colder on a lower setting than it was before.

Salt water is evil! 🙂

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Appliances, Electricity, Fridge, Technical    6 Comments
Apr 23, 2013 -

Pauls Valley to Shawnee, OK

It was a so-so night at Walmart. Because of the lack of parking spots, a reefer parked almost on top of me (not exaggerating; he had to go out his passenger door and I couldn’t open my house door!). I couldn’t fault the driver for that. He ran the engine for a few hours in the evening, then again in the middle of the night before finally taking off around 5:00 or 6:00. So my sleep was interrupted and I gave up around 7:00.

Since I only had about an hour to my destination, I thought of just taking off, but something told me to check my email. There was a comment from Linda Sand warning me that there are two Firelake casinos in Shawnee and that she was parked at the wrong one. Since it was on route to the right one, where I had planned to spend the night, I decided to stop there first and meet her since we keep just missing each other this spring. Onsite, I could check out the RV facilities and determine the best casino to stay at.

I arrived at the first casino, Firelake Casino, around 10AM, after circling around the complex a number of times before finding the RV park. I knew Linda is a late riser, so I sent a message to let her know I was on site instead of banging on her door, then had breakfast and did some online stuff. I called the casino to ask about the RV park and after being bounced around a bit, I was told it is $15 for FHU. Good deal and a nice location, but too much for me right now.

Linda got back to me around 11:30 and I went to check out her swanky digs (WOW, the things you can do with a class B when you custom design the layout!) and we gabbed for a bit. We will be having dinner tonight.

I headed out to the Grand Casino around 2:00 and was settled into a spot and had had lunch by 2:30. Linda had warned me I would have to unhook and back in, so I was prepared. Neither event took any effort. The slots are super narrow, but there is ample room to back in and they are perfectly angled for easy entrance. The view out the back is of a muddy creek, but the view from the desk is half into a bedroom window (I’m keeping that curtain closed!), one quarter onto an RV wall, and one quarter to the big rig parking lot.

In exchange for signing up for the player’s club, I get three nights with power and water and access to a dump station (each additional night is $25). With the player’s club, you get free keno, 10 entries to a draw, and $10 in match play (so you put $10 in the slot machines and they give you 10, but not on progressive machines). I have never played keno, but for the chance to win $100, I will try it out!

Three nights with power will be much appreciated since it is super cold and overcast. I’m running out of propane, so I have to ration until I find a place to fill and am grateful I can run the electric heater.

Gas prices in OK are much cheaper than in TX, to my surprise. Thank goodness for that. My gas mileage the last two days has been the pits and I’ve had to adjust my gas budget from $600 to $900 to get back to Canada from Dallas. *sighs* I’m just glad I’m not paying Canadian prices for fuel!!! Here, fuel is about $3.20 ($0.85/litre) a gallon and average Canadian prices are $4.90 ($1.30/litre) a gallon. So to fill the motorhome here (50 gallons), it’s $160 and to fill it in Canada would be $245!

I wish I could have had just one more month in the US to avoid getting back to Canada in this frigid soupy mess. I’m afraid that that’s what I’ll remember most about my winter, the cold humid last days rather than the hot sunny days walking barefoot along the beach with palm trees rustling in the background. Those days already feel like they belonged to another life. 🙁

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Boondocking/Dry camping, Countries, Electricity, Finances, Nice Folks, Oklahoma, Propane, Social, Technical, Travel, USA, Weather    8 Comments