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Showing posts from September, 2014

Door-actuated space heater power lockout

Here's a little project I did last night: Power strip modified for dry-contact switching Magnetic switch on the door I'll try to keep this short: due to some insulation issues in the garage under the second floor, Henry's room gets kind of cold in the morning.  This is not compensated by the house thermostat because it's in our room and we sleep with the doors closed.  So we use a little electric space heater to regulate the temperature in Henry's room at night.  With this comes a couple of problems: Heater can be left on in the morning If the door is open, the heater then runs open-loop and tries to heat the rest of the house  The heater will run all day long, if it's set to even 1 degree above the "house" temp.   This costs over $.25/hour It's also (more of) a fire hazard since the heater will potentially be running when no one is in the house I thought of a bunch of different ways to solve this problem.  Sure, go ahead and t

Got a new car

Well I did it.  Bit the bullet and, after thinking about lots of different possibilities, decided to go with what I know: 2013 VW Golf TDI with tech package.  It took me a while to find one, but as I learned from my last car, if you don't get what you want the first time, you'll spend the rest of your ownership trying to add it (and in many cases you still won't get it). Here are some of the many features: Heated seats (my previous car didn't have this and I regretted it for 12 years.) Xenon headlights with "follow" action LED DRLs 17" rims Dual power seats Nav, SDcard slot Bluetooth smartphone integration Sunroof DSG transmission (basically a standard transmission that is robotically automated) It's going to take me a year or two just to get a handle on what is in this car.  I apparently have the RNS315 radio, which is different from the RNS516, but is apparently now standard on the tech package, I'm guessing because it's