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Author Topic: Texas in a state of emergency  (Read 2453 times)

Ben

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Re: Texas in a state of emergency
« Reply #75 on: February 19, 2021, 01:02:43 PM »

None of mine, except for the frost free outside valve, hit an exterior wall. The master bath comes close as they come up from the crawlspace right next to an exterior wall, but in single digits, just for safety, I keep the under sink cabinets partially open there.
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K Frame

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Re: Texas in a state of emergency
« Reply #76 on: February 19, 2021, 01:51:14 PM »

Sounds like your only real vulnerability is in the crawlspace.
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charby

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Re: Texas in a state of emergency
« Reply #77 on: February 19, 2021, 04:15:06 PM »

Sounds like your only real vulnerability is in the crawlspace.

I'd have a switched outlet installed in the crawl space and wrap the pipes with a heat tape. Switch on when the temps are low.
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WLJ

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Re: Texas in a state of emergency
« Reply #78 on: February 19, 2021, 04:22:32 PM »

The 8-Bit Guy posted a video

Texas in Crisis - My house is ruined!
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hc4_PnKoea4
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K Frame

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Re: Texas in a state of emergency
« Reply #79 on: February 19, 2021, 04:27:03 PM »

I'd have a switched outlet installed in the crawl space and wrap the pipes with a heat tape. Switch on when the temps are low.

but that might cause all of the hobo bodies to thaw out premature and start to stink before he can bury them when the ground defrosts...
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Ben

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Re: Texas in a state of emergency
« Reply #80 on: February 19, 2021, 04:30:58 PM »

I'd have a switched outlet installed in the crawl space and wrap the pipes with a heat tape. Switch on when the temps are low.

There's an outlet down there. Also one in the laundry room, where the hatch is, so  Iwouldn't even have to go down to plug it in. I might do the tape at some point. It's a good idea, but man, do I hate crawling around down there. It might be a normal design, but when I do my 2-3 times a year inspections, there are some places I can barely squeeze through to get from one section to the next. Almost literally, if I gain ten more pounds I'll end up wedging myself in one of them and somebody is gonna find my decomposed body a year later.  :laugh:
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Ben

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Re: Texas in a state of emergency
« Reply #81 on: February 19, 2021, 04:31:41 PM »

but that might cause all of the hobo bodies to thaw out premature and start to stink before he can bury them when the ground defrosts...

Please, give me a little credit. That's what the backhoe and gravel pit are for.
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cordex

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Re: Texas in a state of emergency
« Reply #82 on: February 19, 2021, 04:37:30 PM »

We put some PTC heat tape around the drain pipe for the washing machine (it is against the wall of an unheated garage) as it sometimes freezes up when the temperature gets single digits or sub-zero.  It has a power switch that only comes on if the temperature goes below freezing, but I only plug it in when it starts to get really cold.

Ben

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Re: Texas in a state of emergency
« Reply #83 on: February 19, 2021, 05:21:45 PM »

It has a power switch that only comes on if the temperature goes below freezing, but I only plug it in when it starts to get really cold.

I have one of those thermostat switches hooked up to a heat lamp in my well house. Comes on at ~34deg and turns off at ~45deg.  It has worked well so far.
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Cliffh

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Re: Texas in a state of emergency
« Reply #84 on: February 19, 2021, 07:28:11 PM »

No reason to run hot water in this instance.  The pipes freeze before they get into the house, when the water is cold.  Letting the hot water run is just running gas down into the sewer.

Unfortunately the PVC piping to all of the fixtures is run beneath the house.  There's a few inches (~4") of fiberglass insulation under the entire house, the piping is sandwiched between the insulation and the floor joists.  Most of the piping is perpendicular to the joists, so it's not even sucked up against the sub-floor.  Last time one of the broken lines was a hot water feed to the master bath.

The way I figure it, running the hot water not only keeps the water in those pipes running, it's also heating the immediate area, however minimally that may be. 

At least there's plenty of room to work under there, relatively speaking.  The crawl space varies from ~18" to almost 30".

I'd like to replace it all with PEX, but realistically, that's not likely to happen.

K Frame

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Re: Texas in a state of emergency
« Reply #85 on: February 20, 2021, 08:33:06 AM »

Please, give me a little credit. That's what the backhoe and gravel pit are for.

OK. VERY little credit.

Satisfied?  :rofl:
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Re: Texas in a state of emergency
« Reply #88 on: February 21, 2021, 08:28:02 AM »

Yes  I know it's Vox but can anyone comment on this story?
Note: A quick scan of the article they claim they're quoting says $5k while Vox ups that to $17k unless I'm over looking something. Still really really bad but come on Vox.

Quote
According to the Dallas Morning News, some Texans have been hit with power bills totaling as much as $17,000 for only a few days of electricity, many times more than the usual cost of power in Texas.

Specifically, it’s Texas residents who rely on a wholesale power plan, rather than a fixed-rate plan, who have seen their bills climb after the demand for power jumped dramatically across the state this week as Winter Storm Uri struck and temperatures plunged. Texas, which has a deregulated electricity market, has a number of providers, both wholesale and fixed rate.
Why some Texans are facing catastrophic electric bills after a winter storm
Wholesale power plans left Texans on the hook for thousands of dollars after prices spiked.
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dogmush

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Re: Texas in a state of emergency
« Reply #89 on: February 21, 2021, 09:19:26 AM »

Yes. That would be how a wholesale,  variable rate plan works. As demand goes up, and supply goes down price dramatically increase.

One could insulate themselves from something like that by paying for a fixed rate plan. It will be more expensive during high supply times, but unlikely to fluctuate wildly during emergencies.

Next Vox can discover how an Adjustable Rate Mortgage works.

zxcvbob

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Re: Texas in a state of emergency
« Reply #90 on: February 21, 2021, 09:19:42 AM »

Yes  I know it's Vox but can anyone comment on this story?
Note: A quick scan of the article they claim they're quoting says $5k while Vox ups that to $17k unless I'm over looking something. Still really really bad but come on Vox.
Why some Texans are facing catastrophic electric bills after a winter storm
Wholesale power plans left Texans on the hook for thousands of dollars after prices spiked.

Some Texans are on variable-rate electric contracts.  Usually it saves a little money.  But I read a news story last week about this that said the Texas Energy Commission raised the rate (or the rate ceiling, it wasn't clear) to $9/kWh.  It didn't say for how long, but that's almost 100x higher than normal.
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kgbsquirrel

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Re: Texas in a state of emergency
« Reply #91 on: February 21, 2021, 11:19:33 AM »

Some Texans are on variable-rate electric contracts.  Usually it saves a little money.  But I read a news story last week about this that said the Texas Energy Commission raised the rate (or the rate ceiling, it wasn't clear) to $9/kWh.  It didn't say for how long, but that's almost 100x higher than normal.

Same commission that kept generation capacity offline because reasons or am I misreading something?

zxcvbob

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Re: Texas in a state of emergency
« Reply #92 on: February 21, 2021, 11:32:58 AM »

Same commission that kept generation capacity offline because reasons or am I misreading something?

I don't know.  I'm a Texan, but I haven't live here in about 30 years.  I'm visiting my parents for a month or so and just catching up on local and regional news.

I think they just haven't maintained the equipment and didn't winterize it, and the way the grid is setup they cannot just buy any significant power from out of state during a crisis.
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Angel Eyes

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Re: Texas in a state of emergency
« Reply #93 on: February 21, 2021, 11:52:38 AM »

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Ben

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Re: Texas in a state of emergency
« Reply #94 on: February 21, 2021, 12:11:47 PM »

and the way the grid is setup they cannot just buy any significant power from out of state during a crisis.

From what I read (if accurate), most of Texas is on a "private" grid for wont of a better word, with only like 20% hooked up as part of the national grid. That 20% was able to get rerouted power from other areas, while the rest was not.

If that's accurate, I would wonder why there was no thought to leaving a way for the "private" side to be able to get power from the national grid in emergency situations.
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MillCreek

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Re: Texas in a state of emergency
« Reply #95 on: February 21, 2021, 12:34:59 PM »

^^^From my reading, this was a choice by the state government so that they would not have to abide by Federal regulations/standards for the power grid.
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kgbsquirrel

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Re: Texas in a state of emergency
« Reply #96 on: February 21, 2021, 12:50:21 PM »

From what I read (if accurate), most of Texas is on a "private" grid for wont of a better word, with only like 20% hooked up as part of the national grid. That 20% was able to get rerouted power from other areas, while the rest was not.

If that's accurate, I would wonder why there was no thought to leaving a way for the "private" side to be able to get power from the national grid in emergency situations.

Irrelevant in the face of Texas having enough local generation to cover themselves 110%.  The shortfall during the storm came allegedly because DOE wouldn't allow Texas coal and gas plants to throttle up.

Meanwhile a couple zeros got added to a bunch of utility bills because of government suppressed supply in a period of peak demand.

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Re: Texas in a state of emergency
« Reply #97 on: February 21, 2021, 01:34:18 PM »

Please post your favorite MSM article or blue-check tweet attacking Biden for causing this problem in Texas or for an insufficient response.
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dogmush

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Re: Texas in a state of emergency
« Reply #98 on: February 21, 2021, 01:41:45 PM »

Irrelevant in the face of Texas having enough local generation to cover themselves 110%.  The shortfall during the storm came allegedly because DOE wouldn't allow Texas coal and gas plants to throttle up.

I've seen this on social media a couple times,  but never with an attributable source.

Do you have a primary source for this info?

MechAg94

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Re: Texas in a state of emergency
« Reply #99 on: February 21, 2021, 02:24:24 PM »

The local post office where I am finally got going again delivering mail on Friday.  Friday I got a couple of letters that looked like they had been at the Post Office a few days.  Saturday brought more junk mail (so back to normal).  I got an Amazon delivery today.

I have a FedEx delivery scheduled for Monday.  Should be okay I guess.
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