The DRS News
June - July
In this issue:
1) Vaseline – Your
Refrigerator Door Seal’s Best Friend
2) Room Air
Conditioner Sizing – a Quick Primer
3) Old Freezers and Child
Entrapment – Still an Issue
1) Here’s a trick that will
prevent your ever having to replace either of your
seals. It becomes even
more valuable if you own one
of the newest models whose seals are no longer attached with screws,
“glued” on. Once per year – make it a part of Spring
housecleaning? – wipe
down the working surfaces of the seals with a damp cloth, and dry.
apply a thin film of Petroleum Jelly to the HINGE side surface of both
(ONLY to the hinge side working surface that contacts the cabinet, NOT
the whole seal!). This allows the sliding face of the seal to, well, slide,
across the cabinet face, and prevent its twisting and tearing, the #1
There was a time when new refrigerators, at least Frigidaires, arrived
the factory with this already done, but that was back in the late 70’s
I’m dating myself and we’ll drop that subject…
2) Here in the mountains we’ve
never had too much need for air conditioning,
but more and more folks
around here are buying them for the 2 or 3 weeks
we do, and I regularly see the same mistake: under-sizing!
This not only causes
the little units to run themselves to death, but can cause other
excessive dehumidification and excessive utility bills.
Here’s a “rule of thumb”
chart for calculating how many BTU’s of
“cooling capacity” you need for your
room’s area (length x width, for those of you on Hatch Hill J):
Approx BTU's needed
figures assume an occupied space above the ceiling; add about
½ size if the ceiling is insulated under an attic, and add a
full size if the ceiling is
non-insulated. Also, add at least one size if the cooled area
includes a kitchen)
thanks to AHAM for the following:
Up to 9 million chest freezers were manufactured between 1945 and 1970
before voluntary safety standards went into effect allowing freezers
opened from the inside. Although some manufacturers had freezers that
in compliance prior to the 1970 standards, most old chest freezers
that can trap a child. Children playing “hide-and-seek” have found
the non-working freezers a deadly place to hide. When the lid closes, children can
become trapped inside and suffocate – usually in less than ten minutes.
Consumers should properly dispose of these non-working freezers
or disable the latch if disposal is impossible. AHAM has set up a
number (800) 267-3138 from which consumers will be sent detailed
on identifying the affected units and how to dispose of them or
disable the latch.
if a consumer has a pre-1970 chest freezer that is working, they
call the toll-free number to get information on what to do when the
freezer is no
longer working. Consumers also can receive information at:
27 children died from suffocation between 1980 and 1999 after becoming
trapped in the freezers. The deaths occurred in non-working freezers
stored outside, in basements or garages. Victims ranged in age from two to fourteen.
In many cases, more than one child suffocated inside the freezer.
The freezers that are part of this program were made before 1970 by
more than 40 manufacturers, a number of whom do not exist today. Consumers can
determine if their chest freezer poses a hazard by trying to open the freezer
without using the handle.
the freezer can be opened by pulling up on sides of the lid, it is not
a hazard. If the lid only opens by using the handle, it needs to be properly disposed
of or disabled.
”Many of these old freezers are still sitting in people’s
basements or abandoned in backyards,” said CPSC Chairman Ann Brown. “This is an innovative
cooperative effort that helps get safety information to consumers and saves lives.”
”We are hopeful this partnership between manufacturers and the
help save children’s lives. We urge all consumers with an affected
freezer to dispose of the unit as soon as possible,” said Joseph M. McGuire, president
Well, that’s about it for this month. Thanks once again for enduring this rambling!
Don’t forget to send me your suggestions for topics you’d like to
see addressed here.
God bless you,
is crowded with men who would be God,
but only one God who would be Man.”