Maintenance lists and other clues on what to do or where things are

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Clarence
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Maintenance lists and other clues on what to do or where things are

Post by Clarence » Mon Oct 15, 2018 7:45 pm

Stress or illness and the need for lists:

During the 89 ice storm an interesting issue came to my attention and same for recent Ottawa tornado. ( good farm freind out of commision for nine days)

We all are good at certain things and can do them by near automation. Some of us even can change a lightbulb in decent form. However, during a crisis, will we be sharp on day six?

I was chatting with a large farm equipment dealer and discussing ice storm and how busy he must have been selling generators. He immediately related how farmers were burning out their tractors (using PTO generators running all day) or standalone generators.
Apparently, they were so tired from running farms that things they were taught and practiced since being able to walk, were forgotten. Simply checking of oil levels and other routine maintenance functions. "what, we didn't check the oil" So much needed, expensive and hard to replace equipment during a disaster, was burning out on them.

What about the impact of age. Your 50 now, but in ten years from now, how good will your memory be when your bone tired.

What if you are sick and someone else is filling in for you. You may not only be unable to do the chore but also be unable to even “think” about walking people through the process. Then there is that tricky wire you need to jiggle a bit or the sticky valve. How will that person who is also tired, know how to work your setup.

I have started making up lists or step by step instructions and attaching them to key pieces of equipment. I also use pictures with arrows pointing at the various switches or toggles to help people find the fuel cut off lever….

I know, I have become a walking zombie when tired and that was 20 years ago. After a week of little sleep, I may need that simple 1,2,3,4 cheat sheet myself. If not, it’s there for others in case you’re out of town or doing something else.

I insert my colored notes into plastic cover (from staples), hole punch them and attach with string to the generator, electrical breaker etc. etc.

All my manuals are in binders and in the garage ready for easy access.
Tacking lists up to cupboards in the garage… are other ways of helping people know where stuff is (if your security protocols permit you to do so) ;)

Sounds like something an older person would need but it applies to any age or level of experience. Just that it is in your face, may make you glance at it and cause the light bulb to go on. You then find yourself muttering words like “flip, I almost forgot”

I try and get family to operate things as much as possible but simple truth is, they dont do as often as myself.

love to hear peoples ideas on what they do to remind themselves or help others know where things are or to operate them.



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oldschool
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Re: Maintenance lists and other clues on what to do or where things are

Post by oldschool » Tue Oct 16, 2018 1:31 am

Part of my design for my "dream" place was changed due seeing my mom going through cancer. Just a few of the things that I came up with.

-an "industrial" type shower that a wheel chair can just roll into
-kitchen counters with a kick plate that can be removed to lower the level for wheel chair use
-building the access to the basement with a permanent wheel chair ramp
-putting in a dumbwaiter to move things from the main floor to the basement
-having the washer and dryer on the main floor, front loading
-using drop downs in the cabinets
-having 2 feet high or more raised beds
-no grass to cut in the main outdoor spaces (see the book The Rusty Rake by David and Cathy Cummins)
-label everything with instructions
-keep up a regular maintenance schedule now - taking into account things like the roof, windows, indoor wiring, doors, fencing, etc
-walk at least one person through your schedule now

as for the ice storm, this is a great read
https://grammomsblog.wordpress.com/2012 ... ice-storm/

Clarence
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Re: Maintenance lists and other clues on what to do or where things are

Post by Clarence » Tue Oct 16, 2018 2:50 pm

oldschool wrote:Part of my design for my "dream" place was changed due seeing my mom going through cancer. Just a few of the things that I came up with.

-an "industrial" type shower that a wheel chair can just roll into
-kitchen counters with a kick plate that can be removed to lower the level for wheel chair use
-building the access to the basement with a permanent wheel chair ramp
-putting in a dumbwaiter to move things from the main floor to the basement
-having the washer and dryer on the main floor, front loading
-using drop downs in the cabinets
-having 2 feet high or more raised beds
-no grass to cut in the main outdoor spaces (see the book The Rusty Rake by David and Cathy Cummins)
-label everything with instructions
-keep up a regular maintenance schedule now - taking into account things like the roof, windows, indoor wiring, doors, fencing, etc
-walk at least one person through your schedule now

as for the ice storm, this is a great read
https://grammomsblog.wordpress.com/2012 ... ice-storm/
thanks old school. All the items you mentioned will help sick or those just plain tired. Stayng on top of all the big ticket items like windows... will be an enormous help and greatly relieve stress. Ease of use and reducing stress is far more important than most realize.

Read the blog post and sounded very familiar. One thing i read in the blog that is a possible concern and echoes what i know another family did was, people using sump pump water fir drinking or washing. If your in the country, then your likely on septic. With the septic bed 10 feet from the house and leaching into ground, I wouldn't drink the water from a country sump pit!!!, yet I know a family of university educated folks doing just that.

We used roof runoff for flushing of toilets and to this day i remember using my kids plastic sand pails to collect it. As a decent outdoorsman and always prepared for a bush survival situation, I felt like such a failure at the time, but it sure did stick in my mind.

We were out for 13 days but i was lucky to snag brother in-laws genny at end of day 3. According to ministry, our little area was hit the hardest on day three ( tree damage). My hopes for a 1500 tap maple bush were destroyed and we cut down the majority of the 200 plus year old trees. the tops looked like something out of a WW1 photo./ just sheared off on straight line from shells.

army didn't come down our long lane way until day 13. kids of maybe 18 or 19 walking. Army had focused efforts on towns and emergency centers and left country folk to figure things out. Speaking of the Army, a friend of mine in the force had to use his personal Canadian tire card to purchase items as the army didn't even have basic electrical supplies to rig up emergency centers!!!! Pretty pathetic when one thinks about it!. In all of Canada, they couldnt even access enought supplies to furnish troops with stuff the get emergency centers in a functioning manner. So think about that one for a few minutes and try and imagine Toronto and Ottawa being hit in a cyber attack and going completely dark. scares the heck out of an intelligent person. No flipping way people will be nice and courteous on day two. not a prayer. Just pray its snowing or minus 40, because if its warm, people will hit the roads and look to the country for food etc.

When land line went dead, only my security pager worked so i had to go into town and place calls in phone booth ( no longer in existence). switch gear didn't even work so operator had to dial number for me ( very weird feeling standing in cold phone booth retrieving messages). I would get home and bloody thing would chirp again and back i would go. Today, with cell towers, i don't think people would be very well served and Ottawa tornado was a good example.

I had chainsaw in back of truck so I could clear a path when leaving or coming back to the house and that included back roads that would have a tree across it. that storm and subsequent work on Y2K projects taught me a lot. raising a young family, starting a business can make you put things aside( like having a genny ) as a nice to have but not "needed" item, then stuff happens and your suddenly in the stone age. I had all my camping stuff and plenty of food but needed that power. We had a big outdoor wood boiler but damned if it didn't need some power to pump all that nice 180 F water into our floors.!

its good to read blogs like you attached, little things will pop up in peoples stories and help us all think of this or that. silly things like a fuse, spare thermostats for my wood boiler. and your list of things...
so thanks and i hope others add to your list so we can cross reference and see what we may have forgotten or not put in proper priority. ( like a good strudy pail instead of one with Disney characters on it :shock: :lol: :oops: :oops: :oops: :oops: :oops:

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oldschool
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Re: Maintenance lists and other clues on what to do or where things are

Post by oldschool » Wed Oct 17, 2018 1:03 am

Clarence
It sucks about the trees. The blog may have sounded familiar as one of the members of this group wrote it. For me, phone is no big deal most of the times. I may use the phone twice a month. No one to talk to or text so that is no longer a consideration on my prepping.

As for going black, we had that for 4 days in 2003. Long before I had heard the word "prepper". I was making coffee, baking bread & muffins for my end of the street. By day 3 it turned into a block party.

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Re: Maintenance lists and other clues on what to do or where things are

Post by peppercorn » Wed Oct 17, 2018 3:37 am

A good topic Clarence. About ten years ago I started a book, I call it the house book. It lists everything I have done here. When things were constructed, why things were built the way they are, Changes made over time, right down to trees, when and where they were planted, records of first and last frosts, snowfall, yearly rainfall, observations of game, and birds. records of water consumption house/garden, wood volume burnt each winter and volume heated, sometimes just upstairs, sometimes just down stair. sometimes both. Its for whoever has the property after I kick the bucket. All my solar is now being redone with everything in a single cabinet. Manuals for each piece of equipment included in the cabinet, and I am adding heavy duty switch gear to everything so no one ever has to work a screw driver to undo anything.
Give a man a gun, and he can rob a bank. Give a man a bank, and he can rob the world.

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farmgal
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Re: Maintenance lists and other clues on what to do or where things are

Post by farmgal » Wed Oct 17, 2018 4:49 pm

Peppercorn.. You ROCK :) that is all..
http://livingmydreamlifeonthefarm.wordpress.com/

Clarence
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Re: Maintenance lists and other clues on what to do or where things are

Post by Clarence » Sat Dec 01, 2018 1:17 am

Denob mentioned a bit of gas in an air filter to help start a gen and it reminder me of a post I wanted to make about carburater cleaners.

Have a seldom used lawn mower I use for certain rougher tasks and of course fuel sits there and does some gumming up. Yes I use fuel stabilizer. I took the air filter off and While driving, I flipped open the hood And sprayed in the carb cleaner. Took me a full can but it cleaned it out nicely and all is fine.

I bought a number of cans to keep on hand.

Of course, one can take things all apart and fuss with them for hours and in the end, maybe break a bolt etc! Maintenance is essential but so are quick fixes. A quick fix can save your bacon and I love my bacon. :roll:

Along with carb cleaners, I also stocked up on
Fuel stabilizers, we 40, release all for helping with tight nuts ( no comments :geek: ), silicone spray, spark plugs for chainsaws, spare chainsaw bars and more chains,

I realize that a great deal of what I stock up on, is not going to last many years or more importantly, get me away from current methods of work, BUT I believe it helps in the immediate and buy time for any possible transitioning.

Three is two, two is one and one is none!

Clarence
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Re: Maintenance lists and other clues on what to do or where things are

Post by Clarence » Mon May 06, 2019 3:55 am

Here’s something to look at this time of the year.
Bird nests on outdoor floodlights or any exterior shed.. light.
Every year I clean away nests that birds love to build on some of my lights. Serious fire hazard on some of the hot halogen types. Poop, isn’t to good either for wires

Should Probably be on the top to do items when you show up at a remote location. You may have been gone for weeks or months and flip on a flood light and find your building on fire.

If your gone for awhile, you may also consider turning off any motion activation on lights susceptible to a fire from a nest

Check engine areas as well for mouse... nests as well

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Wayne
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Re: Maintenance lists and other clues on what to do or where things are

Post by Wayne » Mon May 06, 2019 9:12 am

Great points! This hit home for me this past year. As you might recall, I broke my leg/ankle this past year and I ended up with a cast and strict instructions not to put any weight on my leg (the other one had tendon damage to the knee). I ended-up crawling everywhere.

As expected the snows came and my wife had to hook-up the plow onto my truck and clean the driveway. She had never done this before. Fortunately, I was able to make drawings and give instructions. If I had died, she would have been out-on-a-limb. Point well taken...
None you improvise, one (or more) is luxury.

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Re: Maintenance lists and other clues on what to do or where things are

Post by Clarence » Sat Sep 14, 2019 8:56 pm

Friend of mine has a cottage in Nova Scotia and we were discussing the recent Dorian tropical storm. He had already cut all the trees down that were within touching range of his newly built cottage. I have many big trees that I kept up to provide shade and even if they are all hardwood, a bit of a windbreak in the winter.

That said, I think it would be wise to put the cutting of all trees around the house on an emergency to do list. May not be the top but certainly something one wouldn’t want t9 forget about.

I do not wish to do it now, as I want them up for above stated reasons, but would want them down if I knew the damage to the house wouldn’t be covered during a serious emergency. All great firewood and shade would be least of my worries.

Same should apply to all outbuildings or places where one has equipment, power lines, fuel tanks, gardens....

Another guy I know had a tree do a good job on crushing his nice new tractor! So keep those trees that are dieing down in the bush to decrease risk

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