Small blessings

21 02 2009

Sometimes it’s easy to miss all the small blessings that God places in our lives every day, but this last week have definitely been enjoying the seemingly small blessing of 110v power in our house. While this may sound like no big deal, power issues here are a challenge! So far we have burned up a hot water pot, had a 200w light bulb explode (fortunately no one was near!), have melted (and replaced) the wiring for a 220-110v step-down transformer twice, and are down to one small fluorescent light in our kitchen that sometimes needs some coaxing to come on, and will often flicker off unexpectedly.  And even when the power is on, there are frequent flickers, surges, and power level changes that are very hard on all things electrical…that’s just “normal” here!

Getting 110v power in our house requires a 220v-12V charger to charge the battery, which feeds the 12v-110v 2000 watt inverter, which connects to 3 110v outlets throughout our apartment and one 110v light in the bathroom. The advantages of this configuration is that it isolates sensitive equipment (like our laptops) from the nasty power surges that frequently occur here, and even better, continues to provide at least some power and light from the battery even if the power is out.

I brought the charger and inverter with us, but it took some time and scrounging to locate all the other necessary parts and wires and get it all put together. The walls of the buildings here are concrete block, so we had to use a long masonery drill bit for one hole to run cables from the charger (inside) to the battery (outside),  and a second hole to run cables from the battery to the inverter (inside). And since the drill bit wasn’t quite large enough for both of the heavy battery cables to fit through together, Stu had to work the bit around to enlarge the hole. Not so easy when you’re holding the drill up above your head (even when you’re 6’3″ like Stu!) I also spent some time over in the maintenance shop building a box out of plywood from old school desks for the battery to mount it up on the wall outside so the cable runs are shorter.  And then to mount everything else on the wall (charger and inverter) required more holes in the wall along w/ concrete inserts and screws.

Here are a couple of pix from of the finished project:

God is good!

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