Things you don’t think of when buying a house: Power

So as a first-time buyer a few years back it never occurred to me to check the Amperage of the power into the house. Something I would do now.

I recently looked into taking advantage of the government scheme to cover 75% of the cost to install a home electric car charger:

Reference: https://www.gov.uk/government/collections/government-grants-for-low-emission-vehicles#electric-vehicle-homecharge-scheme

It was at this point, talking to one of the suppliers and having a few questions pitched at me. That I realised I only had 60A coming into the properly. Which to be fair is a lot of you have gas as well. This thing is new car fast chargers can do 32A and I don’t want to put in old tech to suit my current needs only.

With this, I put things on the back burner regarding the OELV / car charger.

Then my energy supplier Tonik contacted me about having a smart meter installed like most UK energy suppliers are doing presently. I had an engineer come out (actually a few) and they told me the backboard was not compliant and they could not do the work.

So I was wondering how do I resolve these issues.

Answer: UK Power Networks: Who’s site is pretty informative thankfully!

This image in particular:

Found here: https://www.ukpowernetworks.co.uk/internet/en/our-services/upgrade-fuse/

The only blocker:  For the fuse upgrade, UK power networks need to know that the meter tails are upgraded to 25m(il?) (from 16). I had no idea about that… I called my supplier Tonik and neither did they. This is where I’m at. Looking for a response from their meter team as to a cost for the upgrade. Ironically if its too much and I’m not keen on doing it, they’ll stop me using more electricity and making them more profit… 😀

Updates to follow. Hopefully, I can get past all this and start looking at OLEV and solar again.

Boosting home cold water mains pressure.

So i’m no plumber but my father was so I know a little about plumbing.

What I actually didn’t know was that in the UK you can boost the inbound water mains to 12litres per minute (according to WRAS) directly off the mains. I thought any pump would have to be fed from the cold water storage tank.

So with a small amount of research I’ve found:

HomeBoostRan past the old man and he gave it the thumbs up and also found some decent YouTube videos on the product such as:

If you’ve got access to the right tools and feel comfortable with the install then its fairly straight forward. The main bit I would recommend before purchasing is to make sure your cold water stop tap works or check if you  have an external one (that potentially cuts supply to multiple residence). I actually had one that cut supply to about 10 houses. We tried to freeze the pipe before hand but it proved difficult with the inbound pipe being lead so we ended up giving notice to the other houses and cutting the supply to install the new stop tap. The best bit was the external stop tap was on someones drive with the opening flap being under their car so even more fun ensued..

So when I get a chance I think it’ll be time to grab one of these and give it a shot. Should give some much needed pressure to the electric shower so as to not give people cold shocks when the washing machine / dishwasher / kitchen tap is used! Plus you get a nice clean feeling when the shower has some omph to it!

Here a diagram to visualise the install with:

Link to purchase: http://amzn.to/2G4vToi

Xbox One X and One S getting 1440p support in the near future

Article over at TechRadar:

https://www.techradar.com/news/xbox-one-x-and-one-s-getting-1440p-support-in-the-near-future

Interesting for the Xbox One X and i’m sure users in the resolution middle ground will really appreciated the efforrt.

If i’m being really skepticle its also a good way to get those Xbox One S’s nice and toasty and shorten the life of them a little bit 😉 On the flip side it’s a nice bonus for ownders while this also narrows the reasons to jump to an X so an interesting move by Microsoft.

G.fast – yeah yeah faster downloads… We want upstream!

50Mbps upstream on the top end package of G.Fast is where my interest is for this service as it rolls out. Its going to shake things up for the likes of Virgin Media also who should have plenty of time to respond with a DOCSIS 3.0 /3.1 upstream changes to complete. I would hope they would go one better and outdo OpenReach here as DOCSIS 3.0 can go way way beyond!

BT Confirm Tech Details for Summer UK Pilot of 300Mbps G.fast Broadband

image from ISPreview article above:

 

If you want to see the green extention boxes being added to your nearby cabinets, see this article:

BT Openreach Reveals G.fast Broadband Cabinet Extension Pod

Mega.co.nz – 50GB free

Totally forgot about the Mega service but recently needed some space to backup videos as my One Drive and Google Drive are mostly full. Amazon Prime Cloud Drive also gives 5GB for non-videos (Unlimited photos!) but I needed more and then I remembered this service and wondered if it was still going! To my surprise it was and found some old music I had stored away as a bonus! Give the service ago here: 

So Apple released some stuff yesterday…

Most of the attention seems to be on the iPhone X (you have to say it as 10, which is great but a) what happens to 9 and b) what happens to 10 in two years! ). THis post isn’t really about the iPhone X or 8 as in my opinion, they were run of the mill updates, some stuff is nice, like the dual camera orientation and buffs but meh to the rest..

The interesting stuff:

Apple TV 4K

Weirdly the Apple TV hasn’t gotten much limelight from what I’m seeing from general browsing. Apart from the appalling lack of storage (max 64GB), it looks good! Maybe not good enough to have Roku quaking in their boots but it looks decent with everything you would want:

Specs:

Video Output

2160p

Dolby Vision and HDR10

Processor

A10X Fusion chip with 64-bit architecture

 

Networking

Gigabit Ethernet

802.11ac Wi‑Fi with MIMO; simultaneous dual band (2.4GHz and 5GHz)

Bluetooth 5.0

 

Ports

HDMI 2.0a

Gigabit Ethernet

IR receiver

 

Audio Output

Up to Dolby Digital Plus 7.1 surround sound

Apple Watch Series 3

Anyway, moving on, the other interesting product is the Apple watch which adds LTE support. So now its a truly standalone device and with some Airpods sounds pretty cool depending on how long the battery is going to last in actual use. Plus it actually beats a lot of Android competitors as it’s claimed you can actually go swimming with it! The thing I like most, however, is that Apple has taken an old school technology such as having the same mobile number on multiple SIMs and are pushing it to be mainstream. Operators usually try and stick you on a business account if you want this type of functionality and even then its a fight.

EE refers to the SIM as an eSIM and there doesn’t appear to be a slot on the marketing pictures of the device so I suspect it’s a virtual SIM that’ll link to the Apple watch based on the IMEI  that links back to a SIM identifier that also goes out to your phone’s SIM / IMEI.

Hopefully, network support will be fast and furious! I’m with Three in the UK and it looks like only EE will be offering it from the start. Not a major issue, I like EE but usually put off by their pricing/caps. I might still be tempted however once some real world reviews are out!

Apple Watch 3
Apple Watch 3