2019-02-24 to 2019-03-06
Robyn, Robert and three guests arrived by helicopter interchange with Karin and Bruce.
A couple of wet days at the start, but otherwise, brilliantly fine weather conditions throughout.
Solar System. On arrival, Bruce and Karin advised that the batteries were low owing to (primarily) a 20% draw off the previous 2 nights. In addition, the generator ‘supplementation’ system didn’t seem to be working. The battery monitor that Simon installed soon confirmed that there was no input from the generator. Upon investigation, we discovered that the lead to the inverter was not properly inserted to the generator socket – an easy ‘mistake’. (The socket is quite difficult to insert and extra force is needed to ‘ram’ it right home. I have drawn 2 arrow heads on the male and female components which must be touching to achieve full connection.) (Incidentally, the monitor operates much more smoothly when located near the bookshelf in the ‘study’ area.)
Now to the daily 20% draw off reported by Bruce and Karin. I checked the system at 1.30am on our first night and discovered that the warming belt for the hot water gas bottle was still on (and hot). I turned it off. By then there had been a 10% reduction, but by morning ‘just’ another 5% was drawn off. Suggested solution: Leave the belt switched off until a few minutes prior to taking a shower, etc. This leaves the question of “why do we usually ‘lose’ 9% overnight?” I happened to check the monitor at 2am of our final evening and was surprised to observe that Simon’s monitor was recording a 600 watt draw off. How come? I am deeply suspicious that the Biolytic system (the refrigerator was off at the time) is the ‘culprit’. We suspect that the float switch which controls the system might need adjustment.. It could also be the case that some of the drainage laterals are blocked (there is at least one such case) and that this is requiring more work by the pump. These issues need to be taken up with the plumber at the next annual maintenance check. Does anyone know if the laterals are tested and flushed with chlorine for instance? In the meantime, I wonder whether might be advisable to turn the Biolytic system off overnight – particularly during the winter months?
Now to the golden rule. From all the research we have done, it is essential that we set a benchmark of 70% as being the agreed minimum battery charge level. We have the necessary means (via the generator and prudent use of electric appliances) to manage that requirement.
Chimney flu. An adjustable band has been fastened to the external flu to prevent the moveable collar from sliding downwards and shutting off the log fire chimney.
Water system. We followed Bruce’s approach – to good effect. The ‘litmus test’ is the strength of the water flow into the washing machine and the shower. We stored the jug and toothbrush in the container for safekeeping.
Boat trailer skids. Installed. Note that the centre straps ‘pop’ into place. One could easily be misled into believing that the straps need to slide in from one end – probably impossible to achieve.
Rats and mice. Apart from a couple of mouse kills we had no other success. DISTURBINGLY we spotted a black cat on the walkway too the jetty.
Mower. We searched for the missing dashboard cover but without success. I have been to the agent and apparently the cover isn’t sold as a separate item and that the whole fitting will cost $450 (yes, $450). I suggest that we buy a sheet if thin Perspex and glue it in place with a special sealant—glue. (Ura………something was mentioned.)