Some snow drifts may exceed 7 inches

I have two fireplaces in the house. So why o why did I not pay attention when the builder told me how open up the tops/ flues or whatever those are called. I got out my generator when we had the bad storm this summer and the rubber hoses were all rotten. I didn’t do anything with it because " No way will I have a need to use the generator twice in one year".

So now they are predicting ice storms and power outages. Going down to 12/16/18 tonight depending on which forecast you believe. It is still in the 40’s and misting and is supposed to stay cloudy so I am hoping the temperature won’t fall that much and we won’t have power failures.

4 cats in the bed tonight to stay warm? Y’all can laugh at this Southerner now.

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Is that 9% indoor humidity? If so, I think it’s time for a humidifier!


Stick your head in the fireplace** and shine a light up towards the chimney. You should see a simple handle to open the flue. If it’s like mine, you just push it up, and it has notches in the metal where you can set it to be open all the way or part way.

**do not stick your head in the fireplace if there’s a fire in it!


Good catch.

Is down to 4% now.

Allergic to molds, no humidifier, plants or carpets around, squeaky clean everything.

Seriously, it generally is running higher than that, but the heat pump has been struggling at -13F and so auxiliary heat strips, that are very drying, are working overtime.

This too shall pass, is not very often we have this weather here.

Thanks! I have never had a fire in them and I don’t have any firewood here. BUT it sounds like a good idea to be able to use them if we have a winter power outage. A fire upstairs and downstairs would help keep the house warm. Plus a working generator. These weather occurrences are rare here but I need to be better prepared. I don’t think it is going to be as cold as the forecast. It is upper 30’s and overcast this afternoon and no north wind.

An open fireplace usually won’t really heat much beyond the reach of the radiant heat of the flames. Usually better than nothing, but you really want a woodstove for heat. We have long had one in the kitchen (which is in an ell on the side of the original house) but really need to add one to the living room fireplace for backup heat and to make that room cozier - something that’s been planned but not acted on for the better part of a decade!

We did put in a battery with our solar panels a couple years ago - a splurge but so much nicer than a fuel-driven generator. No worry about keeping a generator in shape & with fresh fuel for the so-occasional extended outage! With the battery we have to watch what we use (e.g. dishwasher heating water + microwave + ??? = unhappy battery) but if we watch the big draws it’s like we don’t even have an outage - in that it easily covers what I really care about - fridge, freezer, and water pump. And DSL modem/router. The furnace blower is a big draw so we really should get our butts in gear, hence a desire for the woodstove (backup heat) in the main body of the house.

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well we had one of those “rolling blackouts” that was supposed to be 45 to 90 minutes… ours was for just over 21 Hours… temp in the house dropped to 40. And a city water main broke this morning so limited water… put us back to the Stone Age.

Expecting a prolonged power outage we got a generator big enough to run the complete house expect for the AC unit which is three phase. Got the puppy setup running and all was happy… power just came back on for now, I guess they will dump us out again but come on folks 21 hours is not a rolling black out that is a power outage

All horses, goats, dogs and cats are doing fine …and think a heat wave has hit since it will only get down to 18F tonight (was 3F this morning)

Forecast is still screwy with a High of 12F and Low 18F


So how the rest of Texans doing? We got power back Wednesday night. Water is still thinking about it
due local water company having pumps without power. Boil the water they say. Not at full pressure…
hoping no broken pipes pop up in next few days. Got enough pressure to flush now instead of melting
snow to do it.

No horses at home right now. Put our old man down at end of January and new mare in boarding barn
recovering from quarantine injury. Don’t ask. Actually, kinda enjoying the break from horse keeping.
First day of storm, we stayed in jammies all day.

The rolling blackouts had all types of stores from Walmarts to CVS Pharmacy closed. Gas hard to get…if not. Restaurants running out of food.

out, pumps would be out and not always able to reboot when power came back on.

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supposed to maybe get to 40F today but it is 17F now… and the “record low” was 30F … there has been a continuous record low and record low highs for the last eight or nine days

I guess soon we will find out just what froze

We never fully lost water but did have a rolling black out that was actually a fault of a major transmission line failing. We got that fixed by getting a generator large enough to run everything in the house (all small generators were sold out and this large one was only few more dollars), got it hooked up and presto the power grid came back to life

I lay all blame on my wife who got a Suburb in October, nice car and the cause of the snow just to prove itself as it sets warmly in the garage

And one of the neighbor’s goats had a baby the other night… wife, daughters and grand kids spent most of the day moving stock around to get everything into stalls …and mother goat and baby into our goat’s barn which is heated. Baby is doing fine


Here, today first morning for days it is not snowing, although still cold at 8F

They promise us we will be above freezing some time today, first time over a week.

Hope your pipes didn’t freeze, maybe they didn’t.


Fireplaces will heat a room and a house well designed for fireplace heat ,as are some old New England homes. The important bit is that the fire must be continuous so the chimney itself becomes heated. That takes a wood laid down with heating a house in mind. Not just a few logs for ambience.


As someone retired from our Department of Public Works, this is what we told our residents during freezing temperatures. We are all on City-provided water; there are NO wells in use.

For our citizens on CITY water, we tell them to leave each faucet in the house ON, with a tiny stream of water running. It will help keep the pipes from freezing and busting, but EACH faucet in the house (kitchen sink, bathroom faucet, laundry, etc.) must be running. The water bills will reflect the extra water use, but it is cheaper than fixing busted pipes and flooded homes. The faucets will only need to be left running during the MOST EXTREME cold temperatures or when heat is restored (if that is the problem).

In addition, we remind them to tell EVERY member of their family and any visitors to their homes why the faucets must be left on and running.

As I said above, we have no wells in our city so I can’t address homes with those.


From what I was reading earlier today, the issue in Texas is that many of the municipal systems have lost pressure & can no longer drip. :cold_face:

few if any cities have backup generators on their water wells (and few cities in large urban areas have their own water). My little city does it has two deep wells that supply about 50% of the water the rest is purchased from Ft Worth. but we have two large elevated tanks that have been able to supply water.

There was a water main break is what caused us to lose pressure… but it all was fixed in short order.

Was in low 40s yesterday…almost all snow has melted. We had no water lines freeze or break.

Will be in low 50s today almost summer time

I’ve been thinking of you Texas friends. Clanter, your last post was two days ago, hope things are still ok with you and everyone else. You all got punched by some tough weather.

Regarding how much fireplaces can heat a house - they are usually better than nothing, but they also suck warm air out of a room and up the chimney. Best case scenario is your fireplace has passive heatilators (sp) - vertical chambers on either side of the opening that suck cool air in at the bottom vent and expel it at the top vent. These can really make a difference on the usefulness. But yes, for real wood heat, a wood stove is the answer. I will NEVER live anywhere it gets cold without one or the other.
Hang in there friends!

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well it was 77F by Saturday. All animals did well, enjoyed the added attention of special feed. We did loose water for a few days so we were hauling water to the barns (great fun) but did not have any water lines freeze.

We did loose electrical power for 21 hours… got that fixed by getting full house generator, got it hooked up and power came back two hours after the generator was turned on. (generator is now in storage under the Meadowbrook cart in the garage)

Currently…74F when was supposed to only get to 65F

There are some who are going to be devastated when thy do get their electricity bill…if they had selected a variable rate plan it has been estimated their bill could be as high as $17,000
We are on a fixed rate plan so really do expect much change.

It has been said the cost to fully charge a Tesla which would have been about $18 suddenly became $900 plus (that is if they had electrical service). There are several local Youtubers who have posted about their Green Energy houses having succumbed to forces of nature, one was totally alternative energy including electric cars which were not charged …then the thaw came… water running out the doors of the house.

We did get out our many Baker Blankets that we have had in storage for a few decades. Also the pony’s new hooded insulated turnout blanket that was ordered in advance of this…that blanket showed up after all of this was over (way to go rush UPS shipping only to find out the hub in Louisville was closed)

But all the stock made it without an issue. We were bedding in shredded straw which was warm for the gang.

We ended up with about six inches of snow during the eight or nine days of sub freezing weather…snow melted in four hours to reveal greening pastures.


and the night it was the coldest, getting down to neg 1F… goat was born… wife had moved mother goat from pasture next door to our “goat barn” which is heated, but our goats were evicted to the horse barn which caused the miniature horses to be moved about so two of the goats could live in one of their stalls…then the third goat who does not get along with the other two, she was moved to stall next to the pony

The girls have named it Cricket … mother and baby are doing fine…these are some of neighbor’s goats who my wife and the kids are looking after for the neighbor since they have bulldozed the house that was there preparing to build anew.


and now we are in the low 80F (27C range) so in less than a week we go from neg 1F (about -18C) to low 80s… over an 81 degree Fahrenheit swing (45 degree Celsius swing)

Horses are shedding out their winter coats, time to check and clean the stall fans, get fly sheets ready


`I know. We went from 22 to 75 today. Horses were shedding before the deep freeze but are really shedding now. I guess I need to order fly spray for the fly system. Sigh! Why can’t it get below freezing at night and mid 40’s during the day. That is perfect weather and the bugs stay in hibernation a bit longer.


Sheesh. Perfect colic-weather-swings. I was imagining the deluge of flooding of people’s houses when the pipes (that froze and broke) thawed. I really feel for you folks. Glad things are looking up.