Sunday, November 4, 2007

Day four: Um. What?

I think my apartment complex is getting kickbacks from the gas company, and possibly the water company as well.

See, we got this lovely little notice on the doors. Among other things it includes several guidelines for making sure your pipes don't freeze in cold weather. Some of them make quite a bit of sense, especially for those like me who may be keeping their heat at much lower levels than previously, and I do plan to be careful -- burst pipes are no fun.

Two of their guidelines, however, I find entirely ridiculous. The first is that, any time the temperature falls before 32 degrees Fahrenheit, one is supposed to turn all faucets on to a low trickle and leave them there until the temperature is above freezing. Y'know, I don't think if it's barely below freezing outside that my pipes are likely to burst -- it's got to be a lot colder than that, for a lot longer, and that's even if I don't have my heat on at all. Besides which, given how Colorado winters get, if I followed this to the letter my water would be running all day, every day, for weeks at a time. And this in a state with regular water shortages.

The other (speaking of the heat) is that they recommend that you keep the heat on when it gets too cold. This? I'm fine with. But they recommend that you keep your heat at a minimum of 70 to 80 degrees. What!?

Even in a free-standing house, keeping the heat on at 55 is usually enough to keep your pipes unfrozen, unless they're especially exposed or your insulation is horrendous or the weather is just insane. In an apartment complex? Two of my six walls are insulated by other apartments and another is insulated by the ground. I could probably leave my heat off most of the year and not have problems with bursting pipes. Leaving the heat turned as low as it can go and still be on will entirely precluse pipe issues. Even for people who aren't used to the cold and don't put on a sweater, 70 is on the warm side to have the heat turned to, and 80 is just ridiculous. What, do you feel this need to be able to wear shorts and a t-shirt all year? Move to Florida.

I'm trying to keep things to a pretty friendly tone this month (okay, I do that anyway, but) because I know that a lot of the ideas I'm proposing are pretty radical. I don't want anyone to feel bad because they think I'm trying to berate them into doing things, or because they're not doing as much as they feel they could or should. I'm not doing near as much as I could, should, or want to, and it's a process, it takes time. I do get grumpy at myself sometimes but mostly I know I'm doing what I can.

But this? Just insane.


RevDrKate said...

WOW! These from your landlords leave me flummoxed! Makes no sense at all! Loving your NaBloPoMos. And Maggie says she will be honored to interview Chocolate and will write questions as soon as she is done

Kate said...

Yeah, I'm kinda boggled. I'm moving anyway -- the rent's going up and the new corporate overlords are horrendous -- but this just adds to the urgency.

I'm tempted to print up some more reasonable guidelines and post them on everyone's doors, but they'd probably kick me out. :P