Below Zero Wind Chill Tonight

Just a heads up that, despite the mild temps today, it’s supposed to drop way down tonight with significant winds and wind chills below zero. If your unit happens to be one with pipes near an exterior surface and thus vulnerable to freezing, you might want to nudge your heat up in advance of the temperature drop as a precaution.

With so many people staying home so much these days, it’s easy to stop paying attention to what’s happening weather-wise.

Board Meeting Tonight

There is an online Board meeting tonight at 7:00. Cathy sent out the information Monday but I know that at least one or two of the e-mails got caught in people’s spam filters (including mine). If you’d like to attend but didn’t get the e-mail with the link, please check your spam/junk folder.

Traffic & Free Furniture

As of today, there is no right turn at the Central Street end of Market Street due to bridge work (I discovered this the hard way this morning). This closure is expected to last about five months and also affects bus routes.

Also, there’s a resident giving away a beautiful entertainment center:

Hi Neighbors, I’m selling my condo Unit 508, and I’m giving away a FREE Entertainment Center for your TV, cable box, DVD player and other devices. It’s an authentic piece of Hooker Furniture with wood paneling and glass door to display books and treasures. Includes 3 cabinet doors, pull out shelves, and 2 drawers. The dimensions are: 57″ High x 68″ Wide x 23″ Deep.
I will help you move it because I have a hand truck on wheels. This piece was given to me by the previous owner, so it’s nice to pay it forward and give it to another neighbor in the building. Please let me know if anyone is interested. FREE!
I live in Canal Place 3, so I’ll still be in the neighborhood!

Thanks, Julie Manoogian julie_manoogian@yahoo.com

Parking Ban Lifted and H2O heater Question

First of all, the parking ban was lifted at 9:00am this morning which means any cars remaining in a city garage past 11:00am will start getting charged the usual parking rate.

Secondly, a resident is asking for advice about heat pump water heaters:

“I wanted to know if anyone in the building has installed a Heat Pump Water Heater and if they had, did they install a louvered door to their utility room.  I am looking at my options.  I found this article.

The article basically says that the heat pump is the way to go.  The author quotes another article written by Ian M Shapiro which says that a great place to put the heat pump is upstairs in a utility room – bingo.  It goes on to further state that if you heat your space with a heat pump, your efficiency level is further enhanced; sounds perfect.

Never having heard of heat pump water heaters myself, I went looking for more info and found this. Any input from residents should go in the comments and would be much appreciated.

Parking Ban Tonight

A snow emergency and parking ban has been declared beginning at 3:00 this afternoon with enforcement starting six hours later at 9:00pm. If your car is parked in our surface lot, please move it to one of the city garages before then or you risk it being towed. The new Hamilton Canal District garage over behind Canal Place 3 is free to city residents for the duration of the declared emergency; the Leo Roy Garage is NOT and you will be charged if you park there without a monthly pass.

Where to Donate Clothes?

I’m always in a quandary about donating clothes. There are the items that are in poor shape that should just go into textile recycling, and there are the ones that are in near-perfect shape that should go to people who can use them. I hate the idea of good clothing getting shredded with the bad.

Does anyone know which local places are best for which category? I’m currently looking to re-home a lot of large men’s clothes, particularly pants, some of them never-worn.

Any suggestions should go in the comments and will be much appreciated.

Electricity Providers

A resident is looking for input. Any answers should go in the comments. And thank you in advance!

  • Has anyone switched out of National Grid being their primary electricity server to another company that has been advertising  a switch over?
  • If you have, have you found that the switched over company been less expensive for you?
  • If you haven’t, why not?
  • Has anyone called the numbers supplied by the switch over company to get more info and, if so, has it been a positive experience and are you in favor of doing a switch over?

Contractor Recommendations & HVAC Info

A resident is looking for recommendations for a contractor to remodel their kitchen. If anyone has any suggestions, please share them in the comments. There are older posts with similar info that can readily be found using the search function at top right but the info may be out of date—contractors come and go—so it’s good to get the latest from neighbors.

For those who were following the discussion a few months back about smart thermostats, you might want to check out the most recent comment.

Now seems as good a time as any to remind people to check the filters on their heating/cooling systems. A dirty filter hampers efficiency, raises your electric bills, and shortens the life of your heat pump.

And, on that note, a resident recently shared his experience with efficiency issues and his planned overhaul using A1 Maintenance:

I had a new heat pump installed about 8 years ago.  It never worked right.  To make a long story short, I discovered (on my own) that the fan was pulling in air from underneath the unit.  This caused the outgoing air to be about 5 to 10 degrees cooler than it should be.  Of course, this adds to my heating and cooling costs.  I also discovered that the new heat pump is extremely sensitive to air flow, meaning that if your filter is the slightest bit dirty, the flow through the unit is affected and subsequently your outgoing air will be cooler in winter and vice versa in summer.  I am having A1 maintenance pull this unit completely out and we will reseal the back against the chase.  He’ll install it on blocks, fix the kinked drain, check the charge (coolant) and then cut and fix a new vent to the front of the unit.

Another Snow, Another Parking Ban

Here we go again folks. Please move your car out of our surface lot ASAP or risk being towed as per Association rules. The city announcement from lowellma.gov reads as follows:

Snow Emergency Parking Ban – February 9, 2021

A snow emergency parking ban will be in effect today, Tuesday, Feb. 9 starting at 9 AM, and will be enforced beginning at 3 PM. No parking will be permitted on City streets until the ban is lifted.

Free parking is available to residents who do not have access to off-street parking at three City garages: Ayotte Parking Facility, 1 Post Office Square, Lower Locks Garage, 90 Warren Street, and HCID Garage, Dutton Street @ Broadway.

Residents will have two hours from when the parking ban is lifted to move their vehichles without incurring expens

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