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Showing posts by author Willard Strong  Show all posts >

On the hunt for holiday LEDs on the cheap


December 21, 2016   By Willard Strong in Reduce The Use

Strings of holiday LEDs are at bargain prices after Christmas, and LEDs can save up to 80 percent in energy costs.

I’m a bargain hunter. Why pay retail this time of year when you can do some bargain hunting and save money, sometimes 50 percent or more?

Although Black Friday, Cyber Monday and pre-holiday sales have come and gone for another year, there are some real deals beginning the day after Christmas when it comes to holiday lighting in general – and energy efficient LEDs in particular.

In my hunting expeditions, I’ve found the LED “happy hunting ground” happens to be two of the big-name pharmacy chains. These stores mark down the multicolored and white strings of 50 to 100 lights (or more) that didn’t make it to consumers’ hearths, wreaths and trees this year. It’s like an Island of Misfit Lights, instead of an Island of Misfit Toys. And when you use them for the first time, you’ll feel like these lights are shining all the brighter because they cost you less.

Although your neighbors, and... Continue Reading >>

Be electrically safe and sound this holiday season


November 22, 2016   By Willard Strong in Safety
This is the week many of us put up our holiday lights and decorate the tree. Of course, some traditionalists will wait until the calendar turns to Dec.1 to begin decking the halls and such.

The holidays are supposed to be joyous time for family and friends, but bad things can of course happen any time of year. There are simple and easy things you can do to make the Thanksgiving and yuletide season safer for you and your loved ones---and give you peace of mind.

For example:

Prior to putting up or stringing lights on the tree, make sure you examine each set for loose connections, damaged sockets, or bare or frayed wires. Now, some lights may hold some sentimental value to you, but there’s nothing sentimental about have to dial 911 for the fire department if a dangerous lighting set goes terribly wrong. This could be an ideal time to replace older lighting sets with LEDs that are super energy efficient, essentially... Continue Reading >>

Get out on the lakes this fall


September 07, 2016   By Willard Strong in

A sailboat plies the blue waters of Lake Marion on a recent September afternoon.

The Santee Cooper Lakes, Marion and Moultrie, are South Carolina’s largest freshwater resource when you combine the acreage of the two reservoirs, which are connected by the Diversion Canal.

One thing I heard this summer, particularly during the brutal July was, “it’s just too hot to get out on the water.” Well, good-bye Tropical Storm Hermine and hello autumn! After she blew through with a little wind, lots of rain and a few scattered power outages, fall seemed to arrive a little early last Saturday morning.

Temperatures were in the low 60s around the lakes and the humidity was way down. It felt so good, warming up to the mid-80s by early afternoon. The water is still plenty warm enough for swimming, tubing or any kind of water sports. I still don’t understand how this thing they call a “noodle” is useful in any way in a lake or swimming pool. But I digress.

The secret is, the next 30 to 45 days... Continue Reading >>

Portable generator safety a must for successful use


August 31, 2016   By Willard Strong in

Portable generator safety tips

All these storms forming off the coast of faraway lands, and even closer to our shores are making me quite nervous as we are now facing the heart of hurricane season.

Just the prospect of a tropical storm or hurricane lurking about can prey on your mind. It’s time to plan. One thing that appeals to many people is the purchase of a portable gasoline generator to run the refrigerator, lights and a flatscreen TV while power is being restored.

A portable generator can cost from several hundred dollars to a thousand or more. But like any internal combustion engine that burns a flammable liquid and emits potentially deadly carbon monoxide, safety is paramount. The National Safety Council offers the following safety safety tips. No. 9 is especially close to our heart at Santee Cooper.

Always read and follow the manufacturer’s operating instructions. Never use a generator inside your home, garage, crawl space or other enclosed... Continue Reading >>

Here’s one thing your child’s teacher may have done this summer


August 03, 2016   By Willard Strong in

Teachers have some selfie fun at Santee Cooper's Energy Educators Institute this summer.

In a few weeks, the state’s public school teachers go back to work, but do you know how nearly 85 educators from across South Carolina spent the summer?

For the 31 st consecutive year, classroom teachers and administrative personnel spent a week at Santee Cooper’s Wampee Conference Center in Pinopolis, S.C.

It’s called the Energy Educators Institute , and the educators get hands-on experience by learning about the electric utility industry in general and Santee Cooper in particular.

They visited a generating station, heard presentations by energy efficiency experts, took a boat ride through the Pinopolis Lock and even went canoeing at Santee Cooper’s Old Santee Canal Park .

Santee Cooper held three institutes this summer. They began on July 5 and ended on July 22. Hands-on learning activities and unit-planning sessions are the cornerstone of the experience. The educators receive three graduate-level... Continue Reading >>