How to change a Samsung fridge freezer 40W light bulb

Samsung fridge interior lampWith every previous fridge we owned, replacing the light bulb was as simple as removing the cover and inserting a new 15W SES appliance bulb.  When the bulb blew in our Samsung fridge freezer (model RL38SCTB), it was a rather surprising challenge to replace.

The cover is tricky to remove and the lamp holder base is recessed.  Its 40-watt bulb is smaller than a typical GLS size.  Even with a bulb that screws in, it may not even light!  The instruction manual was anything but helpful, advising to get a service engineer to replace the interior bulb. Continue reading How to change a Samsung fridge freezer 40W light bulb

Philips Senseo HD7829 review – Coffee at 1/3 cost of capsules

Philips SenseoUp until the end of 2016, we used a filter coffee maker to make a pot of coffee each day.  The first cup in the morning was fine and the next cup near midday was so-so.   By the afternoon, it was barely drinkable.

I researched various single-serving machines such as Nespresso, Tassimo and Dolce Gusto, but they have ridiculously expensive running costs.  A bean to cup machine sounded like the answer, but it had a high upfront cost.  Then someone from Germany mentioned about the Philips Senseo. Continue reading Philips Senseo HD7829 review – Coffee at 1/3 cost of capsules

Servers that respond to ping requests around the world

Pingable IP addresses by country and city exampleOokla’s Speedtest measures the ping time to each server it operates around the world.  What it lacks is the ability to run extended ping tests that the command prompt offers.  With each test, it also runs a full speed test.  This is incredibly bandwidth intensive if all the user wants to check is the response times to various countries or cities.

One workaround is to ping from the command line.  Before we start, we first need the host name or IP address to ping.  Continue reading Servers that respond to ping requests around the world

Improve coverage, data bundles, etc. with a dual SIM phone

Dual SIM iconsDual SIM phones traditionally provide two lines with a single phone such as for personal and work numbers.  They are also brilliant for prepay users to combine the benefits of two mobile operators or even with two SIM plans on the same operator.

Depending on the combination, this can either reduce data or call costs or improve network coverage compared to what’s possible with just one prepay SIM.  It can also replace a MiFi (mobile router) by using the second SIM slot for data-only SIMs. Continue reading Improve coverage, data bundles, etc. with a dual SIM phone

Troubleshooting 3G/4G mobile broadband and antennas

LTE panel antennaLike mobile phones, most mobile broadband routers are considered plug and play where you just insert your SIM card and it’s ready to use.  However, in some instances routers and modems will need some further tweaking to improve the connection stability or to even get online. Continue reading Troubleshooting 3G/4G mobile broadband and antennas

Irish mobile broadband SIM card APN settings

Huawei B593s-22 disconnectedIf the device / modem shows a signal, but will not connect, it is very likely that the APN setting is incorrect, particularly if trying to use a phone SIM in a modem/router.  Most routers automatically configure the APN from the SIM or have preconfigured APNs per the SIM type, so it’s likely it is either trying to configure an obsolete APN or picking up an incorrect APN from the SIM. Continue reading Irish mobile broadband SIM card APN settings

How effective is a desiccant dehumidifier for room heating?

Thermometer with humidity readingElectric oil filled radiators, fan heaters, halogen heaters, bar heaters, convertor, panel heaters and so on are all 100% efficient at converting electric power into heat.  However, as for how efficient they are at heating the room varies from one type to another.

Another form of electric heating involves a heat pump, where heat is taken from the outdoor environment and pumped into the house like a refrigerator operating in reverse.  Air to air heat pumps do this by extracting heat from the outdoor air and humidity and releasing it indoors.  Technically, a dehumidifier releases heat from indoor humidity as it condenses it to a liquid, so just how effective is one at warming a room? Continue reading How effective is a desiccant dehumidifier for room heating?

How to configure an unused Eir F2000 router as a Wi-Fi access point

Eir F2000The Irish ISP Eir (formerly Eircom) supplies the F2000 modem router with its fibre broadband package, which provides 802.11ac Wi-Fi on the 5GHz band in addition to the 802.11n Wi-Fi commonly available on other Wi-Fi access points.  While this may seem great, what if you are using another router in place of the F2000?

In this article, I show how to set up the Eir F2000 as a Wi-Fi access point where another router is used for Internet access and how to configure the Eir F2000 to extend the existing Wi-Fi network where the uplink is carried over a network cable to the main router. Continue reading How to configure an unused Eir F2000 router as a Wi-Fi access point

Electric dehumidifier running costs vs moisture absorber and silica gel

Dehumidifier runningUp until recently, single use moisture absorbers were mainly marketed at keeping small spaces such as wardrobes dry.  This makes sense given that most wardrobes don’t have a power socket.  Now there are many larger moisture absorbers such as the UniBond Aero 360 marketed at keeping rooms or even the whole home dry.

In this article, I roughly calculate the running costs of various types of dehumidifiers and suggest when to use an electric dehumidifier, moisture absorber or silica gel. Continue reading Electric dehumidifier running costs vs moisture absorber and silica gel