Originally created 04/16/04

News you can use



BACK IN TIME

APRIL 16, 1976

Six people were injured and 2,000 gallons of raw gasoline was spilled Thursday night when a large tanker truck collided with an automobile on U.S. 25 near Interstate 20.

The auto was traveling north on U.S. 25, headed toward I-20 west, when it pulled into the path of the tanker, authorities said. About 50 fire and rescue vehicles and 150 men from Aiken County and Augusta answered the call.

WINDOW WASHING

Avoid streaks when washing windows. Don't use cleaners with vinegar and ammonia. Use cheap paper towels that don't contain additives, and when they are saturated and dirty, pitch them and start again.

AIR CONDITIONING QUESTIONS

As outdoor temperatures rise, so do the demands placed on your home's central air-conditioning system. To ensure that you stay cool through the summer, now is the time to check how well your unit is running. Here are answers to common questions about caring for air-conditioners.

Q: How often should I replace the unit's air filter?

A: Replace a conventional fiberglass air filter at least twice a year - spring and fall. For newer filters, follow manufacturer's instructions. A dirty air filter can decrease working capacity by 25 percent; one completely clogged with dust might cause the unit to shut down entirely.

Q: Why does the thermostat's temperature setting sometimes not reflect the actual temperature inside my house?

A: Drafts, vibrations or the thermostat's placement in direct sunlight can cause discrepancies. Contact a certified technician to check it and, if necessary, move and rewire it.

Q: Can I damage my air-conditioner when I turn it off and on?

A: Yes - especially if you turn it off and immediately turn it back on. The quick action hurts the compressor, except in air conditioners with a built-in, timed off-cycle. This type of unit gives the system time to equalize before it's turned on again.

Q: How can I help my air conditioner work more efficiently?

A: Keep doors and windows tightly closed to prevent air leakage, and pull shades or close blinds on windows facing the direct sun during daylight hours.

Q: How many years should I expect my air conditioner to last?

A: It depends on what type of unit you have and how often you use it. If it's more than 10 years old, however, take a close look at its efficiency. A new unit might cost you less to run.

WATCH THAT CHOLESTEROL

You don't have to stop eating eggs. But here's a tip: Use three egg whites and one yolk instead of two whole eggs, or use two egg whites instead of one egg.