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How so?



I live in Chicago.

...Which should be enough of an answer if you have ever lived in Chicago, but suffice to say, temperature here ranges between -10 and 110, and has the incredible ability to swing 50 or 60 degrees in one day. And my favorite situation can happen where my house is too warm but it's too cold outside to safely operate the air conditioner...

Anyways, fire and forget doesn't really work for my thermostat, I need one I can monitor and control, especially if the weather changes unpredictably here. One of my pets in particular is extremely sensitive to temperature, and I actually have a secondary thermostat monitoring the temperature by my pets, which can swing a good 6-8 degrees from the temperature at my master control.

Today I had a power outage at home. I got notifications, the computer controlling my home (and my router and modem) are on UPS, and remained online. I was able to remote in and verify that after the outage my thermostat was where it was supposed to be and doing what it was supposed to.

I also have had a computer light on fire before, so I'm pretty wary of fire concerns. My computer monitors my home's smoke and carbon monoxide alarms and notifies me as well. While there's no chance my pets might still be alive by the time an outside party notices something wrong in my home, there's a reasonable chance I could call the fire department and they could intervene before all of my pets perished.


Thank you for the explanation.

A close relation is a firefighter, the one thing that sets him apart from everybody else that I know is that he religiously powers down (as in: unplugged) all consumer electronics before leaving the house. Now, obviously, that is a job related thing, he's seen more than anybody else that isn't in the firefighting business what causes home fires. But if I had had a computer light on fire in my house I probably would switch it off when I'm leaving, and you are making me wonder if that wouldn't be worth it for my home system (which is normally on for years on end).

I do spend a lot of time keeping the power supply and the airways dust free, that's one reason computers overheat.


Keeping your PC dust-free, and your surge protectors and electrical wiring well-organized is a must. I personally prefer surge protectors with outlet covers to ensure nothing gets in them. I have additional removable dust filters on my computers' fan intakes that can easily be removed and cleaned.

My PC fire specifically happened due to a melting Molex to SATA adapter, I learned the "Molex to SATA, lose your data" adage after this incident, and I've actually purged any such adapters from any of my builds. (They're cheaply made, as the case is.)

I was super lucky, it happened while I was nearby, and I was able to shut off the PC before it became more than a purely electrical fire. (And the computer it happened in still works!)

You can see the damage here: https://twitter.com/ocdtrekkie/status/684565735197163520


Sometimes electronics can be surprisingly sturdy. The only case when I've had my computer emit the magic blue smoke was when I first connected my homemade fan rpm regulator. After I replaced one of the wires where the shielding had partially melted away, and fixed my circuit, everything worked as if nothing had happened.


Ouch. You should consider yourself very lucky that that is how it ended. That looks like you were at best seconds away from something a lot more exciting.


Yep! Though I did have a fire extinguisher handy as well. Afterwards I bought a second one, and an additional smoke/CO detector.

It was super lucky: I had already gone to bed, but got up again for just a minute when I discovered the fire. Counted my blessings that day for sure.




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