House To Home Moving Blog

Before you move, check your cell signal

Most people don’t have land lines these days. If you’re relying on cell service to connect to people, places and emergency services. It’s important to see what your signal strength is if any.

Check your bars
Start with the obvious: your first indication of a strong or weak signal is checking to see how many bars/waveforms your phone has.  Not the best way to measure cell phone signal strength.

Think of it like cooking without using measuring cups and spoons. Sure you can eyeball everything and get a decent meal, but when you want to produce the same reliable results, you need to get accurate.

Check for cell towers in the area
To find out how many cell towers are near you and if there are any plans for future development, enter your street address on the Antenna Search website. You can compare your signal strength to other areas of the city, state, or even nation.

Check your phone’s decibel unit of measure (dBm)
Go to settings: Settings – About phone – Status – Signal strength. Typically, decibels are shown as a negative number. The closer the dBm is to zero, the stronger the signal in the area. A measure of -55 is one of the strongest (and rarest) signals you might see, while a rating of -100 dBm is considered a weak signal.

  • -50 to -40 means an excellent signal (your phone is close to the base station).
  • -60 to -50 indicates very good signal.
  • -70 to -60 shows good signal.
  • -80 to -70 means less weak signal.
  • -90 to -80 shows weak signal.

How to Find an Accurate dB Reading on your iPhone:
Starting with iOS 11 and 12, Apple has hidden dBm readings in iPhone field test mode. However, depending on your iPhone chipset (Intel or Qualcomm) and your carrier (Verizon, AT&T, T-Mobile, or Sprint), there’s a slim chance to find your dBm readings through this workaround.

AT&T or T-Mobile iPhone with Intel chipset (iOS 11 & 12)

Dial *3001#12345#*
Tap LTE.
Tap Serving Cell Meas.
Your dBm is read as rsrp0.
Verizon or Sprint iPhone with Qualcomm chipset (iOS 11 & 12)

Dial *3001#12345#*
Tap 1xEV-DO.
Your dBm is read as RX AGC0.
For any iPhone pre-iOS 11

Dial *3001#12345#*
Swipe down notifications bar.
Your dBm is in the upper left-hand corner of the screen.

Try downloading an app
Network Cell Info Lite is a favorite of installers, and it’s more or less interchangeable with LTE Discovery. These two are the best options. The Network Cell Info Lite doesn’t mess with bars, but it shows neighboring towers, and is extremely user-friendly.

Gas saving tips

The price of gas this summer is skyrocketing. We all drive, here’s some great tips from AAA to implement while drive to save gas.

  1. Slow down and drive the speed limit. On the highway, aerodynamic drag causes fuel economy to drop off significantly as speeds increase above 50 mph.
  2. Avoid “jackrabbit” starts and hard acceleration. These actions greatly increase fuel consumption.
  3. To idle or not to idle.
    -Avoid extended idling to warm up the engine, even in winter. It’s unnecessary and wastes fuel.
    -Avoid prolonged idling in general. If your car will be stopped for more than 60 seconds, shut off the engine to save fuel. Many newer cars have automatic engine stop-start systems that do this.
  4. When driving in town, adjust your speed to “time” the traffic lights. This reduces repeated braking and acceleration that consume additional fuel.
  5. When approaching a red light or stop sign, take your foot off the gas early and allow your car to coast down to a slower speed until it is time to brake.
  6. Accelerate smoothly with light to moderate throttle. This allows the automatic transmission to upshift into higher gears sooner, reducing engine rpm and saving fuel.
  7. Use cruise control to help maintain a constant speed and save fuel. However, never use cruise control on slippery roads because a loss of vehicle control could result.
  8. If your car has a manual transmission, upshift as soon as you can without “lugging” the engine. When practical, you can also save fuel by skip-shifting – for example, going directly from first gear to third.

5 ways to deal with the heat this summer

Here are a few tips to beat the heat this season.

1. Take breaks under shade to cool off

Even if you have to spend most of the day outside, make time to get away from the sun every now and then. Don’t hesitate to walk into a public library or shopping mall and take a while to cool off when temperatures are high.

“To stay indoors or in shade even just an hour or two out of the heat can really help the body repair,” said Elizabeth Merson, San Luis Obispo County Public Health Emergency Preparedness Program Manager.

2. Wear loose, light-colored clothing

Stay away from the tight-fitting, synthetic or dark-colored pieces of your wardrobe as they can absorb heat and restrict air flow. Cotton is considered the most suitable material for this kind of weather as it can absorb moisture (sweat) easily.

Of course, accessories like hats and sunglasses are also recommended to protect your eyes and skin against permanent damage caused by sun exposure.

3. Head down to lower floors of buildings

Since hot air rises, the upper floors of a building tend to be warmer compared to the lower ones. If possible, consider sleeping on the ground floor or even the basement for a naturally cool environment. Covering windows with drapes, shades, awnings, or louvers can reduce the levels of indoor heat by up to 80 percent.

4. Limit your intake of soda and alcohol

You may want to reconsider reaching for soda cans or wine glasses during the hotter days of the year, as tempting as they may be. While soda may seem extremely refreshing, research has shown it can actually have a dehydrating effect.

Alcohol, on the other hand, should be consumed with caution as it can lead to increased urine output. Alternating with sips of water between drinks can help reduce the risk of dehydration.

5. Avoid using handheld electric fans

The Federal Emergency Management Agency advised people to not use the devices, even though they are marketed to provide relief on hot, summer days.

They have a drying effect on our skin which can prevent natural evaporation from taking place. If the outdoor temperature is 95 degrees or more, using the fans could potentially increase the risk of heat-related illness.

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