Tuesday, February 1, 2011

New car, part 1

As I said in my previous post, a lot of things were taking up my time last fall.  I'd like to relate three of them right now.  Bear with me - there is a test-related payoff.

I bought a new car in October.  After a lot of thought and research, I decided on an Escape Hybrid.  I've written before about my Prius, it has never given me trouble, so I decided to try the SUV version of a hybrid from Ford.  I did a lot of research before I committed to buying it, and so far - four months and 7000 miles later - I'm happy with the results.

My water heater sprung a leak last fall, and I finally bought a new one in November.  Again, I did a lot of reading up on water heaters, and for better or worse I know more about them than I ever thought I would.

In October my washing machine went kaput.  It just stopped working.  I debated the merits of a) paying someone several hundred to fix it or b) spending days of my time fixing it myself.  It was more cost-effective to buy a new one.  For a third time, I did a lot of reading up on the subject and decided on getting a front loader.  It saves water, it saves electricity, and it's a nifty piece of engineering.

I love Consumer Reports.  For a small yearly fee I can read articles, view customer ratings, and test reports.  The test reports are detailed, comprehensive, and informative.  I've had a subscription to their magazine, and then the website, for a decade.  Needless to say, I gave their test database a workout last fall on the three items listed above.  It truly helped out.  I tip my test engineer hat to them.

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