Dear Heloise: Our under-the-counter microwave just blew up as my husband was changing one of the light bulbs. The entire circuit board fried, and the unit is beyond repair.
I contacted the manufacturer. A representative told me that this is a common occurrence and said that we should have disconnected the appliance prior to changing the bulb, adding that this information was in the manual.
I realize that it is our fault that the microwave has been destroyed, but I think the manufacturer should have a big CAUTION label on the microwave itself, not buried in the manual. I wrote to the manufacturer and recommended this.
Please advise your readers to disconnect their microwaves prior to changing the bulbs. -- Jeanne Martin, Via E-mail
Wow! Thank heavens your husband is all right! Here's the lesson: Before doing any maintenance on an appliance, always unplug it first! Not all microwaves are the same, and some have bulbs that cannot be changed at home. This surely shows how important it is to read the owner's manual and safety precautions before operating any appliance. -- Heloise
THE SHAPE OF
THINGS TO COME
Dear Heloise: My friend is so clever! She just moved into a new house and wanted a large deck built at the back and side.
Nancy let the grass grow for two weeks, then mowed only where she wanted the deck to be. Her contractor was able to see the size and shape of the deck and take the necessary measurements. Afterward, she "allowed" her teen-age son to finish mowing! -- Judy Moon, Peoria, Ill.
Dear Heloise: About losing things down the drain: I discovered a wonderful tool if the lost object is metal.
It is a telescoping gadget the size of a pen with a magnet in the end, and it stretches to be just more than 25 inches long. I just gave one to a friend when she said she had lost one of her little gold earrings down the drain.
Well, she didn't find her earring, but she found her mother's favorite ring that had been lost. The gadget costs a few dollars, and you might be able to find one at your local hardware store. I have bought several for presents! -- Muriel Jones, Scott Ark.
Dear Heloise: To make a hotel/motel room smell a little more like home, I purchased a plug-in room deodorizer in a gentle vanilla scent.
When I go into the room, I plug in the deodorizer in the bathroom area, and very soon a soothing, familiar smell is filling the room. -- Judi Hardin, King George, Va.
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