I Have A Question - Volume 279 [Read only] - Pugugly

***** This thread is now closed, please CLICK HERE to go to Volume 280 *****

In this thread you may ask any question for which you need help, advice, suggestions or whatever.

It does not need to be motoring related. In fact, in this thread it should not be.

No Questions About PCs. Please use the current "computer Related Questions" thread instead.
No politics
No Speeding, speed cameras, traffic calming
No arguments or slanging matches
Nothing which we think is not following the spirit of the thread
Nothing that risks the future of this site (please see the small print for details -
www.honestjohn.co.uk/credits/index.htm )

Any of the above will be deleted. If the thread becomes difficult to maintain it will simply be removed.

However, as has been said a couple of times, there is a wealth of knowledge in here, much of which is not motoring related, but most of which is useful.

This is Volume 279. Previous Volumes will not be deleted,

A list of previous volumes can be found:- HERE


When posting a NEW question, please "Reply to" the first message in this thread, i.e. this one. This keeps each question in it's own separate segment and stops each new question from getting mixed up in amongst existing questions. Also please remember to change the subject header.

Edited by Dynamic Dave on 07/03/2009 at 03:06

My son wants to buy shares - Rudedog
Out of the blue my 13 year old son as asked me that he would like to buy some shares!

He knows what companies he wants to invest in and we are only talking about small amounts that he has saved up.

So my questions would be...

Is it possible for a 13 year old to buy shares? and if so how would he go about it?

Obviously I would keep a close eye on what he was doing but I don't what to squash a potential millionaire ;-)
My son wants to buy shares - madux
I would relieve him of all of his pocket money, tell him repeatedly that his investments are doing well, then in a year or two mutter something about some guy in a string vest in Alabama defaulting on his mortgage and I hope this will be a lesson for you etc etc.
My son wants to buy shares - Mapmaker
Children under 18 cannot hold shares in their own name. However, under such circumstances it is perfectly possible for you to hold them in your name as a "bare trust" for the child - i.e. the child is absolutely and entirely entitled to them.

Beware, just as with bank accounts, the income is NOT tax free for children if the original cash has come from parents. Under such circumstances any income is taxable on the parents.

Remember that dealing costs are a flat rate - typically 1% with a minimum £15 charge through a low-cost dealing system; this makes dealing in small quantities horribly expensive.

Equally, setting up a "proper" bare trust will prove expensive. tinyurl.com/b3atol On the grounds that the sums are (presumably) small, I suggest not bothering, and writing a two line trust agreement...

There are plenty of online mock share portfolio trading games. Might be a better solution for you...
My son wants to buy shares - jbif
Is it possible for a 13 year old to buy shares?

Simple answer is "No". You have to be over 18 [iirc] to own "stuff" in your own right. For under 18s, parents or grandparents can hold shares for children in trust by registering them in "own name" plus "a/c child's name".
we are only talking about small amounts

For small amounts, best bet IMO is something like
and if so how would he go about it?

If above method is unsuitable for whatever reason, then consider my reply here re. investing for children:

Edited by jbif on 03/03/2009 at 16:35

My son wants to buy shares - Rudedog
Thanks for the replies, looks like I'll have to do a bit of reading up on this because it doesn't seem as straight forward as he thought it would be, which is a shame as he is really enthusiastic about it.
My son wants to buy shares - Lud
Sounds an enterprising nipper Rudedog. Obviously you or another trusted adult could buy them and hold them for him. If I were you I would be strongly tempted to do this.
My son wants to buy shares - Altea Ego
How much and how long does he want to invest?

You could run a dummy portfolio, let him "buy" the shares and put the money in a savings acount. track the share value and pay him out or not as the case may be when he cashes in shares.
My son wants to buy shares - Nsar
They say a child with a pin can do a better job of picking stocks so I'd buy them for real. More exciting for both of you when some green is at risk
My son wants to buy shares - nick
You can get execution-only online dealing services for around £10 a deal plus 0.5% stamp duty. If you deal a lot, that can drop to around £7.50.
A good time to buy certain shares IMHO. In every crash/depression/recession including the Wall St Crash, shares regained 80% of their pre-crash value within two years.
My son wants to buy shares - legacylad
As nick says, there are some very reasonable online share dealing services around.
If you go ahead, the MOST important thing is to set up a stop loss system, move it up accordingly (hopefully) and USE it when the occasion demands!
Good luck..
My son wants to buy shares - crunch_time
Depending on which bank you have your current a/c with, they may well offer the most convenient route.

My son wants to buy shares - nick
Yes, I use my bank, First Direct. It saved all the hassle of proving identity etc. that you get when setting up with a third party.
My son wants to buy shares - David Horn
What about one of those virtual stock exchange things which are knocking around on t'internet?
My son wants to buy shares - spikeyhead {p}
Set up a Bullbarings (I think) account to play at it.
My son wants to buy shares - Mapmaker
From elsewhere on the internet, haven't checked to see if it's true or not. NB no ISA for the under 18s (cash ISA when you reach 16).

The share centre, online account www.share.com , based in aylesbury where i live. Well known and good value for money. Brilliant online dealing website, very few calls to make, can run 100% over the web once set up, and you can deal the shares in your yearly ISA allowance tax free.

Dealing fees are 1% buy / sell min £7.50 per trade for instant trades, batch buys are cheaper @ £2 per buy trade at three set times a day (9am , 1pm and 4pm).

Dress etiquette at a formal funeral - L'escargot
I'm going to buy a black 3/4 length overcoat or mac for use over a black suit at a formal funeral. If the weather wasn't particularly cold would it be acceptable to dispense with the jacket of the suit? Also, is a white shirt de rigeur?
Dress etiquette at a formal funeral - deepwith
A white shirt is formal, and would have been expected by my parents (born in the '20's), but I am not sure people stick rigorously to this now. White does look good with the black suit and tie!
The problem with discarding your jacket would be if you were invited on afterwards, which invitation is often given out at the funeral. If you cannot find a black overcoat you like, then a dark navy or grey would be okay .
Dress etiquette at a formal funeral - pmh2
If it was my funeral you could wear anything! But I would be VERY upset if you were spending good money on a one time wear item. Donate the money you would have spent to a charity - and stand there in the cold! It does not matter what other people think, - the same goes for for flowers and other examples of 'wasted' money on transient items.


Edited by pmh2 on 04/03/2009 at 08:38

Dress etiquette at a formal funeral - Stuartli
I'm at an age where you tend to go to far more funerals than you would like - in general the trend is for less formal, but still darkish clothing with, of course, a black tie.

There has also been a noticeable swing in recent years towards celebrating a person's life in a more upbeat and joyous mode, rather than the sombre ceremonies of the past.

Dress etiquette at a formal funeral - Nsar
It's a funeral. Wear a jacket and tie. Black or very dark grey suit, black tie white shirt.
Shine your shoes.
Dress etiquette at a formal funeral - Mapmaker
Why would you want to wear an overcoat but take off your jacket?

BTW snails never take their jackets off.

Dress etiquette at a formal funeral - Pugugly
Unless you're immediate family black tie is considered a bit "not right" these days.
Dress etiquette at a formal funeral - 1400ted
Wear what you want and feel comfortable in. I, too , am an age where funerals are becoming frequent. I wore a red tie to my mother's and my late step-fathers EEPTU badge to reflect her previous status as a shop steward. A black roll neck jumper under a sports jacket seems popular in our family. I havn't worn a tie since. 14 yrs.
Dress etiquette at a formal funeral - Rattle
I'm youngish still and sadly funerals are becoming more frequent than weddings and christianings but that is because my generation seem to hold of getting married till at least 35 and I have a couple of grand parents approaching 90 so funerals will just get more and more common. I have a black suite I use my funerals still seemed to be forced by the elders to wear a tie though.

I also find funerals always seem to be next to each other, I don't want to sound depressing but if you have to go one, make sure you keep that funeral outfit near by. I found that when my grandad died I was just starting to get over it, then my uncle died (grandads oldest son) just three months later (we think the stress of my grandad passing away contributed to my uncles death).

Just wear what you want but be respectful I know from personal experience people can be very upset, something really upset me about my grandads funeral (behaviour of a distant relatie) and to this day I will not speak about him or have his name mentioned). It was not dress related I might add

So before thinking you're cool going in a pink tie just think how the deased closest relatives may think.

I think that was probably the most depressing post I have ever made on a forum.
Dress etiquette at a formal funeral - L'escargot
But I would be VERY upset
if you were spending good money on a one time wear item.

Take a chill pill, pmh2. Getting upset at something so trivial done by someone you don't even know is a sure way to hasten the arrival of your own funeral!

In any case, it's unlikely to be a "one time wear" because when you get to my age funeral invitations become increasingly frequent.
Dress etiquette at a formal funeral - pmh2
M. le Snail,

No need to chill - you should quote me in full, not selectively.

>>If it was my funeral you could wear anything! But I would be VERY upset if you were spending good money on a one time wear item. <<

The important elements are 'my funeral' and 'would' ....... no room for a misunderstanding?

Dress etiquette at a formal funeral - Rattle
My parents (born in the 50's) insist I wear a tie for funerals.
Bank treating me like a crinimal - Rattle
Has anybody else had this sort of experience? I won't name bank but they are owned by a very large Southern European bank which narrows it down a bit.

I am in credit with my bank by about £400 atm but now my bank have suddenly withdrawn my overdraft without any written communication. This sort of thing has been going on for months now, I keep writing to them and they just ignore all my letters. My statements don't show the overdraft so when I did go into a few months back it looks like it unauthorised and its not. I keep writing to bank to get them to rectifiy it.

Now most months I usualy pay in between £700 and £1000 depending on how much money I earn and have been in credit since at November (I did once owe £1500 but I have been paying quickly) and I never once had a problem with the bank when I was overdrawn.

Now I owe them nothing they are taking my overdraft facilities of me, I know legally can do this but I am disgusted at the way they are treating me, they have offered me no explanation at all other than my account does not have an overdraft facility.

When I called the bank before they put me through to debt management it is very patronising when I owe them nothing. I have a meeting with a customer service jobsworth tomorrow and I intend to close my account down after 22 years of banking with them.

Why is this country going so backward when it comes to customer service?
Bank treating me like a crinimal - daveyjp
It may be something simple that the account you have isn't the correct one for the variable desposits. For example you may be on a £1,000+ a month minimum deposit account - if you fail to deposit this you will get a lower rating and may be unable to have an overdraft.

I am also with said bank and have had a problem with fraudulent transactions. I have found the best way of sorting anything out is to go to my local small branch and see someone there.

It's very difficult for a member of staff to fob you off when you are sat in front of them.

I'd also recommend their on line banking service so you can keep track of the overdraft situation as the balance on this does show the overdraft.
Bank treating me like a crinimal - L'escargot
I have a meeting with a customer service
jobsworth tomorrow and I intend to close my account down after 22 years of banking
with them.

22 years or 2 years? Perhaps you're not as young as you'd like us to believe!
Bank treating me like a crinimal - jbif
... I have a meeting with a customer service jobsworth tomorrow and I intend to close my account down after 22 years of banking with them. ... >>

That may suit them down to the ground, because it is probably what they are trying to achieve.
This sort of thing usually happens when Banks find that someone is using a Personal account for Business banking, although obviously you are not doing it - obvious as the subject heading of your post makes it clear that you are honest.

Bank treating me like a crinimal - Rattle
I have a seperate business account for business transactions but I do pay lot of cash into my current account, as soon as the cheques clear I tend to pay the cash into my current account but only in the same way somebody might have paid in their weekly wages 20 years ago.

And yes I did mean 22 years, I opened the account in 1987 well my dad did, it was one of them savings accounts for kids.

I have realised this morning thinking about it that their debt management call centre has just told me a pack of lies everytime I have spoken to them. I will try not to looser my temper this afternoon but my branch know I am very annoyed with head office for not responding to any of my letters or complaints.

Once I get them to sort out the paper work to show that I had an overdraft I will simply switch banks. I have my business account with them too so I shall be moving that as well.
Bank treating me like a crinimal - 1400ted
Has anybody else had this sort of experience? I won't name bank but they are
owned by a very large Southern European bank which narrows it down a bit.

I have a current account with the Halifax. I have an overdraft limit of £500. I have never had an overdraft in 20 yrs with them and they have never varied the amount I could use.
I have a few savings accounts with the same branch of the Abbey as Rattle. My only gripe with them was two lads they employed behind the counter who greeted me with 'You all right there, mate ?'...the manager heard one day. Next trip I was greeted..'Can I help you, sir ?' much better.
Bank treating me like a crinimal - Altea Ego
My only gripe with them was two lads they employed behind the counter who greeted me with 'You all right there, mate ?'...the manager heard one day. Next trip I was greeted..'Can I help you, sir ?' much better.

so before you got a genuine question, interest and an offer of assistance, and now you get trotted at you parrot fashion the banks standard greeting or they get a threat of discipline.

I haven't been knighted so I dont need the "sir" - a genuine "mate" is ok by me.
Bank treating me like a criminal (Sorry) - madux
I agree with Ted. A 19ish-year-old in the local shop used to greet me with "Yes, mate?"
He is no longer there.
I have to say though that some of the customers are just as bad, as in (Without a hello or a good morning, or a please) "Can I get 20 Rothmans." Note the lack of question mark.
If I were serving I might have replied "Well, yes you could, if you were to ask for them."
Bank treating me like a criminal (Sorry) - Rattle
I was in the bank for an hour as they were 20 minutes late seeing me. I have to do now put in an official complaint in order to get them to fix the paper work. It is all do with the fact my overdraft is tempory but nobody ever once told me this, as far as I was concerned I had a £500 overdraft.

One my neighbours also came in she was telling me that £500 of her money has gone missing during a transfer she has written and phoned them up, everything has been ignored so it seems to be a common theme.

The company has also bought out another British bank so soon all our banks will either be owned by the Spannish or the British government.
Bank treating me like a criminal (Sorry) - rtj70
Please do not discuss bank ownership and credit crunch or similar here if anyone was thinking of replying to Rattle.

So Rattle is sounds like this may be easily fixed. For all the hassle it might be easier staying with them. Why they could not have told you this over the phone though....

I rarely deal with banks in person. I used telephone banking from graduating and as soon as my bank (not owned by the Spanish or British apart from shares of individuals) offered Internet banking over 10 years ago I started using it. Brilliant it is to do this sort of stuff online 24/7. Bills, direct debits, standing orders, etc. But it must put people in branches out of work :-(

Edited by rtj70 on 05/03/2009 at 20:35

Bank treating me like a criminal (Sorry) - Rattle
I was told I should have a fixed overdraft of £500 but the software declined it but I was told that was common (I am not bothered about that anyway), RBS said I could have a £750 limit but I only need a £250 one. I am not annoyed about the overdraft it is the lies from debt management and the lack of communication I am annoyed about.

The only reason I visit branches now is to pay cash in from when my business cheques clear or even just cash. I told the person today that I know I do use this account for business in the sense that cash I get from jobs goes straight into my personal account but I explained it would be pointless putting into my business account only to then transfer it into my personal account and he agreed. He said once a week is no problem at all they are only bothered about it if somebody was paying money into the accoutn three or four times a day.

I've used online banking since 2001 and do most stuff on it. A lot of older people won't touch it though even though its much more secure than telephone banking.
Bank treating me like a crinimal - Stuartli
>>'Can I help you, sir ?' much better.>>

My late mother always used to say: "You can if you may."

In other words, "May I help you, sir?"

I would also suggest that you should have stated: "with them were two lads they employed..." - was is singular...:-)
Bank treating me like a crinimal - Mapmaker
I would also suggest that you should have stated: "with them were two lads they
employed..." - was is singular...:-)

If you're going to correct other posters' English in quite so patronising a fashion, may I suggest you take more care with your own English.

1. The first person singular of the verb expressing condition is "I should", the equivalent second or third person is "you/he would".

2. Was is indeed singular. This is because our poster had only the one gripe, which is the subject of the sentence.
Bank treating me like a crinimal - L'escargot
Why is this country going so backward when it comes to customer service?

Is your own customer service completely in order? Your bank is staffed by fallible human beings just like any other business. Just calmly and rationally sort the problem out with them and stop moaning.

Edited by L'escargot on 06/03/2009 at 06:53

Pedant alert - Mapmaker
I have just been rung by the Telegraph to ask me to come to do some market research for them. As a part of the screening process to ascertain whether I was suitable material, they asked me for the meaning of some words. inter alia

Pedant. But the interviewer amusingly pronounced it with the stress on the second syllable.

Decimate. Did this mean (1) to destroy one in ten, or (2) to destroy the greater part.

Aha, said I, this is a much mis-used word, but strictly meaning (1) applies, although it is oft mis-used as meaning (2). Researcher said "not really" and I proceeded to explain what it really means. Poor chap had had previous people giving him exactly the same spiel.

I wonder what muppet came up with the question...
Pedant alert - madux
But did he agree with you in the end?
Pedant alert - Number_Cruncher
I suspect Mapmakers factually correct answers meant that he wasn't in the paper's target audience.
Pedant alert - ifithelps
It's a living language and the meaning of words evolves.

I would say the majority of people who use 'decimate' mean 'destroy a greater part', so that is what the word will come to mean, if it doesn't already.

Anyone who disagrees might like to define the word 'gay' for me.
Pedant alert - Lud
define the word 'gay' for me.

In the slang sense or senses? Gay meaning homosexual is quite recent. Used to be applied to prostitutes and other members of the demi-monde perhaps including homosexual individuals but not restricted to them. I don't know without looking it up but wouldn't be surprised it this meaning went back to the 17th century or even earlier.
Pedant alert - Stuartli
When I was a young lad in the late 1950s/early 1960s, the word gay had an entirely different meaning.

It was very common for us to say to our parents, for instance, that we had had a gay night out, but merely in the sense that we had had a fun time.
Pedant alert - SpamCan61 {P}
Whereas my teenaged daughters use 'gay' to mean naff.
Pedant alert - Armitage Shanks {p}
Can some other pedant tell me what "A big ask" is, please? The spelling of ask is correct BTW!
Pedant alert - bathtub tom
If it came from one of my kids (they're in their thirties) I'd presume it meant they wanted a favour - usually involving me opening my wallet!
Pedant alert - Alby Back
A big ask. Not a phrase which I favour but increasingly used.

My understanding is that it is used to describe a request or requirement which will inconvenience or cost the requestee more than might be seen as reasonable.

My wife describes my fondness for and frequency of eating cheese and raw onion sandwiches as a big ask.....

Pedant alert - jbif
.. what "A big ask" is, please? ... >>


Pedant alert - Hugh Watt
That's telling 'em, jbif! Terrific site, that lmgtfy, & one I shall make use of...
Pedant alert - jbif
That's telling 'em, jbif! Terrific site, that lmgtfy, & one I shall make use of... >>

I am using it as per the intention/ and in the spirit described here:
".... Instead of turning up a list of URLs you have to troll through for their answer, you are given a single URL to post in reply.
The result is a cheeky animation of you typing in the question ... "

Pedant alert - L'escargot
I used to be somewhat of a pedant until I watched a recent edition of Countdown in which it was explained that the meaning of words changes according to the whims and ignorances of the general public. Words which are misused eventually take on a new meaning. My favourite used to be "reiterate" which, according to my 1920s dictionary, means to repeat over and over again. In the 1920s, to repeat once was to "iterate". Nowadays everyone "reiterates", and I accept that.
Trespass question please - Petel
Have already done forum search.

Can anyone please advise the Act, its year and the wording to be used, when asking an unauthorized person to leave a property?

Have recently had a " problem family " moved into the local area by the district council, who are causing trouble by entering onto private property without permission. This includes that of elderly neighbours and my own.

A log is being kept of these incidents but would wish to be able to use the correct terminology when challenging these incursions.

Thank you.
Trespass question please - ifithelps

Keeping a log is the usual advice, but why do you need the 'correct terminology'?

Plain, simple, English is best.

Trying to sound like a lawyer when you are not one will just make you look like a pompous twit.
Trespass question please - adverse camber
You dont need specific words, tell them to leave and not return.

Call the police and report intruders - every time.
Cashing in an endowment fund - AshT
Quick question for the legal and financial brains on here.

I have an endowment, held jointly with my ex-partner, although all payments into the policy were made by me. After our separation she refused to make any contribution to payments, and not being in a position to make up the payments myself I informed her and the company holding the endowment that no further payments would be made to the policy.

I have tried twice since to persuade her that we should cash in the policy and split it equally between us, but have met with a flat (and abusive) refusal. I have had a valuation for the policy arrive today, and it is now losing value, although wahat's left over will pay for the new central heating system I need.

The question is simply therefore can I force her hand into cashing in the policy without resorting to a protracted and costly legal process - she refuses to work, now lives at her parents' house, and claims benefits, and is therefore entitled to full legal aid while I work full time, care for our children, and have had to pay all my legal expenses up to this point (apologies for the slight edge of bitterness there) - which means that most of the money from the policy will go straight to my solicitor.

I think I know the answer, but any advice will be gratefully received.
Cashing in an endowment fund - FotheringtonThomas
Partner, *that* meaningless word. What was your partner? Girlfriend or wife? That matters.

Also, a bit of advice may go along way - it might be worth lashing out for a 1/2 hr.

Lastly, it was said to be better under some circumstances to sell some sorts of policies - although I don't know what the state is now with the current situation.
Cashing in an endowment fund - jbif
I suspect that no legally qualified bod will give you "advice" on a forum such as this.
IMO, I think you have discovered one of the perils of joint ownership unless covered by a pre-agreement on what to do when one of the owners wishes to resign the partnership.
Your suspicion that it may be cheaper not to go the legal route may be wise. You could lose a lot more than you stand to gain.
How many years left to maturity?

Edited by jbif on 06/03/2009 at 17:56

Cashing in an endowment fund - AshT
Partner - girlfriend, not wife. If there's a next time some form of pre-nuptial agreement will be involved.

There is around 13 years left to run on the policy - current value is < £7000, and declining rapidly. We looked into selling some time back when we were told the policy would not meet expectation, but it is one of the "unsellable" types of endowment.

While my solicitor has been very good, straightforward, and quick to act, my ex's seems determined to delay and question every point possible. We separated nearly three years ago, and the legal machinations are still ongoing, hence my reluctance to add to my bill.

That said, I am still getting occasional letters and calls from debt collection agencies for my ex, who left some very sizeable debts behind when she left - she may have a concern that her half of the endowment payout will be taken by some of these companies. And yes, my address does appear to have been credit blacklisted.
How do you heat a floor (cheaply and easily)? - tyro
Odd question, I know, but bear with me.

1) I have noticed that often how warm one feels is not just a function of the air temperature in a room. e.g I generally feel warm in a room where the temperature is 20° in the summer, but if the same room is at 20° in the winter, I will feel chilly.

2) I suspect that this is partly because the floor temperature is lower in the winter, and how cold a person feels is closely related to the floor temperature.

3) I took measurements one cold day last month in a room in my house (which was built in the 19th century) and discovered, to my surprise, that the temperature on the floor was 8.5°, but was 19° on a shelf 5 feet off the ground.

How can I heat the floor? I know that one can install underfloor heating, or pull up the carpet and put down a couple of layers of good underlay underneath it, but I wondered if there was anything that I can do that is cheap and simple that would make a significant difference?

How do you heat a floor (cheaply and easily)? - Old Navy
I would think that you will need a heat source at floor level, as it will always be warmer the further you are above the floor. If you have high ceilings a ceiling fan would help push warm air down.
How do you heat a floor (cheaply and easily)? - Alby Back
My first property ( a flat ) had electric underfloor heating. Lovely underfoot on a cold morning but ruinously expensive even then. Fortunately for me the lady who lived above me had hers on all the time in winter so my ceiling was always warm ! Not enough stolen heat to completely warm my flat but enough to keep the chill off and allow me to just supplement it with a wee electric fire when required.


How do you heat a floor (cheaply and easily)? - jbif
... How can I heat the floor? .. >>

The cheapest solution is NOT to heat the floor, but divert heat from the ceiling level to the floor level. You do this with a very low speed low power fan.

How do you heat a floor (cheaply and easily)? - Lud
The underlay idea is also good. Anything that seals up gaps and cracks, and insulates in itself, is good. Even an overlaid parquet or other floor.
How do you heat a floor (cheaply and easily)? - adverse camber
Assuming a suspended wooden floor and y6ou want quick/cheap/effective.

staple a draught barrier to the undersides of the joists - something like the garden weed barrier - it should not be a vapour barrier like poly sheeting - just something that cuts down on the draught - if nothing suitable around then just use some sort of mesh netting.

Fill the space between the joists and above the garden fabric with rockwool type insulation.
Freezer - accidentally damaged the "element" - FocusDriver
This afternoon I lived up to my self-confessed idiocy and punctured the freezer element in my fridge/freezer with a sharp knife. All manuals tell you NOT to use a sharp knife. Gas escaping and compressor on constantly.

Quick internet search reveals that my f/f is a gonner.

Now switched off, food given away.

Has anyone else suffered the same? If so was a new f/f the solution?


subject line filled out - see my "I wish I hadn't done that" thread a few months ago !

Edited by Pugugly on 06/03/2009 at 19:45

Freezer - accidentally damaged the "element" - mjm
Focus driver fridge freezer**

It depends on how the f/f is made and what it is made of. If it is a roll bond (flat painted aluminium with refrigerant channels formed in it then you are on a loser unless the thing can be removed and replaced. If the evaporator is built in, (cold back wall) then it's also a write off. If it is a fin and tube or wire and tube and made of copper or stainless then it can be repared as long as it can be removed or silver soldered in place.

It doesn't look good, does it.

In case it is repairable I would advise turning it off and covering the hole. (Sellotape will do. This will help to keep water and other contaminants out of the system. Some moist air will already have been sucked in but damage limitation is the objective.
I have heard of a process of using an Araldite type filler specifically designed to fill and seal the system. I haven't tried one, though.

** Inserted to clarify answer to question asked, Subject header wrong.

Edited by Pugugly on 06/03/2009 at 19:46

Freezer - accidentally damaged the "element" - FocusDriver
Many thanks mjm - from what you say I think it's bye bye £700 (it's a cold wall). I'm more than a little deflated because I'm a modern day Dickensian pauper. My insurers were charming but useless as usual (not being covered for acts of intense stupidity).

I've just been looking on the web at fridge/freezers. So expensive and unutterably dull to boot. They all look the same except some are a slightly different shade of white. Yawn.

Thanks mjm, Humph Backbridge and SpamCan, you've assured me that I'm not chucking out a salvageable item.

This puts my new car back even further...

Edited by Pugugly on 06/03/2009 at 19:46

Freezer - accidentally damaged the "element" - Alby Back
'fraid it's not good FD. My brother in law did the same thing. New one unfortunately......

Old Confucion saying - " A wise man should not defrost a fridge with a sharp knife unless his credit remains uncrunched... "

Edited by Pugugly on 06/03/2009 at 19:47

Freezer - accidentally damaged the "element" - SpamCan61 {P}
Yes and yes.

Edited by Pugugly on 06/03/2009 at 19:47

Freezer - accidentally damaged the "element" - Old Navy
You said gas was escaping, if so replacement probably cheaper than repair. Unlike car aircon where you can replace components and recharge, the f/f is a one piece system.

Edited by Pugugly on 06/03/2009 at 19:48

Freezer - accidentally damaged the "element" - FocusDriver
Yep, looks that way ON! I'm so annoyed because I can't afford this. No-one to blame but myself though. I knew not to use a knife, but this time it was "just a quick scrape" because the freezer draw was catching on ice build-up and I was in the middle of cooking.

Still, looking on the bright side, it's 10 years old, and we're all still alive!


Edited by Pugugly on 06/03/2009 at 19:57

Freezer - accidentally damaged the "element" - Alby Back
On a serious note, as a temporary measure, take yourself down to the more basic part of your town/city. There will be shops selling second hand fridge freezers.

Edited by Pugugly on 06/03/2009 at 19:58

Freezer - accidentally damaged the "element" - FocusDriver
Oops, sorry Pug, thanks for your speedy modding! Those people that don't read the rules...ummm
Freezer - accidentally damaged the "element" - mfarrow
We had one go at uni after an end-of-term break - we think it was one of the halls' cleaners, and a pipe in the freezer section was split.

Again, unfortunately a new fridge/freezer was required.