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Cable Box Blewup, What would you do?

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  1. bedbugsbad

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    Posted 10 years ago
    Mon Feb 23 2009 19:31:37
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    All right so here's the issue. Saturday my cable box/DVR blew up. You know, the one that allows you to get all those cool HD channels on the big flat screen. No big deal right? Well not so fast. All I have to do is bring my my old box to the customer service center and they will give me a new one with a new remote. Only it won't be so new. When customers cancel cable or move they return their boxes to the cable company where they make sure they work and then send out the "used/been in other peoples houses" boxes to current or new customers. You rarely if ever get a new out of the box unit. To the average customer this would be no big deal, but I have been very diligent in not bringing other peoples stuff into my house. Anything either goes into the dryer or my Packtite first- better safe than sorry. What would you do?

    I know the odds are tiny that there would be a BB issue with a used cable box, but the PTSD/fear is very strong. And there is no option to buy new equipment, as it can't be done. I have the rabbit ears hooked up and I still can get HD on the 4 networks but needless to say I have lost over 150 channels. DirecTV is not an option either. Would you replace the box and take the risk? Would you just stop watching TV? Would you run the new cable box through a cycle in the Packtite? (DJames any input here would be appreciated.

  2. djames1921

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    Posted 10 years ago
    Mon Feb 23 2009 20:17:43
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    I will, of course, have to give the company response that electronics are not currently recommended for use in this device, you may find posts from others who have done so with no issues on this very site, but I can't give you the green light. I know that in a previous post Sean,aka thebedbugresource, used it in an office situation to treat some electronics, but once again, I'm instructed to tell you that we currently don't recommend it for electronics.....

  3. bitten123

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    Posted 10 years ago
    Mon Feb 23 2009 20:31:21
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    Could you put it in with Mothballs in a sealed bag for two or three weeks? I know that DDVP can possibly be corrosive to electronics, or I would suggest that. I do know how you feel, I needed a new box and when the cable guy showed up to install, I insisted it be new, and saw him actually open a brand new box. I so can relate to PTSD... I'm a bit jealous you have a packtite, it is on my list of wants...lol

  4. persona-non-bugga

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    Posted 10 years ago
    Mon Feb 23 2009 20:58:21
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    bedbugsbad,
    Thank you for being so conscientious. I love TV, and I'd miss it so much if I didn't have it.

    djames,
    can you elaborate on why electronics are not recommended for heating in the packtite? Is it solely because there's risk of damage to the electronics? Or are there other dangers like risk of fire?

    I ask, because if the electronics are already broken, and the _ONLY_ danger associated with heating electronics in the Packtite is the risk of damaging that equipment ... maybe there wouldn't be a drawback to using the Packtite for bug-killing purposes.

  5. MyWorstFear

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    Posted 10 years ago
    Mon Feb 23 2009 23:08:01
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    I accidentally Packtited (yes, now it's a verb too!) the recharger for a camera and it was fine. I also accidentally Packtited my husband's electric shaver, but he realized it was
    in there and so we were able to retrieve it before it got hot.
    Now this is probably unethical, but since you can easily get another cable unit if it gets destroyed, I would probably Packtite it. I so know what you mean about those things. The
    DVR wasn't working properly in our bedroom, and unbeknown to me, my husband brought it to cable to get a replacement. I didn't find out he had done that until the following week. By then, I figured it was too late to run it through the Packtite, but believe me, I would have done so had I known.

  6. spideyjg

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    Posted 10 years ago
    Mon Feb 23 2009 23:33:52
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    persona-non-bugga - 2 hours ago  » 

    can you elaborate on why electronics are not recommended for heating in the packtite? Is it solely because there's risk of damage to the electronics? Or are there other dangers like risk of fire?

    Don't know what internal temps the Packtite generates in the process of heating to lethal temps, 120 I believe they aim for, but electronics can suffer damage at those same temps.

    My laptop states it can be stored in temps of like 140 and I have seen some that go higher.

    The Packtite may be harmless to some, but lethal to other devices.

    Unless the device states it can be stored in excess of 140 it may die.

    I have no affiliation with Packtite but I am and electronics tech and temps above 120 make me nervous.

    Jim

  7. djames1921

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    Posted 10 years ago
    Tue Feb 24 2009 0:19:51
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    Our concern is that electronics may be damaged.

    I like that my product has now reached verb status, "packtited!"

  8. Nobugsonme

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    Posted 10 years ago
    Tue Feb 24 2009 1:05:36
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    David, if your product is a verb, you have arrived.

    I started and run the site but am "not an expert."
  9. buggyinsocal

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    Posted 10 years ago
    Tue Feb 24 2009 11:23:22
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    For what it's worth, in addition to my TiVo with a cable card, I had a second TiVo with a cable box (the older model) in my apartment when I had thermal treatment, and the cable box was clearly located in one of the parts of the place that got hotter (since both TiVos died after treatment).

    The cable box has been fine.

    Of course, that could have been sheer luck, or my company could use a different cable box, or, well, you get the idea.

    In other news, I put DDVP strips in plastic bins with all my DVDs and CDs. I was going to leave them for a few days, but because we had a sudden bout of rainy weather for a few weekends in a row, they ended up in the bins for two weeks.

    I saw some minor corroding on a few metal clasps on a few non DVD and CD items. So I can't tell you what it would do to a cable box.

    It sounds to me, based on that info, like the best bet is to require the cable company to get you a new box. If the tech shows up with one not in a box, just tell him/her that you're paying for the service and you want a brand new box and you'll wait until they bring you a new one, as per your request. I suspect if you're polite and assertive enough, you can find someone on the phone when you call to set things up who will agree to it, even if it takes more than one call.

  10. MyWorstFear

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    Posted 10 years ago
    Wed Feb 25 2009 0:02:35
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    djames1921 - 23 hours ago  » 
    Our concern is that electronics may be damaged.
    I like that my product has now reached verb status, "packtited!"

    Glad to oblige! You are up there with Xerox!

  11. BitteninBaltimore

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    Posted 10 years ago
    Fri Sep 11 2009 9:40:05
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    My super duper geek housemates, and electrical engineer ex-boyfriend both said that electronics internal parts get up to 120 when they are turned on, so they don't think Packtiting them will be a problem. I'm going to clone my hard drive on my laptop just in case and then hope for the best. The other reason they think Packtiting will be safe is that thermal treatments of the whole structure have to get that high, and those things would be inside the structure at the time of the treatment. I will post afterwards to let you all know if it works for me.

  12. spideyjg

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    Posted 10 years ago
    Fri Sep 11 2009 10:56:16
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    On BBCTV recently Jeff White did a long term test on a full suitcase and areas of the Packtite got over 170F.

    Bounce that fact off the super duper geeks and see what they say. Up until I saw that it was a risk but now it means you must babysit your electronics if Packtiting and shut it off it the temp get too high.

    Ask that engineer ex what temp should be the cutoff point. Bearing in mind many things don't come with environmental temp specs. As I said in a prior post my laptop has a spec of 140 max storage temp so I would stop the Packtite at that and restart once it dropped to 125.

    Jim

  13. BitteninBaltimore

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    Posted 10 years ago
    Fri Sep 11 2009 16:23:56
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    spideyjg,

    Yes, I would have to babysit it to make sure temps didn't get too high since I've already seen core temps over 150.

    Engineer ex says:

    "I'd have to say you don't *really* want to put your laptop or most computers in there. Unplugged and so on, most stuff should be ok for an ~hour or so at 125-130 F. Laptop batteries NO! Most consumer electronics contains parts rated for ~45 to 60 C (aka 130-165 F, roughly). So as long as it doesn't have batteries in it, it should mostly be ok. Batteries die Fast at over ~40-50 C. Especially rechargables. OTOH, you can go over any batteries with isopropyl pretty easily. And the ~primary (ie., use once) batteries you can replace cheaper than it is worth to clean them, I suspect. And where is a bug gonna hide in a sealed battery anyway?"

    Bitten (Katy)


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