Urban Survival Starts With Modest Home Repairs

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Pablo Edronkin

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Knowing how to repair things at home, like vacuum cleaners, your car, walls, the roof, electrical circuits and such stuff helps a lot to prepare yourself as an urban survivalist.

Our forefathers could build their own houses: most of us, in these enlightened times can't. Most people around the world cannot repair a lawn mower, the engine of a car or the electrical wiring inside their homes. With the advent of consumer society goods flowed the markets and prices went down; so much variety made it harder than ever to know even a little about every gadget and lower prices and quality meant that sooner or later those goods had to be replaced by new ones. How many computers you replaced actually died? How many CPUs were fried beyond recognition? We replace things because they become obsolete or unfashionable, but rarely because they can't work anymore. And thus, we have no practice repairing, so every time something dead we either throw it away or call technical service. Some systems and things, of course, are dangerous and require proper skills to handle, like the gas tubing of your home, for example, but most things only require knowledge. Almost anyone can repair a hair dryer, a vacuum cleaner or a car.

In an average garage found at any home it is actually possible to build a car: I did that after purchasing two old VW Beetles from the German mail a few years ago, for about five hundred euros each. After six months of mixing components from both cars, I got a brand-new Beetle for a fraction of its original cost, and I am not a car engineer.

Knowing how to repair things and how they work could become very useful in any sort of survival situation; it may even help solve things to such a point that you could avoid the impeding emergency altogether. Just think about a trip to the wilderness in a 4x4 truck. If something breaks down while you a re away from help, a serious situation could begin unravelling. But if you know a little bit about mechanics, you may be able to get out after fixing what is broken or even notice the trouble before it actually causes a malfunction. Such knowledge will also help us save money and extend the useful life of any component in circumstances that would make any replacement very unlikely: In Cuba, car mechanics perform actual miracles by keeping all those cars made sixty years ago in useful conditions.

And in this, the last paragraph, we should mention the biggest advantage of all: By knowing how to repair things we become self sufficient, consuming less resources and helping the environment that needs our collaboration so badly these days.

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