Power down: Smart phones are similar to computers and need to be restarted every couple of days. *MCT photo
Power down: Smart phones are similar to computers and need to be restarted every couple of days. *MCT photo

I don’t have one particular topic to discuss this week: instead I will offer some random tips and tidbits on everything from cell phones to storing eggs in the fridge.  

Some of this info will save you money and time so please feel free to share with your friends and family.

The door on your refrigerator is warmer than the rest of the fridge — this is not a good place to store eggs and milk.

When buying second hand cribs remember, unless the crib can be fully assembled and operated correctly — contains all of the original hardware and the instructions are included — do not buy it. Do not buy drop side cribs. Crib safety standards changed in 2011, and cribs with drop-sides are no longer considered safe. 

There are children’s products, especially cribs and bassinets, that have caused deaths and have been the subject of numerous recalls. Check the Consumer Affairs website before you purchase any children’s product second hand.

When grocery shopping, stick to the perimetre of the grocery store. Fresh foods (healthier and less processed), fruits, veggies, dairy and meats, tend to be around the perimetre of the store.

Food expiration labels can be confusing. Sell by/Display until The “sell by” date has more to do with quality than safety. This label is more a guide to the store on how long to “display the product for sale”. Stores will use this to ensure their staff know when to remove from the shelves, usually a few days before the ‘use-by’ date so that consumers have some days left to use the food.

If you are considering joining a multi-level marketing business, do your research. As with any business venture, investigate the business and its products first. Get as much information as you can, including copies of their sales literature, business plan and/or marketing plan. There is a ton of information on the Internet, use it to your advantage.

Smart phones are similar to computers and need to be restarted every couple of days. Refreshing your smart phone will purge the memory reserved by programs no longer running and will fix glitches that can hinder performance. If you are having problems with your smart phone (or even your regular cell phone) pull the battery and reboot it — this usually resolves common problems.

Before buying a major appliance, go online and do some research. A good site to visit is consumerreports.org. Also, read the user reviews on the products that you are researching.

Gift certificates may have an expiry date and terms and conditions of use. Inquire before you buy and let the user know before you give one away.

If you are looking for a stove or toaster oven avoid one with a built in convection oven if you do not intend on using it — you can save yourself some money by avoiding features you will not use.

It is not uncommon in Bermuda for people to download music and movies off the Internet, copy them and then sell them. However, it is illegal. Even if you simply make copies of your personal CDs and DVDs and sell them, it is still illegal.

Turn off your Wi-Fi, Bluetooth and 3G/4G when you don’t need it to conserve your smart phone battery. Having your smart phone on vibrate uses more power than a ringtone.

Second-hand goods are not covered by the Consumer Protection Act 1999. If you are buying second hand it is “buyer beware”.

If you are not sleeping well or are experiencing back problems, it may be time for a new mattress, especially if it is over seven years old. The mattress industry recommends getting a new mattress every five to seven years.

For more consumer tips and resources visit the Consumer Affairs website, www.ca.gov.bm.

Honey Adams is the education officer for the Bermuda Government office of Consumer Affairs.