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Generator Safety

Customer safety is extremely important to Jack's Repair and that’s why we want to encourage discussions about generator safety. All too often, we hear about preventable deaths when generator safety isn’t a high priority, resulting in Carbon Monoxide (CO) poisoning. In fact about 170 people in the U.S. die every year from CO produced by non-automotive consumer products.  


These products include Honda’s engine powered equipment such as generators for the construction and rental industries, backup power during outages, camping equipment and other outdoor events. CO is a deadly, colorless, odorless and can kill within minutes.


Jack's Repair wants you to be safe. Many people don’t know the only safe place to have a generator is outdoors, away from doors and windows. In closed areas, even with open doors and windows, these spaces can trap CO and allow it to quickly build to lethal levels. So we need to learn and share how to practice generator safety.


Did you know generators …

·   Exhaust contains toxic CO.

·   Connected to a building improperly could allow electrical current to feed back into utility lines, creating an electrocution hazard for utility workers.

·   Using a generator with wet hands or in wet conditions could result in electrocution.

·   Run on gasoline and to avoid explosive situations, don’t refuel while the engine is hot and running and keep flammables away from the generator when it’s running.

·   Become very hot during operation and remain hot for a while after the engine stops. Be careful not to touch the muffler while it is hot, and let the engine cool before storing the generator indoors.


CO initial symptoms are similar to the flu (without the fever), shortness of breath, nausea and dizziness. Higher level symptoms of CO poisoning include mental confusion, vomiting, loss of muscular coordination and consciousness and death. If you think you have been exposed to toxic levels of CO, get outside immediately for fresh air, call 911 and tell them you suspect you’ve been exposed to CO poisoning. This winter, Jack's Repair wants us all to be safer by telling our family and friends about CO dangers and how we can avoid catastrophes. Consider purchasing CO detectors as gifts for ourselves and loved ones. We definitely want to read our generator manuals and encourage others to read them too and share the information, and take time to review generator labels for more safety specifics.


Jack's Repair, 930 W Main St Santa Maria, CA 93458-4236, (805) 925-5653 is here to answer your questions and help with your generator needs.

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Hurricane Preparation Tips Santa Maria, CA

Hurricane Preparation Tips 

Atlantic hurricanes can strike between June 1 and November 30. Even if there is no hurricane in the forecast, it’s best to make sure that you and your family are prepared for a hurricane or tropical storm. Learn more about hurricane preparation tips on getting supplies, preparing to evacuate and using a Honda generator if there is a power outage from the hurricane.


Have An Emergency Plan

Discuss an emergency plan with your family. The plan can include getting extra supplies now, making copies of important documents, preparing for a power outage for 7+ days and preparing for an evacuation. Also include supplies for pets and older relatives who may need your help. The Red Cross has some additional tips on keeping your family safe during and after a hurricane.  


Pack A Travel Bag

Having a travel bag pre-packed with clothing, shoes and essentials for each person in your family, will save time, if you have to evacuate for a hurricane. Pack toiletries, baby wipes, liquid soap, prescriptions, an extra phone charger, flashlight and batteries, a small AM/FM radio, cash, food and beverages. Remember to bring personal documents, including copies of your birth certificates, social security cards, insurance cards, medical records and a will, in a waterproof bag. 


Use A Honda Generator

Generators provide backup electricity when there is a power outage from a hurricane. The Honda Generator EU2200i can provide power for cell phones, computers, televisions and refrigerators. The Honda Generator EU2200i also has inverter technology which provides clean power for computers. Have extra fuel to keep your Honda generator running for at least three days and a heavy duty power cord that is long enough to access the generator. 


Generators belong outside and should never be run in a basement or garage, even if windows or doors are open. There are some safety issues to be aware of when using generators:  beware of carbon monoxide and electrocution. Carbon monoxide is colorless and odorless and kills people every year, while sending others to the emergency room. Always consult your owner’s manual for other safety concerns and more information. If you are not sure which generator you’ll need, Honda has a great tool to help you calculate the wattage you need. Jack's Repair, 930 W Main St Santa Maria, CA 93458-4236, (805) 925-5653 is here to answer your questions and help with preparing for a hurricane and your generator needs.



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Tips For Hosting A Fun Tailgate in Santa Maria, CA

You’ve been counting down the days for game day. The invitations have been sent and it’s time to plan your tailgate. Kick off the fun with by making the most of your tailgate with these tips for hosting an epic tailgate.



Show Your Team Spirit

Show your team spirit by decking out your tables with a table cloth, paper plates, cups and napkins with your favorite team. Accent the table with pom poms and team pennants.



Plan the Game Day Menu

Plan your game day menu in advance. If your time is limited, then consider ordering food from local grocery store or restaurant. If you are going to grill the food, clean the grill before game day and make sure that there is plenty of ice for the coolers for the food. Decorate some team inspired cookies, brownies or cupcakes for dessert with sprinkles in the team’s colors. Pack a bottle opener, paper towels, foil, sandwich bags, grilling tools, condiments, hand sanitizer and anti-bacterial soap. Remember to pack some extra plastic containers for leftover food.  



Pack Two Coolers

Chill the beverages in a refrigerator, the day before game day. Pack two coolers: one with kid’s beverages and non alcoholic beverages and one with adult beverages. Label each cooler. Pack the cans, bottles and ice in the bottom half of the cooler. Pack the food in airtight containers, with ice and freezer packs, on the top half of the cooler. 



Let the Games Begin

Make the game even more fun with some tailgate games that are family friendly. What’s a tailgate without playing cornhole? Make some cornhole bean bags with fabric of your team’s logo and you will have the coolest cornhole at game day. Show off your Frisbee skills in a game of Kanjam. For the guests who like a challenge, Spikeball is a fast paced tailgate game.



Step Up Your Game With A Generator

A portable generator can take your tailgate to the next level. If you plan on having a plasma TV and an electric grill, you’ll need a portable generator. The Honda EU2200i is a portable generator that is a super quiet, durable and easy to use. This Honda generator is so reliable that we cover it from top to bottom, for three years. Jack's Repair, Santa Maria, CA, (805) 925-5653 is here to answer your questions and help with your tailgating needs.

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Differences In 4-Stroke and 2-Stroke Engines in Santa Maria, CA

Advantages of Honda 4-Stroke Trimmers

One of the most disliked parts of lawn maintenance is trimming, and for good reason. Historically, trimmers are heavy, the smell of burning gas is overwhelming, and grass gets all over you. There’s not a lot you can do about getting grass on your clothes except to be more careful when you trim. However, with Honda’s 4-stroke engines, you can make trimming a more pleasant job. 


Fuel 

There are a couple of reasons that Honda’s 4-stroke engines are better than 2-stroke engines when it comes to fuel. When you use a 2-stroke engine, you have to mix gas and oil – and in the correct proportions – adding a step to an already sometimes tedious job. With 4-stroke engines, however, you don’t have to mix, because they use only straight unleaded gasoline. 


The design means that you use fuel more efficiently, and that means you spend less money on lawn maintenance. Honda tested the HHT25 against a 2-stroke competitor, and you’ll be amazed at the results. These savings are based on an average of $3.00/gallon of gasoline, $0.27/oz for oil, and using a 50:1 mix of gas and oil in the 2-stroke engine. 


Running Time (hours) - 100

Honda HHT25 Fuel Cost - $45.40

Competitor Fuel Cost - $92.40

Savings - $47.00


Running Time (hours) - 200

Honda HHT25 Fuel Cost - $90.80

Competitor Fuel Cost - $184.80

Savings - $94.00


Running Time (hours) - 300

Honda HHT25 Fuel Cost - $136.20

Competitor Fuel Cost - $277.20

Savings - $141.00


Comfort


4-stroke engines don’t just save you money, though. They are lighter, so you’ll be able to work more quickly and be less tired when you’re finished with your lawn. Traditional 2-stroke engines also have higher vibratation. If you’re like many people and have carpal tunnel syndrome or something else that is irritated by vibrations, you’ll quickly forget spending the next day recuperating from the aches that come after using a 2-stroke trimmer.


Even better, the cleaner-running engine means that you won’t have to deal with the traditional smell of burning oil and gas, and it runs more quietly. 


So instead of listening to the raspy sound of a 2-stroke engine, smelling gas/oil burn, and carrying around heavy vibrating equipment, you’ll be in relative comfort with the 4-stroke engine. 


Quicker, More Efficient Work


When you eliminate mixing oil and gas, your worktime is already cut. There are other time-saving advantages of the 4-stroke engine. 4-stroke engines start more reliably, shaving more minutes off your lawn work. And because the engine works in any position, you can easily adjust quickly to cut even the steepest slope without losing time. 


Honda makes two 4-stroke engines for trimmers: the GX25 and GX35. While the two engines have slightly different specifications, they’re both designed with your time and comfort in mind. When you use a 4-stroke engine, you’ll love it.

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How Often Should You Cut Your Grass in Santa Maria, CA

How Often Should You Cut Grass?

You know when you are looking for the best Honda lawn mower in Santa Maria, CA, you need to come see Jack's Repair. But once you get the perfect lawn mower, how often should you use it?


You see your neighbor out mowing his lawn two – or sometimes three – days a week. Another neighbor has a lawn service that cuts every other week. You’re lucky if you get out in the yard with your Honda mower every week. But really, which is right? How often should you cut?


Unfortunately, there is no one-size-fits-all answer to that question. It depends on how fast your grass is growing and how tall it should be. Depending on factors, you and your neighbors could all be cutting your grass at the right frequency…or the wrong one.


Grass Type


Most people don’t know that different types of grasses should be cut at different mowing heights. Lawn experts and scientists have studied these grasses, or even bred them, to be healthiest and look their best when they’re cut to the correct height. When there’s not excessive rain, drought, or other weather conditions, we can also determine how often that type of grass should be cut to maintain the ideal height.


If you don’t know what type of grass is in your yard, that’s okay. We’re not all lucky enough that we planted exactly what we want in our yards. You can hire a professional or call our local county extension office to help you determine your grass type.


These are some types of lawn grass with their average ideal heights and mowing frequencies:


Common Bermudagrass

Ideal Height Range (Inches) - 1 - 2

Ideal Mowing Frequency (Normal Growth) (Days) - 5 - 7


Hybrid Bermudagrass

Ideal Height Range (Inches) - 1 - 1.5

Ideal Mowing Frequency (Normal Growth) (Days) - 4 - 7


Centipede

Ideal Height Range (Inches) - 1 - 2

Ideal Mowing Frequency (Normal Growth) (Days) - 5 - 10


St. Augustinegrass

Ideal Height Range (Inches) - 2 - 3

Ideal Mowing Frequency (Normal Growth) (Days) - 5 - 7


Zoysiagrass

Ideal Height Range (Inches) - 1 - 2

Ideal Mowing Frequency (Normal Growth) (Days) - 4 - 7


Tall fescue

Ideal Height Range (Inches) - 2 - 3

Ideal Mowing Frequency (Normal Growth) (Days) - 5 - 7


There are two things you should keep in mind when following this chart:


1.    Ideal factors depends on region. Check the specifics for your area.

2.    There are multiple species of each type of grass. Follow the recommendations for your species.


Usually, you should cut shaded grasses slightly higher. Because they don’t have as much direct sunlight, they may need the extra leaf area to absorb the sunlight they are able to get in the shade. 



The One Third Rule

As a general rule, you shouldn’t cut more than 1/3 of the grass height at a time. If you remove too much, you could damage the grass. If your grass gets too high, adjust the mower height up so that you’re cutting no more than 1/3 of the blade. Gradually lower the mowing height in the next cuttings until your lawn is within the ideal range. 


Use this list, based on mowing height, to see when to cut your grass:


When Mowing Height = 1 inch > Cut When Grass is at 1 3/8 inches

When Mowing Height = 1.5 inches > Cut When Grass is at 2 inches

When Mowing Height = 2 inches > Cut When Grass is at 2 5/8 inches

When Mowing Height = 3 inch > Cut When Grass is at 4 inches



Mowing During Stress Periods

There are times that your lawn is under stress. This might be during a drought or in the hottest months of the summer. When that’s the case, you may want to mow a little higher – or a little less frequently – to help your grass get through the stressful period without damage. When the drought is over or the heat isn’t as bad, gradually adjust so you’re cutting at the recommended height and frequency. 



Mowing After Excessive Rain

Another time you’ll want to adjust how often you cut your grass is when there’s been a lot of rain. The grass is probably growing faster, and you should cut more frequently. Of course, you shouldn’t mow your lawn when the grass and ground are wet, but keep an eye on the height of your lawn and adjust as needed. 


You can see that a lot that goes into deciding how often to cut your grass, and it’s not the same for everyone. Then, you can watch how quickly your grass is growing, and mow at the right time to have the best-looking lawn in your neighborhood. 



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Top Eight Most Useful Generator Accessories in Santa Maria, CA

Generator accessories will ensure that your generator is working properly and easier to move around, outdoors. Remember that the only safe place to have a generator is outdoors, away from doors and windows. These are eight of the most popular generator accessories that you can use, to keep your generator running optimally:

Optimate 3 Charger – The Honda Optimate 3 Charger will automatically recover, monitor and maintain all types of batteries from 2.5 to 32 amp-hours with its advanced diagnostic program, so your Honda generator is always ready to start when you need it.

Transfer Switch - *A transfer switch is essential to safely connect a generator to a home. A transfer switch is required by the National Electric Code for any connection of power to a home. A Transfer Switch isolates the generator, allowing a safe connection, so it cannot accidentally electrify external power wires. 

Power Inlet Box - *Inlet boxes are mounted on the outside of a home to avoid running a power cord through a window or door.

Extension Cord Sets – Extension cord sets ensure proper delivery of electricity from the generator to power outdoor items. If you choose not to install a transfer switch, you would also need extension cord sets to power indoor items, such as a TV or refrigerator.

Cold Weather Kit – Honda designed cold weather kits that are unique to a specific generator. A small heating coil that fits inside the crankcase breather tube, prevents water from freezing inside the crankcase, due to severely cold weather. If ice forms in the breather tube, it can block the air flow, causing the generator to not work properly and/or leak oil. 

Wheel Kit – Lifting a generator can be quite a challenge. Honda has a 2-wheel kit and a 4-wheel kit with rubber tires that makes moving a generator effortless. 

Generator Cover – Protect the Honda generator from rain, sleet and snow, with a custom-fitted, water resistant generator cover.

Lockwrap – A lockwrap is a neoprene cover that keeps ice, snow and debris out of combination locks.

*Power inlet boxes and transfer switches must be installed by a qualified electrician and the connection must comply with all applicable laws and electrical codes.


Jack's Repair, 930 W Main St Santa Maria, CA 93458-4236, (805) 925-5653 is here to answer your questions about generators and generator accessories. We carry a wide variety of accessories in stock and can help you choose the right ones for your needs!


To learn more about operating a generator safely, check out our Generator Safety article.


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Honda’s Technology Makes Mowing Easier in Santa Maria, CA

Spring is one of our favorite times of the year. Warmer weather means the flowers are blooming, the grass is growing and it’s time to mow the lawn. If you want to have a beautiful, healthy lawn, nothing makes the cut like a genuine Honda lawn mower.


Honda is dedicated to technological and environmental innovation. In fact, Honda designed the first and only lawn mower to feature a NeXite® mower deck. The rust free, dent proof NeXite® mowing deck, on the Honda HRX series mowers, is so durable, that it’s backed with a lifetime warranty. 


Honda also designed another FIRST: the first lawn mower to feature an overhead cam engine. Honda developed an overhead cam engine for use on a walk behind lawn mower. Introduced in 1997, the GCV160 engine offers lighter weight, less mechanical noise, improved fuel efficiency and the world’s first small engine internal timing belt. All Honda mowers are backed by a comprehensive warranty.


Honda wants to help you get the best results from your new mower. Check out the Honda Owner’s Manual before operating the lawn mower for the first time. The Honda Owner’s Manual includes safety instructions, a check list before operating the mower, maintenance schedule, parts, storage tips and warranty information. The Honda Owner’s Manual also has the product registration information. Registering your Honda lawn mower within 30 days of purchase, will ensure that you receive important service information.


Jack's Repair, 930 W Main St Santa Maria, CA 93458-4236, (805) 925-5653 is here to answer your questions about lawn mowers, servicing and maintenance.


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Choosing A Honda Generator in Santa Maria, CA

As winter continues to grip a good part of our country and the weather remains unpredictable, you never know when a generator might come in handy. If the area you live in has frequent power outages, buying a generator might be a good investment and relieve some stress.


Many of us don’t think about the need for a generator until we experience a power failure. Then all kinds of issues arise, including the inability to heat or cool our home, spoiled food in the refrigerator and freezer, inoperable medical equipment, charging your cell phone, and more. 




When choosing a generator, you will want to consider the following:


•      Decide on the size of the generator you need. Keep in mind, many people can use a small generator like the EU2200i to power their fridge, lights, TV, and other critical essentials during outages. If you need to power your well pump, you’ll need to go with a larger model, like the EM5000. Honda has a great tool to help you calculate the wattage you need. https://powerequipment.honda.com/generators/wattage-calculator


•      Decide if the generator will be used as an emergency backup at home or during outdoor activities. If you are interested in using it for more than just emergency back up, consider an EU series generator, which is very versatile and perfect for recreational activities as well as home power.


A couple of safety issues to be aware of when using generators are carbon monoxide and electrocution. Carbon monoxide is colorless and odorless and kills people every year, while sending others to the emergency room. Generators belong outside and should never be run in a basement or garage, even if windows or doors are open. Always consult your owner’s manual for other safety concerns and more information.

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Honda Power Equipment in Santa Maria CA

Jack's Repair is proud to carry Honda Power Equipment products. Why? Because we only want to offer you products that you can trust and believe in. We want you to leave our store as a satisfied customer – and to have a positive experience both in our store and when you return home with your product. With Honda, we can be confident that you will be happy for years to come.


Honda has manufactured over 100 million power products worldwide since 1953. Over these years, they have developed power equipment like generators, lawn mowers, and snow blowers that have transformed the industry with new innovations and technology that rethinks how we use power equipment. In terms of durability, Honda doesn’t skimp. The quality of their manufacturing and parts is top notch. That’s why Honda has over 40 million satisfied power equipment customers in the United States. It’s common for us to see customers with Honda products that are 20 or 30 years old, and still working without problems.

Honda Power Equipment offers more than 70 models in six major product families, including brush power equipment.


You can purchase:

Generators: from 1,000 watts to 10,000 watts in models designed for residential, recreational, and industrial applications.

Lawn Mowers: 21-inch push-type and self-propelled models for premium residential and commercial gardening applications. Honda's full line of lawn mowers meets rigorous California Air Resources Board (CARB) standards, ensuring their availability and regulatory compliance in all 50 states.

Pumps: a wide variety of general de-watering, multi-purpose, commercial, and submersible models with discharge capacities from 37 to 433 gallons per minute.

Snow blowers: wheel drive, track drive, and lightweight models capable of moving from 1500 to 3000 lbs of snow.

Tillers: mini- mid- and rear-tine models.

Trimmers: three trimmer models in a variety of trim heads, engine sizes, and handle design choices, as well as the Honda VersAttach® system, a multi-tool system featuring 2 power heads and six attachments.


Contact Jack's Repair for your Honda Power Equipment needs. 

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Power Your Camping Trip In Style in Santa Maria, CA

When you’re out camping in the RV, you want power. And at Jack's Repair we are happy to help you find the right Honda generator for your trip. Equally important, we want to make sure you know how to use that generator safely – and easier – during your time outdoors.


Cover Your Generator in Wet Weather

Electricity and water don’t mix, so protect yourself by not running the generator when it’s wet outside. Depending on where you camp and the time of year, it may rain often during your camping trip. It’s best to have a dry place in your campsite to keep your generator at all times. Many RVs have a canopy you can set up, and you can raise the generator off the ground with blocks or other safe material so it stays dry.


However, you may also want to invest in a Honda cover for your generator. These covers are water-resistant and available in several colors and styles. This can help to ensure your generator never gets wet when you’re storing it outdoors. At Jack's Repair we carry a wide variety of accessories and can help you find the right cover for your generator.


Remember that running your generator inside the RV is not a safe alternative to having it outside in inclement weather. Generators emit exhaust fumes, like your vehicle, and those fumes contain carbon monoxide. It’s best to invest in weather protection for your generator.


Get a Remote Start Kit

Don’t run your generator the entire time you’re camping. If you’re inside the RV relaxing, you may not want to walk outside to start the power. Honda makes remote start kits that work with most models with electric start and automatic choke. You’ll still need to make sure your generator is set up for safety before you start it, but the instructions included with the remote start kit make it easy to set up, and you’ll thank yourself for the investment when you can start the air conditioning without walking out into the heat.


Honda makes both wired and wireless remote start kits. You’ll want to look at the advantages of each before you purchase. Jack's Repair can help you find the right model for your generator.


Light up Your Campsite

A campfire is essential when camping. The soft flickering glow…the smell of wood burning…these things just make your camping trip perfect. Unfortunately, a campfire isn’t great for reading or many other activities you might want to do outdoors at night. Consider getting a lighting kit. If you have a EU1000i, EU2000i, or EU2200i generator, the Tele-Lite Kit is perfect. It’s lightweight and the folding halogen light is easy to store. There are other lighting kits available, and one of these may be the perfect solution to seeing the full beauty of the forest on your camping trip.


There are many ways to power your camping trip, whether you take advantage of remote start or get a no-spill fuel can for easy and safe gas storage. No matter what, you’ll love your camping trip even more with the right accessories. Stop by Jack's Repair to see all the available options!

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Lawn Mowing Tips For Healthy Grass in Santa Maria, CA

How do you get the most beautiful lawn on your street? Follow these lawn mowing tips to make your lawn healthy and the envy of your neighborhood.


1) Mow your lawn when the grass is dry. Wet grass tends to clog the mower which can leave clumps of grass on the lawn. Morning is the usually the best time to mow because the ground is damp and the grass is dry. 


2) Always practice safety first when operating a lawn mower. Keep children and pets inside your home, when you are mowing the lawn. Hands and feet should be away from the lawn mower blade when operating the lawn mower. Read the Honda Lawn Mower Manual for safety information, maintenance schedule and operating instructions. When the mower is off, inspect the mower’s blade to make sure it is sharp. If the blade is dull, bring it to us. Jack's Repair can help with blade sharpening or a new blade if one is desired.


3) Identify the grass type to determine the mowing height. The height that the grass should be cut varies depending on the grass type and geographic location. 


Grass Type Recommended Mowing Height

Kentucky Bluegrass: 2 – 2 ½”

Fine Fescue: 2 – 2 ½”

Tall Fescue: 2 – 3”

St. Augustine: 2 ½ - 3”

Centipede: 1 ½ - 2”

Perennial Ryegrass: 1 ½ - 2 ½”

Bermuda: 1 – 1 ½”

Zoysia: 1 – 1 ½”


4) Cutting too much grass can damage your lawn and is the leading cause of poor cut quality. Never cut more than 1/3 of the grass height, at a time.


5) Remove debris from your lawn. This includes branches, leaves, rocks and pet waste. Remember to avoid hitting sprinkler heads, when mowing your lawn.


6) Each time you mow your lawn, use a different mowing pattern. This can be done by changing the direction the lawn is mowed. For example, change the direction from horizontal rows one week to vertical rows, the next week.


7) And of course, choose a Honda mower for the best cut! Honda’s technology keeps its lawn mowers on the cutting edge. The Honda HRX and HRR Lawn Mowers have the exclusive Twin Blade Advantage. This is how it works: your lawn is cut with each rotation of the Microcut® Twin Blades. Then it is cut again, for a smooth, even surface. When bagging, you’ll empty the bag less often because the smaller clippings allow your bag to hold more. 


Jack's Repair can help you choose the right Honda mower for your lawn. Stop by and see us in Santa Maria, CA!

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