Archive for the ‘electrical’ Category

How to Mount a TV

Posted on: June 11th, 2017 by Derek Barmer No Comments

 

Central Carolina Air Conditioning, Heating, Plumbing, and Electrical mounting a tvIt’s a project you’ve likely been thinking about for awhile if you haven’t done it already—mounting your TV to the wall. It looks so clean and takes up less space than a TV on a stand. So let’s get to it!

Look for a spot on the wall with no glare and good visibility, and pick a good sitting height (usually with the center of the screen 40-45 inches off the floor). Make sure there is an electrical outlet nearby!

 

Look for the mounting holes on the back of your TV. If needed, take off the plastic caps over the holes. If there’s a stand on the frame, remove it. Attach the mounting arms to the mounting holes on your TV, and make sure the mounting brackets are level with each other.

Use a stud finder to find the two studs in your wall that will support your TV. (Hollow wall anchors will not work.) Use a pencil to mark each stud’s center, and a nail to confirm a stud has been located. Measure the distance between the top and bottom holes on each TV mounting arm, then mark two points in the center of each wall stud. Drill pilot holes for the wall bracket screws or bolts. Attach the wall bracket plate to the wall using the screws or bolts provided.

Lock the TV mounting arms onto the wall bracket plate. Follow the manufacturer’s instructions to secure the connections. It may be easier to connect the cables to the television before attaching it to the wall bracket if you’re attaching your TV flat to the wall to a fixed wall mount. Do not attempt this last section without help from another person.

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Have a concern with your electrical, plumbing or air conditioning? Central Carolina Air Conditioning, Plumbing and Electrical is here to help! We offer 24 hour emergency service 7 days a week!  Give us a call! 1-800-461-3010 to speak with our customer service agents that can answer your questions or schedule an appointment!

 

Outdoor Project Safety

Posted on: April 28th, 2017 by Derek Barmer No Comments

 

When you’re working on your spring outdoors projects, take precautions. Every year people end up in the hospital for simple mistakes that could have easily been avoided. In fact, most injuries happen on your own property. Here are some simple tips to help you be safe.

  1. When using electrical appliances, stay on dry ground. Keep all of your equipment away from pools, sprinklers, hoses, wet ground, or any standing water. You can also use a ground fault circuit interrupter (GFCI) to help protect against electrocution.
  2. As soon as you hear thunder, that means lighting is not far off, even if it is not storming at the moment! It is best to head inside. Don’t risk your life by trying to stay out for a few more minutes to finish your project.
  3. Make sure your extension cords are in good condition, and are rated for outdoor use. Also check that they are the proper gauge for the electrical current capacity of the item you’re using.
  4. When using lawn tools, protect yourself from debris by wearing close-fitting clothing, eye protection and sturdy shoes. Also, remove objects such as sticks and stones that would be in your way.
  5. Do not fill tanks with gasoline while machinery is on or still hot. Do not smoke around gasoline.
  6. Before climbing trees, look for power lines overhead. This is especially important when using an aluminum ladder, which is an excellent conductor of electricity.
  7. Before installing a fence or planting trees, call 811. This free service will tell you where buried utility lines are located. This is crucial so you don’t knock out lines to your house or your neighbor’s house.
  8. It is spring allergy season! Wear a dust mask if you suffer from allergies. This will help filter out mold spores, pollen and other potential allergens.

Have a concern with your electrical, plumbing or air conditioning? Central Carolina Air Conditioning, Plumbing and Electrical is here to help! We offer 24-hour emergency service 7 days a week!  Give us a call! 1-800-461-3010 to speak with our customer service agents that can answer your questions or schedule an appointment!

 

Going Green Around Your Home

Posted on: April 21st, 2017 by Derek Barmer No Comments

 

This month’s Earth Day reminds us that we as Americans generate a huge amount of trash—an average of 4.4 pounds per person each day. So what can we do to reduce waste to not only help the environment, but help us save money too? Frankly, start questioning everything you own and everything you regularly buy:

  • Limit or cancel paper subscriptions. If you have subscriptions, then magazines, catalogs and newspapers can stack up quickly.
  • Reduce and reuse packaging. When you do buy things, try to buy in bulk and buy things with as little packaging as possible. Also, use reusable grocery bags. Lastly, buy recycled items. Glass, paper, metal and plastic items are often recycled materials.
  • Recycle. Give things away to charity and make use of your regular recycling service. Books, clothing and kitchen ware are great items to donate.
  • Maintain and repair your appliances. The goal is to get as much life out of these items as possible and maintaining them will make a big difference in their longevity.
  • Reuse things as much as possible. Wear clothes again, use the same towel all week, and reuse jars, old rags, etc. for other purposes around the house.
  • Monitor energy use. Turn off lights when you can, unplug things, adjust the thermostat up or down, and consider energy-efficient items and solar energy if you’re looking for even bigger long-term changes.
  • Be aware of water use. Take shorter showers, turn off the water while brushing your teeth, and wear things more often before washing. It takes energy as well as wear and tear on your pipes and system to pump water through the home and down the drain. It also takes energy to heat it and treat it to make it drinkable.

It starts with simple, small changes. Once you start taking a critical look at your home and your lifestyle, you’ll see there is plenty you can do.

Have a concern with your electrical, plumbing or air conditioning? Central Carolina Air Conditioning, Plumbing and Electrical is here to help! We offer 24 hour emergency service 7 days a week!  Give us a call! 1-800-461-3010 to speak with our customer service agents that can answer your questions or schedule an appointment!

Bathroom Updates 

Posted on: April 15th, 2017 by Derek Barmer No Comments

 

If you’re considering updating your bathroom, where should you focus your efforts? What are the most useful and most common changes that will really make an impact? It is easy to get overwhelmed and try to do it all. How about starting with these ideas instead?

1 – If your countertops are dated, this can be a great area to tackle. Look for natural stone or engineered quartz for a modern look, or for a very inexpensive change, paint your countertops. Neutral colors are key, no matter what type of material you decide to use.

2 – Glamour light bulbs are a definite sign of an older bathroom. Lighting is an inexpensive and easy way to make major changes. LED sconces or a bathroom bar with frosted shades will look more modern. If you’re not comfortable with installing new lighting yourself, hire a professional.

3 – Bathroom fixtures that are beige or bone colored, or brass fixtures that have become dull over the years need to go. Nickel, chrome or white fixtures will look much more up-to-date.

4 – Carpeted flooring has to go. Not only is it unsightly, its also unsafe because it is a breeding place for mold, bacteria and damage from moisture. Look for natural stone or ceramic tiles. Another popular option these days is laminate or ceramic that looks like hardwood. For a soft place to step onto after your shower, simply add a cushy bath mat.

5 – Old bathroom cabinets can be upgraded with paint or refacing or you can go for a total replacement if it is in your budget. Again, neutral colors are the way to go.

Have a concern with your electrical, plumbing or air conditioning? Central Carolina Air Conditioning, Plumbing and Electrical is here to help! We offer 24 hour emergency service 7 days a week!  Give us a call! 1-800-461-3010 to speak with our customer service agents that can answer your questions or schedule an appointment!

Wiring Your Unfinished Garage

Posted on: April 2nd, 2017 by Derek Barmer No Comments

 

You’re looking around at your unfinished garage and realize you need more outlets and lighting. Before getting started, keep a few things in mind: If you are leaving the walls and ceiling open, you’ll have to use the framing members to protect and support the wires. Do not span stud or joist spaces with wires, and keep the cables closely hugging the studs, plates and ceiling joists.

Always make sure you’re doing everything safely and up to code. If you’re just not sure, don’t hesitate to bring in a professional electrician. Lastly, if you plan to close up the walls later on, you’ll have to rewire. So, what’s next?

You’ll route the cable along studs, top plates and ceiling joists, along the framing member that leads to the next box. Keep cables on vertical surfaces—not on the tops of walls. Plan your wiring and put up all the electrical boxes.

Next, run a cable from one box to another by pulling cable off the coil, stripping at least 8 inches of sheathing off the wires and threading the wires and about 1/2 inch of sheathing through the wire opening in the box.

Untwist the cable and staple, staple, staple! Do this at least every 4 feet to the framing, preferably more.

When you get to the next box, stretch out the cable and mark the entrance point on it, cut the cable about a foot long, strip the sheathing and feed the wires into the box. Nail in the staples near the box.

NOTE: You’ll have to hold all wires at least 1-1/4 inches from the back and front surface of studs and joists.

Electrical boxes may have metal or plastic cable clamps that are built in. Many duplex boxes only have knockouts. Staple cable within 8 inches of boxes without clamps and within 12 inches of boxes with clamps.

And don’t forget: If your garage has a wall made of concrete or is already dry walled, cable installed on these exposed surfaces has to be protected by conduit.

Have a concern with your electrical, plumbing or air conditioning? Central Carolina Air Conditioning, Plumbing and Electrical is here to help! We offer 24 hour emergency service 7 days a week!  Give us a call! 1-800-461-3010 to speak with our customer service agents that can answer your questions or schedule an appointment!

Light Up Your Deck or Patio

Posted on: March 28th, 2017 by Derek Barmer No Comments

 

Whether you’re hoping to throw some cookouts this summer or are concerned about your family’s safety while walking outside in the dark, adding lighting around your deck or patio is a great idea. What are some easy options?

  • Low-voltage landscape lighting is a great addition. It won’t light up a large area, but can work well along with other lighting components. They are great to light up a pathway.
  • String lights are increasingly popular, as they create a pretty ambiance and are inexpensive. When shopping, look specifically for outdoor-rated string lights. LED bulbs will last many years. If you’re looking for that softer glow, though, you may consider incandescent bulbs. If you need them far away from an outlet, look for solar options.
  • If you’re looking to cast a glow on an area, sconces are a good idea.  You can get one that mounts onto the house or a lantern-style fixture, which casts a larger glow.
  • If you have an outdoor grilling or kitchen area, overhead lighting is the most useful, instead of decorative mood lighting that is generally more used for the patio or deck.
  • If your house is old, make sure your outlets are upgraded to have the modern safety features. Outdoor outlets should have a ground-fault circuit interrupter (GFCI) and a cover that can withstand weather. If you need more outlets in your outdoor area, you may want to contact a professional. It is not recommended to run cords through an open window, as this is not only unsightly but can also be unsafe.

Last but not least, consider using lighting around stairs and other walking areas for safety.

Have a concern with your electrical, plumbing or air conditioning? Central Carolina Air Conditioning, Plumbing and Electrical is here to help! We offer 24 hour emergency service 7 days a week!  Give us a call! 1-800-461-3010 to speak with our customer service agents that can answer your questions or schedule an appointment!

Reduce Laundry Energy Costs

Posted on: March 23rd, 2017 by Derek Barmer No Comments

 

An easy way to reduce your energy costs is to change the way you do your laundry. What are some changes you can make to reduce your carbon footprint and put money back into your wallet?

With the warmer weather coming, try line-drying your clothing instead of using the dryer. Drying accounts for up to 90% of laundry energy. If drying outdoors will not work for you, look around your home and see where you can put a drying rack or clothesline. Even if you only hang a few items, it’s better than nothing! You can even hang a few items on your shower rod. Choose the fastest spin cycle on your washing machine to get as much of the water out as you can. Keep racks away from the walls to prevent mold and don’t put items too close together so they dry quickly.

Maintain your dryer. Clean out the lint filter after each use, and deep clean your dryer (including the tubing) once a year. Use the automatic setting instead of the timed setting to avoid over drying.

As for your washer, about 80% of the energy it uses is for heating the water. Wash clothes and other items in cold water as much as possible. This will also help them to last longer. If you need more cleaning, then use a warm pre-soak then wash cold. Wash full loads as much as you can.

If you’re looking to buy a new washer and dryer, look into ENERGY STAR models. These typically use 25% less energy and 45% less water!

A few extra tips: reuse clothing as much as you can before washing, and don’t dry heavy materials or towels with lightweight items.

Have a concern with your electrical, plumbing or air conditioning? Central Carolina Air Conditioning, Plumbing and Electrical is here to help! We offer 24 hour emergency service 7 days a week!  Give us a call! 1-800-461-3010 to speak with our customer service agents that can answer your questions or schedule an appointment!

Deep Clean Your Dryer

Posted on: March 6th, 2017 by Derek Barmer No Comments

 

To keep your dryer running efficiently and to help keep your family and home safe from a potential dryer fire, thoroughly clean it annually. This is a great project to tackle on a weekend afternoon. Improper dryer ventilation causes 14,000 fires each year!

Over time lint builds up in the inside of your dryer, especially around the drum. With most dryers you can remove the top or front panel by simply removing a few screws, and take your extension on your vacuum to it.

Next up, your dryer ducts. This part is a bit trickier. Unplug your dryer and remove the flexible duct from the back of the dryer with your screwdriver. Use a large cleaning brush to push out any lint from behind your lint trap. Reach into the hole and pull out any buildup and vacuum again there and in the tubing. Be careful with using any sharper tools to get to the middle of the tubing, as they could puncture it. Typically, there is more buildup towards the ends.

Also vacuum where the duct exhaust exits your house. If you find that you have issues with birds/critters, install a bird guard on the outside. Make sure that the screen is not covered with lint, which will prevent any airflow.

Lastly, slide the clamp over the vent to attach and then put the dryer back into place. Run dryer on air fluff for about 10 minutes to let the debris that may be loose escape.

Have a concern with your electrical, plumbing or air conditioning? Central Carolina Air Conditioning, Plumbing and Electrical is here to help! We offer 24 hour emergency service 7 days a week!  Give us a call! 1-800-461-3010 to speak with our customer service agents that can answer your questions or schedule an appointment!

Installing a Wine Fridge

Posted on: March 2nd, 2017 by Derek Barmer No Comments

 

If you’re planning to head out to the wineries this spring and stocking up on your favorite wines, you might consider a wine fridge. This will keep your wine at the ideal temperature, preserve the flavors, and help you free some space in your fridge or wet bar.

Wine refrigerators come as stand-alone units ranging in size from small to fridges the same size as a regular refrigerator. Most medium-sized wine fridges can fit under a counter. Measure the area (length, width, height, depth) where you plan to install your wine fridge. A common size is between 15 and 30 inches wide.

Ideally, you will not need to wire a new outlet for your wine fridge. See if there is space near the same outlet bay as your kitchen sink, so you can run an extension electrical cord to the outlet for your garbage disposal. Make sure to use a ground protector. Drill a hole through the cabinets for the cord, and leave a space at the back of the wine fridge so there isn’t pressure on the extension cord plug. If you do end up needing to wire a new outlet, buy and install a 110 volt outlet that is standard for most units. It is best to get a professional electrician to do this.

When you install your wine fridge, fit its mounting plates into the provided slots. Plug it in and wait a few minutes and check the temperature gauge. You’ll want about 55 degrees Fahrenheit at 70 percent humidity.

Have a concern with your electrical, plumbing or air conditioning? Central Carolina Air Conditioning, Plumbing and Electrical is here to help! We offer 24 hour emergency service 7 days a week!  Give us a call! 1-800-461-3010 to speak with our customer service agents that can answer your questions or schedule an appointment!

Considering a Gas Fireplace?

Posted on: February 22nd, 2017 by Derek Barmer No Comments

 

Perhaps you’re tired of chopping wood, or you just want a new look. Gas fireplaces can be a great addition to your home, whether you want to install it now to use for any cold weather that may be around the corner, or you’re thinking ahead to next fall. What does the set up look like and what should you know ahead of time?

Many models come as inserts and do not need a chimney or an existing fireplace, but some will need outside ventilation. It should also be placed where installation of a gas line, an electrical circuit, and an exhaust pipe will be convenient. It is usually best to install a stand-alone gas fireplace on an exterior wall so the venting pipe can go straight out the wall. You will also need a platform.

You’ll install the exhaust piping at the top, or back, and when you figure out where the hole for the exhaust pipe will be placed, trace a circle around the pipe at the wall. Then move the fireplace platform and the fireplace out of the way so you can cut the hole for the direct venting system. Make sure that there aren’t any electrical lines or pipes in the area. Drill a hole from the inside through the outside.

Frame the inside edges of the opening with lumber. Insert the wall-pass-through. Inside the house, put high-temperature caulk on the inside surfaces of the hole. Install the remaining piping according to the instructions.

If you aren’t comfortable doing the installation yourself, hire a professional. That said, to ensure your safety, hire a professional to install and connect the gas line and electricity.

Have a concern with your electrical, plumbing or air conditioning? Central Carolina Air Conditioning, Plumbing and Electrical is here to help! We offer 24 hour emergency service 7 days a week!  Give us a call! 1-800-461-3010 to speak with our customer service agents that can answer your questions or schedule an appointment!