Archive for the ‘home improvement’ Category

Stylish Kitchen Appliances

Posted on: July 27th, 2017 by Derek Barmer No Comments

 

If you’re thinking about upgrading your kitchen you might consider some options beyond the usual stainless steel appliances—what about something bold? Something unique? Some trends are popping up in kitchens that might grab your attention.

Panel-covered appliances create a clean look and are great for open-concept kitchens. Often, with the open-concept floor plan, kitchen appliances clash with the living room furniture and create a discord in style. With the panels, that issue is gone.

Brushed metal appliances are neutral and elegant. They look similar to stainless steel from far away, but because they are matte, they don’t get scratches and fingerprints all over them the same way.

If you can’t get away from stainless steel, how about black stainless steel? This has a softer touch but still has the durability you may be looking for. There is a wide range of styles that comes in black stainless steel.

Bold-colored appliances and quirky, retro designs make the kitchen look fun and inviting. Again, often bold hues won’t be as prone to scratching and fingerprints as the stainless-steel options.

Remember to properly clean and maintain your new appliances. Of course, with any appliances it is best to have a professional install if you’re not comfortable with the job. This is especially true if you need to change the type of outlet you have, you need additional wiring, you need a stove hood or vent installed, or if your fridge needs a water line hooked up to it for ice or drinking water.

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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!

Front Porch Improvements For This Summer

Posted on: June 24th, 2017 by Derek Barmer No Comments

 

Central Carolina Air Conditioning, Plumbing and Electrical Front Porch ImprovementsIf you’re looking for an easy curb-appeal project this summer that doesn’t involve staying out in the hot sun, how about working on your front porch? This is one of the first areas potential buyers and guests notice, and changes don’t need to be expensive.

A fresh coat of paint on your door can really make it pop. Don’t be timid– try out yellow, red or turquoise! Make sure to check the weather before you get started. You don’t want a major storm blowing through while your paint is drying.

Next, add some flowers. Choose a type that matches the color and style of your house, as well as the size of your porch. When it comes to picking flowers, the options are endless. You can install a flower box underneath your windows, hang baskets of flowers on the sides of the porch, or hang pots from hooks on the ceiling. You can also decorate the porch steps by putting flower pots on each ascending step.

You can also ways to draw attention to your newly painted door by putting tall plants on each side of it or hanging up a summery wreath. You can make your own or buy one that displays flowers, fruits, or leaves to match the rest of your porch.

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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!

Get A Bathroom Upgrade With New Toilet Seats

Posted on: June 16th, 2017 by Derek Barmer No Comments

It might be the last piece in your home that you even think about, let alone care to upgrade… but the latest and greatest toilet seats can make your bathroom seem like it’s part of a five-star hotel. What are some of the trendy items for an easy bathroom upgrade?

Central Carolina Air Conditioning, Heating, Electrical, and Plumbing bathroom upgrade tips.

Heated toilet seats can start as low as about $80. You know the drill—you go to the bathroom in the middle of a cold night and it can be quite a rude awakening. If that’s ever the case at your house, this might be the perfect toilet for you. Simpler models have only one heating setting, but more expensive models can have several options. Some also have a glow to act as an extra light for your restroom. These seats are easy to install, but you’ll need an electrical outlet nearby.

Bidet toilet seats start at about $250 and give you a cleaning with a stream of fresh water. They are very common in many places outside of the U.S. Not only does it seem very clean, but also think about how much money you can save in toilet paper costs! They do need a water source, so they are a bit harder to install than the heated seats.

Lastly, you already have a smart phone and possibly other smart technology… so how about a smart toilet seat? These can start around $600, but are worth the cost! This type of toilet seat often includes a bidet and a heating element, and you can customize it. Some allow you to make changes per person. Some spray air freshener into the air and cleaner into the bowl before and after each use. Some can raise and lower. Some even spray warm air!! Of course, don’t forget the music, temperature and white noise machine—all part of some models. Professional installation is recommended.

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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!

 

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!

 

Celebrating 50 Years of Air Conditioning Service

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

 

Central Carolina Air Conditioning, Heating, Plumbing, and Electrical 50 Year AnniversaryFrom a small 6-employee air conditioning business in 1967 to the largest provider of residential air conditioning services in the Piedmont Triad—Central Carolina Air Conditioning, Plumbing & Electrical has come a long way in 50 years.

May 2017 marked 50 years for the company, which was founded by Richard Lacy as Lacy Air Conditioning. Five years later it became Central Trane Air Conditioning Company LLC, and later, Central Carolina Air Conditioning. It was sold in 1997 and operated under a business unit called Encompass until 2002, when Richard Lacy, current President Robert J. Allison and senior managers Barbara Dixon, Pat Priddy and Bill Corriher purchased the business back from Encompass.

Central Carolina Air Conditioning expanded to include plumbing and electrical services a few years ago. This past fall the company renamed its residential division to include “Plumbing & Electrical” in the name.

“We love that we can offer residential customers an array of services that service their whole house and have even implemented a “WholeHouse program” to help with regular maintenance.  Many people don’t realize that like a car, they need to regularly service their HVAC, Plumbing & Electrical systems to avoid major problems later. We have had some loyal customers for more than 30 years and want to do everything we can to take care of them.” Steve Wobig, General Manager.

The commercial division, CCAC Building Solutions, leads the way in the world of HVAC Mechanical Contracting, Service, and Energy Solutions. They develop strategic plans to reduce energy costs, provide comfort to building occupants, and extend the life of equipment. They work with customers throughout the state, as their offices are strategically located in Greensboro and Raleigh.

Central Carolina was voted one of Triad Business Journal’s “Best Places to Work” in 2016 in the mid-size employer category. A family-oriented environment, overall employee satisfaction, a benefits package with multiple healthcare options, company-matched 401-K and financial assistance for industry-related educational opportunities are just some of the reasons the company is so loved by its employees.

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!

 

Avoiding Tree-Planting Disasters

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

 

Planting pretty trees can spruce up your yard and allow for privacy in certain areas. Before you get started on this project, here are a few things to think about:

  • Take the location that you want to plant the tree(s) into strong consideration. Choosing the wrong spot can lead to issues not only with your land, but your power lines, plumbing/sewer lines and your home’s foundation, driveway and sidewalk. Think about how large your tree will eventually grow.
  • Plant trees away from overhead power lines, other large trees, and the house’s foundation, driveway and sidewalks. Growing trees can make concrete crack. A four-foot distance or more is usually a good rule of thumb. You might be tempted to plant trees near the home for shade, but consider how large it will grow.

 

  • Call 811 to schedule an underground utility inspection. This is free for homeowners. It will prevent you from digging through an underground utility line, which could knock out power to not only your home, but your neighbors’ homes as well! This is also a great service to use if you want to put up a fence.
  • Don’t forget the lateral—the underground sewer line that connects to your home—is filled with water. Tree roots naturally grow towards this line and then thrive on the sewer line’s contents. Furthermore, soil shifts and can crack sewer lines. Damage can ultimately lead to sewage backups in your house.*
  • Stay atleast 10 feet from lateral and 20 feet from under ground pipes and utility lines when planting.
  • You can get your home surveyed (or check the survey documents if it has already been done) to find the sewer lateral on your property. You can help protect your sewer line with a root barrier. Types include: growth inhibitors (chemicals which stop further root growth), deflectors (physical barriers), and traps (screens and sheets.) It is best to consult a plumber before using these.
  • Keep in mind that some types of trees have less aggressive roots than others and water your trees well so roots don’t need to grow out in search of water.

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!

Sunroom Options

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

 

With warmer temperatures come dreams of a relaxing on a comfortable chair with a great book in beautiful sunroom. But before getting started on this major project, here are some things to think about so you can maintain temperature and save money on your energy bill.

First, decide on the location. Southern exposure means additional cooling could be needed on hot days, eastern means sun in the morning and shade later, western means harsher afternoon sun.

Next, consider materials. Vinyl material for the supports costs the least and don’t need much maintenance. Vinyl is also strong and insulated. Many vinyl supports have an internal reinforcement of aluminum or galvanized steel. Aluminum is more expensive and not as good an insulator as vinyl, however many homeowners use aluminum for the roof structure to provide additional strength. The most costly material for the support is wood. The benefit of wood is it easily lets you attach the screen mesh to the timbers. Wood does require some maintenance.

As for the pretty glass roof, that will cost you. Look for the U-value of the glass or polycarbonate, which is a measure of how much heat the material conducts. You’ll want to choose the lowest possible U value for the most energy-efficient space.

When looking at glass walls, they should be silicone double-sealed, A-rated, and—in order to meet building codes—will be labeled “tempered safety.”

If you can’t choose the optimal location or you want to make sure you have as many comfortable hours in the sunroom as possible, here are some additional things to look into:

-Adding operative skylights

-Putting in ceiling fans to circulate the air

-Installing exterior roof shade tracks which hold rigid exterior
sunscreens

-Using window treatments that can be raised and lowered

-Using a small gas wall heater for the cold months

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!