Posts Tagged ‘Greensboro NC electrician’

Light Bulbs for Each Purpose in Your Home

Posted on: May 13th, 2018 by Derek Barmer No Comments

In our previous post, we covered the different functions of lighting, and how they correspond with the purpose of each room in your home. Now that we know what the different forms of lighting there are – ambient/general, accent lighting, and task lighting – we’ll cover the light bulbs that are used for each of these forms of lighting.

 Light Bulbs for each purpose

  •  Incandescent: Although the lighting that incandescent bulbs produce is warm, they are not energy efficient like alternatives on the market today. For that reason, many people are discontinuing the use of these bulbs in their homes.
  • LEDs: You know the kind of lighting you need to finish a late night project or the book you’ve been reading for the past couple nights? This is the kind of light bulb you want to use for that purpose of task lighting that we talked about earlier. Often times harsh and bright, it will illuminate what you need to work on, and last a long time. Since the first release of LED lights, they have now come out with other options available that are warmer and resemble the lighting emitted by incandescent bulbs. Because of the long lifetime that LED lights provide, they can be a pricier option.
  • Halogen is another task lighting option that emits a bright light and saves about 10-20% more energy than the incandescent bulbs.
  • Compact Florescent Bulbs (CFLs): If you’re looking for a real energy saver – look no further than the CFL bulbs, which use 75% less energy than their counterparts, the incandescent bulbs. Not only do they use less energy, but they also last a long time.

There are a few helpful tips to follow for the use of all the various bulbs mentioned above. According to Energy.gov, incandescent and halogen bulbs should be turned off when they are not being used. This will save on cost and prevent extra heat in a room during the summer time. When using CFL’s, which are different in nature, there’s a different rule to follow. If you’re going to be out of a room for longer than 15 minutes, it’s advised that you turn them off. The longevity of a CFL bulb is different from other bulbs. The lift of a CFL bulb more so depends on how often you turn the bulb on and off, and it not really affected by how long the bulb is used.

When using any form of electricity, it’s always important to make sure that your electrical panel is operating efficiently and safely. Central Carolina Air Conditioning, Plumbing & Electrical can perform a thorough scan throughout your home, looking for any hot spots in your electrical system. We will also test the ground fault outlets to make sure that they are functioning properly.

Give us a call today Call to schedule your appointment today at 800-461-3010.

 

 

Easy DIY Updates

Posted on: April 12th, 2018 by Derek Barmer No Comments

Need To Update Your Home?

Are you ready for a new look and feel to your home? Maybe it’s time for a home makeover, but you don’t want to spend all that it requires to professionally remodel. There are many fun DIY  ideas that not only provide a refreshed look to your home, but many of them serve a double purpose of adding value as well. With kitchen and bath remodels, you actually add value to your home and we can help!

  • Painting can instantly make anything old and dingy feel new and beautiful. You can start by painting furniture such as chairs and tables. If you feel like repainting multiple rooms in your home, this could be a good way to brighten up each space. However, you can still accomplish a remodeled look by creating a couple accent walls. This will also save you time, energy and money as opposed to painting your whole home.
  • Adding some chair rail in rooms is easier now than ever as many home improvement stores offer stick-on options!
  • Add some art to create new dimension in your main living areas. Hang pictures or paintings that tie in with the desired theme of that room. Hanging art can also cover any eye sores of hanging cords.
  • Update your Hardware on kitchen and bathroom cabinets. Show your personality and style preference by selecting a new set of hardware to instantly give your kitchen and bathroom cabinets a more modern feel!
  • Hang a mirror in a room in your home that may be particularly small. A mirror will create the illusion that your room is bigger than it really is.

bathroom remodel

Bathroom Remodels

Don’t forget there are a few quick and easy ways to improve your bathrooms to make a big impact and add value to your home!

  • Trade in your old bathroom faucet with a new and improved faucet! This central piece will transform the overall look and feel of your bathroom.
  • Switch out your toilet to match your new style décor for your bathroom and helps conserve water! .

Need help with remodeling kitchens and bathrooms?  Let Central Carolina Air Conditioning, Plumbing & Electric help you complete minor or major updates to your kitchen and bathroom as we offer both plumbing and electrical services to help with remodels!

Call to schedule your appointment now.  800-461-3010.

New Window Considerations

Posted on: September 10th, 2017 by Derek Barmer No Comments

 

If you’re looking to install new windows, you have plenty of options. It isn’t all about the style though—here are some things to consider.

First, your lifestyle and budget. Figure out how much you’re willing to spend. Also, think about your lifestyle. Do you have kids or pets? Do you have a view you’re looking for? What about the temperatures? Do you use window AC units?

Next, materials. There are three main options—wood, fiberglass and vinyl. Wood has a warm, natural look. It can be stained or painted. Aluminum-clad exteriors offer a durable finish. Fiberglass does a good job protecting your home against extreme heat and cold and can also offer the look of a painted wood window. These have a low-maintenance powdercoat finish. Vinyl offers energy efficiency and is affordable. These require no painting, staining or refinishing. In addition to materials, you’ll also have plenty of styles to choose from depending on what you like and what room you’re putting the windows in.

You’ll also look at various options for grilles, hardware, screens, trim for wood windows, finishes and colors.

When looking at glass, think about optimum energy efficiency. This means you’ll likely want two or three panes of glass. Look for windows with Low-E (Low-emissivity) insulating glass with argon between the panes that will help to block more of the sun’s ultraviolet rays. Also, look for products that meet ENERGY STAR® requirements. High quality windows lead to less use of heating and air conditioning and thus, lower electric bills!

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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!

Efficient Cell Phone & Tablet Usage

Posted on: July 29th, 2017 by Derek Barmer No Comments

 

You can save energy—and save yourself from some headaches—if you can extend the battery life on your cell phones and tablets. These simple steps can make a big difference.

First off, check your battery use in your settings to see what your phone or tablet is doing. On most phones you can see a breakdown of what is consuming your battery. Usually, you can see the percentages.

Turn off any services you don’t use all the time, such as Wi-Fi, or GPS. Are these items running in the background even if you’re not using them? There are even apps to help you manage what programs run automatically.

Turn down the brightness. Most of use can see the screen without the high brightness. You can even put your device on night time mode set to certain hours of the day, which not only helps save battery but also—if it’s a warmer tone—this can help you sleep better because of what your eyes are looking at! Let’s be real—you’re still going to check your phone. So, at least put it in this mode to help your brain turn off.

Activate the lock screen after a minute or two of inactivity.

This is an easy one: remove your device from the charger and unplug the charger when the device is fully charged. If you don’t want the hassle, try a power strip so you can unplug all the items at once. This is great for those who have several items to charge. “Phantom Loads” waste more energy than you’d think and ultimately, more money!

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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!

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!

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!

Hiding Unsightly Power Cords

Posted on: February 9th, 2017 by Derek Barmer No Comments

 

Maybe you’re tired of looking at a tangled mess of cords around your TV stand or under your desk. Or, maybe you’re trying to make your home safer (especially important with young children). What are some ways you can hide your electrical cords? Here are some options:

  • First, unplug the appliances, clean up around the area and untangle! You can label the different cords with bread clips or pieces of masking tape that you can label and wrap around the cords.
  • You can clip the cords together with binder clips if you want a hassle-free solution and don’t mind if it doesn’t look perfect. Or, you can use a cord spiral wrap to make the cords blend in better with your background.
  • Use packing tape to affix the cord to the back of a table leg, TV stand, desk, etc. Or similarly, use adhesive hooks/clips.
  • If you have many electronics on your nightstand, put a power strip inside your top drawer to hide it all.
  • A creative, yet simple solution, is to use a box of some sort to put all of the cords into and sit it on your desk, TV stand, or other surface. This won’t hide the entire length of the cords but will make a big difference.
  • If you don’t mind a little bit more work, get a paintable cord cover. Measure the wall to figure out what length you need. You may cut it if needed. All you have to do is mount it to the wall and put the cords in, then paint the cord if you wish.
  • If you don’t mind even more work and you’re very tech savvy, use flat wire on the wall and paint over it. This is exactly what it sounds like—wiring that is flat instead of round. Low-voltage wires look like copper strips encased in film, so they are safe to touch.
  • Lastly, if it’s a wall-mounted TV you have — while probably the most labor intensive but most effective — you can feed cords from your TV through your wall where they will be hidden. If this is the route you choose, you may wish to engage a professional electrician to help.

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!

Prepare for Power Outages with Standby Generators

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

 

imagesLosing your power is never something anyone wants, especially during the winter months. For some homeowners, a lapse in power is a minor annoyance while for others it can be life threatening. For this and a variety of other reasons, a generator may be a wise purchase for your home.

While you may already have a portable gasoline-powered generator (or have thought about getting one), you may want to consider upgrading. A standby generator can energize your home for days. This is especially useful during extended power outages.

A great option for big families, standby generators are especially beneficial for those with young children or elderly relatives who may rely on medical equipment run by electricity. When looking at sizes, remember that the higher the generator’s capacity, the more circuits it can power. Think about what you’ll need to power.

The standby generator is permanently installed in your yard and is connected directly to your home’s electrical panel. It is powered by an external fuel supply, such as liquid propane, natural gas, or diesel. When you lose power, an automatic switch will start the generator. When power comes back on, the switch shuts down the generator and reconnects your home to the grid. The switch prevents back-feeding electricity, which is unsafe and can start fires.

Look for a trustworthy professional to install yours. The person will need to assess your load needs based on what you’ll want to run electricity to and the starting wattage of appliances that rely on motors. The person will also assess all of the logistics. Keep in mind that you will need some space: it will need to be several feet away from home openings and flammable materials.

If you do end up using the generator, get it serviced if it runs for 24 or more hours continually. Check the engine oil daily while it is being used and run it at less than 75 percent of its rated capacity.

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!

Make Your Home Greener

Posted on: January 8th, 2017 by Derek Barmer No Comments

 

Today there are plenty of “greener” choices when it comes to your home. Whether you’re trying to help the environment or just want to save money, here are some ideas to get you started.

  • 13334874691845924070House in the Sun.svg.medSwitch to CFLs or LEDs. They cost more up front but use far less energy and last much longer. Plus, incandescent bulbs are being phased out in stores.
  • Take a look at items that are constantly using energy in your home while plugged in, such as kitchen appliances, computers, chargers, printers, etc. It only takes a moment to unplug!
  • If you’re in the market for new appliances, look for the Energy-Star seal. They may cost a bit more up front, but using these can slash a third of your electric bill!
  • Insulate your attic. The attic can be as much as 50 degrees warmer than the other parts of the house. You can also look into an attic fan, which will help reduce the amount of energy spent on heating and cooling.
  • How many of us really know what is in the cleaners we use? Typically, it’s a bunch of stuff we can’t even pronounce. It’s easy to make safe, homemade cleaners out of vinegar, water and baking soda.
  • Seal gaps around doors and windows. You can save 10 percent on your electric bill by installing weather stripping to fill the gaps. You can choose from cheaper foam rolls or the more durable plastic option.
  • Fix leaky faucets and toilets. Not only is wasted water literally going down the drain, but also these issues should not be ignored, as leaks can lead to more costly repairs in the long run. For example, your pipes may end up needing to be replaced.
  • Install low-flow showerheads. According to the EPA, showering accounts for nearly 17 percent of residential indoor water use. Look into low-flow toilets as well. These are the main source of water in the home– nearly 30 percent of
    water use!

 

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 for Your Home Office

Posted on: January 3rd, 2017 by Derek Barmer No Comments

 
imagesMore and more people are working from home. You can have the best speed and performance in your home office if you set everything up properly and don’t cut corners.

You’ll likely need high-speed Internet and networking. Structured wiring is a data delivery system that can carry phone, fax, broadband, networking, and video/television technologies. The system has three parts: a panel where outside service enters the home, wires and cables throughout the house, and connecting hardware. You can get a prepackaged system, but that means you may have wasted outlets or no outlet where you need one. It is a good idea to develop a home-office plan before you wire. Figure out where the computer, printer, phones, and media will be set up and where conference calls will happen.

The system is installed the same way regardless of whether you have a new construction or are remodeling. The preferred method is the “star” layout, where each outlet extends individually to the service panel. This will allow for flexibility and help to figure out any problems. There are options for older homes so you don’t have to open up walls. Wires can be fished through walls.

If you’re not comfortable doing such a big project on your own, hire a professional. Not only do you want it to be installed correctly but you also want to make sure you have create necessary flexibility to accommodate future expansion. Costs vary, but the system typically ranges from about 1 to 3 percent of a home’s value.

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!