No More Ramen: A College Student’s Guide To Saving Money On The Power Bill

Posted by on May 8, 2015 in Uncategorized | 0 comments

It’s a month after you moved into your first college apartment. You’ve finally gotten the posters on the wall, everything unpacked and then you open up your first electric bill. Odds are, it is more than you were expecting. Thankfully, a few small changes can help you to save a lot of money. It’s Getting Drafty in Here Leaking air is a little like a ghost: you can’t see it, but it can cause trouble. Walk around your place at night and feel for any areas that are drafty or cold, especially around doors and windows. If you feel any air coming through, roll up a washcloth or towel and plug the leak. Similarly, make sure all of your air vents are open. Closed air vents trap the cooled or heated air, which prevents them from getting into the room. Worse, if the vents are closed, your air conditioning system will still register the room as being the wrong temperature and will keep producing air to control the climate. By opening those vents, you allow your A/C to work smarter, not harder. Screw Around Energy efficient light bulbs used to be quite pricey, but now they are roughly the cost of a normal bulb. EELs use up to 80% less energy compared with traditional bulbs and can last up to 25 times longer, with the average bulb lasting over a year. Screwing a few of these in can net significant savings. There’s an App for That Heating and cooling accounts for 48% of the average power bill and a majority of the power use is during times when you aren’t even there. Talk to your landlord about installing a programmable thermostat, which makes it easy to maintain control of the temperature inside of your home, even if you aren’t there. Many programmable thermostats can be operated using an application on your phone or tablet, meaning you can change the temperature even if you’re in class. Additionally, many utility companies now provide bills and power saving tips through apps. Installing one on your phone can alert you to ways you can slash your bill even further. Put a Stake in Those Vampires Devices that suck power, even when not in use, are referred to as “vampires.” It may seem convenient to leave your cell charger or computer on all night, but those charges add up. Overall, vampire charges account for 10% of the average power bill. Taking a few moments each night to shut off and unplug devices that are not being used can save you quite a bit over the course of a year. When you’re in school, every penny counts. Save yourself a little bit of money on the power bill with these tips and you can splurge on better meals than ramen. To learn more, contact a company like Argon Electric Ltd electrical...

read more

Replacing An Electrical Outlet With A GFCI Outlet

Posted by on April 16, 2015 in Uncategorized | 0 comments

Regular electrical outlets cannot be used in wet or damp areas of your home, because they bring a risk of shock or electrocution to residents who come into contact with them under these conditions. Fortunately, a homeowner can minimize the danger by installing a GFCI outlet in a potentially wet area, such as a bathroom, basement, or outdoor area of the home. What is a GFCI outlet? A GFCI (Ground Fault Circuit Interrupter) outlet is specially designed to detect subtle fluctuations in electrical current, such as those occurring in the presence of moisture. When these fluctuations are detected, power to the outlet is shut off. The power can then be restored by activating a reset button on the outlet. However, the power can only be restored to the outlet if the danger is removed. If not, the outlet will shut off continuously until the conditions are safe. Preparing to install a GFCI outlet. Things you will need: A GFCI outlet. These can be purchased at any home improvement store. They will be more expensive than standard outlets, but it is a very wise investment. A Phillips-head screwdriver A small flat head screwdriver You will begin by turning off the circuit breaker that controls power to the outlet that you wish to replace with a GFCI outlet. If it is not clearly marked on the inside of the breaker box panel door which breaker controls that line, plug something that makes noise into the outlet. Choose an appliance with no battery backup. Begin switching breakers off and on, and when the noise ceases, you’ve found the correct breaker. Installing a GFCI outlet. When the power to the outlet is turned off, you will begin by using the flat head screwdriver to remove the cover plate from the outlet. Place the plate and the small screw away from the work area, because the screw may be easily lost. Use your Phillips-head screwdriver to unscrew the outlet from the wall. Pull the outlet from the wall, and you will see either three or six wires attached. If the outlet is in the middle of a circuit line, it will have three wires on each side. If it is at the end of a line, it will only have three wires on the left side. Remove all wires with the Phillips-head screwdriver, and keep them separated. If you have only three wires, connect them to the part of the GFCI outlet marked “line.” The black wire will connect to the gold screw, the white wire to the silver screw, and the green- or copper-colored wire to the green screw. If you have two sets of wires, the wires from the left side of the old outlet are connected to the “line” area of the GFCI outlet, while the wires from the right side of the old outlet are attached to the “load” area of the GFCI outlet. When all wires are connected, screw the GFCI outlet into the wall, then attach the cover plate. Turn on the breaker, and you’ve finished. For further assistance, contact a professional electrician....

read more

Summertime Electrical Safety Tips

Posted by on April 10, 2015 in Uncategorized | 0 comments

Summertime is the time of year when most people get active and get outside. Whether you realize it or not, there are a number of electrical dangers you face when you’re outside enjoying the summer weather. In order to ensure you are protected, it’s a good idea to familiarize yourself with these dangers and take preventive measures to avoid them. Look out for Unexpected Dangers As the temperatures rise and your little ones get released from school for the summer, they will likely be spending more time outside. Make certain you are taking the time to inspect the area where your children will play for any hidden dangers. This is especially true if you have any trees in your yard. If your children are adventurous, they might get enjoyment from simply climbing the tree or building a tree-house. If that’s the case, make certain there aren’t any electrical lines that run near the tree. If there are any lines in the area, it’s best to prevent your children from playing in that area. If you’re worried about your children forgetting not to play on a particular tree, consider placing a strip of colored paint on the base of the tree to signal that it is off limits. Practice Water Safety with Electrical Equipment If you happen to be lucky enough to have a pool, you will probably be hosting your fair share of outdoor celebrations. Make certain you are taking extra steps to keep everyone safe. Sure, music, a movie on a projector and other forms of entertainment would be awesome to enjoy while in the pool. However, if you don’t have an area to set up this equipment that is a safe distance away from the water, it’s best to avoid using the equipment. A safe distance should be at least several feet away from the source of water. Electricity can travel at a rapid pace through water, placing everyone in the water at a high risk for electrocution. In addition to pools, keep this same train of thought for water slides and any other outdoor water play. Don’t ruin your summer by encountering an electrical danger. If you are unable to assess the hidden electrical dangers around your home, an electrician can help. In addition to helping highlight any dangers to you, an electrician can also inspect your home to help bring to your attention any malfunction or repair issues that could be affecting your safety. Click here for more information about electric...

read more

Do You Need Professional Electrical Services For Your Home Breaker Box?

Posted by on December 2, 2014 in Uncategorized | Comments Off on Do You Need Professional Electrical Services For Your Home Breaker Box?

As a homeowner, it is important to make sure that you are staying on top of all potential electrical issues. This way, not only will you be able to make sure that everything continues to run properly within your home, but that you are protecting it and your loved ones from a potential fire. So make sure that you are checking out the following signs that your home breaker box might be in need of some professional assistance. Smells Of Something Burning Even if you do not see a fire or feel anything hot, there could still be the potential of a fire if you are smelling something burning. An electrical fire has a distinct smell to it so if you are starting to smell something a little off, it is vital that you are calling the emergency authorities once you and your loved ones have evacuated the home. After they have cleared your home of any dangers, you will need to call a professional electrician in order to fix the issue. It could be that there was a bad connection between the electrical wires and the individual breaker. The Breaker Keeps Flipping Off If you have a breaker or two that keeps flipping into the off position, you are going to want to have a professional electrician take a look at it soon. Sure, flipping into the off position is something that the breakers are designed to do in the event that it becomes overloaded with too much electricity. However, if this is happening more times than not, you need to have an electrical company figure out the reason for that and correct it. This way, you are not going to have to deal with a breaker that is flipping off every time you use the stove, dryer, or too many wall outlets. The Lights Flicker A Lot A small flickering of the lights in your home does not automatically mean that you have a major problem. However, if it seems to be happening regularly or more often than before, there could be a loose connection in the breaker box. This is not something that you want to inspect or try to correct on your own in order to make sure that you are not getting shocked. Once a licensed electrician is on the scene, the connections can be tightened in a matter of minutes and everything should be able to go back to normal. As you can tell, there are a few things you will notice that should tell you that it is time to call in the professional electrician. Of course, even though you might be in a hurry to have your electrical issues resolved, you are going to want to make sure that you are only hiring the best in the business since there is so much at risk when it comes to the electrical in your...

read more