Things to Consider – Part 3

This is a 5 part Series covering the procedure for considering a rewire of an older home and the steps we take to rewire a home. We have also answered a few common questions.

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  • To even start the process you need to think of a couple of things first; like where do I start, well .  .  .  thats easy.  The first thing any good Electrician is going to do is to start outside at the meter base, we will asses it and see if it has grounding, exterior disconnect, the right size conductors up to the utility, the condition of those conductors, and are they falling apart, are they showing the wire, is the insulation in good shape, and if there is any grounding and its condition.

Disclaimer:   This is meant as an informational blog only, as always contact your local licensed and insured electrical contractor to work on your home and business.

 

Safety; Keeping it clean and clear

Lets talk safety again, can you see a problem in these photos?

IMG_0389 IMG_0388The problem is there is no clearance for the Electricians to work on the meter.   What happens if the meter starts sparking?  Oh my goodness, then you have your AC unit on fire also!  Plus the heat from the AC unit going can heat up the meter.   Electricians need room to work.  There is actually code on this, from the NEC Code Book –  “For equipment serving between 120 volts and 250 volts, the regulations require a minimum of three feet of clearance. The width of the working space in front shall be 30 inches minimum or width of the equipment. The OSHA standard (29 CFR1910.305 (d)) requires a dead front on electrical panel boards.”

imagesThere are many times Electricians have to wade through boxes or storage containers or outside equipment such as wheelbarrows, lawn mowers, hoses, etc to get to the panel/meter or box they are working on, which causes an unsafe environment for them.  Also, again, if there is sparking coming from the panel or meter or electrical box and it sparks and hits a cardboard box in your storage area, then you have bigger problems then a light or outlet not working.

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So, lets keep it clean for your safety and ours!

 

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Disclaimer:  this is an information blog, not meant as a how to, please always call your local insured and licensed electrical contractor to work on your electrical!

 

Doorbell Cameras/Security

Lets talk Doorbell Cameras and Security!

Unknown-4We want our homes and families safe!  We want to protect our belongings!  We want to feel safe in our own home!   We want our loved ones to be safe when we are not home!

( YES, We install door bell cameras )

There are so many different options out there

Costco has some

Walmart has some

Home Depot  has some

Ebay  

Amazon

There are a ton  of options on the web.

So, how do we know we get the best security system, or how to install it correctly?

Disclaimer – Always read the installation instructions and directions of each device they are all different and you need to understand there limitations and requirements.

 

Lets talk benefits first.  How many times have we seen on the news or  on UTube about the burglars caught on the security camera.  When they are in plain sight they deter the robbers, because they don’t want to be .  How about the porch bandits that steal your amazon or eBay delivery, these can deter the bandits or catch them in the act.

Video Camera  door bells help you know who is there at the door before you get to the door, some come with intercoms thats you can talk to the people at your some  you can link to your phone and check out who is at the door while you are in the basement or out back in your garden.

And of course, they increase your home value because of the safety reasons.

Yes, you can install the system yourself, but getting a professional to install your system can insure your quality of the system.  They can talk to you about different systems they have seen, different systems they have worked to problems others have had to help you get the best.  They are able to connect it to your electrical system, you could possibly get more cameras around the house, there are a lot of different options an electrician can help you with to get a better system.

 

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Disclaimer:  This post is an informational post not legal advice.  Always hire a licensed, qualified, insured electricians to work on your home.

 

 

Hiring the right Electrical Company/Electrician

We talk a lot about “make sure you hire a licensed and insured electrical company to do your work”   But do you know how or what to look for?

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Why should I pay more money to hire a licensed Electrician than an unlicensed Electrician?  All Electricians- Master and  Journeyman – Have a minimum of 4 years schooling and on the job training and then they have to qualify and test with the state before the board approves them to be a licensed journeyman then another 3 years minimum before they can test to be a Master Electrician.

 

They are all required 16 hours continuing Ed every two years (state law)  to renew their licenses.  Continuing Ed goes over the new laws and new requirements.  Electrical Contractors have to have an additional 8 hours to renew their licenses.    This is to keep the workers up to date on everything.  NEC (National Electrical Code) also puts out an expensive book every two years that electricians have to go by.  OSHA has requirements that Electricians have to abide by also.  So, if you have a licensed Electrician, vs an unlicensed electrician,  more than likely they are up to date on all the continuing laws and regulations.  Really, who would you rather have working on your home?  You can ask to see their licenses, it is required that they carry it on them. You can look on the state website DOPL to check if their licensing is current also. Its fast and easy to check.

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Why should I make sure my Electrician has insurance coverage?   Insurance coverage for contractors covers both the electrician and the homeowner.

How can I know my Electrician has the right experience:   Talk to your Electrician to see what work they have done in the past.  This will help you know if they are able to do the work you need.  Also talk to friends and neighbors about their experiences and check out reviews online.

Make sure your Electrician listens to what you need and want and what your concerns are:  Make sure they know what your problem is and they are addressing the right problem.

Remember, it might feel like you are saving money to do the work yourself, but we get lots of calls that start out with “I was just doing ** and now I have no electricity in my home.”   Electricians have to go to school to learn what they do professionally, you wouldn’t go to your next door neighbor and ask them to put your braces on, right?

 

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Disclaimer:  Remember what you just learned, always call a licensed and insured up to date Electrician to safely do work on your home. The way you want it done.

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Knob and Tube Wiring – Dangerous!!!!

Do you live in a home that was built between 1880 and 1940?  Have you had the Electrical replaced since then?  Commonly used in these old houses are what is called Knob and Tube Wiring.  It is considered to be DANGEROUS!  If you do, you need to have your home inspected right away and new Electrical system installed.

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Some of the biggest safety problems are the lack of a ground conductor, and the switches were often placed on the neutral wire, turning off the circuit, but not the current.  Some people say when this was installed correctly, it was superior to how it is done now.  Due to age and new safety procedures, though, these practices are severely outdated and cause a significant safety hazard.  Some people try to tie into the old wires with new wires which the old wires are not rated for the new loads.  This can cause the disintegration in the insulation around the wire, which is there for your safety and for your homes safety.  Also, through the years, dust and mice are most likely to have corrupted the protection tubing also, leaving copper wiring open and unprotected.  People have also tried to insulate their homes around the Knob and Tube wiring and this is also a huge fire problem, the Knob and Tube Wiring were meant to be left open to cool, so covering them with insulation, is very, very dangerous.

When these systems where built they had no idea that we would have all of life’s extra little things to help us out.  All they had was one light and outlet in each room and if they were lucky a fridge.  Now there is an outlet or two on every wall, custom can lighting and iPhones, I pads, computers, laptops, and iPods to charge daily and everything else you can think of.  The old systems just can’t hold the loads.  I can go on and on about the dangers but I want you to be able to sleep at night !

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Homeowners Insurance Companies don’t like to insure homes with this type of wiring in it because of the potential danger.  Some require it to be inspected and signed off to be safe and some require it to be replaced. So, like always, have your home inspected by a certified, qualified, licensed, insured, Electrician.  Know your local and state laws about home requirements.

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Sabin Electric is a licensed, insured Electrical Contractor who works with all the different Electrical needs.  Giver us a call – 8013585170!

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