Don’t flame your own home!

Your home is a safe haven from the world, a place to relax and unwind with family and friends. Unfortunately, hidden dangers may be lurking behind the walls that threaten your safety and that of your loved ones. That’s why it’s a good time to find out just how safe your home is from electrical hazards.

According to the National Fire Protection Association, there’s plenty of reason for concern: Nearly 32,000 fires in the home were caused by faulty house wiring or damaged wiring devices each year between 1999 and 2002. However, there is something you can do to safeguard your home from dangerous electrical hazards. The Leviton Institute recommends that with May being National Electrical Safety Month, homeowners conduct

an inspection of their home and outdoor areas as part of their regular spring-cleaning projects.

First, make sure pool pumps, hot tubs and outdoor appliances that require electricity are plugged into GFCI-protected outlets with weatherproof covers. Ground fault circuit interruptors safeguard you and your loved ones from dangerous electrical shock. GFCIs detect when current is leaking from an electrical circuit to ground and automatically shut off the power at the receptacle. They have saved thousands of lives since their introduction in 1972. When choosing a GFCI, it’s important to ensure the device is stamped with the UL logo.

In addition, kitchens, bathrooms, laundry rooms, or any other place around the house that has a water source within six feet of the receptacle needs GFCI protection. Check all outlets and switches for cracks, broken parts or loose-fitting plugs. Replace defective devices immediately, as well as those that feel hot to the touch. You should also inspect all power cords and extension cords: Those showing signs of cracking, fraying or obvious wear should be replaced immediately. Never run extensions under rugs, carpets or furniture where damage can hide.

Make sure outlets are not overloaded. Most household outlets are typically rated around 15-20 amps. Plugging too many appliances into one outlet can exceed that rating and create a fire or shock hazard.

When you use an extension cord, always plug the appliance into the extension cord first before plugging the extension cord into the outlet.

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Don’t Take Your HVAC System For Granted

The system that heats and cools your house is ordinarily a forgettable portion of our lives. We expect these to always work and us at a comfortable temperature all year round, no matter what the surface temperature. However, all homeowners have to make sure you be a part of up keeping this helpful system, as replacement or repair costs greatly outweigh the cost of just a little regular maintenance.

It’s not unusual for failures to happen when a system is turned on from a long time of inactivity. Your heating system continues to be dormant for quite a few months and you should contain it checked out ahead of the heating season is for us. If you have gas heat, a technician can search for leaks inside heat exchanger, and also ensure that you adapt to make sure that carbon monoxide (CO) is just not being produced.

You must understand that HVAC systems need regular maintenance. During the warm weather, you may have to check into the body more frequently. The more you utilize your air conditioning unit, the more it can be prone for problems. It is wise to follow the common adage that the ounce of prevention is preferable to a pound of cure. Do not wait for one’s body to break down before you decide to make contact with a maintenance company. Even if one’s body is functional, you’ll want it checked from time to time except if you desire the scenario above to take place to you personally.

The condenser coil from the HVAC is the one other part that is susceptible to damages subsequently hindering normal drawing of fresh air into the equipment. Some from the most standard reason for such damages includes dust, leaves as well as other unwanted objects which might penetrate to the condenser coil. These foreign and harmful objects ought to be removed by gently washing the coil using substances including weak dish soap solution with water. High-pressure washers are discouraged from washing the coil because they can readily damage the thin fins.

Electrical connections usually become loose with expansion and contraction from temperature changes throughout every season. This brings about hot connections, reduced voltage to motors, high amperage that could damage motors. Most HVAC maintenance contracts include checking this, but it’s not normally done during non-contract service calls.

Along with routine maintenance, your house furnace should be inspected annually, usually before the cold winter season, to make sure it is functional and will be able to keep your household warm. A furnace inspection ought to be done by a seasoned heating repair or HVAC professional. This inspection will ensure your furnace is working efficiently – improving your premiums on energy bills and adequately heating your home.

Heat pumps, boilers and oil-fired furnaces demand a yearly maintenance check, while cleaner operating gas fired equipment uses a visit every other year. But in each case, an HVAC servicing company will inspect for leaks, dirty filters, rust, soot and corroded electrical contacts, cleaning and replacing parts as necessary. In forced air and domestic hot water boiler systems, the technician will also inspect ductwork or pipes, blowers or pumps, registers or radiators, along with the fuel line, gas meter and oil tank where applicable. The technician may also inspect furnace, heat pump or boiler parts to check for excessive wear and corrosion. Finally, the technician will search for sufficient draft using smoke pencils and look deadly carbon monoxide levels.

As a homeowner, regular maintenance and inspection of your respective HVAC system is important. But it is also equally important a professional inspection is conducted annually. A HVAC contractor is trained to do a rigorous inspection of your respective system in order to find conditions the normal homeowner wouldn’t be able to unearthing. This annual inspection is a great time that you should have small repairs made before they transform into larger, higher priced problems.

Saving Money on Electricity: A Money-Saving Maintenance

An electrical appliance that does not work at maximum capacity results in less than ideal performance and higher electricity bills. That is why it is best to save on electricity in order to save more money.

Here is how you can get everything saving up:

1. Keep your appliances clean and well maintained. Regular cleaning and maintenance keeps your appliances in top shape, hence, it will perform better and consumes lesser energy. Energy saved is money saved.

2. Have an annual checkup by a qualified service technician. This can reduce the appliance’s operating costs by as much as 20%, extend the life of the system, and improve its safety and air quality.

3. When using air conditioners, it is best to establish your comfort temperature, and then setting your thermostat at that level permanently. This will definitely save on electric bills because the air conditioning unit takes less energy to cool air four to five degrees than it does to cool air eight to ten degrees.

4. Replace any items that may have been 10 years or older already. Old appliances are most likely not at their optimum efficiency. By replacing them, your electric bills may be cut by half.

5. If you experience a power outage, make sure you turn off the switch on your appliances and allow time to pass before turning the appliances on again when the power returns.

6. In refrigerators, do not overstuff compartments with bottles and plastic containers. Cool air must circulate freely to avoid overworking the condenser.

Also, try not to leave the door of your refrigerator as open as possible or open longer than what is needed. This will have the tendency to allow the cool air to break out.

7. Always try to look for the “energy saving” logo or notes whenever you buy your new appliances. Buying an appliance with a logo that states it consumes lower energy, it will definitely let you save more money on your electricity.

8. Always use energy saving lights or light bulbs. These energy saving lights or light bulbs usually last up to 12 times longer. Plus, energy saving light bulbs consume less energy. Hence, you will be able to save more money just by saving on electricity.

9. Use energy-saving facilities at home like energy-saving windows or energy-saving appliances. This will lessen the consumption of energy and, thus, will let you save on money.

For instance, use a “double-glazed” window instead of the ordinary window.

10. Use insulators at home. This will not let the warm or cool air out, and vice-versa.

Indeed, saving on electricity will definitely save more money.

Home Electrical Safety and Efficiency

We rely on electrical systems for virtually every appliance in our dwelling. Electrical systems are useful and strong but quite dangerous if not maintained properly. You can save a lot of money on your utility bills as well if you know the basics of electrical safety and efficiency.

Using electric wires
Electric wires ought to be utilized for the function for which they’re designed. Do not use a wire as a leash or a fabric line or change it to suit a distinct function. Consistently ensure before using the wire is securely plugged on the wall socket. Be sure to do not overload the wire and sub panels and constantly make sure you’re using the appropriate one in terms of kind, weight and length. For example, a wire that’s made for indoor use should not be used outside.

Preventing electric fires
Your house is placed by flickering light switches in danger of an electric fire. You should not use any wires that are damaged or attempt running electric repairs on your own. Replace them promptly, for those who have tools that give off a light jolt when in use. In the event of an electric fire, use an extinguisher and not water or baking soda, to fight with it and run for security.

Using electric appliances
Use just hands that are dry to touch appliances and be sure to switch off the power supply from the wall socket before unplugging or plugging your electric appliances.

Electrical outlets
Cover suitably in your house particularly if you’ve got children. Ensure there is no wiring hanging outside the wall socket. In places which are subjected to water like kitchen, swimming pool or toilets, choose the best wall socket.

Be extra cautious when socializing with electricity outside the home. For example, keep any trees around your house way from power lines. You are able to do it by pruning consistently. Above all, do not touch a power line that’s gone down in an attempt to discover if it is live. Consistently understand that getting into contact using a power line is deadly.