All About Electrical Systems

Learning The Basics of Electrical Systems

Electrical systems keep a household functioning. They provide light, a source of entertainment, and the ability to run appliances such as refrigerators, chest freezers, electric stovetops and ovens, and other useful appliances and devices.

Without electrical systems, homeowners would be living much as the Amish do. Since that lifestyle is not for everyone, it’s important that homeowners understand their electrical systems, how to operate them safely, and what signs of an electrical problem are. Knowing how electrical systems work and how to keep safe if problems arise can save homeowners a headache later on.

Parts of an Electrical System

electric meterAn electrical system is made up of several different components. Some of the most important features are the electric meter, the disconnect switch, the breaker panel or electrical panel, the circuits, and the outlets.

In short, the electric meter is a meter, usually located on the outside of a home, that tells how much energy is used each month. This meter allows the electric company to gauge energy usage and understand how much to charge each home. A disconnect switch allows homeowners to turn off certain electrical currents/appliances.

The breaker panel houses all the circuit breakers, and the circuit breakers control the electricity and where it is distributed. If a breaker is flipped, part of the electricity in a home or building goes off. Each circuit controls a different area of a building or home. As everyone should know, the outlets are the wall components into which items and appliances are plugged. This allows devices to become energized and to do their intended work.

Signs of Electrical Repair Issues

burning smellThere are several signs to look out for to determine if electrical system problems are present. Some of the most common signs to look for include:

Should any of these issues become present and an electrical system problem is suspected, homeowners should contact a qualified professional immediately before the damage worsens or an electrical fire happens.

The Importance of Safety

It is not recommended for homeowners to attempt electrical work on their own or to have amateur electrical work done. In doing so, homeowners risk dangerous situations such as a fire or electric shock. That is why hiring a professional with the experience, knowledge, training, and tools to handle these issues accordingly is important.

Furthermore, it’s important to realize that circuits should never be overloaded, and neither should electrical outlets. This can cause significant electrical problems and may result in a fire if things become too overloaded. It is not wise to use extension cords to run more appliances than what an outlet should be running. Each outlet and circuit has a set number of watts and voltages that they can handle, and these numbers should be adhered to.

If homeowners are unsure about any of these issues or how best to practice electrical safety, they should consult a professional. It’s also important to have electrical repairs done by a professional electrician to avoid the risks and damages associated with DIY electrical work.

About Grand Canyon Home Services

Grand Canyon Home Services has over 20 years of experience serving Peoria, AZ, and the surrounding areas. They provide upfront pricing, same-day service, free estimates, and free second opinions. Call them today for electrical services in Peoria, AZ.

How to Stay Cool On Hot Summer Nights

Save Money On Cooling Costs This Summer

Homeowners can save money on the skyrocketing costs of utility bills this summer with these AC tips from local experts. Air conditioning is one of the biggest ways that modern homes use power. 

Optimizing the AC system during the summer can help homeowners save hundreds of dollars a year on cooling costs. Scheduling maintenance and changing the filter can go a long way in promoting efficient AC performance during the hot summer months. Experts also recommend several thermostat settings to save money on the summer AC bills. 

Adjust Thermostat Temperature

The ideal thermostat temperature for the summer months is 78 degrees. This may seem high to some people, but homeowners can simultaneously use fans to make the indoor temperature more comfortable. A temperature of 78 degrees Fahrenheit is a comfortable temperature for most people. 

Setting the thermostat at 78 degrees during the summertime can save homeowners a significant amount on their power bills. Experts estimate that each degree over 72 degrees could equal 3% in savings on cooling costs. 

The thermostat should also be adjusted during the night and while away from the home to optimize energy savings. On nights when the temperature drops, homeowners can take advantage of the moderate weather by turning off the AC and opening the windows. While on summer vacation away from home, the air conditioner should be turned off to save even more money. 

Smart Thermostat Installation

thermostatThermostats control the overall function of the HVAC system. Installing a new thermostat can improve the performance of the AC for the summer months. New thermostats are more efficient than older models. 

Programmable thermostats make it easy for homeowners to adjust their thermostats at night or while away. Most new programmable thermostats connect with smartphone apps. Homeowners can adjust the temperature at home even while away from the house. 

Programmable thermostats can automate adjusting the thermostat for energy savings and convenience. Smart thermostats take optimization to the next level by learning the home’s environment and making adjustments for optimal efficiency and comfort. Homeowners can save significantly by installing a smart thermostat or programmable thermostat. 

Air Filter Replacement

filter Replacing the air filter on time promotes better indoor air quality and efficient HVAC performance. Most homes need their air filters changed every three months. However, homes with large families, pets, or smokers may want to replace their air filters monthly. 

Not changing the air filter often enough can cause reduced airflow and electric bills to increase. Eventually, the dirty filter can cause the system to break down. Dust and other debris can clog up the inside of the HVAC machinery. 

Air filters are mesh screens that filter out dust, hair, and other debris from the AC air intake. Without a clean air filter, dust and other contaminants can collect in the air ducts and then get recirculated into the air. Investing in a heavy-duty air filter can help to promote better air conditioner performance this summer. 

About Grand Canyon Home Services

Grand Canyon Home Services has over 20 years of experience serving the community of Sun City, AZ, and the surrounding areas. They provide upfront pricing, same-day service, free estimates, and free second opinions. Call them today for air conditioning services in Sun City, AZ.

Maintenance Tips To Keep the AC Running

There’s No Reason for a Faulty Air Conditioner

Proper air conditioner servicing is crucial for an efficient and smooth-running system. By implementing the air conditioner maintenance tips from this guide, homeowners will avoid getting stuck with a faulty cooling system this summer, especially since it’s so hot. Also, routine AC maintenance can help homeowners save on their cooling bills.

Check and Replace Old Air Filters

replace air filters Different types of air filters are available, and each has specific features depending on the home’s and its family’s needs. Replacing the air filter is one of the easiest and least time-consuming parts of air conditioner maintenance because after distinguishing which filter is correct for the home, a multipack can be bought and stored in the garage for swifter swaps.

It is recommended that the air filters be changed at least every three months, depending on the weather temperature and allergen aggression. In months when trees and flowers create more pollen or when the temperature is at its highest temperatures, it is advised the filters be changed once a month to ensure optimal air quality. If an air filter is not changed regularly, the air conditioner may take longer to cool air because it has to work twice as hard to pull air through a dirty, clogged filter.

Declutter the Space Around the AC

Another easy way to keep an air conditioner cooling at its most efficient is to remove all excess plants, debris, or storage from the area around the outdoor unit. This easy step can keep the air conditioner from overheating and working twice as hard to cool itself down. It also eliminates the need to worry about any heating components being too close for comfort and starting a fire.

This task is a quick one to cross off the list. A quick sweep and check of the area throughout the year can keep the monthly energy bills and the hazards low!

Schedule Routine Maintenance

schedule maintenanceRoutine maintenance from a qualified technician is recommended for a thorough investigation and servicing of the cooling system that homeowners cannot check. This checkup includes cleaning the inside and outside coils in the inside AC unit and the outside, brushing debris and build-up from vents, inspecting that the system is cooling properly, and identifying potential early issues that could become larger later on.

This inspection can be scheduled on the homeowner’s time and is recommended to be done in spring to ensure a decent time slot and no last-minute rush. These easy tips can help lower electric bills and ensure that the air conditioner will last as long, if not longer than expected.

About Grand Canyon Home Services

Grand Canyon Home Services has over 20 years of experience serving its neighbors in Peoria, AZ, and the surrounding areas. They provide straightforward pricing, same-day service, and free second opinions. Call them today for air conditioning services in Peoria, AZ.

How to Improve Electrical Safety Practices for Ultimate Safety

Homeowners who decide to work on electrical appliances should always make safety a top priority. All systems with strong current running through them have the potential to cause harm, whether one comes directly in contact with a live component or indirectly due to conduction.

Electricity can cause shocks, burns and death by electrocution. Faulty electrical work can also result in fires and property damage. If you’re a homeowner and thinking about undertaking an electrical project, you should learn about the hazards and risks involved. Here are some ways you can improve electrical safety.

Check for Faulty Plugs and Wires

One of the most basic and crucial steps to take before starting a job is to inspect an electrical appliance’s plugs and wires. It could mean the difference between a job well done and disaster for you and your home. Here are some things you should look out for:

  • Plugs & WiresMake sure there’s no exposed wiring or cracks in the insulation
  • Check for any kinks in the cords
  • Ensure there are no breaks or loose pins in wall outlets
  • Plugs should be fully inserted, no exposed part of the prongs
  • Avoid overloading by checking to see only one cord is being used per outlet
  • Inspect appliances to see if they are properly grounded
  • Keep all cords dry and away from water sources
  • Chords should be covered or kept away from foot traffic

Hit the pause button on any job if the plugs or wires don’t match up with any of the above and perform repairs or replacements as necessary before you continue.

Tone Down the DIY Projects

No DIYAlways ask yourself, before working on an electrical appliance by yourself, if it’s worth putting your own life or that of a loved one in your own hands just to save a few bucks.

It’s essentially what you’re doing before beginning any electrical project. Different tasks have certain levels of risk assigned to them, but ultimately you may be putting people and your property in harm’s way.

Don’t forget about your home’s insurance policy. Any screw-ups or shoddy work could result in unsafe circumstances that may lead to major damage accompanied by huge financial costs. No matter how good you feel about embarking on a do-it-yourself project, it’s always worth it to think twice about contracting the services of a trained technician.

Don’t Mix Water and Electricity

No Water ContactThis is a no-brainer, but water and electricity don’t go well together. Be careful whenever you’re forced to work on electrical appliances near sources of water or wet areas.

Water is a good conductor for electricity, which means if you touch a wet surface that’s exposed to a live wire, you may become shocked due to current passing through your body.

Under circumstances where you must work near water, make sure any equipment not designed to get wet is secured in a dry area and any tools you use have a safety switch. Remember to keep any cords out of the water.

When it comes to electrical projects, you can never be too safe. The consequences of making a mistake can be dire. If you’re not sure about something, homeowners should always call up a professional for advice.

Explore 6 Fun Boiler Facts & Learn More About These Efficient Systems

 

A new efficient condenser-style boiler that runs on natural gas can improve your life in multiple ways. First of all, you will find yourself paying much less for fuel, and secondly, you will find yourself breathing cleaner air, as the new condenser models do allow exhaust to escape the system.

Investing in a boiler is well worth it, but first, you might want to learn a few more facts about how these boilers can be an inexpensive heating system for your home.

Boiler QuestionFact #1 – Boilers Do Not Actually Boil Water

A century ago, boiler water was heated to vapor, and that is how they originally got their name. Nowadays the water in boilers is usually heated to about sixty degrees for heating radiators.

Boilers located in freestanding water heaters can be in the range of 145 to 190 degrees.

Fact #2 – Boilers Work Using the Principles of Radiant Heat

Working BoilerThe water in your boiler system is heated by a natural gas flame, that you can switch on and off at will. The blue flame heats water in your pipes, sending up to provide warmth to all of your radiators.

Pipes may also be located behind walls, providing what it is called radiant heat. The warm water eventually cools and flows back down through your pipes to the boiler, where it is reheated and goes through the same process again.

Fact #3 – Low Water Pressure Can Affect Your Boiler

Water Pressure

Before you install a new boiler, you need to make sure that your intake from your water main has enough flow to support the boiler and your daily water use.

Otherwise, certain taps may not work or provide hot water when you need. Having your plumbing inspected by a professional can help you determine whether or not you have enough water pressure to sustain your lifestyle needs.

Not looking into this can result in the upper floors of your home being unheated.

Fact #4 – Boiler Heating Systems Do Not Add or Remove Humidity

HumidityOne of the biggest myths about boiler heating systems is that they add moisture to the air.

Technically these systems are radiant heat, which means that the heat is pulled from an outside source and heats objects such as radiators, rather than warming the air itself.

This is unlike a system such as electric heat, which automatically dries the air out. No humidity is added to your indoor air.

Fact #5 – Boilers Are Incredibly Energy Efficient

Energy Efficient Boiler

Boilers are energy efficient because there is no way for the heat to escape the system, once it is warmed.

Modern condenser boilers do not let heat escape from an exhaust component called a flue.

Hot water in the pipes cool naturally and then flow back down to the boiler to be warmed all over again.

Fact #6 – Boilers Can Save You Up to 90% On Your Energy Bill

Save MoneyIf you get a water heater replacement for your 15-year old boiler with a brand-new condenser one, you can save 90% on annual costs for heating, especially if you don’t turn it up too high.

Furthermore, every time you turn down your heat a degree, you can save 10% on your heating bill in Peoria. Finally, aside from saving money and energy, a new boiler can also help your family breathe cleaner easier.

This is because they don’t pollute the air with particulates and carbon dioxide the way that older models do. Boilers that are older can be retrofitted in some cases, in which case, it is a good idea for you to consult with a professional plumber to see if this is possible, or if you should invest in a new “green” boiler.

Superhero Plumbers Use Numerous Heroic Tactics to Battle Unclean Water in the Home

You might be wondering why plumbers are often referred to as superheroes in their own communities. It is because they risk their own lives every time they enter a home contaminated with black mold and pathogens.

The types of viruses, bacteria, and protozoa found in water contaminated with sewage are infectious and can cause death. Your plumber superhero is often the first person risking health issues due to dirty water, as he is exposing himself to dysentery, cholera, typhoid, E. coli, HIV, SARS, Hepatitis A, all kinds of protozoa, and chemicals that cause serious symptoms.

5 Tactics That Superhero Plumbers Use Bring Clean Water to All

Plumbers use several heroic tactics to battle unclean water in your home including the following measures.

Stomach Ache Sick1. Plumbers will wade into very dirty waters to do the necessary water testing. After a big flood or a storm, it is often necessary for your water to be tested at a lab to make sure that it is not contaminated with life-threatening pathogens such as typhoid, cholera, or dysentery.

2. Plumbers who respond in a flooding emergency often expose themselves to damp structures that could collapse in on them due to weakening from water saturation. Often these plumbers will also help you rescue pets and important papers as well as help you set up a sump pump and fans to help get rid of excess water and dry the place out.

Often these plumbers will also help you rescue pets and important papers as well as help you set up a sump pump and fans to help get rid of excess water and dry the place out.

3. Plumbers also face contracting diseases when they install backflow device that are worn out or that have been damaged by flooding and storms. This is crucial because it is these backflow devices that will prevent even more water from being mixed with raw sewage.

4. Superhero plumbers can install UV filters in your pipes and also replace damaged old pipes if necessary. UV filters kill the up to 99.9 percent of all pathogens known including those that cause diseases and fatalities like cholera, dysentery, and typhoid.

5. Plumbers are also very vulnerable to being exposed to black mold, as they are usually the first to come in contact with it as they search crawlspaces and basements for signs of proliferation. Toxic mold is very deadly and can cause severe respiratory distress so plumbers who often wear heavy-duty protective masks while they perform this duty.

Water ConservationIf you are wondering how we can aid plumbers by practicing proper water conservation, then be sure to take his or her advice about installing back-flow mechanisms and low-flow toilets in your home.

This will reduce your risk of having the back-flow mechanism malfunctioning during a flooding emergency because the water levels in your pipes will always be kept very low.