New Years Resolutions for Your Home’s Electrical System
Every year people think through what they have experienced and what they want from the year ahead. Sometimes those plans include your home, and what you’d like to improve. This year, consider your electrical system, and how you can improve both your electrical usage in Florida and your home’s overall safety and value.
Electrical System Savings with LED Bulbs
One of the biggest draws on your energy is your light bulbs. Definitely reduce the number of lights on where you are not present. However, what about the rooms where you do need light?
One of the best ways to reduce the energy your lights use is to use more energy-efficient light bulbs. The first step is CFL bulbs, which use argon gas. However, an even better step is to use energy-efficient LED bulbs.
LED bulbs use about 75% less energy than standard incandescent bulbs and are guaranteed to last for at least three years. They also put off much less heat than the traditional incandescent bulbs. Further, they are not glass so there is no risk of them shattering if they fall.
Make Resetting Your GFCI Outlets a Regular Practice
GFCI outlets are used around water utilities or where moisture may present a problem. GFCI stands for Ground-Fault Circuit Interrupter, and they work as an additional breaker in case there is an unusual fluctuation in the current.
What most people do not realize is that you should reset these outlets in Florida every month. To perform a reset, you simply push the test button and make sure it trips properly. Then press the reset button and ensure that it works properly.
If it does not trip or reset properly, you need to replace the outlet. You can either do this yourself or hire an electrician to do it for you.
Replace the Safety Detector Batteries
In your home, you should have at least two different safety detectors, a smoke detector and a carbon monoxide detector. If you have a large home, you will probably have several detectors throughout your space.
There are two different styles of power for these detectors, either a direct tie into your home’s electrical system or they use batteries. Even those that are hard-wired in will have batteries in them in case you lose power.
You need to be sure you replace those batteries regularly so that if there were ever a problem you know it will work. Make January the month you decide to replace the batteries every year. Also, replace the detector itself if it is time. Carbon monoxide detectors should be replaced every 5 years, and smoke detectors every 10 years.
Take Surge Protection to the Next Level
Most people realize they should use surge protectors in their homes to protect their electric devices. It used to be thought that you only needed these on your television and computers.
However, with the advance in technology throughout the home, you likely have more devices susceptible to surge damage. Given that, one of the best things you can do is have a whole-home surge protector installed.
These usually install directly at the circuit panel. Combining this larger device with individual surge protectors at the point of service provides the best service. For the point of service detector consider those with phone and fiber optic capabilities, being these can also carry electric current.
Reduce Overall Energy Consumption
Finally, work to reduce your overall electric consumption. We already addressed turning lights out in rooms where you do not need them. This alone saves about 1.2 kWh per bulb. If a bedroom as a two bulb light, then that saves 2.4kWH for that one room. If you have lights on in two or three rooms you do not need, that equates to 7.2kWH for every hour they are not on. That can turn into significant savings every month.
Another common electrical bleed is unused electric appliances. Even if the device is not being used, it will draw a minimal amount of power. Now consider all the things you keep plugged in, including your computer, television, coffee pot, stove, toast, charging cables, and more. If you do not want to reach down and unplug each thing every time you are done using it, consider putting them on a switch you can easily turn on and off.
Your Next Move
You should always contact a licensed electrician whenever you consider upgrading or repairing anything electrical. Electricity is nothing to play with, and attempting to fix a problem on your own could worsen your issue or create a bigger problem than you know how to fix. When it comes to installing dedicated circuits, you want to make sure the process goes smoothly and causes no issues.
At D.O.C. Electric Inc., we have the know-how to assist you. We’ll send out a professional electrician to help you figure out which appliances deserve dedicated circuits so that you can configure the electrical system of your home more efficiently and logically. To get in contact with an electrician today, contact us, and we’ll help you get your circuits sorted out.