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Information and Tips

Code requires all jacuzzi type tubs to be GFI protected. The device to control this option is located either in the master closet or the master commode. It is a no-face (no plug-in type) GFI device.

Categories:
Bathroom, Electrical Codes, Electrical System Components, GFI-GFCI, Interior Electrical

All motion switches are factory set. Please see your information booklet for adjustments.

Categories:
Electrical System Components, Interior Electrical

Always look at the label inside the recessed can for the maximum bulb wattage to prevent it from overheating.

Wall mount recess (kick light) cans, usually on stairways, have a maximum wattage for bulb replacement of 25 watts.

Recess cans over showers or tubs have a maximum wattage of 40 watts.

Categories:
Bathroom, Electrical System Components, Lighting

Please consider utilizing separate dedicated circuits for each of the following items:

  • Freezers
  • Golf cart chargers
  • Holiday lights
  • Exercise equipment
  • Shop tools
  • Floor heaters (depending on the size and quantity being used)
  • Home office equipment
  • Certain coffee pots or high end counter appliances
  • Vacuum cleaners (Dyson)

This is a list of the more common types of items that typically draw higher current loads. It is not meant to be an exhaustive list of items that may perform better on a dedicated circuit. Always read the manufacturer's instructions and warning labels.

Categories:
Appliances and Devices, Circuit Breakers and Panels, Electrical System Components

Be aware that when using refrigerators in garages, utility rooms, and laundry rooms, the receptacle you are plugging into may not have the proper continuous amperage required to maintain a constant load that a refrigerator or freezer requires. This might cause circuits to trip, such as the GFCI Device or the circuit breaker at the panel. Please consult the manufacturer's instructions prior to making this decision. We recommend purchasing a separate 20 amp circuit for this type of appliance.

Categories:
Circuit Breakers and Panels, Electrical System Components, GFI-GFCI, Interior Electrical, Troubleshooting

Smoke detectors and carbon monoxide detectors have a battery backup, as well as a 120 volt wired connection. If the unit begins to "chirp", it is an indication that the battery is low. Batteries need to be replaced occassionally. Open the battery compartment and replace the 9 volt battery.

Cleaning is also recommended due to dust particles in the air. Do not use chemicals. Instead, use a vacuum to suck out the dust particles, or use compressed air to blow out the particles.

Smoke detectors may sound a false alarm due to a sudden change of humidity, such as shower steam or night air. If a false alarm occurs, push the button to silence the alarm once. Do this only after you have assessed the situation and determined it to be a false alarm and not a life threatening situation. Smoke detectors are interconnected, so when one is set off, they all sound. To locate the alarm that was activated, check the smoke detectors for differently lit LED indicators.

Categories:
Electrical System Components, Interior Electrical, Safety, Troubleshooting

The tendency to trip a breaker depends on the brand and the type of space heater being used. They start at 1500 watts (12.5 amps). The heaters that are designed to look like a fireplace can draw up to 1850 watts (15.5 amps). See below for recommendations:

  • Solution 1: Use with no other devices on.
  • Solution 2: Purchase a dedicated circuit with a minimum of 15 amps.
Categories:
Appliances and Devices, Circuit Breakers and Panels, Interior Electrical, Product Updates

Always check the start and plan-mini if available for placement and locations for all electrical options purchased with your home before contacting us for service.

Categories:
Electrical System Components, Troubleshooting

Lights controlled by switches in two or more locatons are called three way or four way switches. The do not have a set "on" or "off" position, but work in conjunction with the other switch(es). Care should be taken not to assume the device is de-energized because the switch appears to be in the off position.

Many rooms are prewired for ceiling fans. Some of these include two switches. If you do not have a fan installed, these switches may appear to do nothing. Other prewires may also appear to have non-functioning switches, such as floodlight prewires and coach light prewires. Always make sure switches and/or that the circuit is off and de-energized before installing fixtures on these prewires.

Half-switched outlets are common in bedrooms and other living areas. If you locate a receptacle on which only one of the two outlets work, locate the switches in the general area, and then turn each switch until the switch that controls the other half of the outlet is located.

Categories:
Electrical System Components, Interior Electrical, Lighting, Outlets and Switches, Troubleshooting

Most vacuum cleaners start out at 12 amps and go up from there.  For example, Dyson vacuum cleaners, at start up, can draw up to 25 amps.  This can and will trip a breaker. See below for recommendations:

  • Solution 1:  Use an outlet from the bathroom or dining room.
  • Solution 2: Purchase a separate 20 amp circuit with at least two outlets on it for convenience.
Categories:
Appliances and Devices, Circuit Breakers and Panels, Interior Electrical, Product Updates

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