Tag Archives: electrical safety

The Importance of an Annual Electrical Safety Check

The Importance of an Annual Electrical Safety CheckAn electrical safety check might prevent serious damage to your home or any of its major appliances. The electrical system is easy to ignore since it’s out of sight and silent. But doing so could be risky because electricity is a powerful force. A periodic inspection will assure you that it’s working as it should and meets all safety codes.

Scheduling an Electrical Safety Check

Home safety professionals recommend that a licensed electrician look it over once a year to keep minor issues from becoming catastrophic problems. If your electrical system shows any of these signs of electrical problems, schedule an inspection promptly:

  • Frequent circuit breakers trips
  • Lights flicker, which could indicate a short in the wiring in the walls or the cord
  • Humming noises from the breaker box. This is never a good sign, and usually means that the breaker is bad and won’t trip even if it’s overloaded. Heat will build and it has the potential to start a fire.
  • The home is more than 25 years old. The wiring insulation may have disintegrated or the outlets have aged.
  • The wiring is aluminum. Over time, aluminum wiring oxidizes, which increases the resistance on the wiring, causing it to overheat.

What to Expect During an Electrical Safety Check

During an electrical safety check, the electrician will test the circuit breakers and visually inspect the switches and outlets. Outward signs of problems include switches that don’t work and discolored outlets.

Excessive use of power strips or multi-outlets usually indicates you need more outlets or receptacles. If your circuit breaker box is full, you may need a new, larger box to handle your present power demand and provide room for future expansion.

Other issues might include shorts when using certain switches, outlets or appliances. The electrician will pinpoint the problem, whether it’s in the wall, a fixture, or an appliance.

It makes sense to have an electrical safety check to avoid preventable damage to your home, appliances, or devices. If you’d like to learn more, contact Roth Heating & Cooling, providing licensed HVAC and electrical services for Portland-area homeowners.

Our goal is to help educate our customers in the Metro Portland, Oregon area about energy and home comfort issues (specific to HVAC systems). 

Tips on How to Install Under Cabinet Kitchen Lighting

Tips on How to Install Under Cabinet Kitchen Lighting Regardless of the lighting source in your kitchen, it always seems like your counters are never bright enough. Fortunately, there are several options available for task lighting that can brighten up your workspace even if you’re not renovating your kitchen.

With new products and some helpful tips, you can install under cabinet kitchen lighting to shed some light on your counters. If you run the wiring through your kitchen’s base cabinets, the installation will be much easier than fishing electrical wire through your walls. Whenever you attempt an electrical project, make sure to follow all safety procedures to avoid dangerous problems

  • Locate an electrical source. Since under cabinet lighting doesn’t draw a lot of power, you can tap into an existing light switch as your power source. Make sure you know which breaker your switch is located on, so you can kill the power.
  • Map the wiring path. Before doing any drilling, carefully map out the wiring path through your base cabinets. The cabinet closest to your power source is the best location for your new junction box.
  • Install flex. Follow the route you planned and drill holes in your cabinet to accommodate a 1/2″ steel flex. Once you have the flex in place, fish your wiring through it. The flex will protect the wiring from any disturbances when you’re using the base cabinets.
  • Mount the lights and complete the wiring. Once you’ve mounted your lights, you’ll have to wire them, and then connect your wiring to the power source. You should consider adding a dimmer switch for ambient lighting and as a power-saving feature.

Provided you have electrical knowledge and follow safety practices, you can install under cabinet kitchen lighting by yourself. Roth Heating & Cooling has been serving the Portland and surrounding areas for more than 35 years and has an experienced electrical staff that can install your lighting. Contact us for an estimate today.

Our goal is to help educate our customers in the Metro Portland area about energy and home comfort issues (specific to HVAC systems).

Credit/Copyright Attribution: “PJStock/Shutterstock”

Electrical Safety Tips to Teach Children of Any Age

Electrical Safety Tips to Teach Children of Any AgeWe all want to keep our children safe. With this in mind, it’s important to teach them the potential dangers of electricity at a young age. Here are 10 electrical safety tips to teach children of any age:

  1. Don’t plug too many things into one outlet or extension cord. It could damage your home’s electrical system or even cause a fire.
  2. Make sure all electric cords are tucked away and not laying out where people can trip on them or pets can find and chew on them.
  3. Never climb the fence around an electrical substation. No matter what gets over the fence, whether it’s a ball, toy or pet, ask an adult to call the electric company to get it out for you.
  4. Remove plugs from outlets carefully – don’t yank them out. This can cause damage to the appliance, to the plug and to the outlet.
  5. When you’re flying a kite, never fly it around substations or power lines. The kite and the string will conduct electricity and send it through you and into the ground.
  6. If you need to use something that uses electricity to run, ask a grown-up for help.
  7. Before you climb a tree, look up and make sure there are no power lines around the tree. The tree’s branches can conduct electricity and send it through you.
  8. Remind grown-ups to put safety caps on all unused electrical outlets. This will keep you safe, and also help to save energy by stopping drafts.
  9. If your mom or dad is using outdoor equipment, like a ladder or chainsaw, remind them to watch out for electrical wires.
  10. Keep all electrical appliances and other things far away from water. Water and electricity are very dangerous together.

Contact Roth Heating and Cooling for help with questions about electrical safety, and to learn more electrical safety tips to use in your Portland home.

Our goal is to help educate our customers in the Metro Portland area about energy and home comfort issues (specific to HVAC systems).

Credit/Copyright Attribution: “marinini/Shutterstock”