What Does It Mean for My Electric System to be “Up to Code”?

December 10th, 2014

You have probably heard the phrase “up to code” used before to refer to homes and businesses. Sometimes this applies to building construction, or to the hygiene standards for food service companies. But it can also refer to the electrical system, and this “code” is important for homes and well as commercial buildings. But what exactly does it mean? What is this electrical code and how can you keep your house up to its requirements?

The second part is quicker to answer: to make sure that your home is up to the electrical code, rely on licensed professional electricians only when it’s time for electrical repair in Farmington, CT. At Electrical Connection, Inc., we know exactly what is necessary to keep homes (and businesses) up to code so they remain safe and their electrical systems operate at their best. If you need any electrical repairs or if you have concerns about electrical safety in your home, give us a call right away to schedule service.

The National Electrical Code

What it means “to be up to code” is difficult to answer in a straightforward way because the code is different from one place to another. The National Electrical Code is a set of standard for the safe installation and repair of electrical wiring. However, it is not part of federal law. It instead serves as a guideline for each jurisdiction, such as a city, state, or other municipality, to develop its own version of the code as part of local laws. A jurisdiction can accept the code in whole, in part, adapt it as it sees fit, or even reject the code entirely for a different set of standards. The code receives annual updates.

In practice, this means that you won’t know the specific application of the code for your area. But your local professional electricians will. Keeping up with the code is a major part of their job. This is why it is so important to hire only licensed and trained electricians for any electrical repairs in your house. These electricians will know how to keep all repairs within the standards of the code as applied in the area and maintain a high level of safety.

You can rely on Electrical Connection, Inc. for the electrical repair in Farmington, CT that will keep your house “up to code” and your family safe. We are a Licensed SBE Contractor with the State of Connecticut, so you know that the work you receive from us will live up to the highest standards. Call us for any electrical installation, repair, or inspection work you require.

Why You Should Not Attempt Electrical Repairs on Your Own

December 3rd, 2014

In today’s world, there are a lot of projects you can easily accomplish on your own with a little bit of elbow grease and the help of the internet. Thanks to the World Wide Web, it’s easy for you to find guides and advice online about how to create new things, install home appliances, or make a few simple repairs. However, one job that should always be left to professionals is electrical repair work. Anytime you are working with electrical connections, you should entrust the work to somebody trained on electrical systems.

The most important reason not to pursue any electrical work is the possible risk to your home and health. A minor risk is that the repair will be done incorrectly and you’ll be left without any electricity. But what’s far worse is that an electrical shock can leave you injured, while a faulty repair can spark a series of events that lead to a fire at your home. Professionals have the right tools for the job and spend years learning what a proper repair should look like and how to recognize when something is not quite right.

One of the other major reasons not to pursue any major electrical work without help is that it’s the law! Most municipalities require that you obtain a permit in order to make any major renovations, particularly if they involve the electrical grid.

Finding a Quality Electrician

Luckily, finding a skilled electrician for repairs is not too difficult of a task, especially since we have the help of the internet. If you think you’ve found a quality contractor for electrical repair work, double check their website or outside review sites to make sure they receive good reviews from customers. You should also read through their website or call their office to make sure they are able to perform the specific repair you need.

Of course, you should also only entrust the work to licensed and certified electricians for the work in your home. This not only ensures it’s completed properly, but also that all repairs are done safely as well. For electrical repair in Farmington, call on the trained and experienced electricians at Electrical Connection, Inc, offering 24 hour service for emergency repairs. Give us a call today to schedule an appointment.

10 Facts You Should Know about Thanksgiving

November 27th, 2014

Thanksgiving has been celebrated as an official holiday in the United States for over 150 years, so you may think you understand all there is to know about this family feast. Most of us have heard the story of the pilgrims’ first Thanksgiving in 1621 after arriving in North America on the Mayflower. But did you know that only about half of the people on this ship were actually pilgrims? This fact is one of ten things that may actually surprise you about the Thanksgiving tradition!

  1. Although we often consider Thanksgiving a holiday unique to the United States, many other countries and cultures celebrate their own set of harvest-time and thanksgiving traditions. In Korea, Chu-Sok (or “fall evening”) is put on in remembrance of forefathers on August 15th of every year. Brazil celebrates a contemporary version of the U.S. holiday. Chinese, Roman, and Jewish cultures all have a history of harvest celebrations as well.
  2. President Harry S. Truman began the tradition of a ceremony held before Thanksgiving during which the president receives a turkey. George H.W. Bush was the first to pardon the turkey instead of eating it.
  3. In Minnesota alone, farmers raise over 40 million turkeys a year. In fact, U.S. farmers produce about one turkey for every one person in the country.
  4. According to the New England Journal of Medicine, the average American will gain about one to two pounds every year during the holiday season.
  5. On the other hand, turkey is naturally high in protein and has been known to support and boost immune systems to protect against illness and speed up healing. So feast on!
  6. Abraham Lincoln issued a “Thanksgiving Proclamation” in 1863, but a woman named Sarah Josepha Hale can be credited with the idea. While Thanksgiving had been celebrated at different times of year in many areas of the U.S. for years, it was Hale, prominent magazine editor and author of the rhyme “Mary Had a Little Lamb,” who urged Lincoln to finally establish the national event.
  7. President Franklin D Roosevelt once tried to change the date of Thanksgiving to the second-to-last Thursday of the month in order to extend the holiday shopping season and boost the economy.
  8. Only about half of the people on the Mayflower were what we would consider today as “Pilgrims.” The other (approximately) 50 people were simply trying to find a way over to the New World.
  9. Gobble, gobble! Click, click? While male turkeys make a gobbling noise, females (hens) do not; it’s often described as a clicking.
  10. Even though we celebrate Thanksgiving on the last Thursday of November, the month of June has been declared National Turkey Lovers’ Month by the National Turkey Federation so you can continue the celebration in the summer as well!

From our family here at Electrical Connection Inc., we’d like to wish you and yours a very Happy Thanksgiving!

Options for Under Cabinet Lighting in Your Home

November 19th, 2014

Choosing to install under cabinet lights in your kitchen can improve visibility and make cleanup and other tasks a lot easier. Furthermore, under cabinet lighting can provide an efficient, stylish, and helpful way to light the way late at night in the kitchen when you need a midnight snack or glass of water. There are many options available for homeowners, however, and Electrical Connection would like to help illuminate these choices with today’s post.

  • Puck Lights: Puck lights are small, round individual lights (picture the shape of a hockey puck) wired together. Some puck lights operate on batteries and don’t need to be wired into the home, but professional wiring is recommended for greater convenience. These may be fairly inexpensive and efficient units.
  • Fluorescent strips: Fluorescent strips are common in many homes, but if your older fluorescent under cabinet lighting is flickering or not quite doing the job, you may consider replacement. You can find fluorescent bulbs with a small diameter for a sleek look and greater energy savings.
  • LED Strips: Some homeowners prefer the look of an LED light over a fluorescent light, although they may be a bit more costly. However, fluorescent lights are more energy efficient as they use very little electricity to produce a similar output. Furthermore, LED lights are cool to the touch, so you won’t have to worry about heating up the kitchen or about the safety of little ones in the home.
  • LED Tape: Instead of an LED strip or bar, you may consider LED tape. This type of fixture is thin and flexible, which means you can easily have them installed in under cabinet areas that may have bumps or structures blocking the way.

Selecting the right type of under cabinet lighting often depends on visual preference, but an electrician can help you choose the type of light that is most efficient as well. You should always count on a skilled and certified electrician for these types of installation to ensure proper safety procedures are followed. Electrical Connection, Inc. offers many types of services for indoor lighting in Berlin including professional installation and electrical repair. Call us now!

Should I Install an Automatic Standby Generator for My Home?

November 12th, 2014

Where would we be without electricity? Electricity gets us through the most basic tasks of the day, from powering our ovens and microwaves for cooking, to allowing our alarm clocks to stay on throughout the night so we wake up at the right time. Electricity is vital to some homeowners for very specific and important reasons. Sometimes, a member of the household works at home and requires an electrical connection to work on the computer. In some homes, a family member has an illness that requires there to be an operational HVAC system or some form of medical equipment on throughout the day and night.

So if a sudden power outage hit your home, what would you do? For some homeowners this is a question of vast importance, and many choose to install a generator to protect their loved ones who rely on medical equipment or other electrical appliances to feel well. However, an automatic standby generator can be great for any home, and is a safe and easy way to restore power in the event of a sudden outage. Let’s look at a few of the benefits of this electrical installation.

The Benefits of Automatic Standby Generators

  • Fully Automatic: An automatic standby generator is fully automatic for 24/7 blackout protection. As soon as it senses there is no longer an electrical current flowing through your home, the automatic standby generator switches on, which means you won’t have to manually switch it on or wait to regain power.
  • Runs on Natural or LP Gas: At Electrical Connection, Inc., our automatic standby generators run on natural gas or LP gas, which is an inexpensive and environmentally friendly energy source. Furthermore, you won’t have to worry about refueling, as this is the same type of gas that already fuels the existing gas-powered components of your home.
  • Self–Tests Weekly: It can be difficult to tell if your generator is in need of repair, mostly because you don’t want your unit to kick in unless there is an emergency. A quality automatic standby generator performs weekly self tests so that you will be alerted to a problem if the generator does not run properly.

Call Electrical Connection, Inc. to learn more about the benefits of automatic standby generator installation in Avon and discover whether it is the right choice for your home.

Why Consider Professionals for Your Indoor Lighting

November 5th, 2014

The lighting inside of your home can set the mood in a positive way. If you’re content with your current indoor lighting design, you may feel at peace when you switch on the lights and feel pride in the gentle glow of a light that adds décor and function to the room. However, there are a number of reasons people become dissatisfied with their lighting design and choose to upgrade. You may be dissatisfied with a plain, tired lighting design. Or the lights may be in a position that makes them appear too bright or too dim, rendering them impractical. You might even decide to upgrade to a lighting system that turns on automatically when you enter a room.

Whatever reason you choose to upgrade, you should always make sure to hire professional electricians for the job. We’d like to go over a few of the reasons why in today’s post. When you decide to upgrade your lights for either function or design, contact the lighting experts in Newington, CT by calling Electrical Connection, Inc.

  • Learn about Additional Options: When you discuss your vision for indoor lighting with a professional electrician, you may even learn about additional affordable options you hadn’t even considered. This may include art lighting to accentuate your décor or cabinet lighting so you can easily view the items in your kitchen or bathroom.
  • Get the Best Performance Possible: An electrician will make sure your new fixtures are fitted properly for optimal performance. Technicians can even make sure you understand which types of light bulbs to purchase for replacement, so you don’t end up with a fixture that won’t illuminate or dim a room as it is meant to.
  • Ensure Your Safety: Finally, choosing an electrician for installation is the best way to ensure the proper safety procedures are followed to protect your home, your power, and your safety.

Electrical wiring and installation are jobs that should never be left to an amateur. Make sure you get the lighting design that best suits your needs for practicality and beauty by calling the skilled electricians at Electrical Connection, Inc. to discuss your lighting options in Newington, CT.

3 Ways to Tell You Need Generator Repair

October 29th, 2014

Most of the large appliances in your home run frequently, so it’s easy to tell when they need repairs. Loud noises, faulty operation, and even unusual odors are all ways to tell that your air conditioner, heater, refrigerator, or other appliances are failing. However, your generator only runs in case of an emergency, which can make it difficult to tell when there is trouble.

Don’t wait for a disaster to find out whether your generator is working correctly. Follow the following steps to ensure your unit runs when you need it most.

  • Perform a Visual Inspection for Outward Damages: After a major storm, it may be a good idea to perform a visual check on your generator—even if there was no power outage. If it has sustained any physical damage, it’s best to call an electrician to come take a look at it, to be sure it works properly in case of an emergency.
  • Test the System from Time to Time: Your generator goes for very long periods of time without running, so it can be difficult to tell whether or not it will work properly in the event of a power failure. Most experts recommend turning on the system every few months for a short period of time to be sure it starts without any difficulties. Trouble at startup can indicate a low fuel supply. Pay attention to anything that may signal damages, such as strange noises, and call a technician right away.
  • Schedule Regular Maintenance: Finally, you should schedule maintenance with a professional technician every year to keep your generator in top shape. During a maintenance visit, a trained electrician will inspect every portion of your unit for damages, and run special tests to check for loose connections or a low fuel supply. The technician my also lubricate the engine and change the oil, if necessary.

Your generator is intended as a safety measure, but the only way to ensure it runs safely and correctly is by scheduling maintenance every year and calling for a professional generator repair service in Simsbury at the first signs of trouble. Call Electrical Connection, Inc. to speak with a quality electrician about your generator repair needs today!

How Do Smoke Detectors Work?

October 22nd, 2014

The protection of your family members is one of the most important things in the world. A sudden fire is a very real possibility in any home, but smoke alarms are extremely effective at alerting homeowners when there is a problem and keeping your family and your home safe from fire and smoke inhalation.

State and federal laws mandate that smoke alarms be installed throughout any home or building. If you need a new smoke detector installed, we recommend the electrical services of a trained electrician, like the experts at Electrical Connection, Inc. An electrician can wire your smoke detector into the wall, so that you won’t have to worry about any potential problems from a compromised battery. However, a batter backup is still used in case of a power outage. If you’re wondering how these life-saving units work, we offer a quick explanation in this guide.

Photoelectric Detectors

There are two different types of smoke detectors: photoelectric and ionization detectors. Photoelectric detectors work under a fairly simple principle but are not often used in homes. This is because photoelectric detectors are not good at detecting small fires, an important feature in any home, and they may be more expensive. Photoelectric detectors contain two important components, a light source and a photo-detector, positioned at a 90-degree angle from one another. A beam of light runs straight across the unit over the sensor. As smoke fills the unit, it scatters the light beam, thus causing some light to hit the sensor, which then triggers the alarm.

Ionization Detectors

However, a photoelectric detector only works with thicker clouds of smoke. Ionization detectors instead detect smoke particles so that they go off at the first sign of trouble. In this type of system, ions move back and forth between two plates inside of the detector. These ions carry a charge, but as smoke particles enter the chamber, they attach to the ions and neutralize them. The detector senses that the current has stopped, and sends out a signal to the sensor which in turn activates the alarm.

If you need electrical services in Glastonbury, look no further than the skilled technicians at Electrical Connection, Inc. Call us today and make an appointment for your next service.

How Regular Generator Maintenance Benefits You

October 15th, 2014

A generator is something often kept in case of emergencies. You won’t be using it every day, or even every year. Because of this, it’s easy to install one and think that you can ignore it until you need it. This isn’t the case, however. Just like any emergency supplies, your generator should be checked on a regular basis to ensure that it remains in good condition. The last thing you want is to have your generator break down in an emergency situation. Let’s examine some of the ways that regular generator maintenance can benefit you.

Reliability

The whole reason that you install a backup generator is for peace of mind. You want to know that when you need it, you can rely on your backup generator to provide power to vital systems in your home. The problem is that for most of the year, the backup generator just sits there doing nothing. This increases the likelihood of the generator developing issues that will only become evident when you try and use it.

For example, gasoline that is left in your generator tank will break down over time and become useless. Most people just fill up their generator when they first install it, then assume it will start just fine a year later. This will not only prevent your generator from starting when needed, it can actually damage the system and require costly repairs. You don’t want to find out that your generator needs repair in the middle of a power outage when it’s too late to fix it.

You’ll also want to have a professional check the electrical lines between the generator and the house on a regular basis. Damaged or improperly installed connections can lead to electrical surges, which can damage home appliances and make matters worse.

Regular maintenance checkups ensure that your generator is in fine working condition, so that it will perform properly when you need it. Make sure to have a professional check your generator at least once a year before storm season.

If you haven’t scheduled your annual generator maintenance yet, call Electrical Connection, Inc. We also install generators in the Farmington area. Contact us to find out more about our available generator services today.

Considerations for New Outdoor Lighting

October 8th, 2014

Enhanced or redesigned outdoor lighting is a good way to provide a home with the appearance of a complete remodel without spending the money and time on an actual massive building project. With the assistance of professional electricians who have a background in home lighting, you can create a pleasing new look for the outside of your house. Enhanced outdoor lighting will also allow you to make more use of outdoor recreational facilities and enjoy increased levels of security.

To find out more about installing new outdoor lighting in Avon, CT, get in touch with Electrical Connection, Inc. We have landscape lighting experts who will design a new lighting scheme to meet your home’s needs. We offer estimates and upfront pricing, so contact us today.

Some Tips for Your Outdoor Lighting

  • Light for safety as well as beauty: The outside of a home can be a hazardous place at night if it has insufficient lighting. When you set out to enhance your home’s outdoor lighting scheme, target dark and shadowy spots that receive plenty of foot traffic. Two important areas to watch for: the driveway and the front porch. Any spot that has steps should also receive clear lighting. Outdoor lighting experts will make sure that these safety lights blend with the rest of the lighting scheme, so you won’t have any garish, ugly spotlights that attract attention to themselves.
  • Choose energy-saving lights: Ask your lighting expert about using LED-light bulbs and minimizing wattage. Although LED light bulbs cost more than standard incandescent bulbs, they last many times longer and use only a fraction of the energy, so they will rapidly pay for themselves. You also do not need overwhelming wattage to create effective outdoor lighting, so low-wattage bulbs are sufficient for most zones.
  • Timers, zones, dimmers, and sensors: Create an outdoor lighting design that you can adjust to your satisfaction. Have your lighting designer set up different zones of lights that can operate independent of each other. Include light timers that turn the lights on and off at different times during the day. Dimmers will allow you to put the illumination right at the level that you want it. Skilled installers can put in motion sensors, which will help keep you safe—and also scare off potential criminals.

Creating the perfect outdoor lighting setup is complicated, which is why you should always rely on lighting specialists to take care of the job. Lighting homes—inside and out—is one of our specialties at Electrical Connection, Inc. We can deliver you the ideal outdoor lighting in Avon, CT to give your house a fresh look, and to increase your safety and outdoor enjoyment.