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Preparing Your Electronics for International Travel

international power adapters

Traveling abroad is exciting, but also nerve-wracking. If you are traveling from the United States to another country, particularly if you’re situated, like we are, in Northern Kentucky, you aren’t close to any international borders, so you are going to be very far from home. Because of this, if you forget something, unless you can find it at your destination, you may be out of luck. With this in mind, planning accordingly is essential to getting the most out of your international trip. One thing you may not have thought of that could make or break your trip is whether or not you’ll be able to use your electronics. Not sure what we mean? Keep reading to make sure that your smartphones, hair dryers, and any other electronics stay safe on your international voyage, brought to you by Rose Brothers & Sons, Inc. of Northern Kentucky.

 

Figure out what you’ll need

Depending on where you go abroad, everything may be different than it is where you live, but one thing you may not have considered is that power outlets may be different. Because of this, your electrical appliances may be totally unusable in their current state if you go abroad. If you are traveling to Mexico or Canada, you will be fine using your standard American appliances, which run on 120 Volts of power. However, other countries will have differently shaped power outlets, necessitating adapters to go over the plugs of your appliances.

 

Don’t forget the power

It may be more than just the socket that is different where you go, however. Most countries that have different outlets do so because they actually exert different voltages from their sockets. Because of this, an adapter for your appliances may not actually be sufficient. Certain devices, such as certain smartphones, can do voltage conversion on their own, but “dumber” devices like hair dryers will require a voltage converter, as well as an adapter. Otherwise, you may risk ruining your devices.

 

While making sure that your devices are going to be fine while you’re abroad is important, it’s just as important to make sure that the electricity in your home is working perfectly. Whether you want to make sure that everything is in working order before you leave, or you want to optimize your home after you get back, trust in Rose Brothers & Sons, Inc. to help you with all of your electrical needs. We are located in Walton, Kentucky, but we proudly serve all of Northern Kentucky, Cincinnati, and Southern Indiana, including  Florence KY, Ft. Mitchell KY, Villa Hills KY, Union KY, Ft. Wright, Hebron KY, Burlington, Covington KY, Erlanger, Independence KY, Ft. Thomas, Newport, Owenton, Park Hills, Cold Spring, Edgewood, Walton, Dry Ridge, Verona, Crittenden, Sparta, Alexandria, Glenco, and Williamstown.

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How to Choose the Right Lighting for a Room

room with good lighting

The right lighting for a space can make a huge difference. There is a reason that fancy restaurants have dim, hazy lighting and department stores have bright, even lighting. While your home isn’t a business, we could all stand to learn a thing or two from how businesses use lighting within spaces to strike the right mood. If you would like to learn more about how to choose the right lighting for a room, let the electricity experts at Rose Brothers & Sons, Inc. in Walton, Kentucky inform you.

 

  1. Consider what the room is going to be used for

Lighting should be, at its foundation, functional. In many spaces, if you don’t have artificial lighting of some sort, you won’t be able to see for large portions of the day, and in others, you won’t be able to see at all, so making sure that your lighting is serving the purpose it has is central to choosing the right lighting for your space. Spaces that are primarily going to be used for work of some kind, such as a home office or a kitchen, should have bright lighting that easily and consistently illuminates what you are doing. Spaces that are going to be used for entertaining, however, like dining rooms or living rooms, can have dimmer lighting. Bedrooms, finally, should have the softest lighting of all, in order to encourage relaxation and sleep.

 

  1. Consider the size of a room

The size of a room can greatly impact the kind of lighting that you are going to need. Small rooms, such as closets, home offices, or small bathrooms, could each have their own particular lighting needs, but their size is going to influence what sort of lighting you will need to purchase and install. Smaller spaces are more easily illuminated, so even lower lighting can make a small space feel incredibly bright. Because of this, be careful not to overwhelm your smaller spaces with too much lighting. The converse goes for large spaces. Even very bright lighting can seem like a drop in the bucket for huge, open living rooms or basements, so make sure your lighting packs a suitable punch.

 

  1. Trust in Rose Brothers & Sons, Inc. to help

Rose Brothers & Sons, Inc. is here to help you with any of your electricity questions and projects in the Northern Kentucky and Cincinnati area. We are located in Walton, Kentucky, but we proudly serve all of Northern Kentucky, Cincinnati, and Southern Indiana, including  Florence KY, Ft. Mitchell KY, Villa Hills KY, Union KY, Ft. Wright, Hebron KY, Burlington, Covington KY, Erlanger, Independence KY, Ft. Thomas, Newport, Owenton, Park Hills, Cold Spring, Edgewood, Walton, Dry Ridge, Verona, Crittenden, Sparta, Alexandria, Glenco, and Williamstown.

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5 Preventable Electrical Issues

electrician fixing outlet

Electrical issues will happen in a home, it’s as simple as that. Fortunately, once these issues are determined it is easy to fix the problems to ensure that they stop happening. Let Rose Brothers and Sons of Walton, Kentucky show you five common and preventable electrical issues that can easily be resolved.

Tripped Breaker

Probably one of the most annoying and frequently occurring electrical problems in a home is the tripping of breakers. Breakers are tripped by too much wattage being exerted from outlets, like a hair dryer being used in two rooms, a space heater on an extension cord, or appliances being overloaded in the kitchen. While tripped breakers are not a huge issue and can be easily fixed with the flip of a breaker switch, sometimes the problem is persistent or can cause the breaker to not reset when flipped. If this is the case, a separate breaker may be needed for these specific outlets that are frequently used with high-wattage appliances.

Light Bulbs Burning Out

If you notice that you are having to change the lightbulbs in your home far too frequently, it probably isn’t a problem with the brand of lightbulb that you purchased. While this can be caused by a range of problems, usually there will be a loose circuit or socket that will lead to this. To avoid spending large amounts of money on lightbulbs, fix the issue in the circuit or socket.

Dead Outlet

Dead outlets are, unfortunately, quite common in the home. This may result from a tripped breaker or it could be from a larger connection issue but, whatever the case, it is obnoxious. If resetting your breaker doesn’t work, an expert will need to be called to determine the cause of the malfunction. Once they have assessed the situation and repaired the damage they can also assure that the connection is stable and that the outlet is not overheating, which would cause a dead outlet.

Warm Switches and Fixtures

Have you noticed your appliances or outlets feeling warm to the touch after use? If so, there could be a wiring issue. If you have dimming switches in your home, this is completely normal. But, if you do not have this feature in your home and your outlets are still running warm, it is important that you determine the cause of the issues quickly to prevent a potential electrical fire or damage to your electrical lines.

Flickering Lights

Thankfully, flickering lights are caused by poor wiring connections in your wall and not from something more unsettling, like ghosts. If you notice a single flickering light, a single connection may be weak. If you become aware of flickering lights throughout your entire home, there is an issue with the main wiring. If you notice some lights getting brighter while others look dim, the main neutral connection in your home may need to be evaluated. While flickering and uneven lighting may not be an issue that effects your day to day tasks, this is a sign of a bigger problem that needs to be addressed.

Whatever your lighting issues may be, if you need a professional to fix the issue, Rose Brothers & Sons of Northern Kentucky is here to help. Serving Florence Kentucky, Ft. Mitchell Kentucky, Villa Hills Kentucky, Union Kentucky, Ft. Wright, Hebron Kentucky, Burlington, Covington Kentucky, Erlanger, Independence KY, Ft. Thomas, Newport, Owenton, Park Hills, Cold Spring, Edgewood, Walton, Dry Ridge, Verona, Crittenden, Sparta, Alexandria, Glenco, and Williamstown, you can trust that Rose Brothers & Sons will help with all your electrical problems. As an Angie’s List member with an A+ rating from the BBB, we can guarantee that our services will meet your needs. Contact Rose Brothers & Sons today with any questions.

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What Should Be in Every Homeowner’s Toolbox

man with toolbox

There are certain tools that every homeowner should be in possession of, but where do you start when putting together your toolbox? Many people can often be overwhelmed when they first purchase a home as to what tools are necessary to keep everything in working order. Rose Brothers & Sons Inc. serving Northern Kentucky, southern Indiana, and Greater Cincinnati provides you with tips for choosing the right tools for your toolbox.

Necessary Tools for Every Homeowner

  • Claw Hammer– This tool is used for driving in nails, as well as levering them out.
  • Adjustable Wrench– This tool can be used for many tasks, since its jaws are adjustable for nuts and bolts of various sizes.
  • Locking Pliers– This tool also had adjustable jaws and is used for gripping nuts, pipes, and fixtures.
  • Combination Pliers– This tool can be used to turn, hold, or pull out various types of nails.
  • Flashlight– This tool is necessary for seeing in various dark areas.
  • FlatHead Screwdrivers– This tool allows you to deal with slot-headed screws.
  • CrossHeaded Screwdrivers– This tool allows you to deal with cross-headed screws.
  • Utility Knife– This knife is used for precision, as well as general cutting purposes.
  • Tape Measure– This tool is essential for providing you with accurate measurements.
  • A Variety of Hardware– It is essential to keep a large selection of various nails and screws so that you always have a large range of choices available to you.
  • Level– This tool provides you with vertical and horizontal guide lines when positioning various items.
  • Dust Masks, Safety Glasses, and Work Gloves– These are all necessary to keep you safe when working. Dust masks while prevent you from inhaling substance when sanding or sawing. Safety glasses will protect your eyes from substances and debris as well. Work gloves are necessary when handling various materials or using certain tools.
  • Calculator– This is necessary when calculating measurements.
  • Cordless Drill– This tool is necessary for various tasks.
  • Step Stool– This can provide you with a good platform to reach elevated surfaces for different tasks.
  • Extension Cord– This allows you to move a power supply outside of your home or to places that may not be near a power source.

Professional Help in Northern Kentucky, Southern Indiana, and Greater Cincinnati

If you need additional help with any of your tasks around the home, then please do not hesitate to stop by your favorite local, family owned business, Rose Brothers & Sons Inc. of Florence, Kentucky. We have been your trusted electrical contractor in Northern Kentucky, southern Indiana, and Greater Cincinnati for over 45 years. We can offer you help with anything from small repairs to large electrical construction projects. Your safety and happiness is of the utmost importance to us; we want to provide you with the best possible experience by providing you with actual solutions instead of just temporarily fixing your problem. We also have an excellent record on Angie’s List, as well as an A+ rating with the Better Business Bureau. Contact us today for all of your electrical needs!

 

 

 

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Keeping Your Children and Pets Safe from Electricity in Your Home

children playing with electricity

When it comes to what you love, such as your children or pets, safety is of the utmost importance. So, how do you protect your children and pets from electricity in your home? Rose Brothers & Sons Inc. Electric & Construction of Florence, KY provides you with these tips to keep your family safe from electricity in your home!

Pet Safety

  • Keep cables out of sight– Electrical cords are a huge danger for pets, as their chewing or playing with them can lead to shocks, burns, or even fires. It is important to make sure all cords are safely tucked away.
  • Keep sleeping pets away from electronic equipment– Pets, particularly cats, have a tendency to curl up and sleep behind warm appliances such as computers. Try to halt this behavior by creating a bed for them by a sunlit window.
  • Don’t leave heating equipment unattended– It is very important to make sure your pets are not unattended near heating equipment such as a hair straightener or portable heater, as they can easily burn themselves on these items.
  • Check plug sockets­- Make sure all plugs are completely plugged into their sockets, because if they are partially exposed, it could result in a shock to a pet’s tongue or wet nose.

Child Safety

  • Unplug unused devices– It is important to unplug any device that heats up as soon as you are done using it. This helps avoid burns to children and fires from being started.
  • Safety-check appliances– It is important to check your appliances every so often to make sure they are running correctly still.
  • One plug per socket– Try not to overload your plug sockets, especially with appliances that take a lot of power.
  • Turn appliances off– Make sure that you turn all appliances that are not designed to stay on overnight off before you go to bed.

Professional Help in Northern Kentucky, Southern Indiana, and Greater Cincinnati

If you still feel as though you need help making your home safer for your children and pets, then do not hesitate to stop by your favorite local, family owned business, Rose Brothers & Sons Inc. of Florence, Kentucky. We have been your trusted electrical contractor in Northern Kentucky, southern Indiana, and Greater Cincinnati for over 45 years. We can help you with any electrical needs from small repairs to large electrical construction projects. We also care about your safety and happiness; we want to provide you with the best possible experience by providing you with actual solutions instead of just temporarily fixing your problem. We also have an excellent record on Angie’s List, as well as an A+ rating with the Better Business Bureau. Contact us today for all of your electrical needs!

 

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How to Tell If Your Electrical Meter Is Faulty

electrical meter

If your electrical bill is higher than normal and doesn’t seem quite right, a faulty electrical meter could be the culprit. Rose Brother’s & Sons of Northern Kentucky can help you determine if this is the real issue and guide you through getting the problem fixed.

Check Your Meter

If you have noticed unusual energy bills, one way to test to see if you have a faulty electrical meter is to check it every day. Note the reading on your meter for 7 days straight to see if your daily consumption is consistent. If this does not give you the results you wanted, turn off and unplug everything in your home and see if there is any type of output on the meter. If you are on a time-of-use tariff, you should be able to check the clock on your meter and look for electrical rate changes. Make sure the schedule is consistent and seems normal compared to the time of day you are checking. An energy monitor is another great way to discover if your meter is acting up. Monitors allow you to view your energy use in real time making it much easier to find a discrepancy.

Professional Testing

If you can’t find a problem by yourself, call a professional for a meter testing to make sure everything is as it should be. Contact your electricity company and talk to them about what you are concerned about. Electricity suppliers are required to test your faulty meter on-site and perform a basic check. If their findings are inconclusive or not as you expect, you can have the meter tested at a private facility of your choosing. A private test will cost you money out of pocket and will only be refunded if there is a conclusive report that your meter is faulty. Your electric company may charge you for the cost of installing and removing a temporary meter and you should ask how much this will cost before you have a private test performed. If your meter does not have a problem, this will not be refunded.

What to Do After

If your private testing facility discovers that there have been faulty readings, your electrical company will replace your meter and refund you the money you have lost. If you have been overcharged every month, your supplier is required to refund you the money during the period in which your meter was faulty. If your test determines that you are being undercharged, which is also likely, your supplier should not charge you for more than 12 months of charges.

If you suspect a problem with your meter and are ready to have a professional test, contact Rose Brothers & Sons today. Serving all of Greater Cincinnati, Southern Indiana & Northern Kentucky, including: FlorenceFt. MitchellVilla Hills, Union, Ft. Wright, Hebron, Burlington, Covington, Erlanger, Independence , Ft. Thomas, Newport, Owenton, Park Hills, Cold Spring, Edgewood, Walton, Dry Ridge, Verona, Crittenden, Sparta, Alexandria, Glenco, and Williamstown, our experienced team can help you discover what is wrong and put your mind at ease. With an A+ rating from the BBB and over 45 years of combined experience, Rose Brothers & Sons is the best choice you can make.

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How to Use Lighting to Keep Your Home Safe

home with exterior lighting

When you think of home security, you may think of alarms, door locks, and guard dogs. But, Rose Brothers & Sons Inc. recommends including lighting in your home security plans.

Keep Your Family and Visitors Safe

Exterior lighting is a must when you are entering your home at night or having company over. To keep everyone safe on their way in, install landscape lighting along the walkway to light the way to your front door. Up-lights in trees can also provide light to make walking safer. Be sure the lighting is properly spaced to avoid having areas of darkness. A front porch light is not only welcoming to guests, it also illuminates steps to prevent falling.

If you have overnight guests who are unfamiliar with the layout of your home, or little ones who wander at night, have nightlights available in the hallways and bathrooms to allow them to safely get where they’re going. If you don’t want them on all night, find nightlights that turn on when motion is detected.

Turn on outdoor lights and leave at least one or two indoor lights on before you leave if you will be returning after dark, both for security and personal safety.

Keep Unwanted Visitors Out

Keeping unwanted visitors from entering your yard or home is just as important as making sure your invited guests feel welcome and safe.

Flood lights – Flood lights provide bright light that illuminates the outside of your home. Space flood lights out to ensure there aren’t dark patches where thieves could hide. It is better to have several lights strategically placed with lower wattage than one or two extremely bright ones.

Flood lights with motion sensors are more effective than those that are turned on with a switch. They won’t frustrate your neighbors by being on all the time, and will alert you if someone enters your yard when they suddenly flash on.

Be sure to install flood lights high enough that bulbs can’t be removed and motion sensors can’t be tampered with. If a motion sensor is tilted toward the sky, it will no longer sense motion on the ground.

Flood lights work best when you are home or if you have neighbors nearby. If a thief knows you aren’t home and no one else is around to see them, flood lights will actually just light their way to your house.

Light sensors – Sensors on landscape lighting and porch lights will help ensure your home is lit up outside at night even if you aren’t home to turn them on. Timers can also be set on outdoor lights to make them come on and turn off at specific hours. If you decide to forgo a sensor or timer and just leave your outdoor lights on all night, use LED bulbs to reduce energy consumption and the need to replace bulbs as frequently.

Rose Brothers & Sons Inc. services all of Greater Cincinnati, Southern Indiana and Northern Kentucky, including: FlorenceFt. Mitchell KYVilla Hills KYUnion KY, Ft. Wright, Hebron KY, Burlington, Covington KY, Erlanger, Independence KY, Ft. Thomas, Newport, Owenton, Park Hills, Cold Spring, Edgewood, Walton, Dry Ridge, Verona, Crittenden, Sparta, Alexandria, Glencoe, and Williamstown. Contact us with any of your electrical needs!

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Making the Most of the Outlets in Your Small Space

power strip with multiple cords

From first apartments to the currently popular tiny houses, many people live in small spaces, which may also translate to a small number of outlets. With the number of electronic devices an average family owns today, running out of outlets in a small space can definitely happen.

If Possible, Install New Outlets

The most effective and permanent way to cope with not having enough outlets in a home is to add more. However, this is easier said than done. If you are renting from someone else, you will need their permission to add more outlets to the house or apartment. If you own your home, creating a new outlet on a blank wall is still challenging and it best handled by a license electrician, like Rose Brothers & Sons in Walton, Kentucky. Wiring will need to be run from another electrical source and unless you know exactly what your walls are made of, you may be in for a surprise when you try to make room for an outlet in one of them.

Give Existing Outlets or Switches an Upgrade

Are many of your outlets occupied by charging mobile devices like tablets and phones? Traditional outlets can be fairly easily switched out for outlets with built-in USB ports, so you can plug in your device without taking up a socket. One of the most common configurations for these outlets has the standard two sockets with two USB ports, giving you plenty of room to charge your phone and tablet while still keeping your lamp and alarm clock plugged in. Adding an outlet with USB ports is similar to converting a two-prong outlet.

If you have a single light switch in a place where an outlet would also be convenient, replace the switch with a switch/outlet combination. This solution works especially well for bathrooms in older homes that may not have any outlets at all because the switch is often located on a wall near the sink and mirror.

Other Ways to Add More Outlet Space in Your Northern Kentucky Home

If you are not at all handy, the number of sockets per outlet can be increased without changing the outlet itself. Adapters that plug into a socket of an outlet instantly add four new places to plug things in. If space is small where the outlet is (e.g. behind a piece of furniture), use an adapter with rotating sockets so plugs lay parallel to the wall instead of sticking out and being in the way.

Power strips are similar to adapters in that they only use one outlet space and provide six to eight more places to plug things in. Many power strips have the added benefit of providing surge protection for sensitive electronics, including computers and TVs. Some armoires and entertainment centers come with built-in power strips, increasing your outlets and providing additional storage space.

If you need power somewhere not near one of your few outlets use extension cords. Some brands have multiple outlets along the length of the cord. If you don’t want the extension cord to show, use a cord cover that runs along your baseboards and conceals it. Be sure not to run extension cords under things that could crush them or disrupt the electrical current and cause a fire.

If you require assistance with increasing the outlets in your home, or any other electrical service, call Rose Brothers & Sons Electric and Construction. We serve all of Greater Cincinnati, Southern Indiana, and Northern Kentucky, including: Florence, Ft. Mitchell, Villa Hills, Union, Ft. Wright, Hebron, Burlington, Covington, Erlanger, Independence, Ft. Thomas, Newport, Owenton, Park Hills, Cold Spring, Edgewood, Walton, Dry Ridge, Verona, Crittenden, Sparta, Alexandria, Glencoe, and Williamstown.

 

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How to Convert Two-Prong Outlets

three-prong power outlet

If you live in an older home, you may find that some of the outlets in your home only have two prongs instead of three. This can be inconvenient when you go to try and plug in appliances that need three prongs. However, there is a way that you can give these pesky two-prong outlets a makeover and turn them into a new and improved three-prong outlet! Rose Brothers & Sons Electric gives you the inside scoop on how to get the job done.

Converting from a two-prong outlet to a three-prong is definitely a good idea for both your convenience and your safety. Three-prong outlets are designed to have a fault path that prevents devices from shorting out, so they’re a lot safer for your home! According to Apartment Therapy, before you start rewiring your whole house or apartment, you should have an electrician inspect to see if your building’s fuse box has been grounded. Chances are if you only have two-prong plugs in your house, you can probably assume that it has not been grounded. However, always get your electrician’s approval before making any assumptions about your home’s wiring. This will help you in deciding what type of outlet to buy. If your electrician tells you that your home is not grounded, then you can install a GFCI (Ground Fault Circuit Interrupter) or have your electrician rewire the outlet.

If your house is grounded, then you can follow these steps, as recommended by This Old House:

  1. First you must turn off your fuse box and unscrew the old receptacle and detach the wires.
  2. Next, you attach the black wires to the brass terminal and the white wires to the silver terminal.
  3. After that you can tighten the ground screw to the threaded hole in the back of the box.
  4. Then, connect one end of the grounding wire to the green terminal on the three-prong receptacle and place it into the box.
  5. And last, but not least, turn on the power to make sure that the circuit is working properly.

This can be done on your own, but refer anyone to a trusted electrician instead of doing the work yourself if you ever at all feel uncomfortable. It’s always better to be safe than sorry when it comes to dealing with electricity! Rose Brothers & Sons Electric is your electrician in Northern Kentucky, Cincinnati and the surrounding areas.

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Adding Electrical Wiring to Your Basement

Basements are notoriously dark. If you are tired of the poor lighting in your basement, and are ready to brighten up your décor and lighting, adding new electrical wiring to your basement may be necessary to add the lighting fixtures that you love. If you are building a home, the electrical wiring in your basement is an important thing to consider so you avoid any lighting issues in the future. At Rose Brothers & Sons Inc., your best choice for an electrician in Northern Kentucky, Cincinnati, and the surrounding areas, we can give you tips on adding electrical wiring to your basement that will help the process run smoothly.

Installing Electrical Wiring in the Basement

First and foremost, if you are going to attempt to rough-in your electrical wiring yourself, it is important to acquaint yourself with the process of electrically wiring a room. Pick up some books and study. Plan the design for your lighting remodel of your room and attain your measurements before you start doing anything. After you have your measurements, it’s time to learn about nailing up boxes, drilling holes for wires, how to properly and safely pull cables, stapling cables, and connecting all the wires. Once you have done this, purchasing or renting the appropriate tools for your project are a necessity. Do not overlook any of these steps. Be prepared to be frustrated if this is your first DIY project, and don’t rush. Make this remodel a fun project and the work will not seem like work, but rather an accomplishment at the end.

turquoise themed basement with large couch

Designing a Basement’s Lighting

If you are not attempting a DIY project, but are instead designing the lighting for the basement of your new home, make sure you add in as much pre-wired lighting as possible. In addition to permanent light fixtures, another thing you must plan for in your design is the number of outlets and outlet placement in your basement. In the case of outlets, less is not more. Design your outlet placement for convenience. If you have a bar in the basement consider putting outlets on the bar. If your basement is a large, open room, consider placing outlets on the floor near where you will place furniture. This prevents annoying cords covering the floor and gives you more lighting placement options for décor purposes.

When to Call an Expert

Whether you are doing a DIY lighting project in an existing room, remodeling, or designing a new basement entirely, if you reach a point where you aren’t sure what to do, have an electrician come in and help you. At Rose Brothers & Sons Inc., we can help you with all electrical rewiring, remodeling, and design projects in your home. As an Angie’s List member with an A+ rating from the BBB, and over 45 years of experience, we can guarantee that our services will meet your needs. Contact us today with any questions on electrical contracting, wiring, or lighting you may have.

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