All posts in Electrical Problems

What to Do If You Have Bugs in Your Electrical Outlets

Bug infestations in your home can be distressing and quite serious. The bugs can lurk in places you would not think and cause destruction too. If you have this problem it is important to know how to handle it.

Bed bugs are a growing issue in the United States. One of the reasons for this is the myth that they only live in mattresses and other furniture that is soft. Bed bugs can actually hide in a plethora of areas you may not expect, which allows the infestation to increase much easier. Some of the obscure spots they may be lurking in include library books, alarm clocks, underneath beds, dresser drawers, and electrical outlets. In homes that have a high number of bed bugs, they will spread out. They will crawl into the outlet slots and hide behind the electrical outlet plates. The outlets in bedrooms have the highest chances of housing the bugs, especially those that are located nearest to the beds. This is due to the fact that they prefer to live closest to their food source. However, no room free from this problem.

Cockroaches like to inhabit tight spaces where their shells and bodies area able to touch. This has led to their preference to hide inside table legs, hollow walls, the undersides of furniture, and electrical outlets. Once roaches make their way into the outlets it creates a dangerous situation. They produce secretions that have the power to corrode the receptacles. This can damage the wiring of your home, and potentially start a fire. This concealed infestation can put the safety of your loved ones in jeopardy. If you find you have cockroaches in your outlets, there are ways to eliminate the problem and prevent it from reoccurring. First is to apply a dusting of boric acid to all the outlets in your home. The dust attaches to the shell of the pest and kills it. Then you set up bait near the affected areas, to draw them out. They then become trapped in the bait and can easily be taken care of. If you have unused outlets install child-safe covers as this will keep the roaches from re-infesting the receptacle. When they do not have an entry point for the outlet, you do not have to worry about them hiding there.

If you do find bugs in electrical outlets, it is important to handle the matter immediately. You will need to contact a pest removal service to get rid of the infestation but also an electrician. It is imperative to have a professional electrician inspect the wiring of your home to ensure the bugs have done no damage to it. Hiring an electrician ensures that if there are any problems are present, they will be repaired before a fire occurs.

For a trusted electrical contractor, you can count on the professionals at Rose Brothers & Sons Electric. We have training and expertise to handle any electrical issues whether they are residential, commercial, or industrial. We are located in Walton, KY to provide the highest quality of service to Cincinnati and Northern KY. Call us today.

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Temporary Electrical Fixes to Get Your Through an Emergency

Emergencies can occur in an instant, so it is in your best interest to know how to deal with them if a problem arises. Preparedness is your greatest asset in urgent situations. There are several common electrical emergencies that can occur.

When your house loses power, the first thing you should do is check to see if there is power in nearby homes and the streetlights. This will determine if it is a widespread electrical issue for your neighborhood or an isolated incident solely affecting your home. If the outage is only at your house, try to make it to your circuit breaker box if you can safely do so. The problem could have been caused by a breaker overload, so check to see if any have been tripped. To correct, you simply need to flip the breaker switch to the original position. If power is not restored, it is time to call your power company to notify them of the outage. While this problem can have a simple fix, most do not.

If you plug too many cords in a single area of your home and one is damaged, electrical sparks can result. The sparks can eventually cause a fire. If you notice sparking when plugging something into your outlets, remove the cord from it. You should refrain from using that outlet until you can have it evaluated by an electrician. Sparks can cause a dangerous situation for your family and home.

Bad wiring can lead to a serious electrical issue. This problem is more prevalent in older homes, as the wires can deteriorate as they age. Faulty wires can also cause a fire. To prevent problems with bad wiring, you should regularly have your wires inspected to ensure they stay in working condition. Any faulty wires should be immediately replaced, so your home maintains optimal electricity output.

Another frequent electrical emergency occurs due to appliance malfunctions. This can happen as result of leaving the appliance plugged in to a socket for an extended period of time or simply because the wiring has gone bad. If you believe that your appliance has stopped working due to a malfunction, it is best to call a professional electrician to service it. To prevent any damage to your stove, it is important to know how to handle a grease fire. If it is possible, simply cover the fire with a lid until the fire dies down. If there is not a lid around, throw baking soda on the fire until the flames are gone. Being able to quickly handle a fire will keep the wiring of your stove from sustaining damage.

At Rose Brothers & Sons Electric we are available 24 hours a day to repairs any electrical emergencies that arise. We are an electrical contractor available for residential, commercial, and industrial services for the greater Northern KY area.  We don’t provide quick fixes but rather long-lasting results so the problem is entirely eliminated. We have a location in Walton, KY to deliver high-quality service to Cincinnati and Northern KY. Call us today.

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What Should You Do If Your Outlets Spark?

An outlet that sparks when something is plugged into it can seem alarming but in some cases it is completely normal. If the spark is blue in color, appears for just a brief second, and is infrequent, this is nothing to worry about. However, if the spark appears longer than a passing moment, is a yellow hue, occurs with every usage of the outlet, and is accompanied by the smell of burning or smoke, these are all indications that there is a problem that needs to be addressed right away.

A sparking outlet can occur for a number of reasons. In American homes, there is a constant running of electricity from the circuit to the main power grid. So when something is plugged in, the hot electricity immediately transfers from the outlet to the device. The rapid draw of power can result in a brief spark, which is essentially static electricity and is completely normal. However, these next examples are very serious and require professional assistance to correct the issue.

A short circuit can happen when excessive heat accumulates in the outlet and melts the insulation of wires. The electricity that then runs through the exposed wiring can cause sparks to appear. If an outlet has been exposed to water or deteriorated with age, these instances can both lead to sparking. Electrical outlets over time can have connections become loose, which increases the chances of a short circuit. Another issue is faulty repairs. If someone tried to repair your electrical system but lacked the proper skills, serious problems can occur as a result. Electrical problems are not something someone should attempt to repair themselves; it is best left to the professionals.

If you notice sparking outlets in your home, contact an electrician as soon as possible. Your belongings, home, and most importantly family can be in serious danger. Electrical fires can easily occur when there is sparking. There are over 51,000 electrical fires each year, which results in over 1.3 billion dollars in property damage. The fires are also responsible for 500 deaths and 1,400 injuries every year. The wellbeing of your household could be in jeopardy if your residence has outlets that spark. A certified electrician will inspect your outlets to evaluate if the issue is a safety concern. Do not hesitate to call a professional, as this problem will not go away.

If you have sparking outlets in your home, you can trust Rose Brothers & Sons Electric to handle the problem for you. We are a local and family owned business that prioritizes the safety and happiness of our customers. Honesty and hard work are the foundation of our service. Our focus on customer satisfaction is why we have such fantastic reviews on Angie’s List and an A+ rating by the Better Business Bureau. We are not in the business of offering temporary fixes, but rather long-term solutions that address the root of the problem. We are located in Walton, KY to serve Northern KY and Cincinnati. Call us today for help with all your electrical issues.

 

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What Is a Circuit Breaker?

The circuit breaker is a critical device to ensure safety in your home in the modern age. The electrical service panel consists of a series of lever-operated circuit breakers. After the predetermined amperage load is met, each circuit breaker is programmed to turn itself off. The individual amperage amount varies, which is the reason that there are different size breakers in the panel. When the limit is attained, the breaker trips to open the circuit in order to stop the flow of current to that specific circuit or electrical line. The ability to halt the current from reaching the overloaded or short circuit, allows for the issue to be repaired safely.

There are several reasons that can make circuit breakers trip. The following are the three most common. If you have an overloaded circuit, the breaker will shut off. This happens when multiple devices are plugged into the same circuit, and once they are all running, the capacity of the electrical wiring is exceeded. A short circuit occurs when an appliance has a wiring problem that results in additional current to be pulled. A ground fault generally occurs in high moisture environments such as the bathroom and kitchen. The GFCI, ground fault circuit interrupter, is an instrument that is able to detect when a current is flowing on an unintentional path and then shuts the electrical circuit off. This inadvertent pathway can be running through a puddle of water or an individual. The GFCI device reduces the chances of electric shock, which could cause serious burns or heart problems. Fires that are brought about by a metal conduit making contact with a live wire are prevented, as well. GFCIs exist to keep anyone from enduring harm rather than protect the wiring of the structure.

When a circuit breaker trips, the result is an outlet or area of your home not having any power. It is very simple to reset circuit breakers once you have located your breaker box. After opening the door to the breaker box, you will see toggles that look like light switches turned sideways. Most should be aiming toward the center of the panel which indicates that it is currently on. Toggles that are switched away from the panel center are off. Any toggles that are positioned in the middle are the ones that have been tripped. To reset, you must turn the breaker off before turning it back on. If it trips again, it is best to just turn it off without attempting to reset it. This can indicate a larger problem that should be left to a professional electrician.

At Rose Brothers & Sons Electric, we have extensive electrical experience performing a range of services from residential to commercial and industrial projects. We understand that emergencies happen and sympathize with our customers, which is why we are available 24 hours a day. We offer long-term electrical solutions rather than quick, band aid fixes. We are located in Walton, KY and provide service to Northern KY and Cincinnati. Call us today.

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Making Sure Your Outlets Are Child-Proof

Electrical outlets are an essential component of your home, but they are also dangerous. Almost every room has several electrical outlets, so it is imperative to keep these elements from being hazardous to your children. There are a multitude of child-proof options for your outlets.

If your home was built after 2015, you should already have tamper-proof outlets. The national electric code requires the use of these as they prevent the insertion of small items. Even with a newly constructed house, you should double-check to ensure all the outlets are tamper resistant. When looking at the electrical outlets, you will be able to tell which kind you have. The old type has slots that are very open, making them unsafe. If you have an older home, it is almost assuredly a regular electrical outlet. The newer tamper-proof outlets have plastic behind the slot openings. The plastic is spring-loaded shutters, which require both prong slots to be pushed in at the same time for the plastic to move. There is also a third style of outlet known as decora outlets, which are not child-proof. They do not need screws to attach the cover, instead the cover just snaps on. It is crucial to know which outlets your home uses, as baby-proof solutions are not viable options for every type.

If you have unused electric outlets, there are a few ways to make them safe for your family. For a simple and cheap option, you can use plastic outlet caps also called safe plates. They fit into the slots just like a plug would. The outside of the cap uses plastic that has no grips, so a baby will not be able to remove them. This option however is inconvenient as every time you use the outlet, you will have to take the cap out and then plug it back in afterwards. Another route is sliding plate covers. They cost more but are safer. To install, you simply have to replace your current outlet covers with the spring-load sliding ones. If you push the plate cover over, it will automatically slide back in place. You also never have to worry about forgetting to put a cap back on.

For outlets in use, you can use a Lectralock, which will completely cover the plugged in cords. This shield will not allow a toddler to open it. They are also compatible for both regular and decorative outlets. Power strips will also need to be baby-proofed. An easy solution is a cover like the Safety 1st model. These conceal all the outlets and plugs. There is an opening for the cords but it is impossible for kids to pull out the plugs or stick small things into the power strip.

At Rose Brothers & Sons Electric, we can take care of any electrical issues you have. Unlike other electricians, we don’t use a quick fix approach to solve problems. We find and correct the source of the complication, so you never have to worry about it again. We are located in Walton, KY and provide service to Cincinnati and Northern KY.

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Keeping Your Food Fresh During a Power Outage

power outage

With winter quickly approaching, it is important that you are prepared for the possibility of a power outage. Because winter storms can cause damage to power lines, it is not uncommon for homes to lose power during one of these storms. Because food is expensive, especially a full refrigerator and freezer’s worth, a power outage can end up costing you a lot of money when it comes time to replace all the food that you had. At Rose Brothers & Sons Electric of Walton, Kentucky, we want to give you a few tips on keeping your food fresh during a power outage to help you save money and time once your electricity returns.

Ahead of Time

Before your electricity goes out, there are a few things you should have prepared to ensure that you can keep your food fresh during a power outage. First, make sure you have coolers on hand. Many people keep coolers in their home, but if you don’t have one, you should invest in a few. Coolers last for years and having them on hand will always be a convenience. Second, ensure that you have proper working thermometers in your appliances. This will be necessary when you need to monitor the temperature of your refrigerator after a power outage. Third, know where you can buy dry ice. Many ice cream parlors, ice companies, and other large stores like Walmart and Safeway carry dry ice. Dry ice has a very short shelf-life and therefore you cannot just keep it on hand in your home. Fourth, consider investing in a standby generator for emergencies.

When Power is Lost

If a winter or bad rain storm hits and you do lose power, the first thing you should do to ensure the freshness of your food is keep your refrigerator and freezer shut for as long as possible. Opening and closing your refrigerator and freezer will only allow the cool air to escape and decrease the amount of time that you can keep your perishable items in the appliance. If kept shut, a refrigerator can keep a stable temperature for about 4 hours. Half-freezers will keep things cold for about 24 hours and a full freezer will keep things cold for about 48 hours. Second, go to one of the stores that you know sells dry ice and buy dry ice for coolers and for the refrigerator. Place this dry ice in your refrigerator and freezer to keep the temperature low for a longer amount of time. Third, place all frozen meat on a tray because as the meat thaws it will leak. Lastly, if the power is not returned within a few hours, you need to be monitoring the temperature in your refrigerator and then move things to a cooler when the temperature gets too low. Anything perishable, like meats and dairy products, kept above 40 °F for more than two hours will need to be discarded. To avoid this, move your refrigerated food to a cooler lined with dry ice and ice and use your thermometer to keep an eye on the temperature.

After Power is Restored

After the power in your home is restored, it is important that you check your food to ensure that it is still good. Look for ice crystals to ensure that frozen food is still good, and throw away any foods that have gained a strange odor or color. Anything that feels warm to the touch needs to be disposed of. For a more detailed chart on when to discard and keep food, click here.

If you have questions about generators, electrical damages to your home that may have caused a power outage, or need other electrical advice to prepare your home for power outages, contact Rose Brothers & Sons Electric today. Serving all of Northern Kentucky and Cincinnati, our team of experienced professionals can help you with a wide range of electrical needs.

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What to Do After Getting Your Tech Wet

wet

Most of us have been through that scary moment in your life when your phone has gotten wet. But what are you to do if you dropped it in puddle after getting out of your car? At Rose Brothers & Sons INC. we know how important your phone is in your everyday life along with other technical items. We do not want you to suffer without having them handy. When you have wet technology, you have the potential to miss important phone calls, turn a report in late or also miss your alarm. None of those situations are idle so it’s crucial to know what to do.

Water isn’t always good.

Water, the building block of life. We all need water to survive but it’s not good for everything. Yes, drink water every day. Yes, water your plants when needed. But never ever sprinkle water on your technical items. We know you know that, but does your three year old? Probably not, so what do you do after you notice your wet technology? One of the most commonly known ways to rescue a wet phone is with a bag of rice. Before you begin, you want to remove your phone case it you have one and wipe the phone off with a towel or rag to get off as much water as possible. Then, if your phone is capable of opening, take it apart and remove the battery. After it’s apart, place the pieces in the bag of uncooked rice and leave them there overnight or at least a few hours. This method seeks to let the rice absorb the water in your wet cell phone so when you go to retrieve it your phone should turn back on.

A lot of people might be tempted to run a grab their hair dryer to blow dry their wet cell phone. Don’t! Doing so will damage your phone even more than the water. If you were to use a blow dryer, you are at a high risk for damaging your phone by frying the insides, literally.

When you get your cell phone wet, the very first thing most people do is check if it still works, or plug it into the wall to see it will still charge. This is also not a good idea. The main reason water ruins your cell phone is because your cell phone uses electricity. No matter how much water actually got on your phone, it is always safe to just leave it alone. Because when you think your phone is still okay, the water is slowly making its way to your circuit board. If you can put your phone down for one night or even better a few days, this can save your phone from being shorted and damaged.

Being a trusted electrical and construction company, we know how to fix and solve many problems and we want to teach our customers what they should do if any of your tech items get wet. We are Located in Walton, KY and are pleased to be serving Northern KY and Cincinnati.

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Do Your Lightbulbs Keep Blowing? We Can Help!

If you have not made the switch the LED lightbulbs in your home, you may still be noticing that the lightbulbs in your home keep blowing out. If this is the case, there are a number reasons as to why this may be happening. At Rose Brothers & Sons Inc., serving Northern Kentucky and Cincinnati, we can help you discover what issue may be causing the light bulbs in your home to keep blowing.

Lightbulb Choice

Low-quality lightbulbs will burn out faster. In addition to burning out faster, they are more easily affected by issues with wiring, connections, and arcing. When a lightbulb blows, the filament that is used within the bulb breaks. Cheaper lightbulbs are made with thinner materials, including their filaments, which lead to a higher chance of the lightbulb breaking. If you are having an issue with a lightbulb, the first step you should take is to purchase high-quality lightbulbs, LEDs if possible, and see if the problem still exists.

Loose Connection

Make sure your lightbulb is securely in place in your lighting fixture. If the circuit between your lamp and lightbulb is not secure, the electricity will not run from the fixture through the lightbulb properly.

Arcing

Arcing is similar to ensuring that you have a tight connection. Arcing is when the bottom of your lightbulb does not fit tightly enough with the hardware in the light fixture. Arcing generates excess heat around a lightbulb. Excess heat will lead to a blowout. The easiest way to check for arcing is to look at the bottom of your lightbulb for dark spots or pitting on the metal. You can also check the light fixture socket for the same thing. If you suspect that you have arcing, call an electrician to handle the issue and keep yourself safe from an electrical shock.

Voltage

Too much voltage at one socket will decrease the lifespan of a lightbulb. High voltage connections lead to excess heat, which as stated before, will cause your lightbulb to burn out quicker. Voltage issues can stem from the light fixture, the wall connection to your home’s electrical connection, or even the electrical grid in your city.

Rose Brothers & Sons Inc.

If you are experiencing trouble with your lightbulbs, even after switching to a high-quality bulb, it is time to call in a professional electrician to look at the cause. At Rose Brothers & Sons Inc., we specialize in a variety of residential electrical services. With our team of certified professionals, we have maintained an NKEA license for over 20 years. In addition to this license, we have been a member of Angie’s List for many years and we are proud to have an A+ rating from the BBB. In addition to our outstanding customer service history, our workers are fully covered through worker’s compensation, so you don’t have to worry about the possibility that you could get stuck with charges if injuries occur on the job. If you are ready to save your light bulbs and fix the underlying electrical issue in your home, contact Rose Brothers & Sons Inc. today.

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Getting Your Cooling System Ready for Summer

cooling unit

As spring fades into the long and humid days of summer, it is necessary to prepare your air conditioning unit for the big switch. No one wants to be faced with air conditioning trouble on the hottest days of the year and getting your cooling system ready for the summer is the best way to assure proper function. Let Rose Brothers & Sons Electric of Walton, Kentucky, show you how to prepare your cooling system for summer.

Test Your System

Before the temperature gets too unbearable, test your air conditioning unit. Check and see how long it takes for your unit to turn on, how long it takes for you to notice cold air coming from the vents, and listen for strange noises that you haven’t heard before. If there is a significant amount of time before you hear the unit switch on, if the air isn’t as cold as it should be, or you hear something suspicious, call for an inspection. Make sure to test your air conditioning unit early in the summer to ensure that your unit does not die when you need it the most, and to avoid long wait times for repair.

Check and Clean Your Unit

Cleaning your unit is essential to keeping it up and running smoothly in the summer months. Trim all grass and weeds from around the unit to reduce the risk of anything getting caught inside. Remove debris and dirt from the unit to reduce the possibility of overheating. In addition to cleaning the air conditioning unit outside of your home, ensure that all your ducts, filters, and vents are dusted, cleaned, or replaced, to ensure the best function.

Upgrade Your Thermostat

If your thermostat is past its prime, now is the time to purchase a new one. Thermostats have improved in many ways over the years and investing in a new, programmable thermostat can save you money. Thermostats can be programmed to turn on and off at certain times of the day to accommodate your living schedule, some can even be controlled remotely to help you better maintain the energy usage in your home.

Inspect Your Ducts

If you are noticing higher energy bills for your home, your ductwork might be to blame. Leaks in ductwork can lead to charges that are 20% higher than average. Schedule an inspection for your ductwork early in the summer to avoid potentially high air conditioning costs. In addition, have your inspector make sure all connectors are tight and ensure that all holes and gaps are sealed tightly to avoid air leakage.

To keep your family and your home cool this summer, contact the experts at Rose Brothers & Sons Electric. Our team of trained professionals can inspect your air conditioning unit, ductwork, and thermostat to ensure that everything is in working order before the first wave of heat. At Rose Brothers & Sons Electric, serving all of Greater Cincinnati, Southern Indiana & Northern Kentucky, 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. We are proud members of Angie’s List, have an A+ rating from the BBB, and have over 45 years combined electrical experience. You can rest easy knowing that your electrical projects will be handled with the utmost care and expertise.

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What Causes Power Surges In A Home?

what causes power surges in a home

A power surge is defined as “an unexpected, temporary increase in the current or voltage of an electrical circuit.” This current increase can be compared to the rush of water that occurs when a dam breaks, and it can be just as damaging. But instead of destroying buildings or trees, it can wipe out anything that uses electricity.  So, what causes power surges in a home?

Causes of Home Electrical Power Surges

Lightning – A lightning strike is by far the most spectacular cause of power surges. It is also one of the most predictable. If you hear thunder or know a storm is approaching, you can take precautions to protect your electronics.

Blackout or intentional power outage – Blackouts occur when too much power is being used at the same time and the grid shuts down. Utility companies occasionally turn off the electricity to entire areas to do maintenance. These two situations don’t actually cause a power surge. It’s the return of electricity afterward that can cause a surge.

Downed utility lines or switching grids – A utility line being damaged or destroyed can send power surges through other operational lines and into your home. If the electric company has to change grids to accommodate usage in a certain area, an electric surge may occur.

Large appliances – This type of surge is minimal and limited to your home. When an appliance that requires a larger amount of electricity shuts off, a small surge may occur and affect more sensitive components.

How to Prevent Damage from Power Surges

The best way to protect yourself from home electrical power surges is with surge protection devices. Two types are available. The first one is a surge protector that plugs into your outlet and protects only the devices plugged into it. While effective against some surges, this type will not hold up against extremely strong currents, leaving your electronics susceptible to damage. A quality plug-in surge protector can cost anywhere from $20 to over $100, so don’t use them on items that are inexpensive to replace.

The second type is a whole-house surge protector that is installed at the electric panel. It senses electrical spikes and sends them to the ground instead of allowing them into your home. Whole-house surge protectors are hard-wired into your electric panel and should be installed by a licensed electrician. Many surge protection companies offer warranties against damage when their products are used.

Because larger appliances can cause electrical surges when they power down, avoid plugging sensitive electronics – like a TV or DVD player – into the same circuit as a refrigerator, washer and dryer, dishwasher, or air-conditioner.

When you hear thunder or know a storm is on the way, unplug computers, home entertainment systems, and small appliances before lightning strikes. If your power goes out, turn off or unplug electronics and wait a few minutes after the power comes back on before using them.

Rose Brothers & Sons provides electric repairs and installation in Northern Kentucky, Cincinnati and the surrounding areas, and is qualified to install surge protection in your home.  Call today, if you need more information about what causes power surges in a home.

 

 

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