All posts in Electrical Work

Start The New Year With An Energy Audit

 

 

energy audit

If one of your New Year’s Resolutions centers on gaining better control of your finances, you might want to start the New Year right by calling for an energy audit. Now I know that anytime you hear finance and audit in the same sentence, you immediately jump to taxes and an IRS audit. But this time, that’s not what I am talking about. Get better control of your budget this winter by calling your local electrician for an energy audit or electrical system inspection.

Signs That a Home Energy Audit is Needed

  • If you walk through your home and feel drafts
  • If your floor feels cold in the winter
  • If your electric bills are high
  • If there are pockets of heat or cold as you walk your home 
  • If lights flicker or switches aren’t working properly

What is a Home Energy Audit?

A trained professional will utilize specialized equipment to evaluate the heating and cooling efficiency of a home or business. The goal of the audit will be reducing energy costs while maintaining or improving the comfort of the building occupants. An energy audit usually consists of three main areas of scrutiny; the building envelope, the mechanical systems, and user behavior.

Building Envelope

When mailed, a letter is protected by an envelope. Your home’s envelope refers to ceilings, walls, floors, doors, windows, and skylights, or basically the physical structures that separate the interior of your home from the exterior environment. During an energy audit, each element of the envelope will be assessed for how well it resists heat loss and the element will be assigned an R-value. A higher R-value indicates better heat retention or efficient insulation properties. The EPA, through their Energy Star Program, publishes a schedule of recommended R-values based upon locality. Tax Credits are available for improvements made to existing homes. If an element of the building envelope receives an R-value that is below the recommended value, the auditor can make suggestions on ways to improve heat retention.

Mechanical Systems

The second area of scrutiny in an energy audit will be the efficiency of operation provided by the mechanical systems that heat and cool your home. In other words, the auditor will look at your heater, air conditioner, and thermostat and assess them for physical condition, programming and efficiency of operation. If deficiencies are found, the auditor will provide recommendations to increase the efficiency of the mechanical systems.  If new HVAC equipment is necessary your electrician can wire the system correctly to avoid an electrical hazard.  Rose Brothers and Sons also correct faulty wiring to help reduce problems with your HVAC system.

User Behavior  

An area that we as consumers of energy typically overlook is how our behavior affects the energy efficiency of our home. Do you turn off lights when you leave a room? Do you typically keep some interior doors closed? Do you have a programmable thermostat that allows adjustment of temperature based upon time of day and occupancy? After all, why heat or cool to the level of comfort of occupants if the occupants aren’t home. In addition, studies have shown that reducing the temperature of the room you sleep in is conducive to a good night’s sleep.

Audit Recommendations

Following an energy audit your home will be given a report card. Common recommendations include;

  • increase insulation in walls, ceilings, or basements
  • repair or replace inefficient windows
  • installing weather stripping
  • repair or replace inefficient furnace
  • Correct ductwork issues
  • Fix electrical wiring

 

Rose Brothers & Sons can help you meet your New Years Resolution to conserve energy and meet budgeting goals. For service or repair of your electrical systems or for an electrical system inspection, call today.

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Emergency Electric Repair Service

Emergency electric repairPower outages are not an unusual experience in the Midwest; after all, we do have some exciting weather events from time to time. Power failure is only one of the emergencies that can occur when it comes to electricity. Damaged or faulty wiring, falling tree limbs breaking a live electrical wire, and sparking electrical plugs are just a few of the emergencies that require a professional, licensed electrician.

What to Do When the Lights Go Out

I’m sure that all of you know how to change a light bulb, despite the multitude of jokes that exist on that topic. But what if it isn’t just a blown light bulb? What do you need to do if you lose power to your home or business?

  • Turn off all major appliances and lights. This will prevent a surge or circuit overload when power is restored.
  • Keep your refrigerator and freezer doors closed to prevent food spoilage. .
  • If your neighbor has lights but you don’t, reset your home circuit breakers. If your neighbor’s home is also dark, there is probably an area wide power failure.

Emergencies happen when you least expect them to. That follows true even with your electricity. Being prepared is your best defense when it comes to losing power. In the Midwest, snowstorms and ice storms are pretty typical in the winter months, and with them come broken tree limbs and downed power lines. Unfortunately, an electrician is not of great benefit if the entire power grid is down. Planning ahead can have you calmly weathering a power outage.

Make sure you have on Hand

  • A working flashlight and spare batteries.
  • Battery Powered Radio and spare batteries
  • Charged Mobile Phone
  • Fresh Water (if your water pump relies on electricity)
  • An alternative cooking source that does not require electricity
  • A current list of emergency contacts.

Consider a Power Backup System

If being without power is not an option for your home or business, consider having a power backup generator installed. A backup generator can be hard-wired into your electrical system. Within seconds of a power loss it will engage automatically. If your business is dependent on a steady power supply or if you have health issues that require electrical machinery to run without fail, a standby generator is recommended.

Damaged or Faulty Wiring 

If you have had work done in your home by an unlicensed person, you may have wiring that does not meet building codes. Faulty wiring is a fire hazard. Have you ever felt a slight shock or vibration or heard a buzz when you turn on a light or an appliance? These are all clues that you need to have the wiring in your home checked by a qualified electrician. Changes in temperature and old age can lead to frayed wires or cracks in wiring insulation. If you’ve ever smelled an overheated transformer, the smell is distinctive. Unfortunately, faulty electrical wiring, and the resultant potential electrical fire, is odorless and invisible. You need to be vigilant of subtle changes in the way your appliances behave and call an electrician for a home electrical evaluation before you need emergency electrical repair.

Falling Tree Limbs, Live Electrical Wires

That tree that you love in your front yard can create an electrical emergency if a limb breaks during the next storm and brings down the electrical wire that runs under it. Utility companies try to be diligent in trimming tree limbs above power lines but if you notice a potential problem area, notify your electric company. If you see a downed electric line, stay back from the area and maintain at least 100 feet of space from the live wire. Call your power company immediately. If you are in a vehicle that comes in contact with an electric line, stay in the vehicle and wait for assistance. If you must leave the vehicle, jump clear with both feet together, insuring that you do not come in contact with the ground and the vehicle at the same time. Maintain your feet together position and shuffle away while maintaining contact with the ground.

Sparking Electrical Outlets

Your electrical outlet should not spark, or be hot to the touch. If you experience either of these, or if you notice charring around the outlet, stop using the outlet and call for an electrician.

For assistance with any home emergency electrical repair, or for assistance in electrical preparedness, call Rose Brothers and Sons Electric Service or schedule an appointment through our webpage. We proudly serve Northern Kentucky, Cincinnati, and the surrounding areas.

 

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5 Ways to Save Money on Electric Repairs

Electric repairs

Having the hassle of dealing with electric repairs across the home are enough stress for anyone, the last thing you want to worry about is the repairs breaking your bank account. Just like it is important to keep your electric appliances working properly, it is also important to find cost-friendly solutions to your problems from a trusted company like Rose Brothers and Sons. Like most everyone else, you might want to know some tips on how to save your money on electric repairs. Here are our top 5:

Easy Tips To Lower Your Electric repairs Budget:

  1. Preventive Maintenance. As the old saying goes, “be proactive instead of reactive.” Guess what? That can apply with electric repairs as well! There is no need for expensive repairs if you perform preventive maintenance beforehand. Regular maintenance can help the life expectancy of all of your major systems. For example, changing the filter on or deep cleaning a furnace can make it last much longer. For other appliances or systems, a deep clean, visual look over, or removal of debris can keep everything in working order. All of these can potentially prevent any costly repairs down the road.
  2. Off-Season Repairs. Just like your favorite fruits and vegetables, repair items have fluctuating prices dependent on the season. Finding the off seasons for certain systems or appliances are key in finding the cheapest prices for repairs on them. For example, furnace maintenance prices surge during the fall, so get yours checked out and repaired during the summer!
  3. DIY (Do-It-Yourself). If you are even slightly handy, you can go online to find tutorials on how to solve some of your electric problems on your own. The power of YouTube is amazing when you realize you can use the website to solve your real-world problems!
  4. Salvaged Materials. If you do end up fixing some of your own problems by hand, or can have any input on the materials used by your contractor, try out salvaged materials instead of new. Not only is it much cheaper, it’s also great for the environment. If bought secondhand, many materials can be bought for the fraction of a new price.
  5. Manufacturer’s Rebates. You know those fliers you receive whenever you check out at a store that give you chances to get money back on your purchases? Those are rebates and rebates are excellent ways to save money! When purchasing new appliances or materials, check the specific manufacturer or store for online rebates. Some may require surveys or a lengthy online questionnaire, but it is always worth it to get money back!

 

There are many ways to save money on electric repairs and these are just 5. If you are looking for electric repairs in Northern Kentucky, Cincinnati and the surrounding areas, look no further than Rose Brothers and Sons for a convenient, efficient, and cost-friendly solution to your needs.

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Electrical Repairs On A Newly Purchased Home

electrical repairsFinding your newly purchased home needs electrical repairs can be a nightmare. Unexpected expenses are often part of purchasing an older home and should be considered normal but with seller disclosures and a good home inspection, the electrical repairs you need should be limited to things you were aware of or items that have broken after the home inspection. At Rose Brothers and Sons Electric, we can help with all your electrical repairs. We cannot give you legal advice. A good attorney will be able to help you understand real estate laws and who is liable for electrical repairs. Here are a few things for you to consider:

Did Your Have A Home Inspection

Most realtors will urge you to have a home inspection if the house is an older house and even if it is new construction. A home inspection is designed to prevent you from purchasing a home and later finding out there are costly repairs you were unaware of. If you choose to skip the home inspection to save a little money, you are more than likely going to have to pay for the electrical repairs. If you feel that the seller knew about the problem and failed to disclose it, you may need to contact a good attorney.

Was The House Sold “As Is”

Wording in the purchase contract may be stated that lets you know you’re buying the home the way it is. If “As Is” wording exists, then you are more than likely responsible for repairs to the home. If you feel that the seller misrepresented the home or failed to disclose the extent of the needed repairs, you should check with your attorney to see if anything can be done about it. A seller who purposely misrepresented the home can be charged with fraud in some cases.

Were The Repairs Obvious

Another thing to consider when determining who is responsible for electrical repairs to a home you recently purchased is to determine if the problem was obvious or not. What this means is that if you could have found out about the problem by simply turning the lights on, then the courts will often assume you should have known about the electrical problems and you will be responsible for electrical repairs.

Rose Brothers and Sons Electric can help you with all electrical repairs you need. We service the Greater Cincinnati and Northern Kentucky area. Call today for an estimate or electrical inspection and we will be happy to help.

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Can Ceiling Fan Installation Save On Cooling Cost?

ceiling fan installationThere are many good arguments that would recommend ceiling fan installation to save on cooling costs.  The trick is not just to install a ceiling fan but to install it correctly and to use it wisely.

What To Expect From Ceiling Fans

Unlike air conditioners that actually cool the air, ceiling fans work by creating air flow.  It’s important to note that like a portable fan or table fan, unless you are in direct contact with the air flow, it won’t do you much good.  Ceiling fans have 2 settings. The counter-clockwise setting is best in the summer and the clockwise setting is best in the winter.  The direction of the air is determined by the slant of the blades.  During colder weather, the warm air can be pulled up to the ceiling and redistributed around the room to help heat colder exterior walls.  Likewise in the summer, the blades will push air down and create a draft.  Some people are comfortable with ceiling fans and use their A/C less or on a lower setting.

How To Save Cooling Costs With a Ceiling Fan

If you use your ceiling fan as intended, it could produce some savings on your electric bill.  You should attach your ceiling fan to the light switch so that it turns off with the light when you leave the room.  Ceiling fans only help you while your in the room.  They cannot cool air in other rooms.  Also if you can enjoy the breeze from your ceiling fan and adjust the temperature down on your thermostat, then you will be able to realize a greater savings.

Ceiling Fan Placement

When installing a ceiling fan, make sure you think about the affects of blowing air on your room.  Some people don’t like ceiling fans in the kitchen for this reason.  It can lower the temperature on the stove or create a hazard if you own a gas stove.  Potentially a ceiling fan above your dining room table could cool the food faster than you like.  Also when considering ceiling fan installation, make sure you add enough ceiling fans in the room to create even temperatures that will cool the entire room.  Many people who install bedroom ceiling fans get so they cannot sleep comfortably without the airflow and noise of the ceiling fan.

Ceiling Fan Installation

If you are thinking about installing ceiling fans this summer or would like to replace existing ceiling lights with a ceiling fan fixture, contact the electricians at Rose Brothers & Sons Electric.  Rose Brothers can help with all your lighting and ceiling fan installation. Rose Brothers services the Greater Cincinnati and Northern Kentucky area.  Contact us today and live cooler!

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Are Electrical Repairs and Upgrades Tax Deductible?

electrical repairs and upgradesYou may be wondering if electrical repairs and upgrades are tax deductible. According to experts, if you only use your home for personal use, then the amount of the home repair is not tax deductible. You can however use the amount of the home improvement for your benefit. Here’s how it works:

Rules For Home Owners

According to IRS rules, if you made home improvements like kitchen remodeling or a room addition, you can add the cost of the expense to the base price of your home. For example, if you purchased your home for 200,000 and spent 30,000 on remodeling, then the base price of your home would go up to 230,000. When you sell your home, this would offset any capital gain you may have. In our example, if you sold your home for 250,000 then you would only have 20,000 in gains instead of 50,000. You may also qualify for exemption from those gains so it’s important to get all the facts before you file your taxes.

Rules For Home Businesses

If you use part of your home for business, the rules change and you can deduct some of the home improvements or all of them depending on where the improvement was made and how much of it benefits your business. If you remodel your kitchen or need electrical upgrades and you use your home in a business type situation, then the cost of the expense may be deducted. This is especially true if you are upgrading the electric in the part of the home that is your office. If the upgrade or electrical repair is an improvement to the entire home, the amount you can deduct is often based on the square footage of the office in your home or the portion you rent out. If however the expense is part of the office or part of the rental room, you may be able to deduct the full amount. You may also be able to depreciate the expenses similar to the way you would depreciate a building. Your accountant will be able to show you which rules apply to you and how to make the most of your tax situation.

Rules For Landlords

If you own rental property then you can claim all of your electrical repairs and upgrades as a tax deduction. There is a difference in the way you classify the expenses as an improvement or repair. If you choose to write off the expense as a repair, you can take the full amount as an expense in the year you claim it. If you classify the amount as an improvement, then you can depreciate the amount over many years.

A good tax attorney or accountant can show you the best way to write off your expenses and electrical repairs to offset your income.

Electrical repairs and Upgrades

If you need electrical repairs or upgrades, Rose Brothers and Sons Electric can help. We have experience with remodeling, electrical repairs and upgrades. Many of the home improvement you make, including electrical repairs and upgrades can affect your tax situation. When you need a good electrician in Cincinnati or Northern Kentucky, Rose Brothers and Sons Electric is the company to call. We specialize in all sorts of electrical projects from new construction to simple electrical repairs.

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Appliances That Require Dedicated Circuits

appliances that require dedicated circuitsThere are many appliances that require dedicated circuits. In fact, if you are constantly experiencing your circuit breaker tripping or lights dimming, you may have a problem with how your breaker box is set up. This can cause not only damage to your appliances but it’s also a fire hazard. You owe it to yourself and your family to keep your electrical system safe and working properly.

What Is A Dedicated Circuit?

A dedicated circuit is a circuit breaker in your electrical box that is used for only one appliance. It in effect is dedicated to doing only that one thing. Some major appliances that draw a lot of electricity will require more than one switch we usually refer to these as double pole circuits as opposed to single pole circuits. This configuration keeps you and your home safe from fires. Double pole circuits are for appliances requiring 30-50 amps and single pole circuits are for appliances requiring 20 amps.

The Appliances That Require Dedicated Circuits

Heating and Air Conditioning Equipment

Electric Ranges and Ovens

Refrigerators and Freezers

Dishwashers

Washers and Dryers

Microwaves

Electric Fireplaces

Garage Door Openers

Car Charging Stations

Garbage Disposals

Water Heaters

Sump pumps

Jacuzzi, hot tubs and Pools

Upgrading Your Electrical Circuits

If you are adding a new appliance or an older used appliance, you need to make sure your electric is set up to handle the new addition.   You can check the rating on the new appliance or electrical equipment to determine how much electricity it will use. Many appliances are compliant with Energy Star ratings and use less electricity than older models. If you experience fluctuating power, dimming light or you are constantly throwing a breaker switch, you should call your professional electrician in Cincinnati or Northern Kentucky and have your electrical system checked out. Rose Brothers & Sons Electric can help you with fast, dependable electrical repairs and upgrades. Call today to speak with a professional electrician or to schedule a repair or estimate.

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Avoiding Common Wiring Mistakes in Northern Kentucky

common wiring mistakesCommon wiring mistakes can create a problem for homeowners who aren’t aware of the problem. Often do-it-yourself projects can create an electrical wiring nightmare that isn’t discovered until someone gets hurt or the house burns down. Many times unsuspecting homeowners have to confess to electrical project mistakes during a home inspection where they realize some of the jobs they undertook were better left to professional electricians in Northern Kentucky.  Understanding building codes and how to wire your home is what makes a professional electrician stand out.

Common Wiring Mistakes

Many times we find areas of the home where the wiring is put in backwards. Neutral wires in an outlet are connected to the wrong wires. Often this won’t cause any problem with the appliances you plug in but can potentially cause a life threatening shock if left undetected.

Another problem we often see is either not using wire nuts or connectors, or not putting the connections into a junction box. This can cause problems if there is a short. A wire nut or electrical box will protect your wiring and the surrounding area if there is an electrical short or arch.

Many times novice electricians will cut corners when it comes to all the specific wires and connectors that need to be properly placed to avoid fire or injury. Your professional electrician in Northern Kentucky knows what the rules are for safety and to pass building codes in the area. Using too small a junction box or putting too many wires inside the box is a good example of problems that can occur when you aren’t sure what you’re doing or you’re trying to fix your electrical wires without the right equipment.

If you don’t know much about electricity and don’t understand the correct way to run ground wires to your home, it is best to hire a residential electrical contractor to help with all your electrical needs. This will make sure you avoid common wiring mistakes that could end up costing you a ransom in costly repairs.

Call The Experts!

Electrical wiring is one area of your home where avoiding common wiring mistakes is crucial. Let the expert team at Rose Brothers & Sons Electric handle all your electrical upgrades, repairs and wiring projects in Northern Kentucky and Cincinnati Ohio. Keep you, your family and your home safe. Contact us today!

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Tips For Spring Energy Savings

tips for spring energy savingsTips for Spring Energy Savings go hand in hand with normal spring-cleaning. By taking a few extra minutes to think about energy efficiency and what small changes you can do to increase your energy savings, you’ll be ready for spring in no time. Here are a few home maintenance tips to get you started.

Ceiling Fans

Today I started my spring-cleaning with my ceiling fans. Not my favorite job I have to admit.   One of the first things I do each spring is make sure my fans are working properly. This includes changing the direction of the airflow so that warm air is drawn up. This helps cool the room and ensures constant air flow. Having dust free fans not only helps with air quality but also helps your fans work better and last longer.

HVAC Units

Make sure you have your HVAC unit serviced if you haven’t done so. Some things you can do yourself like changing filters. This does not replace the need for a routine maintenance to ensure your air conditioner is ready for the new season. Clean around the outdoor units as well to remove debris and leaves leftover from fall.

Windows and Doors

Now is a great time to make sure your windows and doors have no leaks. Keep the track around your sliding glass door clean to prevent leaks in the seal of the window. Consider purchasing new window treatments or drapes to help keep the cool air inside this spring and summer. This can save you a lot on your heating and cooling bill.

Exhaust Fans

With the warmer weather comes the need for more showers. Make sure you have a good working fan in your bathroom and use it the recommended amount of time. Adding a timer to the fan will ensure you and your guest leave it running for 15 min. after each shower. Attic ventilation is equally important if not more so. An attic ventilation system will draw cool air up through the house. This can replace running the air conditioner during mild weather and runs at a fraction of the cost. Attic ventilation can also lower your heating bill in the winter.

Refrigerators and Appliances

As part of your spring home maintenance, clean the coils around your refrigerator and remove pet hair and dust from appliances. Air should be able to circulate freely around condenser coils. This will help your electric appliances to work more efficiently and lower your electric bill while helping ensure your appliance lasts the full life expectancy. Refrigerators use over 10% of your household energy. That’s quite a lot when you think about it. Make sure your refrigerator is in good working condition and has a good seal to lock in the cold. Whenever you purchase a new appliance or air conditioner make sure it is energy efficient and has the energy star seal.  Look for frayed chords and small appliances that need repaired or replaced and go ahead and make the switch.

Tips For Spring Energy Savings

If you have questions about our tips for spring energy savings or you would like a home energy audit to determine areas where you can save money, call Rose Brothers and Sons Electric. We do electrical maintenance and repairs if you need them.  We also do electrical upgrades and installations.

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Mobile Home Electrical Installation and Repair

mobile home electrical installation and repairRose Brothers & Sons Electric are one of the few Northern Kentucky electricians who specialize in manufactured homes and mobile home electrical installation and repair. We work closely with community management companies and/or mobile home sales companies. We also work with homeowners and residence to provide all the electrical wiring and repairs that might be needed.

Professional Residential Electrical Repairs

When you call Rose Brothers, you can depend on excellent service, prompt attention and a resolution to your electrical problem. We work closely with managers and also residents to schedule appointments as needed and to work within the homeowner’s time frame. You can simply contact our office by phone at 859-746-9440 or fill out the contact request on this website. Here are a few of our services we offer to individual mobile home owners and mobile home communities:

  • Residential electrical contracting
  • New construction
  • Service work
  • Renovation electric
  • Electric system inspection
  • Electrical service changes and upgrades
  • Circuit Breaker Replacement
  • Problem solving
  • Break downs in electrical service
  • Receptacles, breakers, panels
  • Lighting
  • Landscape lighting
  • Security Lighting
  • Recessed lighting
  • Ceiling fans and light fixtures
  • Computer lines
  • Spa and Pool Heater connections
  • Smoke Detectors
  • Carbon Monoxide Detector Installation
  • HVAC wiring
  • Transformer pads
  • Duke Energy service integration
  • Code violation repairs
  • Exterior lighting, security lighting, parking lots
  • Generators
  • Electrical storm damage, surge protection, lightning damage insurance claims accepted
  • Meter base changes
  • Underground cabling

 Development And Community Electrical Projects

Besides working on individual mobile homes and manufactured homes, we also work with the community. If your community needs a back-up generator, well house, streetlights or other electrical projects done, you can depend on the expertise, knowledge and training you’ll find at Rose Brothers & Sons Electric.

Mobile Home Electrical Installation and Repair

With decades of experience, you know when you call Rose Brothers & Sons Electric that we stand behind our work. We are licensed and insured with a good reputation in the area. Electric repairs and installations are one area of your mobile home that shouldn’t be done carelessly. If you need repairs on your mobile home electric, call our office today. We have a dedicated crew, multiple master electricians and assistants who can ensure your job is done to code with every safety in place. For all your mobile home electrical installation and repair, call Rose Brothers and Sons Today.

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