All posts tagged Outlets

How Exterior Outlets Can Transform Your Outdoor Space

You have the ability to turn your backyard into anything you want it to be but you may not have proper access to electricity to achieve it. Whether you wish to hang string lights or hookup your speakers outside, if you do not have enough exterior outlets this can intervene with how you want the area to look and work. Of course, you can use an extension cord running from an interior outlet but this is not really a feasible long-term solution. If your home is in need of additional power outlets, the installation process is not very difficult and you can actually do it yourself. When you have the sufficient level of power you can turn your outdoor living space into a place where you enjoy spending time with whatever devices, machines, or hobbies you want. The fastest method to extend power is to install a receptacle back-to-back with an already existing one inside your home.

First, you must find a location that corresponds to an interior wall outlet. Then it is time to turn the power off to the receptacle circuit by shutting off the appropriate circuit breaker in the service panel. To ensure that the power is off, you can use a non-contact voltage tester on every part of the outlet. You can insert the device into all of the slots as well as checking the wires and outlet terminals after the cover plate is removed. Next, you need to pull the outlet from the electrical box by loosening the mounting strap screws.  Separate the circuit wires from the outlet and push the wires to the side so they are not in the way. You then will have to remove a knockout from the box in order to uncover the outer wall. Drill a hole in the wall through to the exterior side. From the outside, you can enlarge the hole to give yourself more space for the new wiring. Now it is time to install a circuit cable through the hole. Use a push-in cable clamp to secure the cable. You will need three wires to act as pigtails to attach the circuit wires to the indoor receptacle. Once everything is connected, tuck the wires into the indoor electrical box. You can now connect the outdoor box.  It is now time to install the GFCI outlet. After everything is finished, you can restore the power and use the voltage tester on both outlets.

Before attempting anything, you will need to check with local codes for the approved conduit, cable, and boxes. It is also important to make sure that the new service will not overload the circuit. The entire process should take two hours. If you find this too time consuming or are afraid to try this yourself, you can always hire a professional to do the job.

For a local electrician you can trust, you can count on the high quality work by Rose Brothers & Sons Electric. We provide residential, industrial, and commercial electrical contracting services. We always take the time to ensure that everything is done the right way, so you get the results you desire. We are located in Walton, KY to serve Cincinnati and Northern KY. Call us today for help with your electrical projects.

 

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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 the Difference Between Two- and Three-Prong Outlets?

Three-prong electric outlets feature three holes, where the left slot is a tad larger than the right. The right opening is known as “hot” and the left is referred to as “neutral”, while the hole at the bottom is called “ground”. The neutral and ground slots are exactly the same. If you were to look at the breaker box, you would find that the ground and neutral wires from every single outlet both go to the same place. Electricity flows from the hot to neutral slot. When an appliance is plugged into the outlet, the circuit from the hot to neutral hole is complete and power is able to flow through the appliance. The purpose for the ground slot is to protect people who are plugging in an appliance encased in metal, from sustaining an electric shock. The ground prong is connected straight to the casing.  Even with devices such as computers that have a plastic case with a metal-encased power supply inside of it, they also utilize the ground slot to keep users from harm. Another safety concern is burns. A dangerous situation can arise if a wire were to become loose from within an ungrounded metal case. If the wire is hot, it can heat the metal and potentially fatally shock or burn anyone who touches it. However when the case is grounded, this problem will not occur. Electricity runs from the hot wire directly to the ground, and will trip the breaker so the power is not being misdirected.

The biggest difference between two- and three-prong electric outlets is that the two-prong does not have the grounding feature. The omission of a ground slot means that two-prong outlets have a higher chance to give an electric shock. Beyond the lack of a safety component, there are really no large dissimilarities between the two types of outlets. An appliance that utilizes a three-prong outlet will be able to operate when plugged into one with two-prongs. This is possible when someone uses a cheater plug or cuts off the ground prong to make it fit. This is a highly dangerous practice though and is ill-advised as this bypasses a critical safety element. Now the user has created the opportunity to be shocked or burned by disabling the effect of the ground slot.

If you are interested in increasing the protective capabilities of your electric outlets, you can have them upgraded. Switching from two-prong to three-prong outlets will eliminate any worries of members of your household being harmed. Contact a professional electrician as they will be able to execute this task for you.

At Rose Brothers & Sons Electric, we perform a wide array of electrical services from residential to industrial and commercial. We take the time to fix the cause of any issue so it is permanently resolved. We value our customers and listen to their needs, which is why we have a Better Business Bureau A+ rating and outstanding reviews on Angie’s List. We are located in Walton, KY and provide service to Northern KY and Cincinnati. Call us today to schedule an appointment.

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Keeping Your Outdoor Outlets Safe

Outdoor outlets are exposed to many situations that can be damaging. If an outlet is not in working condition, this can lead to potentially dangerous repercussions for your household. Here are some tips to keep your outdoor outlets free from harm.

It is important to only use outdoor-rated electrical elements. Anything you plan to use outside must be specially designed and built to withstand the weather. Even if the outdoor lighting fixture is under a roof and will not be exposed to any rain, it still must be able to endure dampness, and extreme temperatures. Higher ratings are available for components that are not shielded from precipitation; it will state that they are weather resistant, weatherproof, or suitable for wet settings. You must use outdoor-rated light bulbs, fixtures, extension cords, and decorative lights. Indoor extension cords cannot meet the capacity required by many power tools, lawn tools, and outdoor lighting.

Ground Fault Circuit Interrupter, or GFCI, outlets are a critical electrical safety improvement in the last few decades. They should be used anywhere you plug in electronics while grounded, including outside. Weather-resistant GFCI will ensure that your family is not shocked in outdoor environments with moisture present. If the previous owners of your home did not switch the outdoor outlets to GFCI, it is imperative for safety to update them as quickly as possible. These receptacles feature components resistant to corrosion, meaning not only are they safer but they will last longer than indoor options available.

You can install covers to be placed over your outlets so they are not affected by the climate. For receptacles that on porches or in an area with a roof, a cover that is labeled as “Suitable For Damp Locations”, is the right choice. However, for outdoor outlets that do not have protective shelter, they require an in-use cover instead. This style allows both the receptacle and whatever is plugged in it to remain dry, even during rain.

Ensure that wires and extension cords are in proper working order before use. You should inspect them for nicks, cuts, tangles, or any signs of injury. You need to be careful when placing wires along walkways and trees, as this can make them more susceptible to destruction. Avoid the use of these components in locations where the wires can be impaired. Any damage sustained can cause potential problems to arise.

When plugging in something, you should pay attention to the capacity needed. If not, you could overload the extension cord or outlet which may lead to a fire. Consider installing an extra outlet or purchasing a higher-capacity cord for your gadgets.

For all your electrical needs, rely on Rose Brothers & Sons Electric. We are available for residential, commercial, and industrial projects. We even offer 24 hour emergency service, so you can count on us to be there for you around-the-clock. Our superb rating by the Better Business Bureau is due to our dedication to providing outstanding customer service for clients. We are located in Walton, KY, and serve Northern KY and Cincinnati. Contact us today.

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Thinking of Upgrading Your Outlets? We Can Help!

Functionality and appearance are just some of the reasons that a person may want to change their current outlets. The design of receptacles has progressed to perform several purposes beyond just plugging a cord into the wall. Hidden dangers may be hiding in your outlets as well. Here are some things to consider when you are in the market for power outlets.

USB power outlets are a great option to eliminate bulky chargers and adaptors. This allows you to plug devices directly into the outlet, and frees up the plug-in space you would have needed before. This is extremely convenient for those who find they lack the proper outlet access for their needs, and need to frequently charge their phone.

There are many benefits to switching to a LED night light outlet. This option provides longer light without taking up any plug spaces like a traditional night light would. You will also save money because this style has a life expectancy of twenty years. Your children will no longer fear the darkness of night, and you will spend less money too.

Tamper resistant receptacles are a very safety conscious option. These are designed with a barrier that makes it impossible for children to insert foreign objects into the outlet. No longer will you have to worry about your son or daughter being shocked or burned. The peace of mind is well worth the price to upgrade.

If you find plugged in cords sticking out from the wall to be annoying, recessed electrical outlets are the perfect alternative. This model places the outlets deeper in the wall to ensure that the plugs do not extend beyond the surface. Recessed power outlets also opens up more furniture placement options as there is no longer any plugs hanging out to cause interference.

Cracked electrical outlet plates may seem harmless, but they are actually fire hazards. The accumulation of dust, lint, and hair in the cracks can act as kindling. This problem can also occur in undersized wall plates. Dust can even explode in certain situations. Clogs can develop in the outlet due to dust buildup. To eliminate the chances of your house burning down, you should replace your outlet covers as soon as possible.

If you are thinking of selling your home, even the smallest upgrade can make a world of difference to potential buyers. Without spending thousands of dollars, simply changing the power outlets can transform rooms. Appearance is an important aspect of real estate, so any damaged outlets will affect how people think of your home, and can turn them away from making an offer. New electrical outlets are a cheap way to positively alter how buyers feel about your place.

At Rose Brothers & Sons Electric, we can upgrade your outlets for you. We specialize in residential service changes, breaks in service, storm repairs, and upgrades. We are available 24 hours a day in case of emergency. Our business was built on honesty and hard work, which is evident in the exceptional quality service we provide. We value each customer, and take pride in our outstanding record on Angie’s List. We are located in Walton, KY and serve 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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Does Your Home Need New Outlets

outlets

While it may seem like an easy job, it can take much more than a quick scan of your room to determine if your home needs new outlets. Even if you have “hidden” outlets that are out of sight and out of mind, they still need to be inspected and potentially replaced. Regularly inspecting your outlets could save you from overlooking clues to determine if you should upgrade or not. At Rose Brothers & Son’s Electric and Construction, we know the importance of properly wired and visually appealing electrical outlets because they have the potential to be extremely harmful if the issues are left untreated. We are located in Walton, KY, so let us help you get your home in the best shape it has been in since you bought it. If you have a newly built home, we need to make sure it stays in tip top shape. For decades, we have been assisting residents in Northern KY and Cincinnati with electrical contracting and residential services, and we would be thrilled to be trusted with any task you throw our way.

Selling a home can be an overwhelming process with all of the improvements and updates you or a hired professional might have to make. You can save yourself some hassle by regularly inspecting your power outlets while living in your home. Even though you are checking your outlets, do you know what you should be looking for? One thing that should get your attention is cracks in your outlet plate. Not because they are unpleasant to look at, but because they can be a prime location for house fires to begin, and nobody wants to get that call. Dust can build up in your home, no matter how often you try to clean it, and it can be anywhere, even into those cracks in your power outlet. The dust builds up in those cracks, and that is how fires start and homes are ruined.

When buying a new home, you should always get the home inspected, because it’s somewhere you are planning to house your family. That inspection should not just be on the roof or the foundation, but should also include the electrical system. Our team members at Rose Brothers & sons Inc. Electrical and Construction, can provide you with a detailed electric system inspection along with many other skills and services. We know how much home buyers love homes with character, like historic homes. The only problem with historic homes is that they are usually at least a century old, and that means the home’s electrical system will need some updating and rewiring. Two prong outlets can be dangerous to you and your expensive gadgets. If you happen to visit a home that has a lot of two prong outlets rather than having three prong power outlets, then you know you will have some work to do if you decide to buy. However, you won’t have to do it alone, because we are always ready to assist you.

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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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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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Get Your Electric System Ready for the Holidays

Electric system

With winter and the holiday season fast approaching, it is important that you start thinking about preparing your electric system for the holidays. While most people are more concerned with gifts, decorations, and finalizing those large family dinner menus at this time, to keep your holiday plans running smoothly you have to make sure you ensure your electric system is up to the task. The experts at Rose Brothers & Sons Inc., your best choice for electrical inspections in Kentucky, Cincinnati, and the surrounding areas, want to provide you with a few simple tips to get your electric system prepared for the holiday rush.

Surge Protection

Lights, decorations, mixers, and more; All of these things will be running in your home over the holidays and it is important that your circuit breakers are prepared for the increase of use. Power surges are usually caused by lightning strikes or overloads in the electrical grid, but it is not uncommon for things in your home to cause a surge as well. Electronics and other appliances turning on and off already puts your home at risk for a power surge but, with the added electricity usage a home requires for the holidays, what with plug-in decorations, Christmas lights, and extra cooking, the risk of dampening all your holiday festivities with a blown fuse or power surge increases even more. To prevent any surge malfunctions during the stressful holiday season, consider installing surge protection devices throughout your entire home to keep everything running smoothly and safely.

Upgrade Your Outlets

If your home is older and still features two-pronged outlets, it is time for an upgrade. These older style outlets will not offer the level of protection against shock and electrocution that the common three pronged outlets now provide. In addition to upgrading your outlets, you may be in need of more outlets around your home to cut back on the use of extension cords and power strips during the holiday season. While these items work relatively well, singular outlets can only withstand so much usage and if you overload your power strip you can cause power surges and power loss. Avoid all these problems and upgrade your outlets to keep your family safe and your holiday free of stress.

Schedule an Electric System Inspection

The best thing you can do to determine if your electric system needs and upgrade or work of some kind to make it through the holidays is to schedule an electrical inspection and avoid any problems that might occur. Here at Rose Brothers & Sons Inc. we provide our customers with a wide range of services from inspections to repairs. Let one of our electrical contractors inspect your electric system and help you determine what upgrades and improvements need to be done so your home continues running smoothly. If you plan on scheduling an inspection before the holidays, make sure you schedule early so any improvements or repairs can be completed before things get too busy in both your home and with our schedule.

If you have any more questions about scheduling an inspection or other concerns about your electric system before the holidays, contact Rose Brothers & Sons Inc. As an Angie’s List member, a business with an A+ rating from the BBB, and a combined 45 years of electrical experience on our staff, we can guarantee that we can meet all of your needs.

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