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Calorique Blog

Our blog is dedicated to Home improvement, Energy saving, New Energy Sources.

Small Energy Suppliers Beginning To Drive Competition At Last

According to research from Cornwall Energy, small gas and electricity suppliers now boast a customer base of 3.8m households as the market share of the ‘big six’ energy suppliers continues to fall. Currently, each of the top five cheapest plans on the market are all offered by small suppliers.

The news comes at the same time as First Utility, Britain’s biggest independent gas and electricity supplier, announced hitting 1m accounts. Other popular small suppliers include Utility Warehouse (835,000 accounts) and Ovo Energy (640,000 accounts).

Ann Robinson, Director of Consumer Policy at uSwitch, said: “This is a significant milestone for First Utility and evidence that small suppliers are at last beginning to drive competition and make the energy market work for consumers.

“Many of us can save over £200 by switching to a small supplier, which can make a huge difference to cash-strapped households.

“The growing popularity of companies like First Utility shows that small suppliers are here to stay, thanks to the excellent deals they are offering. If the big six energy providers are to keep hold of their customers, they’ll have to look at introducing more competitive prices and improving their customer service.”

The switching trend rides off the back of an investigation into the big six by the Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) after energy regulator Ofgem claimed there is no possibility of fair competition in the market. The probe will last until the end of next year and will look at the possibility of splitting up the top suppliers. The government will also work on proposals to improve engagement with independent suppliers.

According to the Daily Mail, increased customer dissatisfaction with the big six has come from repeated price hikes, billing issues, poor customer service and difficulties experienced when claiming refunds. Last year’s winter price rises saw the top suppliers raise gas and electricity bills by nearly 10% and Ofgem claims staying loyal to the same supplier costs customers up to £232 per year. In contrast, those who have switched to a small supplier will save £180 per year on average.

The number of gas and electricity suppliers in the UK has more than tripled since 2010 yet small suppliers still have a long way to go if they’re to catch up with the big six suppliers – British Gas, npower, SSE, E.ON, EDF and Scottish Power. The largest supplier, British Gas, supplies 15m accounts and the big six retains 92% of the market.

Despite the dominance of the big six, more than 225,000 households are switching suppliers each month according to Energy UK and the biggest suppliers have lost 2m customers to smaller suppliers since 2010.

“More and more people are voting with their feet and switching away from the Big Six to newer providers, chasing lower prices and better service. The Big Six need to raise their game if they want to keep customers,” says USwitch chief executive Steve Weller.

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Debbie Faulkner is an energy blogger who champions green energy and campaigns against the monopolisation of the ‘big six’ energy companies.

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How To Maximize Your Home Space With Outdoor Lighting

Landscape Lighting - Capitol Lighting

Add more space in your home by installing outdoor lights in your yard, so you can use this space even at night. Many homeowners fail to see the many benefits that come from adding outdoor lighting in their backyards. When you go beyond installing a light bulb at the doorway, you actually transform a wide space into a new “room” where you can relax after work, entertain guests, and spend quality time with your family. Here are some tips to help you choose the right outdoor lighting and properly install your light fixtures so that you can transform your yard into a usable outdoor space any time of the day.

Choosing Outdoor Lights

Light-emitting diodes, or LEDs, have become a popular choice for outdoor lighting. These lights are preferred by most homeowners because of their style, design, and effect. When lighting your outdoor space, the goal is not to emit large amount of light, but to highlight particular areas and features that will help create a warm and inviting ambience.

Another outdoor lighting option would be a reflector light. This type of light casts a lot of light, unlike LED lights. In terms of energy consumption, a reflector light uses a 35-watt lamp while an LED only uses one watt. Another advantage of using LED lights is that they are programmable.

Low-voltage lighting is another favorite when it comes to outdoor lighting. While most homes utilize 120 volts of power, low-voltage lighting only uses about 12 volts, so there is no need for deep trenches that will hold the wiring. Low-voltage lights are quite versatile and can be used either for down-lighting or up-lighting.

Additional Outdoor Lighting Options

Landscape Lighting - Capitol Lighting

Add charm in your evening landscape with artisan lights to illuminate a pathway or light a dining area. For a dramatic and eye-catching appeal, install a spotlight to feature a sparkling fountain. There are several small-sized spotlights available in the market, some are designed specifically for underwater lighting. Brightly colored Chinese lanterns add a festive oriental touch, while sheer globe lights create a soft romantic ambiance.

Installing Outdoor Lights

When installing outdoor landscape lighting around trees, avoid mounting them directly onto the trees with nails or screws. Driving nails or screws into growing trees would cause injury to the trees and this would trigger a healing response, similar to scar tissue that forms over a wound. If not monitored properly, the tree would eventually grow around the light fixture.

A better option for installing light fixtures onto trees is to use a strap device which is made of cloth or a nylon-type product that has a clip device which can be adjusted throughout the life of the tree.

You can also up-light using on-ground lights and avoid the dreaded "glare in the eye" hazard, or with an in-ground light. This type of lighting can also be adjusted to up-light and highlight the structure of trees.

When you take the time to carefully plan and select the your outdoor lighting, you do more than just add light, you add a safe and beautiful living space outside your home that you, your family, and your friends can all enjoy. Keep these tips in mind when looking for your landscape lighting fixtures and installing them out in your yard and be happy with the results!

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Joan Silver is a known lighting expert from Capitol Lighting (1800lighting.com) and a fan of all things “lighting”. She currently provides customers and designers with robust information on their lighting needs.

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How To Prevent Your AC Drain Line From Clogging

When it is working correctly, the AC unit is one of the most overlooked home appliances, but when it is broke, well then it becomes the number one concern, especially if you live in the hotter climates like Florida, Texas, or any other southern heat magnet.  There are only a few maintenance issues that the average homeowner can manage on their own, those mainly being the AC filter and the often overlooked drain line.  Filters will be discussed in a different article, for this article the attention will be focused on prevention of clogging in the AC drain line.

Where it is and what it does

AC systems vary in style and type, but they are all designed with the same basic functional characteristics.  The basic premise of air conditioning units is to remove the moisture from the air, thus making the homeowner feel cooler.  To remove moisture from the air means that parts of your AC unit are going to gather water and that very same water has to go somewhere.  While there are different parts of the AC unit that may have condensation, the Air Handler is the part of the AC unit that condensates enough to warrant the installation of a drainage system that collects the water and discharges it through a sewer line, often made of PVC pipe.  Most homeowners who have walked their property and seen their AC unit outside have noticed the PVC pipe that is always dripping water as the unit runs.  This pipe is the AC drain line.  Accurately identifying the drain line is the first step to performing any maintenance on it.

When is maintenance necessary?

Most people do not perform maintenance on their AC units until they stop working.  The first recommendation for any maintenance on an AC system is to call a certified and licensed technician. For Orlando area residents, I highly recommend going to www.facemyeracorlando.com to find that technician.  Before that call is made, take a quick peek at your system to make sure the call is necessary.  The AC drain line in modern systems is equipped with a kill switch that is activated when water backs up and triggers the sensor.  By simply going outside and inspecting the drain line for problems, you may be able to get your AC system going again.  If you look at the drain line and notice that the area around the drain is excessively dry then you may have a clogged pipe.

How to prevent your line from clogging?

Regular maintenance on the AC system is vital.  The central air unit of a home is a big complicated system integrated with highly dangerous electrical parts and sophisticated refrigeration components.  The best way to keep it in excellent condition is to perform maintenance twice a year in addition to regularly changing the AC filter.  Part of that maintenance should include cleaning the drain pipe.  The most common offender in clogging the pipe is the excessive buildup of algae combined with dust and moisture forming blockage inside the line.  As with most fungus, flushing with a simple bleach solution or vinegar mixed with a little water will do the trick.  If you want to make a small investment, there are algae prevention tablets that you can line the base of the collection pan with that will inhibit the growth of algae before the water starts to travel down the AC drain line.  Keeping your filter changed will prevent excess moisture from collecting that also prevents the spread of algae as well.

 Most homeowners are happy to save money and who wants to pay someone a service call fee when he or she can solve the problems themselves?  If the line is already clogged you may have to borrow or purchase a wet vac if you don’t already have one so you can vacuum out the clogged debris from the bottom of the drain line.  Another option is to blow compressed air through the top side of the drain line and force the clog out with air pressure.  Whatever method you use, they are all relatively easy and could potentially save you big money and keep you cool while doing it.  Like they say in the medical field though, an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure.  So, keep it clean!

http://homeguides.sfgate.com/keep-algae-growing-air-conditioner-condensation-line-29959.html

http://www.todayshomeowner.com/innovative-pump-unclogs-ac-condensation-drain-lines/

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The author, Ray Donato, is studying to become an electrical engineer at Valencia College in Orlando. To help supplement his income, he writes articles such as these on a number of topics related to his field of study including home maintenance of electrical appliances.

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Housing Opportunities To Be Found In London

Housing Opportunities To Be Found In London
While the quality of a property is a big factor in the overall price that a home can achieve, there is a lot to be said for the fact that many other factors will play a role in the overall level of demand and price for properties in the UK, and of course, London. There is a need for properties to have a great range of local amenities and features to increase their value to an individual byer. Being located close to some of the most exciting elements in the capital of England creates a level of demand, but there is always a desire and determination to find more elements of interest.

Being situated on the banks of the Thames is an attractive proposition for many people in London but it needs to be remembered that this will often limit the space and facilities around your property. There is a lot to be said for being located close to the river bank and the various forms of entertainment and leisure activities, but if there is no bridge or walkway to the other side of the river, you may find that you are unable to benefit from what is available within walking distance.

This is why there is a great deal of focus on the bridges of London, and there is a number of proposed and planned bridge prospects in the capital at the moment. One such bridge is the Garden Bridge, which helps to link the Temple area of the city to the South Bank. The South Bank is one of the most exciting areas of London, and being able to access this part of the city is something that will bring considerable benefit to many people in the local area.

The Garden Bridge was designed by Thomas Heatherwick, who was heavily involved with many of the designs of the opening ceremony of the 2012 Olympic Games. The bridge, as the name probably suggests, will feature woodlands elements alongside the path across the Thames, providing a visually stunning addition to the local area on top of the benefits of the walkway. At the moment there is only a computer generated layout of the bridge, but it seems to be an attractive proposition. There will be trees and wild flowers while there will also be a green park.

This bridge is indicative of the different approach that London is taking towards the Thames. In the corporate 1980s, the Thames was discarded, thought of as something which was a necessity in the area, but of being no value or merit. This is certainly not the case now, with the Thames and the areas on the banks of the river being hailed as ranking highly amongst the most vibrant and exciting parts of the city.

Property developers are swooping in

As you would expect, property developers seemed to cotton on to this fact quicker than most people and there are currently 3,000 homes being constructed alongside both banks of the Thames and there are many areas of the capital being deemed as prime London when a decade or two ago it would have been horribly overlooked.

In recent times, there has been a massive level of acceptance regarding the South Bank. This is a vibrant part of London and of course, there are some stunning views to be enjoyed from this part of the capital. From a reputable South Bank property, you can enjoy views of the Houses of Parliament, Canary Wharf, St Paul’s Cathedral and even Somerset House. The area also houses the London Eye, the Tate Modern, the Shard, the Globe, the Borough Market ensuring the South Bank is regarded as a place for boho chic in the English capital.

The level of demand for the South Bank can be seen in the fact that it is currently being described as the third city of London, with the city of London and the city of Westminster leading the way. As any city grows in popularity, there is a need to expand and the eastern and western fringes of the South Bank are experiencing a rise in demand, which means that London property surveyors are experiencing a lot more in this area. An area like the Riverwalk, close to Westminster Abbey and Houses of Parliament, is an excellent example of the new blocks and living areas that are sprouting up on the banks of the river.

The north side of the river has long been deemed an area full of millionaires but it seems as though the south bank is catching up. This means that there is a great demand for the services of a local surveyor find one here who can operate in these locations.

Andrew Reilly is a freelance writer with a focus on news stories and consumer interest articles. He has been writing professionally for 8 years but has been writing for as long as he can care to remember. When Andrew isn't sat behind a laptop or researching a story, he will be found watching a gig or a game of football.

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Your Guide To Choosing The Right Ceiling Medallion Size

Ceiling Medallion - Capitol Lighting

A ceiling medallion is a decorative molding that is intended to accentuate the center of a ceiling, usually in a dining or living room. It is often mounted in rooms that also have decorative crown molding. When choosing a ceiling medallion, there are a few things to consider. Here is your quick guide to selecting the best ceiling medallion for your space.

Size of Light Fixture
Most ceiling medallions are used in living and dining rooms along with a hanging light fixture. If your room has, a light fixture such as a chandelier, or if you intend to install one, one important thing you need to remember is to choose a medallion that is not exactly the same size as the outside diameter of the light fixture. The medallion can be bigger or smaller than the fixture. You don’t want it to be the same size as the fixture as this will make the two objects form a virtual column, and this will make the room appear to be smaller than its actual size. You also need to take note of the size of the canopy plate that your light fixture hangs from. This will have to the same size as the hole in the center of the ceiling medallion.

Ceiling Height
Ceiling medallions are generally intended for rooms with high ceilings. A good rule of thumb is that the higher the ceiling, the larger the medallion should be. So a really tall two-story ceiling will require a large medallion, unless its dimensions for length and width are small.

Room Size
There is no fixed formula when it comes to the selection of the medallion size relative to the room where it will be installed. A large room would require a larger medallion compared to a smaller room. For a hallway, you would need to choose a ceiling medallion that is proportional with the width of the area, not its length. If you are intending to mount the medallion in a large room which is part dining area and part living room, consider only the size of the space where the medallion will be placed.

Ceiling Medallion - Capitol Lighting

Type of Room or Space
The size of a ceiling medallion will also depend on what type of room will be installed in. A dining room, bedroom, or a large entry way may have a medallion that's larger in diameter than the light fixture. But for a bathroom or a small hallway, choose one that's smaller than the circumference of the light fixture.

Formula
Like previously mentioned, there really is no specific formula to get the appropriate size of medallion, as you will need to take into consideration all of the factors above. However, if you really want a formula, you may refer to these numbers to help you decide what size ceiling medallion is best for your room.

1. Measure the length and width of the room in feet.
2. Multiply these numbers to get the area of the room in square feet.
3. Divide the result by 7.
4. The final number will be the diameter of your ceiling medallion in inches.

So, for example, a room that is 12 feet wide and 12 feet long would be 144 square feet. Divide this number by seven and round this off, the result will be 20. Consider this number as inches and the ideal size for the ceiling medallion for this particular room would be about 20 inches.

Ceiling medallions are available in a wide range of sizes, from 4 inches in diameter for a closet or dressing room to over 36 inches for large rooms. If you are decorating a large hall or ballroom, you will have to install more than one ceiling medallion on the ceiling.

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Joan Silver is a known lighting expert from Capitol Lighting (1800lighting.com) and a fan of all things “lighting”. She currently provides customers and designers with robust information on their lighting needs.

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The Dos And Don'ts Of Testing And Tagging Equipment

PAT testers are qualified people who run a series of tests on electrical equipment to make sure that they are not malfunctioning and performing as intended. Not everyone is qualified to become a PAT tester because testing requires an understanding of the testing equipment and the appliances being tested. The best way to become competent is to attend a PAT testing and tagging course and have a bachelor’s degree in electronics.

Always follow the IEE code

This is a practical manual that offers a complete code of practice for an in-service inspection and the testing of electrical equipment. This will often include advice on safety legislation, health and compliance issues. Every testing and tagging professional needs to be very familiar with this manual prior to testing anything.

Tests need to be performed in the right order

The correct testes in the correct order ensure that the results you receive i.e. pass or fail are accurate. This also saves you from errors which may end up making you redo the testing.

Get quality PAT testing equipment

When you purchase high quality PAT testing equipment there will be no doubt about the test results. Testers are urged to avoid buying second hand equipment and to always get their equipment re-calibrated every few months.

Do no rush through the tests

If you are trying to reach your monthly testing bonus the worst thing you can do is to rush through the tests. Usually PAT testers will get a bonus for the electrical appliances they test but rushing through things means that you’ll make mistakes which could jeopardize your job or your business.

You shouldn’t have to touch the appliance

Most tests will pass but a tester shouldn’t assume this. Your job is to not assume that the appliance will pass but to go through the whole testing sequence. That said you shouldn’t simply touch an appliance because that would be a good way to receive a nasty shock. Always be prepared by wearing gloves if you really need to touch the appliance.

Never put a ‘Pass’ Label on a ‘Failed’ appliance

During testing and tagging many appliances testers often make the mistake of putting a ‘Pass’ label on a failed appliance because they cannot be bothered to fill out the failed sheet in their records. This type of thing is illegal and if the appliance is in fact dangerous which causes personal harm you’re going to be in big trouble.

Common PAT testing mistakes

Perhaps one of the biggest most common mistakes that many testers make is when testing the insulation of a Class I appliance. Because you do not know that the conductive earth path is working you cannot rely on the insulation test since you’ve not tested the earth path yet to make sure it is good.

Forgetting to turn the appliance on

You could have a situation where a live wire has been broken from inside of a portable appliance which is now touching the outer casting. Once you have performed the insulation test and made sure that everything inside is around 500V you now need to find leaking voltage. So, if the appliance has not been turned on there is no current running through the live wire and so nothing will escape which will result in a false ‘Pass’ of an otherwise dangerous appliance. You should also be careful not to test the appliance as a 500V shock is pretty severe.

Only performing a single earth bond test

There are some appliances that have more than one outer part with separate earthed ends. This will require that you test each one independently. Also when dealing with multiple earth paths you should consider the worst case scenario as opposed to the average reading.

Performing just one insulation test

There are times when you need to perform an insulation test multiple times. The best solution is to wrap a device in kitchen foil and then perform the insulation test on this kitchen foil.

You shouldn’t do any earth bond tests on Class II appliances

These appliances have no earth and so your testing will definitely fail. But you should check if you’ve got the right type of appliance when running a PAT test.

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Mark is one of the leading PAT testing and tagging experts in Sydney. He runs his own testing and tagging service catering to both home owners and businesses alike. 

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Key Attributes To Look Out For In A Property Manager

A property manager is a person who is hired by a real estate owner to take care of the property. Real estate assignments for property managers can include; condominiums, garages, warehouses, apartment buildings, government properties, housing projects, office buildings, shopping centers, and even vacant tracts of land. The property management business can provide one with a highly successful and rewarding career. However it is only ideal for people with certain characteristics. Below is a list of important attributes that property managers must have in order to be successful in their work.

Complete Knowledge Of State Laws

Having complete knowledge of the state laws governing the land and real estate industry is the most important attribute for a real estate owner to have. Every state has its own set of rules that govern the extreme amount of land one can own and how real estate can be managed from getting licenses to how the property is being used. Property management laws keep changing and as such a property manager should always be up to date with the current rules. A simple mistake made by the property manager or a task forgotten, can cause the owner to pay dearly by losing his/her property or paying a hefty fine.

Good Organizational Skills

Property management work is a very hectic job that requires a person with good organizational skills so as to be able to keep on top of things and remain focused. A property manager is required to collect rent, prepare and interpret financial reports, ensure the property is in perfect conditions, prepare monthly records, and keep all court dates. What’s more license renewal documents, rent invoices, rent increase letters, and payment receipts must be prepared and sent to their respective destinations on time. Only an organized person will be able to multi-task, keep files in order, and ensure timely repairs are made to any type of property damage.  

Communication And People Skills

A good part of a property manger’s duties involves dealing with people and as such the manager must have good communication and people skills. With good communication skills, a property manager will be able to articulate cases in front of a judge, talk to the owner, negotiate with vendors, and speak appropriately with tenants. Possessing good people skills on the other hand enables the property manager to be able to easily deal with people from all walks of life and create a good working relationship with them as well as solve problems between vendors or tenants.

Ethical And Honest

Property managers are not only tasked with the responsibility of caring for real estate properties but they also handle a lot of money. Thousands of dollars pass through their hands in the form of collecting rent and security deposits. Since the owner entrusts his property and money to the manager, the least that the property manager can do is carry out his duties with the highest level of integrity.

Acquiring property management qualifications is important but not the only necessity to becoming a property manager. Experience and the above attributes are an added plus that ensures the job is done completely and competently.

Colin Grant is a freelance writer who loves writing about real estate ownership and property management. Colin’s favorite site to getting exemplary and dedicated property managers is http://www.jamesgibb.co.uk/.

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Garage Door Openers: An Overlooked Security Risk?

Garage doorThere are a lot of myths surrounding the effectiveness of many of the devices we use to secure our homes. And not knowing the truth about the safety of our devices can actually compromise our security in the long run.

The garage door opener is one device that appears to be surrounded by lots of controversy. Some say that the garage door opener and its remote devices are safe. Others say that these devices have some of the worst security ratings ever.

The History of the Garage Door Opener

The garage door opener was invented using technology from World War II. In the beginning, the remote controls for garage doors would use radio frequency signals to beam the 'open' command to the receiver.  Of course, this wasn't the most secure way to go - many a garage door was opened accidentally by neighbors.

In response to the unintentional garage door openings, manufacturers tried a new tactic: the dip switch. This allowed over 250 different codes to be generated. Unfortunately, this wasn't foolproof, as it allowed thieves to drive through neighborhoods and scour homes for identical codes. As well, 'code grabber' technology was available, which allowed thieves to obtain a code as a homeowner opened their garage door, and record it for later use.

It wasn't until the 1990s that rolling codes were introduced, which generated a new code every time a garage door was opened. This technology provided the homeowner with much more security, as millions of possible codes could be generated.

An Alternative Breaching Method

Despite both the convenience and security of today's garage door opener technology, there is still a way to gain entry into a home via the garage door. And it's surprisingly non-tech.

Every garage door opener has an emergency release lever, which allows for the manual opening of the garage door in the event of a power outage, or if you accidently lock yourself out of your house. But to a thief, it's a way to gain entry. And all that thief needs is a clothes hanger. A simple insertion of the hanger from the outside to the inside, and then pulling down the emergency release lever is all it takes, depending on the system you have.

Increasing the Safety of Your Garage Door Opener

If you are keeping your garage door opener, you can increase its safety by disabling the emergency release lever. While it will prevent thieves from using the clothes hanger trick above, it will also mean that you have no alternate means of entering your home should you forget your keys or the power goes out.

You can also remove the cord that's attached to the emergency lever, as this can make it easier for a thief to get hold of with a clothes hanger. Thinking like a thief can also help; no thief will want to spend a lot of time trying to break in, so making their job as difficult as possible is a good idea. If you have any windows which allow you to see inside your garage, it's important to ensure they're covered so that thieves can't see what they're doing.

You may want to consider where the photoelectric eyes on your garage door opener are located. These eyes are installed on all opening systems sold in the United States after 1993. Installed near the floor, they automatically reverse the opening of a garage door when the beam is broken. For these eyes, the six inch rule should apply. This means that photoelectric eyes shouldn't be installed any higher than six inches above your garage floor. Any higher, and animals or people can easily bypass the beam and enter your garage undetected.

Other tips involve knowing where your remotes are located at all times, and waiting to ensure your garage door has completely closed before going on your way. There are many suggestions for increasing your safety where your garage door and its opener are concerned. And the more you apply, the safer you and your family can be.

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  •  License: Royalty Free or iStock source: http://www.sxc.hu/photo/762272

Guest author Emma Prior writes on a variety of topics, but is particularly well versed on home security systems. She recommends The HSS Geek as a resource for consumers looking to educate themselves.  

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Tips For Reducing The Price Of Hiring An Electrician

Over the past couple of years the demand for electricians has increased steadily. However, finding a good electrician is till like finding a needle in a haystack and this is despite the fact that these services are popping up almost everywhere. In most cases the electricians you encounter are either not qualified enough or they are not certified or don’t have enough experience so either way hiring them is not a good idea. That said more qualified and experienced electricians tend to be expensive. Sometimes as much as 50% more expensive but you don’t have to pay that much for their services if you know how to negotiate and understand the quote they give you. Expect to save around 30% off what is quoted if you are prepared to do some work on your own.

Get multiple quotes

To start off with you should first get an idea of what the cost will be for that given job. Visit a few nearby electricians and don’t worry about their qualifications. Just ask them to take a look and give you a quote. Even though you may not have any intention of hiring them the quote should tell you a little of what you can expect in the way of work and costs. Also ask them to break up the quote to clearly outline things like labor charges, installation costs and replacement costs. If they are going to for instance replace switches or fuses then ask them to detail what types of fuses they will use and what switches they are going to use. These are very important factors to consider because the quality of these items vary and installing low quality may in fact end up being cheaper but they will not last you as long as properly manufactured and warranty backed replacements. The more you know about what they will install the better position you will be to judge if the electricians you’ve consulted are any good.

Compare quotes

Compare the quotes that you’ve received from the electricians you’ve consulted. Compare labor costs and replacement costs. Ideally, you will want a good electrician to use high quality parts and charge you little in the way of labor. However, as mentioned earlier you’ve gotten these quotes simply to get an idea of what you’ll end up paying. This will also help you negotiate with an expert electrician.

Negotiate with comparisons

An expert electrician is obviously going to be more expensive to hire than the ones you’ve consulted. It is assumed that you’ve verified that they are experts and experienced because everyone will say that they are. The best way to negotiate is to ask the electrician to lower their labor costs by around 10% and not charge you for replacement parts. Rather offer to buy the parts yourself. He should provide you with a list and you can search for these parts online which are often available at way lower prices than what the electrician may offer them to you for. However, keep in mind the fact that you should always buy replacement parts backed up by a warranty. If it does not have a warranty then there is a good chance it will fail and ruin the job the electrician did.

A complete quote

Many expert electricians may charge you by the hour. The quote will reflect their hourly labor charges. You can reduce the cost to some extent by asking them for a complete quote. Ask them to charge you based on the work done and not the hours it takes. The upside to this is that the electrician will work faster and take fewer breaks which results in an overall saving for you.

Hiring an electrician can often be a rather stressful decision. The best way to do it is to hire a known and established expert electrician service like the one offered by Electrician to the Rescue. The service backs all their jobs with a solid warranty and they have been around for ages. If you are in a hurry you can simply visit their website and fill out the online request for an electrician and get a response almost immediately this helps you save time.

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Mark is a certified and experienced electrical engineer. He has been working as an electrician in Sydney for well over a decade. A keen eye for detail and an interest in all things electrical is what has made him one of the leading electricians in the country. He is also the author of various how-to publications. 

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How To Save Money On Your Energy Bills

b2ap3_thumbnail_juice-energysaving-hi-res_650.jpgThere is no surprise that many of us are searching for ways to reduce our household energy bills in order to free up extra cash that we can use for enjoyment in our everyday lives. Most of us would much rather be spending our hard earned cash on days out the family and spending time with friends. To try and keep a little more cash in your wallet or purse take a look at the tips below and see just how much money you could be saving in no time with a few simple changes.

  • If you tend to leave your TV or any other home gadgets on standby start to turn them off. You could save between £50 - £90 a year if you do!
  • Switching to energy saving light bulbs is one of the easiest ways to help reduce your electricity bill. You could end up saving up to £35 a year. It may not sound like a lot but it’s more than enough to treat yourself to a nice lunch or dinner out with a friends. Which would you prefer?
  • Try using your computer less often by switching to a smaller device such as a laptop or a tablet. You could save around £26 a year.
  • Try taking a shower instead of a bath for just one day in the week and you could save around £15 a year on your gas bill.

Sticking to all of the above tips could save you up to £166 a year. Just imagine what you could do with that! For more great ways to help lower your energy bills and keep your money in your pocket take a look at the infographic below created by the expert team at Juice Electrical Supplies UK. 

Created by Juice Electrical Supplies UK. 

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Look At The Top 5 Home Interior Gadgets

b2ap3_thumbnail_ig_image.php_20140311-205923_1.jpgThe advancement in technology has made people to think of ways to automate their home. Several gadgets serve best for home interiors and ranked on the top in 2013.

Lockitron

Lockitron is an excellent gadget that can be fixed with the deadbolt on the inside of the door. You can lock or unlock your door using your smart phone and you can share the access of your doors to your friends as well. You get a message each time the door is open. An interesting option is the Bluetooth connectivity as you just need to walk up the door for it to unlock. 

Hue

Hue is an interesting LED bold starter pack. You can control the lighting options from your smart phone. The bulbs are built with an app and feature a Wi-Fi receiver and brightness, color and on/off operations can be controlled.

Nest

Nest is an intelligent artificial robot that can sense your presence. It has device connectivity, Wi-Fi connection and remote control options.

Ninja Blocks

Ninja Blocks are tiny computers that can speak to neighbor apps. It is possible to connect all things at home to the web. Even a knock at the door is notified through Facebook or Twitter.

Numi Toilet

Numi Toilet is an advanced toilet with plenty of automations and has music.

This infographic of home inprovement products review has been sponsored by Yabbly.com

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Radiant Heating



If you want to get rid of a cold floor in your home and want to heat your home floor, where the heat is less when compared to the remaining rooms, then it is time to think about radiant heating. Radiant heating is a heating system that has become very popular in new home construction in cold climates. This is because; radiant heat offers energy savings along with comfort for homeowners.

Finding the radiant heater is very easy. You can find them in local or online stores. However, if you want to save time and money, buy online radiant heater can be your choice. Simply by entering keywords buy radiant heating in the search engines, you will find hundreds of sites that sell various types of radiant heat systems. But, there is one type of radiant heating system that stands out, that is infrared heaters from CALORIQUE.

CALORIQUE is a world leader in the production of affordable, energy-efficient infrared heating element for a variety of applications, especially for electric under floor heating, which can maximize the effective conductivity of elemental carbon. In addition, the radiant heating system CALORIQUE is a flexible heating system, energy-efficient and cost-effective alternative for environmentally conscious households and institutions, where the idea of renewable energy should be actively implemented.

Do not hesitate! CALORIQUE heating elements made to maximize the energy efficiency. Using unique precision printing equipment Calorique produces heating elements with low wattage, which cover about 66% to 84% of the film surface, which maximizes the thermal mass. This ultra – effective heating elements distribute heat evenly on a very large area, which leads to a rapid warming and less effort than with other heating. This means that CALORIQUE product is an inexpensive way for floor heating, ceiling heating, floor heating and an effective way of operating the main heating source.

 

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