Electrical Basics for Back to School: A Guide

The Essentials of Home Electricity

Having an electrical grid is part of what defines the US as a first-world country. These days, it is essential, especially as the demand for “work from home” increases. People cannot function without it, yet it is a mystery to most.

Everyone knows that the light comes on when they flip a switch, but they may not know why. Electricity is energy produced by charged particles. In a home, energy moves through wires, and switches and plugs are used to create a circuit or a continuously flowing circle of connection for the electricity.

Defining the Parts of the Electrical System

electric meterWhile most people can recognize a switch or an outlet, they may not be aware of some of the other parts of the electrical system in the home. Below is a breakdown of main major components of a residential electrical setup:

  • Electric Meter: The electric meter is the mechanism that measures the amount of electricity that goes through it. The electrical wires from the municipal power grid (underground or overhead) connect to the house through the electric meter.
  • Disconnect Switch: This switch cuts power to the entire home. This switch is usually part of the breaker panel but can be separate from it.
  • Breaker Panel: The home’s electrical panel is where the electricity from the supply lines is divided into various circuits throughout the house. Switches control each circuit and are often labeled by room or by the appliance they service.
  • Outlets: Also called receptacles, electrical outlets have hot and neutral wires. When something is plugged in, the electricity passes from the hot wire through the machine (for example, a hairdryer), turning it on. The electricity then flows through the plug’s second wire and back into the neutral wire of the outlet, thus creating a circuit.
  • Switches: Switches are used to interrupt a circuit from the breaker box to (usually) a light of some kind. Switches come in many different styles, including dimmers and knob switches.

Warning Signs of Electrical Problems

burning plastic smellIf a homeowner is concerned about the age of wiring or electrical problems in general, there are a few indicators to look for that demonstrate a problem with the electrical wiring. If wiring is older, it may not be up to code, as the rules for electrical repairs change as technology improves. Having a consultation with an electrician about these concerns is never a bad idea.

If a homeowner notices any of these things, they should seek out a professional sooner rather than later:

Be Safe and Call an Electrician About Electrical Repairs

Electricity is a fantastic tool, but it can be very dangerous, especially to someone who is not trained. Electrical safety is paramount in preventing the worst, including fire and electric shock. A homeowner should not do electrical work because they don’t have the proper training. Hiring a professional electrician costs less than someone’s life.

About Elite Electric, Plumbing & Air

After serving Port St. Lucie, FL, and the surrounding communities for more than 30 years, Elite Electric, Plumbing & Air has been named best of HomeAdvisor in 2021 and is accredited by the BBB and NATE. They offer same-day service, courteous technicians, and straightforward pricing. Call them today for electrical services in Port St. Lucie, FL.

A Quick Guide to Creating the Perfect Atmosphere for Backyard Cookouts

Get the Backyard Ready for Summer Activities

Warmer temperatures put people in the mood for socializing. That’s why summer is always known for outdoor dinner parties or a BBQ and drinks on the patio. As the heat of summer rolls in, warm evenings are perfect for enjoying outdoor entertainment spaces. Still, as darkness falls on a summer night, lighting can be an important element in creating the perfect atmosphere. 

For homes with an outdoor area to entertain guests, like a patio or covered porch, lighting is often overlooked as a design detail. Luckily, changing or adding lights to an outdoor space can be easy, and the results can be dramatic. Homeowners can follow these tips from local outdoor lighting specialists to help them design their outdoor spaces for the perfect ambiance for summer fun. 

Flood Lights for Practical Lighting

floodlightsThe first step to planning the perfect outdoor space is to get a vision for what activities will happen there. While mood and ambiance may be the goal for some, there must be adequate lighting for any activity from a purely practical standpoint. When having light is more important than setting a certain tone, floodlights are always a popular choice. New LED floodlights can provide plenty of light at just the right price. Outdoor floodlights are weather resistant and will probably never need new bulbs, so they can always be a reliable source of light. 

By electrical codes, one must light every exterior door. This is a good place to start upgrading to floodlights. Chances are that a nearby exterior door will access every outdoor space. By upgrading current lights, homeowners can start to make sure plenty of light is available. After these fixtures are changed, electricians can add even more LED fixtures to spotlight any area where more light is needed. 

Enhance Landscaping With Landscape Lights

Any outdoor space where a homeowner would entertain will certainly have some form of landscaping. Whether it is to enhance curb appeal or add mood lighting to an outdoor gathering, landscape lighting is the perfect option. While landscape lighting isn’t intended to fully illuminate outdoor spaces, it can highlight certain features in the overall landscape design. Additionally, by adding soft and warm light to landscaping, outdoor spaces will feel more in tune with nature and more inviting. 

Set the Mood With String Lights

hang string lightsFor homeowners looking for the perfect union of practicality and style, string lights are the perfect option. String lights have become so popular that almost no patio or outdoor space is complete without them. String lights are prized because they are so versatile from a design standpoint, and they can be implemented to adequately light a space or make it intimate and inviting. 

Electricians can install string lights in no time. In the case of additions to outdoor spaces, new circuitry may need to be added to accommodate the new lighting, but that is easily accomplished. Once the circuitry is in place, one can quickly add string lights to make any outdoor environment inviting and practical. 

About Elite Electric & Air

Elite Electric & Air has been a reliable name in electrical services in Port St. Lucie, FL for more than 30 years! Their team of technicians is expertly trained to handle any issues that may come up, and they always leave homes in better condition than they found them. Elite Electric & Air’s work is always backed by a 100% satisfaction guarantee. Contact them today to learn more about outdoor lighting installation in Port St. Lucie, FL