How to Change a Light Switch at Home

January 14, 2020

Electrical

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You will need insulated, pointed, electricity pliers, a screwdriver, a sharp knife and good quality electric tape. The first and most important step to take is to turn the electric power off to the area or switch you will be changing. Turn the light on, now go to the electric panel and throw the breaker switch to which the lamp is attached. If they are not labeled properly, turn them off one by one checking if the light went off inside. When it goes off, you have found the right breaker switch. If you do not want to do this, throw all the circuit breakers off.

Now using the screwdriver, remove the screws attaching the switch to the electric box in the wall. Pull it out and take a good look at all the wires screwed to the sides of the switch. They should have different colors for proper identification, if they don’t you can still do the job, do not worry. Compare the screws of the new switch to those of the old switch, make sure they are located in the same place and that there is the same number of screws. They will all be the same color with the exception of the ground screw which will be green.

Here I will take a break from the process and explain a little something which is very important. If you are changing a light switch that is the only one used to turn a lamp on and off, any switch will do. When the lamp can be turned on from two or more switches located in different areas of the room, a special switch is needed. If this is the case make sure you tell this to the attendant at the hardware store so he sells you the right kind of switch. This is no big deal; they are just different and have an extra wire connection.

Okay, back to work, the electricity is off and the switch is off the wall too. Take a good look at the wire distribution on the used switch identifying every wire and where it is connected. Loosen the first screw on the used switch, using the pliers take it off the holding screw. Using the pliers straighten the wire out and with the night scrape the end of it so it is shiny and clean again. Make a u shape on the tip and put it around the same screw on the new light switch. Make sure the u is tight against the screw base; tighten the screw until the wire is firmly in place. Do the same for all the other screws. Now take the electric tape and wrap the sides of the switch with a couple of turns covering the screws and the wires. This is a precaution in case that for some reason the screws touch the metal electric box in the wall.

Screw the switch tightly in place and put the cover on. Turn on the circuit breakers in the electric panel and test your new light switch. You have now become an electrician; you are now able to change any light switch in your home, free of charge on your own time. Congratulations you have mastered your fear of electrocution by switch change.


Tips to Install an Exterior Sconce Light

January 14, 2020

Lighting

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Exterior light can serve many purposes. The main purpose is to provide the light for the exterior of a home. The sconce light can work well for the purpose of exterior light on decks or patios. By using the right bulb in the exterior sconce light, any homeowners are able to lounge in their favorite chair for reading or just for relax. Some of the sconce light globes are open at the top. For that reason, you have to be certain when you are going to install them in the place that can protect them from the rain or snow. Basically, the exterior sconce light comes with a rubber steal which fits between the fixture and the wall for protecting the electrical connections. At this time, this article is going to give you several tips to install an exterior sconce light. Just check out the following tips.

Firstly, you need to pull the wire through the hole and then pull it through the holes in light switch box. You should install the box to the wall based on the instructions from the manufacturers. Then, you need to strip three inches of the outer covering from electrical wire in a way to reveal the white wire, the black wire, and also the bare wire. Next, you need to strip for about 1/2-inch of the insulation from white and black wires.

Secondly, what you have to do in installing exterior sconce light is to hold white wires parallel to each other and then insert the ends to the wire nut. After that, you have to tighten it down on the wires. Next, you need to do the same thing with the bare wires. Actually, the light switch comes with two thermals. You need to secure one of the black wires to the one and also the other black wire to other with the screwdriver. Moreover, you also need to secure the switch to the light switch box and then you can install the switch cover plate.

Thirdly, you should go to the location of the sconce light and then you need to strip the wires like when you did for the light switch. After that, you have to connect the white wire from light to white wire from electrical wire just like when you did with the light switch. This step should be repeated with the black and ground wire. Also, you have to wrap the connections of the wire nut using electrical tape, and then push the connection into the junction box.

Fourthly, you need to set the cover plate of fixture over the junction box. Then, you should align the holes of the screw with those on the junction box. After that, the screws that are provided with the fixtures should be inserted, and you need to tighten the fixture to the wall. Do not forget to check the rubber seal in order to ensure that it is certainly in place.

Lastly, you can go to the electrical panel for installing the new breaker for sconce light by following the instructions from the manufacturer. Now you can switch the breaker into the on position.


Types of Electrical Conduits for the Home or Office

January 14, 2020

Electrical

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In the process of installing electrical wires throughout a property, it is essential that the wiring is well protected and safely secured. The use of electrical conduits is a practical solution for running the wires behind or on the surface of walls. Beyond the ability to protect the wiring, the conduits can also help to maintain the aesthetics and keep electric wires out of sight. There are several types of electrical conduits to use in the home or office complex, which varies with the type of cable and local surroundings. It is always essential to use the proper fittings to match the specific application.

Here are a few of the popular types of conduit for the practical installation of wiring:

Flexible Metal

The flexible metal conduit (also referred to as flex or Greenfield) is a practical choice for the installation that takes place in tight or other difficult spaces. The metal conduits are a useful for choice when the wires are being placed on the surface of the wall. Also, it gives greater strength compared PVC and more practical in the basement or garage installation to give protection against pests like mice or rats.

Thin Walled

This type of conduit is built to be rigid and is essentially made up of long and solid pieces of pipe. This type of conduit is more difficult to work with and requires a special tool to cut the pipes to length. But, it is a very dependable choice for a wide range of applications. It is particularly useful when working on projects where aesthetics isn’t much of a concern, such as working in a basement. This type of conduit comes in a wide range of sizes to specifically match the total number of wires that will be passed through. In many situations, it can benefit to use a slightly larger conduit to make it easy to accept the width of the wires.

Rigid non-metallic

The most common choice for a non-metallic conduit is those manufactured in hard-wearing PVC. This is a popular choice for do-it-yourself projects and is appreciated for its ability to give a high degree of resistance against sunlight, heat and fire. Plus, the PVC material is low-cost, light weight, and really easy to work with. But, it is not usable in all applications and may be a prohibited item, so it is necessary to check with local building codes before making use of it. Also, it would be necessary to use a PVC housing box in the installation process.


Properly Maintaining the Electrical Wiring in Your Home

January 14, 2020

Electrical

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Each year, thousands of homes in the United States are engulfed in fires triggered by faulty electrical wiring. In Home Electrical Fires, a report by the National Fire Protection Association’s Fire Analysis and Research Division published in May 2010, an average of 22,000 home fires between 2003 and 2007 involved electrical distribution (e.g., wiring and related equipment, transformers, power supplies) or lighting equipment (e.g., lamps, light fixtures, light bulbs, cords, plugs). The fires caused over $700 million in direct damages, 350 deaths, and 880 injuries. According to the report, 72% of the fires were caused by some type of electrical failure or malfunction. Most home fires are preventable; homeowners just have to take the time to keep their home’s electrical wiring properly maintained.

Often, electricity-related home fires happen not because homeowners are purposely careless about the maintenance of their home. Many of them are in fact quite responsible in the best way they know how; they just don’t have adequate information when it comes to home electrical wiring safety. When it comes to basement electrical wiring, for instance, not many homeowners realize that keeping their basements clean and free of pests is just as important as making sure the wires are all properly connected at all times.

Even though the wire connections are perfectly installed, the rats, insects, and other pests you may unknowingly be housing in your basement can easily wreak havoc on your electrical wiring, considerably increasing the risk of electricity-related fires in your home. And if you live in an older home, it is important that you check the fuse boxes and the circuit breakers on a regular basis. Even better, consider having the earlier models of these components replaced with modern ones that are better equipped to handle the higher voltages used in today’s appliances.

Ideally, your home’s electrical wiring should be checked every three years to make sure they are in good condition and that they are still perfectly capable of providing the electricity needed for the growing number of appliances you have in your home. This sounds simple enough but the shocking truth is that the average American homeowner has not had his electrical wiring checked for at least 20 years (source: National Fire Protection Association). This is one reason there are so many cases of electricity-related home fires in the United States.

One other reason the incidence of house fires caused by faulty wiring is so high is that many homeowners choose to install and repair their own electrical wiring instead of hiring a professional to do the job. While this decision helps them save money initially, it puts their home and their families in much greater risk of accidents later on. It is best to leave the job of electrical wiring installation and repairs to the professionals as much as possible.

Here’s the good news: Most electricity-related fires can be easily avoided by following a few simple preventive measures. For instance, you should always be watchful of electric hazards around your home. When a fuse box melts or when a plug produces sparks when you try to plug it in to the wall socket, call an electrician right away. Unless you are a qualified electrician yourself, you should never try to tinker with your home’s electrical wiring; your noble efforts might cause even more damage than good. Hiring a professional to do the job will cost you a few extra bucks, but this expense is worth the added protection you can give to your home and your family in the long run.