It’s About That Time For Holiday Lights!

Don’t Wait Until the Last Minute For Christmas Decorations

The holidays are right around the corner, and homeowners don’t want to be stuck with broken or unsafe Christmas lights when it’s time to hang them up. Professionals encourage homeowners to take a look at their outdoor Christmas lights and Christmas yard decor as soon as possible! 

Doing so will save homeowners a lot of stress when it’s time to hang them up. The same goes for indoor Christmas lights as well. One can never be too careful when dealing with electrical fixtures. It’s important that homeowners know what to look for so they know if their lights and decorations are safe to use this year or not. That’s why professionals are here to share safety tips and tips for more eco-friendly decoration options and lights that homeowners can try this holiday season.

Is it Time For New Holiday Lights? Try These!

lightsHere are a few festive lighting options that homeowners can add to their decoration shopping list this year:

  • Battery-operated Christmas lights: These aren’t new, but many people might not know about them. They make light decorations extremely easy because most of them are set on a timer and shut off by themselves when the timer runs out. 
  • Falling raindrop Christmas lights: These are perfect for homeowners with big trees in their yards. 
  • Lamppost LED display: They are usually 48 inches tall and look identical to a normal lamppost; only they’re covered in lights! 
  • Choreographed illuminated reindeer light fixtures: Of course, one can’t forget about a Christmas yard ornament staple! They’ve been upgraded throughout the years to be timed, choreographed, and even solar-powered! 

Electrical Safety is Always the First Priority!

safetyBelieve it or not, holiday decorations can be just as capable of starting house fires and causing power outages as any other electrical appliance or fixture in the home. In fact, holiday decorations tend to be more dangerous because they get left on for long periods and hardly ever get safety checked. 

Homeowners should be aware of the following safety tips to avoid electrical fires and outages as much as possible: 

  • Always check the lights and fixtures for faults in the wiring or plug-ins
  • Check the decorations for defects before ever plugging them into an outlet
  • Once they’re confirmed to be safe enough to plug in, homeowners can plug them in to check for flickering lights
  • If the lights flicker, the homeowner should not use them
  • Homeowners should also check for warmth on the outlet and wall near the outlet after the lights have been plugged in for a bit. If it feels warm, that’s a sign not to use them again.

These tips are vital for electrical safety, and homeowners should always follow this checklist before setting up their decorations each year. 

Go Green With Lights

For those that are worried about remaining as eco-friendly as possible while still enjoying the wonders of holiday lighting, there are a few different eco-friendly options available. 

These options include: 

  • LED lighting: LED lights burn brighter and last (potentially) decades longer than traditional lights. 
  • Battery-operated lighting: Battery-operated lights run on batteries rather than electricity. Most of them also have a timer, so the lights will shut off when the timer runs out. 
  • Solar-powered lighting: Solar lights charge from a panel exposed to direct sunlight. This is the most eco-friendly approach to holiday decorating.

All of the lighting options mentioned above can come with timers on them. Timers are convenient for energy saving as well as home safety! 

About Gene’s Refrigeration, Heating & Air Conditioning, Plumbing & Electrical

Gene’s Refrigeration, Heating & Air Conditioning, Plumbing & Electrical serves Medina, OH, and the surrounding neighborhoods. They provide straightforward pricing, same-day services, and protection plans. Call them today for electrical services in Medina, OH.

Remove the Stress of Bathroom Remodeling

Tackle a Bathroom Remodel With Professional Help

No matter how prepared a homeowner is for a bathroom remodel, something always comes up along the way. Unforeseen problems can cause stress to build, and hair starts getting pulled out in frustration.  A professional can relieve all that unnecessary stress and provide many benefits because they are trained and experienced in bathroom remodeling.

Professionals Handle Upgrades Safely 

A bathroom makeover begins with a plan and ends with the completion of the project. It’s not as simple as that, though. As the job progresses, unforeseen issues can be found, broken pipes discovered, insect and rodent infestations seen, and things homeowners did not prepare for can show up. For the average homeowner, this is simply too much stress to deal with. 

Safety is one of the biggest perks of working with a professional. Homeowners can injure themselves and damage their homes when working on the plumbing themselves. They can worsen unforeseen issues or cause them, leading to dangers like flooding and water damage. Plumbers also have more extensive knowledge of:  

  • Permits – Getting the proper permits can become quite a hassle. A qualified professional will know the laws, understand the permits and the regulations behind them, and have the connections to get all the paperwork needed before the bathroom renovation starts.
  • Structural IntegrityA professional renovator will understand the overall engineering concepts behind the home. They will know if a wall is load-bearing and if the floor joists can handle the extra weight of a claw bathtub. They have the experience to guide any homeowner through the entire process.

Professionals Keep Costs In Check

saveBathroom remodeling will never be the cheapest project homeowners take on, but there are still ways to keep costs in check. Some of the savings homeowners can expect by working with a professional include: 

  • Avoid Costly Mistakes – When homeowners attempt to DIY bathroom remodeling, many things can go wrong, leading to additional repairs and damage that can be more costly than hiring a plumber in the first place.
  • Material Discounts – The cost of building materials can be high. Going through a bathroom remodeling contractor is highly beneficial because they typically have a good working relationship with the local supply stores. They can get pretty good discounts or wholesale prices, which will be passed down to their clients.
  • Insurance – A professional will have insurance to cover if they make a mistake or get injured on the job. By hiring an insured professional, homeowners will not be financially responsible for any damage or injuries like they would be if they didn’t hire one. 

Pros Take the Guesswork Out Of Big Projects

timeWorking with a qualified bathroom remodeling contractor is always the best option. Besides the benefits of safety, less stress, and cost savings, hiring a plumber for bathroom remodels also saves homeowners time. Whether big or small, it is never truly known when a bigger problem will be discovered in the middle of the job. Professionals have dealt with it before, and they will know what to do to get through it quickly and safely.

Professional bathroom remodeling contractors have extensive experience dealing with every type of bathroom under the sun. They will not be deterred by any problems they find and will get through the job as fast as they can while still maintaining a high standard of quality.

About Gene’s Refrigeration, Heating & Air Conditioning, Plumbing & Electrical

Gene’s Refrigeration, Heating & Air Conditioning, Plumbing & Electrical has over six decades of experience serving Medina, OH, and the greater Cleveland area. They offer straightforward pricing, same-day services, and protection plans. Call them today for bathroom remodeling services in Medina, OH.

3 Signs That It’s Time to Clean the Evaporator Coil

The Importance of Professional Evaporator Coil Cleaning 

After a summer like this one, it’s easy to see how much work the air conditioner puts in. Sure it gets a few months off in the winter, but it makes up for it when the temperatures rise. All that hard work can take a toll on the air conditioner that requires some maintenance occasionally to ensure it is always operating at peak efficiency. One of the most important steps of seasonal AC maintenance is evaporator coil cleaning. The evaporator coil is the workhorse of the air conditioner; when it is compromised, the entire system can suffer.  

In contrast to the consequences of a dirty evaporator coil, there are some clear benefits of getting it cleaned as a part of a maintenance plan. Among the benefits of AC coil cleaning are:

  • Lower utility bills
  • Shorter cooling cycles
  • More comfortable home

Here are three major signs that an evaporator coil cleaning is overdue. 

Loss of Cooling Function cooling

An air conditioner works by allowing a chemical called a refrigerant to boil or evaporate. This process causes the refrigerant to become very cold quickly. This process occurs in the evaporator coil inside the air conditioner as warm air is blown through it. The result is that the warm air becomes cool by giving its heat to the evaporated, cold refrigerant. 

When this process is impeded, the air conditioner can lose cooling power. The most common way this happens is by blocking airflow from a dirty coil. Thus, cleaning coils can restore cooling power to an air conditioner. 

coil

 

Frost and Frozen Coils

An air conditioner is a finely-tuned machine. Refrigerants must be kept at specific pressures, and airflow must be kept unimpeded, or the whole system can suffer. The goal of the evaporator coil is to get as close to freezing temperatures as possible to stay efficient without freezing. 

However, when evaporator coils are dirty, airflow is impeded and can’t keep the coils above freezing. Instead of removing moisture from the air and draining away the resulting condensation, the moisture will freeze to the coil instead. This compounds the airflow problems, and frost on the coil will lead to a frozen evaporator coil. 

Longer Cycles to Cool the Home 

The air conditioner is one of the biggest energy hogs in the home, so it makes sense to spend some time and energy keeping it efficient. When evaporator coils are dirty and frozen evaporator coils are a consistent problem, the air conditioner loses efficiency and can’t keep the home cool like it once did. Energy bills will spike because the air conditioner must use longer cycles to cool the house. 

Simply schedule evaporator coil cleaning and routine maintenance from a reliable AC maintenance contractor to restore lost cooling power. In a quick visit, technicians can restore lost cooling power and save homeowners money. While most homeowners try to get this done in the spring, it is never too late to clean the coils, especially if a home is heated and cooled by heat pumps. 

About Gene’s Refrigeration, Heating & Air Conditioning, Plumbing & Electrical

Gene’s Refrigeration, Heating & Air Conditioning, Plumbing & Electrical has over 60 years of experience serving Medina, OH, and the surrounding areas. They offer straightforward pricing, same-day service, and on-time arrival. Call them today for evaporator coil services in Medina, OH.

Learn the Basics of Electrical Systems

Electrical 101

This back-to-school season, homeowners can brush up on their knowledge of home electrical systems with this quick guide from experts. Having a basic understanding of the parts of an electrical system, signs of a system malfunction, and how to practice electrical safety can help homeowners prevent accidents and keep system maintenance costs low.

Electrical systems are composed of a complicated network of wires, circuits, and outlets connecting to the local power plant. Professional electricians undergo rigorous training in the classroom and on the job as apprentices to learn how to service and maintain electrical systems. Homeowners should always have a trusted local electrician a phone call away in case of an electrical emergency.

Important Parts of an Electrical System

electric meterHere are some important components of an electrical system:

  • Electric Meter: The electric meter measures the amount of electricity a home uses from the power plant. The metering of electricity is used to identify potential problems with the electrical system and to calculate utility costs.
  • Disconnect Switch: The disconnect switch is usually located on the electric meter or in the breaker panel. The disconnect switch shuts off electricity to the whole home so that the electrical system can be safely serviced without risking accidental electrocution.
  • Breaker Panel: The breaker panel, also called an electrical panel, is a series of switches that controls the electrical circuits for different areas of the home. Each switch correlates to a room in the house or a hard-wired appliance. The breaker panel will flip the switches to an off position to prevent electrical fires in the case of a power overload.
  • Circuits: An electrical circuit is a pathway engineered for electricity to transmit from one place to another. The local power plant provides the electrical circuits with power from the main generator through a network of power lines, wires, and connections.
  • Electrical Outlet: Electrical outlets are a receptacle in the home that allows devices to be plugged in to receive electricity from the power grid through the home’s circuits.

Warning Signs of a Malfunctioning Electrical System

burning smellA malfunctioning electrical system can cause a spike in utility bills, but it can also be a hazard to the house, homeowner, and their family. An electrical fire can harm the entire neighborhood and surrounding ecosystems. There is also the risk of accidental electrocution from a malfunctioning outlet or circuit.

Look out for warning signs of a broken electrical component. Warning signs include sparks or a burning smell coming from outlets or the breaker box. The electrical system can become so overloaded that the heat burns through the insulation on the wires and leads to sparks. It only takes one spark from a sparking outlet to ignite a devastating house fire.

Flickering lights could be a result of installing the wrong voltage lightbulb or simply that the lightbulb is burning out. On the other hand, flickering lights throughout the house for no reason usually mean something is wrong with the electrical system. Homeowners should contact a qualified professional electrician for an inspection as soon as signs of damage or malfunction are noticed.

How to Practice Electrical Safety

Homeowners should have their electrical system routinely inspected and serviced by a professional electrician to improve home safety. Leaving the electrical system in a state of disrepair can cause a small problem to develop into a big issue. Fixing problems early on helps to keep repair costs low and prevent electrical emergencies such as a house fire or electrocution.

Amateur electrical work is extremely dangerous. Unqualified people could injure themselves or start an electrical fire by attempting to repair the wiring themselves. Working on electrical systems requires specialized tools and years of training.

The best thing that homeowners can do for their electrical systems is to schedule annual maintenance, do visual inspections, and call an electrician if they notice signs of damage. Another thing homeowners can do to protect their electrical system is to be careful not to overload circuits. Homeowners should pay attention to the recommended wattage and required voltage for household appliances. Installing surge protectors helps prevent overloading the electrical system.

About Gene’s Refrigeration, Heating & Air Conditioning, Plumbing & Electrical

Gene’s Refrigeration, Heating & Air Conditioning, Plumbing & Electrical has over 60 years of experience serving the residents of Medina, OH, and the surrounding areas. They provide straightforward pricing, same-day service, and 24/7 emergency assistance. Call them today for electrical services in Medina, OH.

Sump Pumps Protect Against Flooding

What is a Sump Pump?

A sump pump is a device that moves water away from the basement and into the outside world. A sump is constructed as a pit, or a hole carved typically somewhere on a basement’s main surface. The pit, otherwise known as a basin, is where the sump pump is placed.

Water triggers the sump pump’s valves when the water level or pressure is too high. When this happens, the sump pump removes the excess water through a discharge line and safely out of the basement. In short, a sump pump is a homeowner’s best line of defense against a flooded home and basement.

How Do Sump Pumps Work?

sump pumpSump pumps can detect rising and high-pressure water levels and will work to stop them from rising too high. Once a high water level is detected, a switch is activated, and the pump comes to life and works to guide the extra water into a discharge pipe. The water flows through the line and is released outside the home, typically away from the home’s foundation.

These pumps are usually powered by electricity but can also be powered by battery and water. The ones wired in electrically often come with a backup plan, either battery or water, in the case of a power outage. Sump pumps are necessary to keep basements clean and free from flooding and sewage backup.

Different Sump Pump Types

types of sump pumpsThere are four main types of sump pumps available on the market: pedestal, submersible, battery-operated, and water-powered.

Submersible Sump Pump

The submersible sump pump is exactly as the name implies: a sump pump that is submerged in the water basin. These sump pumps come in one unit containing both the pump and motor and are safe to be submerged fully in water.

Typically, they are submerged and placed inside a closed basin in a home’s basement. These submersible units are quiet and are a great way to save space. Unfortunately, these pumps are not known to last as long as pedestal pumps, but they are the best choice for homes with major flooding concerns.

Pedestal Sump Pumps

While submersible sump pumps come as one unit with the motor and pump as one, a pedestal sump pump comes with these two separated. The motor is on a pedestal that sits above the basin, and the pump is placed into the basin. A hose connects the two, allowing the motor to give the pump power to run.

Pedestal sump pumps are known to last longer and are easily accessible for maintenance. However, this type of sump pump is not without faults. Since a pedestal sump pump’s motor sits out, it is louder and takes up more space than a submersible one.

Battery-Operated and Water-Powered Backup

These two alternatives are a great addition to the submersible and pedestal sump pumps. They provide backup and extra security to prevent flood damage. A battery or water-powered backup pump will kick in when a power outage occurs, allowing the sump pump to continue working.

Sump Pump Benefits

As mentioned throughout this article, sump pumps are extremely beneficial in protecting against floods in homes and basements, which can help homeowners avoid a tedious cleanup session and water damage. Sump pumps help protect against structural damage and insect infestation from standing water.

Aside from flooding, a sump pump can also protect against sewage backup, keep the humidity level in the basement low, improve indoor air quality, and reduce the risk of mold and mildew growth.

About Gene’s Refrigeration, Heating & Air Conditioning, Plumbing & Electrical

With over 60 years of experience, Gene’s Refrigeration, Heating & Air Conditioning, Plumbing & Electrical is a family-owned and operated company serving the residents of Medina, OH, and the surrounding areas. They provide straightforward pricing, same-day service, and 24/7 emergency service. Call them today for sump pump services in Medina, OH.