Get a Jumpstart on Holiday Decorating

Get Those Christmas Lights Ready Now! 

Preparing for the holiday season demands some planning, whether gifting, decorating, or baking. But when decorating with electric decorations and Christmas lighting, it’s important to make some preparations to make sure they’re done efficiently and safely. Here are some tips to help decorate for the holidays. 

Incandescent Christmas Lights vs. LED Christmas Lights 

lightsThere are many pros and cons of incandescent holiday lights and LED holiday lights. Most electricians recommend LED lights because they’re more efficient and last longer. However, here’s a side-by-side comparison so homeowners can make an informed decision: 

  • Heat: Incandescent lights generate more heat than LEDs, making LEDs safer. But incandescent lights often have a warmer glow. 
  • Cost-effectiveness: Sure, incandescent lights are cheaper at first to purchase. Yet, they don’t last as long as LED lights and use more energy. Because LEDs don’t need to be replaced as often and cost less to power, they are the more cost-effective option. 
  • Durability. LED lights are made of a protective material that protects them from easily shattering. The same cannot be said for incandescent Christmas lights. 

Creating a Festive Holiday Display

holiday displayHomeowners have a lot of options when choosing outdoor Christmas decorations and lights. Here are just a few: 

  • Holiday inflatables: These can come in various designs, from large Santas and snowmen to glowing reindeer. 
  • Net lighting: Net lights make adding holiday lights to bushes and foliage much easier. Tree wraps are also a type of net lighting used to quickly add lights to trees. 
  • Lighting strands: Classic string lights are perfect for outlining the roof and balconies of a home or wrapping around a Christmas tree. However, only lighting made for outdoor use should be used outdoors, and only lighting safe for indoor use on the tree should be used on Christmas trees.

Keep Electrical Safety in Mind 

While having a bright, vibrant holiday display is excellent, keeping electrical safety at the forefront of everything is essential. Nobody wants to risk an electrical fire––especially around the holiday season. Per the Electrical Safety Foundation, some holiday electrical safety tips include: 

  • Inspecting electrical decorations and lighting for damage before using them
  • Being careful not to overload any circuits and outlets
  • Turning off and unplugging decorations before going to sleep or leaving the house 
  • Not connecting more than three strands of incandescent holiday lights
  • Keeping lights and decor at least three feet from heat sources 

Homeowners can also hire professional electricians to install their holiday lighting to ensure that all lighting is installed safely and to protect their homes and families. 

About Trustworthy Electric

Trustworthy Electric is a family-owned and operated business serving Montgomery and the surrounding areas. They offer upfront pricing, on-time service, and customer education. Call them today for holiday light installation in Montgomery, AL. 

Distribution Links +

Prevent Electrical Scares During Halloween Decorating

How to Prevent Electrical Problems During the Holidays 

The holiday season refers to the season starting just after Thanksgiving. Now, in anticipation of the season, many people start celebrating the holiday season starting at Halloween. With the change in the weather, there is excitement in the air, and people start going outside and hanging festive Halloween decorations and holiday lighting.

That means that the electrical safety season starts early, too. Electrical problems seem to cluster around the holiday season when people load the home’s power grid up with decorations. But that phenomenon can begin in October with all the Halloween decor. To avoid electrical problems during Halloween and the upcoming holiday season, take a few tips from electricians to keep the home safe. 

Take Care of Holiday Lighting and Electric Decorations 

Once a holiday is over, people put the holiday lights and decorations away, often cramming them in a box and then in storage. This rough handling can cause problems for lighting and decor, so before using any holiday decorations or lights, always take the time to: 

  • Inspect the cords and wiring for damage or fraying
  • Don’t use nails, staples, or other sharp things to hang lighting or electrical decor
  • Check for broken bulbs and damage to lights 

If any damage is found, those decorations should not be used. Taking a few extra moments to do these things before hanging and turning on Halloween decor and lights can ensure they are safe to use and don’t present an electrical hazard. 

Never Overload a Circuit 

overloaded outletOne of the most common electrical problems during Halloween and holidays, when decorating is expected, is overloading circuits. Each outlet and circuit in a home is only designed to handle a certain amount of power demand. When this level is exceeded, it can cause breakers to trip, fuses to blow, or wiring to overheat. 

The best way to prevent these complications and keep the home safe is to spread the electricity draw to multiple outlets and circuits. Additionally, if homeowners use extension cords for decorating, they should avoid overloading them and never chain them together. Also, upgrading holiday lighting to energy-efficient options like LED lights can reduce the chance of overloads. 

When Is Electrical Repair Needed? 

electrical repairThere may be times when decorating that homeowners notice signs electrical repair is needed because they are paying more attention to their electrical system. Once any symptoms of electrical issues are detected, an electrician should be called for electrical repair immediately to protect the home from electrical fires and other hazards. Some of the signs that people need electrical repairs are: 

  • Flickering or dimming lights
  • Outlets that don’t work or appear damaged
  • Sparks or shocks from outlets 
  • Outlets that feel hot to the touch
  • Tripped breakers or blown fuses
  • Frayed wiring
  • Buzzing sounds
  • Burning smells

About Trustworthy Electric

Trustworthy Electric has more than 25 years of expertise serving Montgomery and the surrounding areas. They offer upfront pricing, on-time service, and a beneficial membership plan. Call them today for electrical repairs in Montgomery, AL.

Distribution Links +

Is There a Problem With the Electrical Wiring? Here's How to Tell

How to Spot Faulty Wiring

Keeping homes safe is a top priority for homeowners, which means ensuring that all systems are functioning properly, especially a home’s wiring and electrical system. This is especially important since electrical problems are a common cause of house fires.

And with over half of homes in the U.S. built before 1980, the chances of fires stemming from older wiring that hasn’t been updated to current safety standards go up significantly. In order to prevent this and keep homes safe, homeowners should be aware of the following signs of an electrical wiring problem to resolve them as safely and quickly as possible.

Circuit Breakers That Trip Often

A tripped circuit breaker or a blown fuse happens every once in a while at home. These are both, after all, safety measures that are designed to protect homes by stopping the flow of electricity when there is too much of it all at once. However, if this becomes a common occurrence at home, it could signal a bigger problem with the electrical wiring that needs to be resolved. 

Sometimes, this just means one or two appliances should be removed from the circuit that is being overloaded and plugged into a different circuit. However, if this doesn’t work, homeowners should get a professional electrician to inspect and fix the wiring and circuit breaker or fuse box to eliminate the possibility of developing a fire hazard.

Outlets Are Discolored or Hot to the Touch

OutletScorch marks around an outlet or if they feel hot to the touch is another red flag for electrical wiring. After all, where there is smoke, there’s fire, and these are outward signs that there is loose or faulty wiring behind the outlet that is causing some kind of burning action when a device or appliance is plugged in. 

This usually happens because damaged wiring sends more electricity than is needed to the outlet, and this extra energy can fry devices or, in more extreme cases, cause a fire. So, any burn marks on outlets or ones that feel warm should be a sign to call an electrician immediately. 

It Smells or Sounds Like Trouble

Bad smell Another way to tell that there has been significant damage to a home’s electrical wiring is the presence of a distinct burning smell around an electrical outlet. The smell is usually similar to burning plastic and indicates wiring that has had some fire damage. Sometimes, this burning smell is also accompanied by a buzzing sound. 

Whether by itself or present together, the smell of burning or the sound of buzzing is always an indication of trouble. Homeowners who experience this are advised to immediately unplug their appliances and call an electrician to deal with the situation safely.

About Trustworthy Electric

Trustworthy Electric is a family-owned company that has been serving Montgomery and the surrounding areas since 1994. They offer upfront pricing, military discounts, and a beneficial membership plan. Call them today for wiring repair and replacement in Montgomery, AL.

Distribution Links +

How to Remain Safe This National Wellness Month

Three Ways to Avoid the Unexpected at Home

National Wellness Month has many goals, but most center around staying happy, healthy, and stress-free. However, what does this entail? Spa days and trips to the doctor? Not necessarily. In honor of National Wellness Month, why not take steps to keep the home safe from avoidable hazards? 

Many people suffer injuries from fires, carbon monoxide poisoning, and electrical hazards every year. Nobody wants to be a statistic. Instead, homeowners should ensure their homes and families are protected and take the following steps.

Install Smoke Detectors 

smoke detectorsThe Alabama Department of Public Health has important information about installing smoke detectors on its website. The organization notes that:

  • There are two types of smoke detectors: those that run on batteries and others that connect to the home’s electrical grid with a battery backup. Both have their own pros and cons.
  • How many smoke detectors a household needs depends on its layout, square footage, and occupancy.
  • Homeowners can avoid placing smoke detectors in kitchens, bathrooms, or garages to prevent “nuisance alarms” or alarms that go off without there being an actual threat. 

Installing and regularly testing smoke detectors can help keep families safe from electrical fires. 

Carbon Monoxide Detectors

carbon monoxide detectorAs the name suggests, carbon monoxide detectors detect carbon monoxide. But why is it so important to have? According to the Alabama Department of Insurance, carbon monoxide is an odorless, colorless gas that can inflict fatal injuries if inhaled for long periods.

Some things to know about carbon monoxide detectors include:

  • These devices should be tested regularly, around once a month, like a smoke detector, to ensure they work.
  • There are two-in-one smoke and carbon monoxide detectors that can help prevent fire and carbon monoxide poisoning from affecting homeowners.
  • Carbon monoxide detectors test for carbon monoxide––not natural gas. If a homeowner wants to get a natural gas detector, they must purchase a detector designed for that purpose or a two-in-one natural gas and carbon monoxide detector.

Schedule an Electrical Safety Inspection

Everyone assumes that their electrical system works fine until something goes wrong. Unfortunately, the things that can go wrong with an electrical system can cause extensive property damage, fires, and inflict injuries. To prevent this, homeowners should schedule routine electrical inspections around every two to five years, depending on the age of the home.

An electrician will inspect the home’s electrical grid, panel, and other components of the system during this process. More specifically, they will: 

  • Test outlets and switches
  • Ensure that outlets don’t produce too much voltage
  • Replace any blown fuses
  • Evaluate wires for fraying, overheating, damage, or improper installation
  • Ensure the home complies with county electrical ordinances and regulations
  • Test the home’s smoke and carbon monoxide detectors
  • Check if the home needs any more dedicated circuits.

An electrician can also advise homeowners on what measures could prevent electrical problems in the future, such as repairing outdated or damaged components. 

About Trustworthy Electric

Trustworthy Electric is a family-owned company serving Montgomery and the surrounding areas since 1994. They offer upfront pricing, on-time service, and military discounts. Call them today for electrical services in Montgomery, AL

Distribution Links +

Stay Safe This Summer With Childproof Outlets!

Promote Electrical Safety at Home With Childproof Outlets 

According to Electrical Safety Foundational International (ESFI), nearly 2,400 children suffer serious electrical shocks and burns yearly from sticking things into electrical outlets. These incidents often arise when they stick foreign objects into the slots of outlets, such as utensils, paper clips, toys, and their fingers. Thankfully, worried parents can protect their children against these incidents by installing childproof and tamper-resistant outlets. This post will discuss these outlets, including how they work and their benefits. 

What Is a Tamper Resistant Outlet? How Does It Work? 

A tamper-resistant outlet is exactly what it sounds like; it prevents children from tampering with the outlet and hurting themselves. They have spring-loaded shutters that only allow a plug’s prongs to pass through since the shutters must be activated simultaneously to open. Another common childproofing tool for outlets is the pieces of plastic that plug into the outlet and prevent anything else from getting in. 

There are also sliding outlet covers. The sliding outlet cover has a plate that slides over the outlet, then locks into place. When adults want to plug something in, they must unlock the cover and slide it over. This also deters young children from sticking their fingers or other objects into the outlets. 

What Are the Benefits of Installing Childproof Outlets?

outletChildproof outlets have one obvious and significant benefit. It prevents children from suffering electrical-related injuries. Additionally, these outlets are more beneficial than plastic outlet caps. Children can learn to remove the plastic outlet plugs from the outlet, and once removed, they can become a choking hazard. 

On the other hand, tamper-resistant outlets don’t present a choking hazard while protecting children from shocks and burns, making them the safer option for childproofing the home. No parent can watch their child every minute of every day. Having tamper-resistant outlets installed around the house offers parents peace of mind that their little ones are protected from electrical hazards. 

When Is It Time to Replace an Old Outlet? 

outletThe Federal Emergency Management Administration (FEMA) notes that homeowners should replace an outlet if a plug feels loose in the outlet and is not snug because it’s an electrical hazard and poses the risk of an electrical fire. Other signs that it’s time to replace an outlet include: 

  • The outlet isn’t working 
  • The outlet feels hot or warm to the touch
  • There are scorch marks, discoloration, melted areas, or other damage on the outlet
  • Sparks or smoke is coming from the outlet 

About Trustworthy Electric 

Trustworthy Electric is a family-owned company with nearly three decades of experience serving Montgomery and the surrounding communities. They provide upfront pricing, on-time service, and military discounts. Call them today for childproof outlet installation in Montgomery, AL.

Distribution Links +