Author Archives: Rob Rohena

Should You DIY, Hire a Handyman, Use a Qualified Electrician

Electrical repairs can hold up a project, especially if you don’t have someone who is handy in the electrician department.

Many homeowners are looking to do more things themselves, which may include electrical work.

At the end of the day, you may wrestle with DIY, hiring a handyman, or hiring a qualified electrician.

Electrical work is dangerous

While it takes a special person to know how to do electrical work, it doesn’t take a special person to know it’s hazardous.

Messing with any sort of electrical wiring can be treacherous, especially if you have no prior experience.

A licensed contractor will be able to properly do electrical wiring. If you DIY or hire someone who “might” know what they’re doing, you are risking a lot.

Kemp Electric is licensed, insured, and bonded.

You know you will get quality work and you know your money and home is protected.

Know who you’re hiring

Hiring someone off the handyman market or trying to do it yourself poses a lot of risks.

There are benefits to hiring a company like Kemp Electric.

They can show you their experience and the proper licensing.

Plus, you are going to know who you’re hiring.

Not only do you get the electrical talent, but you get someone who knows how to work legally on a project.

Remember that codes and laws are always changing, Kemp Electric stays up-to-date on all this, so you can feel at ease.

The state requires a licensed electrician

If you’re doing handy work on your house, it’s one thing to do the painting yourself. However, moving around electrical wires or installing something new gets perilous. In this position, you NEED a qualified electrician. You don’t want to incur a financial loss due a handyman who may be deceptive or even perform legal electrical practices.

The bottom line is to hire a qualified electrician. Will you have to pay a little more? Maybe! Will the job get done, right? Yes! You can go to bed every night with peace of mind. You will know that each electrical wire is where it’s supposed to be.

Kemp Electric has been in this business for many years.

We’ve seen horror stories and we don’t want you to experience those.

At the end of the day, DIY or hiring a handyman isn’t the safest route to go.

Hiring an experienced and qualified electrician is the right way.

Visit Kemp Electric on Facebook or call Kemp Electric today!


6 Tips for Labeling Your Electric Panel

Moving into a new home has a lot of ups and downs.

It can be very exciting to discover all the nuances of your new home!

Don’t let a tripped breaker be a bummer.

Be sure your electrical panel is labeled well so you can get power back quickly.

Here are six tips to help you get started.

#1. Grab a Buddy
The fastest way to find out which breaker controls which area is to do it with a buddy. One person can flip switches while the other controls the panel. Don’t have a buddy? It’s easy to do on your own, you just need a little more time.

#2. Map Your Breakers
Start with turning all the breakers off. Then turn them on one by one and make note of the lights or large appliances that come on. Also take a small lamp or alarm clock around to check the outlets. Find an outlet that doesn’t seem to work? The safest way to check if the outlet is getting any power is by using a non-contact voltage tester.

#3. Label Label Label
It’s likely that your panel is already labeled, just not well. Sticky labels are easier than taping tiny pieces of paper, but either is effective. Print legibly and be clear with your locations. Draw a diagram of the panel and label your practice panel before writing out and applying your final labels. If your handwriting isn’t legible, consider printing your labels.

#4. Take Notes
If you have a section on your electrical panel that doesn’t belong to one specific breaker, you may have a wiring issue. Call a qualified electrician to come out and take a look.

#5. Keep It Simple
Don’t use nicknames for your labeling. Chances are, you won’t live in your house forever, so do the next owners a favor and use practical labels like “SW Bedroom” or “Garage Outlets” rather than “Nursery” or “Bedroom 1.”

#6. Watch the Amperage
If your panel has anything labeled, it’s likely for your large appliances. When you switch off a breaker and discover only the stove doesn’t work, you’ve found a dedicated circuit. Need a little help figuring out which dedicated circuit goes to which location? Check the amperage (amp) rating of the circuit. This is indicated by the number on the circuit toggle lever or nearby. Here are some common amp ratings for various appliances or devices:

  • Kitchen outlets: 20-amp
  • Range/oven/cooktop: 30-, 40-, or 50-amp
  • Dryer: 30-amp
  • Garage outlets: 20-amp
  • Laundry outlet/washer: 20-amp
  • Lighting, general receptacles, and probably everything else: 15-amp

    Keep in mind, some large amp appliances may require more than one breaker.

    Labeling your electrical panel before there’s an emergency can save you lots of time plus a huge headache. It may not be the most fun job, but it will certainly pay off in the end.


Electrical Symbols

Last time we discussed how architects and electricians work together.

Today, we will look at how electrical symbols are used on an architectural plan to highlight both the location and style of electrical tool / device needed to safely complete a project.

Now, before you get too excited, I want to take a moment to say “THANK YOU” to Filip Domenic and his contributors whom in 2007 was attributed as the copyright owner of the electrical symbols we will share today.

Note, that Domenic and his contributors kindly donated the artwork to the public domain.

Kemp Electric has simply modified the images with content for curating modern thought.

Let’s begin.

Sometimes we are dealing with digital challenges that require “Basic Logic Blocks”

Basic Logic Blocks - Electrical Symbols - Kemp Electric

Electrical Symbols : Basic Logic Blocks

According the Radio-Electronics.com,

Digital electronics deals with the manipulation of numbers.

This is achieved by representing numbers in a digital form and using logic operations to provide the processing needed.

Using a wide variety of logic gate and digital circuit building blocks the electrician can successful make this happen today.

What is amazing is that despite the countless number of electronic products available within current markets, these fundamental logic blocks, as known as, digital circuits are all used in a basic form.

The only difference is the number of circuits contained within a large block.

Moving on we have to understand how sources and connectors work.

Sources and Connectors - Kemp Electric - Best of Indiana

Electrical Symbols : Electrical Connectors & Sources

As its name applies, an electrical connector is a device used to bring electrical circuits together using a mechanical assembly.

Electrical connectors can be either temporary or function as a permanent electrical solutions joining two wires together.

There are more types of electrical connectors than one would care to count.

Most connection made with an electrical connector require crimping.

Crimping Electrical Connectors

The crimping process is not too difficult, but, it must be done correctly.

The website Sparkfun, offers a great tutorial on how to master crimping of wire using an electrical connector.

If you need a low-cost, but, high quality crimper, we suggest you check out Walmart or the Auto Part Store.

 

Next we have linear components.

Electrical Symbols - Kemp Electric - Best Electrician in Indiana and Elkhart County - Bristol - Plymouth

Electrical Symbols : Linear Components

A linear component is briefly defined as follows:

linear circuit - kemp electric Warsaw electrician indiana kosciusko

On March 25, 2016, Shivakshit Patri, comprehensively explained what both linear and non-linear components are, and are not. Quora Linear Components

Since, he mentions diodes, let’s take a look at them.

Electrical Symbols diodes

Electrical Symbols : Diodes

According to Tech Target’s WhatIs.com a diode is defined as follows:

A diode is a specialized electronic component with two electrodes called the anode and the cathode. Most diodes are made with semiconductor materials such as silicon, germanium, or selenium. The fundamental property of a diode is its tendency to conduct electric current in only one direction.

Now, let’s take a look at transformers.

No, not the Hasbros Cars that turn into robots, but rather the type of transformer explained by Chris Woodford on Explain That Stuff.

Kemp electric - best of indiana electrical transformers

Kemp Electrical transformers


How Architects Work With Electricians and Contractors on Your Project

How Architects Work With Electricians and Contractors on Your Project

As with all great teams, communication is critical to the success of every project Kemp Electric undertakes.

An architect use a set of working drawings, rendering, or plans to designed and make the necessary instructions available for our licensed and skilled electricians to build the structure illustrated within the plans.

Every detail is covered and made easy to find and understand at a glance.

The items drawn commonly include:

  • Sizes of conduit
  • Quantity of sockets
  • Location of materials required
  • Major and minor construction features
  • And, more!

How The Electrician Uses An Architects Blueprints

Kemp Electric’s  electricians do to main things with an architects renderings.

  1.  They convert the two-dimensional plans into an actual electrical installation.
  2. They visualize the many different views of the plans and coordinate them into a three-dimensional picture.

While the ability to visualize an accurate 3D picture requires a thorough knowledge of blueprint reading, thanks for advancements in software technology, this process has gotten easier over time.

Furthermore, since all of the skilled trades use a common set of plans, our electricians are able to interpret the lines and symbols which refer to the electrical installation, as well as, those used by other contractors working on your project.

The latter is very important for safety reasons.

The Kemp Electric team needs to understand the structural make-up of the building and known what construction materials are being used to ensure the proper electrical components and voltage outputs are used.

Working With The Non-Electrical Contractors On Your Project Team

While these details help Kemp Electricians perform their jobs better, faster, and with accuracy, the drawings are also used by the other skilled construction craft professionals working on your project.

Some of the folks that benefit most from the rendering are:

These construction specialist typically are involved with the drawings before the actual work starts.

 


Taking Fire Safety Precautions - Kemp Electric - Elkhart County Electrical Contractor

Taking Fire Safety Precautions

Category : Fire Prevention

Did you know that three out of five fire deaths were the direct result of homes not having smoke alarms, or having a smoke alarm that didn’t work?

You have so many aspects to your home where a fire can strike.

From electrical storms that short out your electrical circuits to gas leaks that can spark a fire instantaneously, fires are not something to mess around with.

Here’s how you can keep your home safe!

Install Multiple Fire Alarms

If one fire alarm sounds, every fire alarm will sound.

This is why it is important to place fire alarms in every sleeping room, on every level of the home, and in areas that fires start easily such as the kitchen.

Make sure your alarms are interconnected with each other.

Test Your Smoke Alarms

kemp-electric-check-your-smoke-detectors-often

I recently article by Mahar Insurance suggest, checking your smoke detector often help prevent serious fires, and reduces your insurance cost.

Not everything is full proof and that includes your smoke alarms.

Batteries go out, systems are faulty, and other factors can cause your alarms to not work properly.

Test your smoke alarms at least once a month to ensure they are still working.

Practice a Home Fire Drill

If you have kids, it is especially vital to practice a drill in case of a fire.

What should you and your family do when they hear the alarm?

How should they get out of the home?

Where do you go when you get out?

Talk about different situations, make a plan, and practice “getting out.”

Replace Your Alarms

You should replace your smoke alarms every 10 years.

Even if your smoke alarms are working well, it is important that you replace them because just like everything else, the older it gets, the less effective it is.

If you don’t know when the last time your alarms were replaced, now is the best time to do it.

Hire a Licensed Electrical Inspector

Did you know that many house fires are started each year from faulty electrical work being done?

The danger of working with an unlicensed electrical inspector isn’t one to take lightly.

Be sure to get your electrical checked to ensure everything is working properly.

Not only is faulty electrical a huge danger, but you run the risk of not getting your property covered by insurance if there is a fire.

Mount Smoke Alarms High on Walls

Remember, smoke rises, and it rises quickly.

The best chance you have at getting out of the house before it goes into flames is for your smoke alarm to be triggered as quickly as possible.

Hang your smoke alarms high on walls, 10 feet from cooking appliances, and never install them near windows where smoke can escape.

When it comes to keeping yourself safe from fires, taking preventative precautions is key. What other tips do you have for fire safety?

Let us know in the comments below!

 

 

 


The Danger of Working With An Unlicensed Electrical Inspectors

When you are doing home renovations, you are most likely in a hurry to get things done.

While you may be in a hurry, keep in mind that taking shortcuts can be costly.

One shortcut you’ll want to avoid is hiring an unlicensed electrical inspector.

 

Accidents Happen, (But Can Also Be Prevented)

 

Although you never think an electrical engineer would do something on purpose, accidents happen.

One reason an electrician is required to be licensed is that it proves they know what they are doing.

Hiring just anyone to come in and complete electrical work is negligent and pretty scary.

Do your due diligence in making sure you hire a licensed electrical inspector to do the work!

Dangers of hiring unlicensed electrician

Many house fires have been started due to faulty electrical work which was completed by an unlicensed electrical inspector.

In addition, you run the risk of your insurance company not covering your property in the event of an electrical fire if the work is done outside of the code.

This is especially true if it is a rental property.

Mahar Insurance Agency offers some insight into rental property fires in a recent article.

 

Renovations Add Value

It is common knowledge that renovations can add value to a home.

However, hiring someone that doesn’t know what they are doing can decrease the value of the home.

The only way a renovation can truly add value is if they are done correctly.

Simply put, always make sure the work is performed by a licensed professional.

 

Example of Bad Electrical Work

 

Some people think that electrical fires won’t happen to them.

However, there are dozens of stories in the news every day of houses and/or businesses that have burnt down due to faulty electrical work.

Here are two examples.

 

Remodeling and Repair Spending Expected to Continue

 

Not only is the housing market top notch right now, the remodeling and repair industry is also hot.

Because of this, people want work to be done and it can sometimes be hard to come across a licensed professional.

For the sake of safety, it’s worth the wait when it comes to hiring a licensed electrician.

Remodels and repairs are at an all-time high since the market crash in 2008.

Do yourself a favor and keep your house standing by hiring someone who knows what they are doing.

Whether you’re remodeling a home or having one built from the ground up, electricity is everything.

Proper wiring is what will make a house stand for many years to come.
Are you looking for a licensed electrical contractor?

Contact Kemp Electric Today!

Do yourself a favor and avoid the unlicensed electrical inspector, it’s just not worth the risk!


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Finding South Bend’s Best Commercial Electrical Contractor

Choosing an electrical contractor is almost like choosing the best doctor for your health. When it comes to your business, you don’t want any liabilities or problems later down the road. Finding South Bend’s Best commercial electrical contractor can be challenging especially if you don’t understand all the technical jargon. Here are some tips to finding the best electrical contractor in South Bend:

Identify your Need First

Because an electrical contractor may be specialized in one area and not another, it is important to identify exactly what you need from the electrical contractor. Is this a major electrical issue or do you just want to update your current electrical system? Do you need a repair? Is something not working? Do you have specialized systems such as security systems, video, wireless networks, or alarms? Keep in mind that the contractor will need to know if this is a small business or a large commercial business. Knowing the answers to these questions will help the electrical contractor to better determine if they can help you or not.

Check into Certifications

Once you have determined if a commercial electrical contractor can assist you with your needs, it is important to determine how proficient they actually are in their trade. The truth is that people can say they know what they are doing all day long, but if they don’t have the certifications and knowledge to back it up, you don’t want to chance it.

Look into their Reputation

Don’t just go by the reviews on their website; look into their reputation in the community. Talk to other places and ask who they have used and what the outcome has been. If you are questioning the reputation of a specific electrical contractor, you can easily look up reviews online. Do your research on the contractor before hiring them. Electrical work is dangerous work and you want to ensure that the electrician you choose knows what they are doing and adequately performs a safe, reliable, and code enforcing job throughout the community.

Ask Questions

Never be afraid to ask questions when you are looking for a qualified electrical contractor. You have the right to know everything that is involved in your business including your electrical work. Here are a few questions to ask as you begin the process of finding a qualified electrician:

  • Do you have warranty? (get it in writing)
  • Is there insurance?
  • What code do you follow when installing? Will it comply with NEC or NEIS standards?
  • Will you fix work that doesn’t meet my standards?
  • Can I have a written estimate before you begin?

Look them up on NECA Connection

NECA Connection has developed a searchable database of electrical contractors for all over the United States. Contractors on the NECA Connection have been proven to provide safe and reliable installations. Most contractors listed in the NECA Connection have completed an apprenticeship program with over 1,000 hours of instruction in the classroom and at least 8,000 hours of on the job training.

Finding South Bend’s Best Commercial Electrical Contractor is worth it to your business. Take the right steps to ensure you have only the best.


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Electrical Contractor in Elkhart County