Make Your Home Safer

 

With 2 million home burglaries reported each year, it is important to make your home as safe as you can. Whether you only have a little bit of money to spend or quite a bit, there are plenty of options.

Use a heavy-duty deadbolt on your front door.

Use timers to keep lights on at home when you’re not there. Some will turn on randomly throughout the day or night, some can be set ahead of time to a specific time or increments of time. Some will work with only one appliance, others are power strips and can program several appliances.

Keep your car locked, whether it is outside or in the garage. Keep valuables out of sight—or better yet, out of your car.

Lock your windows and doors when you leave the house. Even when you are home, do not open windows more than four inches.

Install plenty of outdoor lighting around your home. Motion sensor lights are a great idea. Don’t forget to over all of your bases—make sure there aren’t large blind spots around your home. Security lighting should be up higher off of the ground, shining downwards to cast a big area of light, as well as prevent burglars from tampering with the lights. Make sure that your wires are hard to access. Lighting is also important for the safety of your family and guests walking around at night.

Store valuables in a safe place.

Consider an alarm system. There are many different options including motion detector, video monitoring and sirens.

If you’re an animal person, consider getting a large dog or two to deter burglars.

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Have a concern with your electrical, plumbing or air conditioning? Central Carolina Air Conditioning, Plumbing and Electrical is here to help! We offer 24 hour emergency service 7 days a week!  Give us a call! 1-800-461-3010 to speak with our customer service agents that can answer your questions or schedule an appointment!

Clean the Fireplace

 

Sitting by the fireplace with a mug of hot chocolate in your hands… what a delightful vision. To make the vision come true, you should get your fireplace ready first so that it works well and you stay safe.

Start off by removing the ashes from the fireplace with a fireplace shovel if you didn’t at the end of last season. Put them into a bucket. Throughout the winter, make sure that the ashes don’t build up to a depth greater than about 2 inches.

Use a shop vacuum with a filter bag to remove any ashes or other dry debris that are left.

If you want to remove the soot and fire stains from the firebox, spray on soapy water and let it sit for about 30 minutes. When the reside looks like it has softened, scrub the surface with a stiff wire brush.

Use a metal brush to remove rust and debris from the damper. Wear eye protection and gloves. Also, check that the damper mechanism works properly so that the damper can open and close.

Check that your chimney cap is in good shape and that is not clogged with leaves or debris.

If you have animals that get down into the chimney, a wire screen will keep them out.

Check the mortar between the bricks to make sure that it is not cracked or flaking away. Check the flashing where the roof meets the chimney and make sure that there is a watertight seal around the flashing. Patch it up with caulk if needed.

If you’re tired of dealing with all of this, consider a gas fireplace.

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Have a concern with your electrical, plumbing or air conditioning? Central Carolina Air Conditioning, Plumbing and Electrical is here to help! We offer 24 hour emergency service 7 days a week!  Give us a call! 1-800-461-3010 to speak with our customer service agents that can answer your questions or schedule an appointment!

Light Your Closet Without Wires

 

How do you properly get dressed in the morning if you get up before the sun or you’re trying to keep the lights dim to let your spouse sleep in? Are you digging around in your closet while holding up your phone’s flashlight? It’s time to put in some quality closet lighting!

An insta bulb is battery-operated and totally wireless. You simply peel and stick it to the wall and pull a cord to turn it on.

A battery-operated motion-sensing LED ceiling light will automatically turn on, then off after a
bout 30 seconds. These can be easily installed within minutes and the only thing you’ll have to remember is to replace the batteries once in a while.

A tap light is another great option. This is turned on or off with a tape. It can be easily attached with screws or mounting tape. Some can be detached so they can be used as a portable emergency light.

LED strip lights can activate within a few feet and provide a linear look. These are great for very dark closets.

A puck light with a remote control will let you direct lighting to where you need it and you can use the remote from 15 feet away!

You can use a combination of the options mentioned for optimal lighting. Take a look at the other closets in your home after you work on the first closet. Don’t forget about your drawers and other nooks and crannies. Most of this lighting can be installed in those areas too.

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Have a concern with your electrical, plumbing or air conditioning? Central Carolina Air Conditioning, Plumbing and Electrical is here to help! We offer 24-hour emergency service 7 days a week!  Give us a call! 1-800-461-3010 to speak with our customer service agents that can answer your questions or schedule an appointment!

Smaller Mudroom Options

 

 

Central Carolina Air Conditioning, Plumbing, and Electrical in North CarolinaWith spring showers come muddy dogs and wet shoes. One trendy home improvement project is creating a mudroom. What can you do though, if you don’t have much space, time or money? What are some easy ways to make a small area that acts as a “mudroom”?

One of the most popular ways to create a mudroom-type area is to clear out a space in the garage. You can add sheetrock to bare walls and install hooks, and bring in a bench with outdoor fabric-covered.

If you have a hallway that isn’t used, this can be a great option. You may need to look at narrower benches, but it can make an otherwise unused area very useful. If you have a closet to spare, this can be a mudroom area. You can replace the rod with hooks and shelves.

A nook or corner of a room can also be a great space for this project. Just take a look around your home to see what might be an option.

For any of these areas, keep lighting in mind. Is this area near a window so that you’ll have natural light? Are there outlets available? An easy way to add lighting to an area that doesn’t have outlets is by adding motion-sensing LED lights. Often you don’t even need a drill—just peel and stick!

Another tip— consider an exhaust fan to help with ventilation and preventing the growth of mildew. If you aren’t comfortable installing this, hire a professional.

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Have a concern with your electrical, plumbing or air conditioning? Central Carolina Air Conditioning, Plumbing and Electrical is here to help! We offer 24 hour emergency service 7 days a week!  Give us a call! 1-800-461-3010 to speak with our customer service agents that can answer your questions or schedule an appointment!

Home Hazards Often Overlooked

 

 

Every homeowner knows the list of home repairs and maintenance is never ending. Although it may be daunting to think about everything needed to maintain your home, it is important to remember things that are easy to overlook. Here are some hazards to keep an eye out for that can wreak havoc on your health and your wallet if not addressed.

Improper dryer exhaust venting causes thousands of fires every year. Over the years lint buildup restricts the airflow in your dryer, which leads to increased fire danger. It is a good idea to regularly check your aluminum vent hose to make sure it is not crushed or kinked. Once a year is a good rule of thumb. Also, clean your vent line regularly. If you are not comfortable trying it yourself, call a professional.

An inefficient water heater is another commonly overlooked problem. Not only will it reduce efficiency and lead to higher bills, but a faulty water heater can also be unsafe. It has the potential to explode, damaging your home and possibly hurting people. Inspect it regularly, and again, if you don’t know what you’re doing, call a professional.

Leaky plumbing may not be top of mind, but it wastes a lot of water and leads to unnecessarily high bills.  Furthermore, leaky pipes, or other water-related issues such as clogged gutters, can lead to water damage as well as mold and mildew. A plumber can fix these problems before they get worse.

Lastly, environmental threats such as asbestosradon gas and lead paint can damage your home and your health. You can test for these things on your own with an at-home test and a specialist can direct you towards the course of action you need to take if you need.

Have a concern with your electrical, plumbing or air conditioning? Central Carolina Air Conditioning, Plumbing and Electrical is here to help! We offer 24 hour emergency service 7 days a week!  Give us a call! 1-800-461-3010 to speak with our customer service agents that can answer your questions or schedule an appointment!

Hot Tubs for Cold Winter Months 

 

During the cold months of winter,images the idea of soaking in a steamy hot tub sounds like a dream. Getting one for your home, though, comes with some expenses and takes preparation. If you’re thinking about splurging on this big-ticket item this holiday season, here is what you should know:

You’ll want to consider where you’d like to put the hot tub and what type you’d like, as some are heavier than others and may require more support than currently exists in that location. Furthermore, the hot tub will need to be at least 10 feet away from overhead power lines and 5 feet from the spa panel.

You will need to install a breaker in your electrical control box. Keep in mind that sometimes warranties are voided if a professional electrician does not install the electrical circuit. Often it also needs to be approved by a building inspector.

Prepare for hot water costs—on average, an electric hot tub uses about 2,500 kWh per year. What does that mean? Well, it’s enough to run more than six refrigerators for about a year. Yikes! So, you’ll want to make sure you have an energy-efficient cover and that it is in good condition. When shopping for a hot tub, look for one that has plenty of insulation and uses an efficient variable speed pump or two-pump system.

Most hot tubs are self-contained, so plumbing won’t be as difficult as the electrical work.

Overall, you’re looking at a project that will cost you several thousand dollars, but in the end, if done correctly, can be a great addition to your home.

Have a concern with your electrical, plumbing or air conditioning? Central Carolina Air Conditioning, Plumbing and Electrical is here to help! We offer 24-hour emergency service 7 days a week!  Give us a call! 1-800-461-3010 to speak with our customer service agents that can answer your questions or schedule an appointment!

Lights Burning Out? by Central Carolina Air Conditioning Plumbing & Electrical

cfl-lightbulb

Ever wondered why some light bulbs burn out faster than others?

Too High Wattage

Did you know that if you put a light bulb in a fixture with too high of wattage, the heat may not be able to dissipate well? You may wind up cooking your light fixture which causes the bulbs to blow too quickly!

Cheap Bulbs

Did you also know that cheap light bulbs won’t burn as long as others? So think twice before you buy the $1 version at the dollar stores.

Over-voltage

Light bulbs are also affected by power surges from the power company. We all know that power surges can wreak havoc on computers, but they can also burn your bulbs out quickly too! Purchase a cheap multimeter at Radio Shack to test. If the voltage is 125V or higher, call your power company. If you have 7 or 8 extra volts on a 120V line, the bulb life expectancy will be cut in half.

Vibration Problems

Light fixtures under stairs, in ceiling fans or over door ways can burn out more quickly due to the constant vibration so look for shock resistant bulbs called “rough service” bulbs for these special areas of your home.

 

Have a concern with your electrical, plumbing or air conditioning? Central Carolina Air Conditioning, Plumbing and Electrical is here to help! We offer 24 hour emergency service 7 days a week!  Give us a call! 1-800-461-3010 to speak with our customer service agents that can answer your questions or schedule an appointment!