Stay Safe ‒ Stay Informed About Electrical Issues with Majak Electric!

Electrical work can be dangerous in a deadly way if it is not done properly or by a qualified professional. At Majak Electric, we are skilled, experienced and licensed professionals and we offer fully insured electrical work. Many people outside the field are unaware of many aspects of electrical work, and so we have provided some commonly asked questions below.

How much should I attempt on my own?

Presently in Alberta, a homeowner is limited to a maximum of 100 amp service. He cannot obtain a permit for a larger service. However, doing electrical work by yourself is a gamble. The potential for damage to you or your property should be factored into the idea of saving money. Also, in case of extensive property damage, insurance may not cover the damage at all.

What is the purpose of home surge protection?

By recognizing electrical hazards that may be present in your home, you can protect your family, home and assets from damage caused by electrical surges. Majak Electric can help you determine the surge protection most suited for your home's wiring system. Get protected before the REAL summer storms hit!

When is it time to call an electrician?

  • When you are resetting circuit breakers
    or changing fuses too often
  • When you turn on your air conditioner and the lights dim in the room
  • When your lights flicker or go on and off
  • When you can smell electricity burning
  • When you have six electronic devices going into one outlet in back of your electronics center
  • When you have receptacle outlets overburdened by multi-plug strips
  • When a three-prong plug needs a two-prong adapter
  • If you have to run extension cords to plug in electrical devices

What size service do I install in my home?

Most provinces call for 100 amps minimum, but with all the new electronic devices, air conditioning and electric heat, I would suggest 200 amps especially in new homes. This also gives you some space for future additions. This is not a job for an unlicensed person to attempt. In most cases it involves replacing everything from the service loop (this is the wire that extends from the top of your meter to the utility tie-in) up to, and including, the main panel.

Are G.F.C.I. receptacles important?

Yes. Found generally in bathrooms, the ground-fault circuit interrupter (GFCI) is there to protect people from electrical shock. When you look at a normal 120-volt outlet in North America, there are two vertical slots and then a round hole centered below them. The left slot is slightly larger than the right. The left slot is called 'neutral', the right slot is called 'hot' and the hole below them is called 'ground.' If an appliance is working properly, all electricity that the appliance uses will flow from hot to neutral. A GFCI monitors the amount of current flowing from hot to neutral. If there is any imbalance, it trips the circuit. It is able to sense a mismatch as small as 4 or 5 milliamps, and it can react as quickly as one-thirtieth of a second.

For example, if you happen to drop your active blow-dryer into the sink full of water, it should trip the GFCI and save your life — or at least it's supposed to. Why is that? If electricity flows from hot to ground through you, it could be fatal. The GFCI can sense the current flowing through you because not all of the current is flowing from hot to neutral as it expects — some of it is flowing through you to ground. As soon as the GFCI senses that, it trips the circuit and cuts off the electricity.

What type of lighting should I install?

The new trend in the electrical consumer marketplace is definitely the rise and increased use of wireless dimmers in the home and workplace. In the next 10 years, wireless dimmers will definitely become the norm. The phenomenon is literally like the introduction of flat screen televisions. It's just a matter of time; as the cost comes down, everyone will upgrade to wireless technology.

What are Arc Fault Circuit Interrupters (AFCI)?

As defined by Wikipedia: An Arc Fault Circuit Interrupter (AFCI) is a circuit breaker designed to prevent fires by detecting a non-working (i.e., non-intended/non-useful) electrical arc and disconnecting the power before the arc starts a fire. An AFCI should, but may not always, distinguish between a working arc that may occur in the brushes of a vacuum cleaner, on operation of a light switch, on insertion / removal of a plug into an electrical receptacle, or during the operation of other household devices and a non-working arc that can occur — for example a lamp cord that has a broken conductor in the cord from overuse. Arc faults in a home are one of the leading causes of household fires.

As an Eaton certified contractor, Majak Electric can recommend the best Arc Fault Circuit Interrupters on the market for your home or business.

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