Installing Outlets for Hot Tubs

How To Add An Outdoor Outlet For A Corded Electric Hedge Trimmer

Posted by on May 13th, 2016 in Uncategorized | Comments Off on How To Add An Outdoor Outlet For A Corded Electric Hedge Trimmer

If you’re tired of cutting your hedges and other bushes with a hand trimmer, but don’t like the idea of storing fuel on your property, you can still opt for an electric hedge trimmer even if you don’t have an available outdoor outlet.

You can power an outdoor outlet from an existing indoor outlet that is located near the planned location of your outdoor outlet. All you need is a few tools and supplies. Electrical service work is only dangerous when you don’t follow basic safety rules or get careless from attempting to finish a job too quickly.

What you will need for your new outlet

GFCI outlet

A GFCI (Ground Fault Circuit Interrupter) outlet is designed for potentially wet locations, and will shut off if inadequate grounding is present.

Open outlet face plate

GFCI outlets have reset and testing buttons in the center, so the face plate must be open in the middle to allow access to these buttons.

Surface mount single gang box

The gang box is the plastic or metal box that holds the outlet. You will need a plastic cover for outdoor use, which can be added separately or be bought pre-installed on the gang box.


You’ll need a three wire sheath of 12 or 14 gauge wire. Check the breaker that controls power to the indoor outlet. If it is stamped with the number 15, it is a 15 amp line, and you need 14 gauge wire. A 20 amp line will need 12 gauge wire. 

If the distance from your indoor outlet to the new outlet is minimal, a 10 meter roll of wire should suffice. The roll of wire will be marked either “14-2″ or “12-2″, depending on the gauge selected.

1/2″ electrical conduit and fittings 

This is the metal tubing though which your wire will travel between outlets. You will need two end connectors and one 90 degree elbow fitting to connect the conduit between the outlets.

Wire cutter/stripper tool


Drill with 5/8″ SDS bit for drilling through your exterior wall


Measuring tape

Preparing the indoor location

You will first turn off the breaker to the outlet, then remove the center screw that holds the face plate in place. Next, you will loosen the two screws that hold the outlet in the gang box inside the wall. Detach the three wires that are connected to the terminal screws on the sides of the outlet, and remove the outlet from the gang box.

Next, remove the gang box by loosening the diagonally placed screws holding it inside the wall. Punch out the knock out tab in the center of the back of the gang box, and place the box inside the wall. Mark the location of the knock out tab hole and remove the gang box again.

Running wire through the wall

You will then use the drill to create a hole through the exterior wall at the marked point inside the wall. Place the gang box inside the interior wall once more and measure the distance from the exterior wall to the back of the gang box by inserting a measuring tape through the hole from the outside.

When this measurement is taken, cut a piece of conduit to this length and attach a connector to one end. Twist the threaded end of the connector into the hole in the back of the gang box and insert the conduit through the wall from the inside location.

You will then reattach the gang box inside the interior wall and begin to feed the sheath of wire through the conduit until it clears the exterior wall. Slide a 90 degree conduit elbow over the protruding wire sheath and connect it to the end of the conduit.

Running wire to the new GFCI outlet

Twist a conduit connector into the bottom of your new flush mount gang box and hold it against the wall at the desired height above the conduit. Measure the distance between the conduit elbow and gang box connector fittings and cut a piece of conduit to match. Pull the wire sheath through the length of conduit and connect the conduit on both ends and screw the gang box into the exterior wall.

Connecting the wires

Pull the wire sheath through the bottom of the gang box. Using the wire stripper, strip 2 centimeters of insulation from each of the three wires in the sheath.You will then connect the black wire to the top “line” gold terminal, the white wire to the top silver terminal ,and the copper wire to the single green terminal of the GFCI outlet.

Place the sub-plate that is supplied with the open face plate behind the GFCI outlet and screw the outlet into the gang box. Snap the open face plate onto the sub-plate. You can then install a plastic shield according to the manufacturer’s instructions (if your new gang box didn’t have one pre-installed).

Back inside, cut the wire sheath and strip and connect the wires in the same manner as with the GFCI outlet. Screw the outlet into the gang box and reinstall the old face plate. Turn on the breaker and you’re finished.

Handling A Corroded Panel

Posted by on Sep 15th, 2015 in Uncategorized | Comments Off on Handling A Corroded Panel

Electrical panels are rarely a big concern for homeowners until they start noticing problems. Things like dimming lights and outlets going in and out are common problems you could be experiencing when your panel is experiencing issues. One of the most common problems electrical panels will experience is corrosion. This is due to a number of different factors and it can be dangerous for your household. Not only that, it can interrupt your service as well. The main reason for corrosion on a panel is moisture. As moisture collects around the box, it can then cause your wires to oxidize. When it comes to a corroded electrical panel, you need to handle it quickly before the situation becomes more dangerous. Here are some things to consider in order to avoid corrosion.

Keeping Moisture Out

Since moisture is a big concern when it comes to electrical panel boxes, it is your duty to keep the moisture away from it to avoid corrosion. In order to do this, you need to keep water away from any wiring both inside and outside of your home. You should check for leaks in your walls and foundation where water could get in and cause moisture buildup. When it comes to avoiding moisture on the outside, you want to make sure rainwater or water from your garden does not collect. Any exposed wiring should be covered to help avoid getting wet. 

Inspecting Your Box

Neglecting your electrical panel box can lead to many problems. In order to keep it from doing this, you need to inspect it often. Check inside and outside of the home where wiring could be exposed to water. This can occur commonly in your outdoor lighting, smoke detectors, and even garages. By doing periodic checks around the house, you will be able to identify issues earlier and avoid further damage from happening. If you do find corrosion beginning, you will want to call a licensed electrician right away to repair it. 

Sealing Your Panel and Wiring

One way to avoid moisture buildup on your wiring and panel is by sealing it. Using a dialectic greaser, this will help seal off the wiring so that moisture cannot harm it. If you feel competent to do it yourself, you can clean the wiring by using electrical contact cleaner to remove any corrosion or debris. You want to cut off the electrical supply before cleaning it to avoid electrocution. Contact a local electrician, like McDonald Electric Ltd, for more information.

How To Wire A Lighted Medicine Cabinet

Posted by on Aug 5th, 2015 in Uncategorized | Comments Off on How To Wire A Lighted Medicine Cabinet

It’s relatively simple to power a lighted medicine cabinet from your existing overhead light. All you need is a few tools and supplies, and confidence in your ability to work with electrical components.

What you will need:

  • Wire cutter-stripper – This tool allows you to cut a wire sheath to length, as well as strip the insulation from the ends of the individual wires within the sheath.
  • Drill – You will need to drill a hole in the wall for the electric wire to access the back of the cabinet. Drill the hole at the intended location of the light atop the cabinet, so the hole and wires won’t be visible.
  • Screwdriver – You will need this to disconnect and reconnect the overhead light.
  • Flashlight – A good flashlight is always useful in electrical work, when power is off and you’re in the dark or in dim light.
  • Wire nuts – These are used to secure wire connections. They resemble the caps on toothpaste tubes, and are sold in various sizes. You should buy a variety pack of different sizes for various household uses.
  • Electrical tape – This is a small roll of black elastic tape used for covering exposed wire connections and securing wire nuts in place.
  • Electric wire – Before purchasing wire, look at the circuit breaker that controls the flow of electrical current to the overhead light from which you intend to power your medicine cabinet. If the breaker has “15” printed on it, it is a fifteen amp line and will only require fourteen gauge wire. 

If the breaker has a “20” printed on it, you will need thicker twelve gauge wire. A twenty amp line handles more power, and thinner wire may become overloaded and heat to the point of starting a fire. Don’t try to save money by purchasing thinner (higher gauge) wire than required.

You will need enough wire to travel across the ceiling from the light and down the wall to the medicine cabinet, but allow extra length for possible obstructions and connection purposes. Four to five meters should be enough.

Wiring the cabinet: at the overhead light

  1. First, install the medicine cabinet in its intended location, and drill the hole for the wiring. The most important step in this job is turning off the power to the light. Turn on the light before turning off the circuit breaker that controls the light. If the light goes out after switching off the breaker, you will be sure that the correct breaker was chosen.
  2. Unscrew the light mount from the ceiling, and pull the light fixture out so the wires are exposed. Remove the electrical tape and wire nuts that hold the wires together. Hold onto the light fixture when you untwist the connected wires, because it will fall otherwise.
  3. Begin to feed your wire into the hole in the ceiling in the direction of the intended location of the cabinet. When you reach the wall, you may need to jostle and wiggle the wire to force it to turn down into the wall space. When you can see the wire through the hole is the wall, pull it through until at least thirty centimeters of wire is protruding through the hole.
  4. Cut off the wire at the light and peel back the plastic sheath that holds the three individual wires within. Strip three centimeters of insulation from the end of each wire with the wire stripper, by placing each wire in the slot of the blades marked for their gauge (12 or 14) and pull it through the closed blades.
  5. Twist each of the three wires around the same colored wires inside the ceiling (black to black, white to white, green or copper colored to the same color). Twist a wire nut onto each set of connected wires until it is tight, then wrap the nut and wire ends in electrical tape to keep moisture out and keep the connection secure. Reattach the light into the ceiling.

At the cabinet

Perform the same functions with the wires from the medicine cabinet and the wire you fed through the ceiling and wall. Be sure that all connections are secure, then turn on the breaker and you’re finished.

If you’d rather have a professional help you out, visit an electrician like Crown Electric Ltd.

3 Signs That There Is An Electrical Problem In Your Restaurant

Posted by on Aug 3rd, 2015 in Uncategorized | Comments Off on 3 Signs That There Is An Electrical Problem In Your Restaurant

You probably have a lot of things to worry about in your restaurant, and one thing that you might not give much thought to is your electrical wiring. However, an electrical issue might be there without you even noticing it. These are some of the signs to look out for.

1. Some of Your Equipment Isn’t Working

In your commercial kitchen, you might be accustomed to dealing with equipment that stops working, such as your fryers. Before you assume that there is something wrong with your equipment, you should first make sure it isn’t an electrical problem. Although a lot of your equipment probably runs off of gas, you might notice that more than one electrical appliance will suddenly stop working if there are electrical problems going on. Test them out by plugging them in elsewhere in the restaurant; if this seems to fix the problem, then it could be a sign that there is something wrong with the electrical outlets in your kitchen.

2. There’s a Burning Smell

A burning smell might not seem too serious in a restaurant, but there’s a chance it might not be related to the food. Electrical problems can cause burning smells and can be very dangerous, so it is important to distinguish them from any burning smells that might be coming from the food preparation that goes on in your kitchen. Make sure you step out into the dining area any time you notice a burning smell; if the smell seems just as strong in there as it does in the kitchen, you may need to look into a potential electrical issue.

3. Your Lighting isn’t Working Properly

The dimmed lighting in your dining area might add to the ambiance in your restaurant, but if your lights are all dimming when you haven’t made any changes, then it’s not good. This is one of the things that you might notice first in your kitchen, where the lights should be nice and bright, rather than in the dining area, where you might have dimmer lighting for your customers. Either way, if you notice your lights aren’t working as they are supposed to, you should know the problem at hand could actually be very serious.

If you have an electrical problem in your restaurant, you should not hesitate to have a commercial electrician from a business like Sierra Electrical out to take a look at the issue. Electrical problems could result in more serious, expensive repair issues for your business, or they could result in electrical fires that could put the staff members and customers at risk. Luckily, a good commercial electrician should be able to take a look to find any potential problems and repair them as needed.

About Home Electrical Problems & Getting Repairs Done

Posted by on Jul 29th, 2015 in Uncategorized | Comments Off on About Home Electrical Problems & Getting Repairs Done

Are you tired of the circuit breakers tripping in your house all of the time? It may be time for you to get your home inspected by an electrician, especially if it was built a long time ago. Find out below why your house is experiencing electrical problems, as well as what it will cost to hire an electrician to make repairs.

What are the Reasons for Home Electrical Problems?

One of the common reasons for a home to experience electrical problems is due to it being old. Old homes are not equipped with the wiring that is necessary for handling modern power demands unless upgrades were made throughout the years. Your circuit breakers are likely tripping because you have too many electronics plugged in at the same time. You must keep in mind that circuit breakers are designed to automatically turn off when there is a fire hazard, so they are only doing their job when tripping.

You must unplug some of your electronics until you get the electrical panel in your house upgraded. An electrician can add more circuit breakers by installed a sub-panel, and he or she can rewire your house to handle a handle more voltage from outlets.

It is also important for all of the wiring in your home to be inspected to make sure the circuit breakers were not tripping due to damaged wiring. The damaged wires must be promptly repaired to prevent your house from burning down. An electrician can inspect outlet covers for discoloration and melting to get an idea of if the wires have been overheating. The power cords to your electronics will also be inspected, as faulty wiring can lead to them melting or developing shorts.

How Much are Services from an Electrician Estimated to Cost?

The overall price charged by an electrician will depend on what is causing the circuit breakers to trip. Upgrading an electrical panel to at least 200 amps can cost at least $1,300 or more. You can end up spending up to $4,000 if you want 400 amps. If you have an average sized home, you can expect to spend a minimum of $3,500 or more for it to be rewired. The complexity of the task will be factored into the price. Get in contact with an electrician, like those at PWPC Electrical Services, so he or she can troubleshoot your tripping circuit breakers and make prompt repairs!