One of the most enjoyable things we get to do at A-Star as Calgary electricians is to design a home or business electrical system from scratch. This allows us to put all of our skills to work, combining our knowledge of electrical system circuit installation, lighting design, and the intelligent configuration of an electrical panel.
Some of our favourite jobs have required us to get creative in unusual spaces, which is always a welcome challenge. Open communication with our clients means we can tick all the boxes for all of your wants and needs.
Before we get going on our electrical system design plan we will ask the following:
Do you have a preference for placement of light switches?
We always advise during the building process that you walk through your home or business (or visualize yourself doing so using building plans) and picture how you will use each space. Imagine how you will perform your common household activities and what would make your life more convenient. If you have small children or require accessible space, consider placing your light switches slightly lower. For dark spaces like a basement, it often makes sense to put light switches outside a door than inside. Light switches should also always be placed on the latch side of a door, not the hinge side, which makes it much easier to enter and exit a room. We can also install dimmable lights to create ambience in spaces such as living rooms and bedrooms.
How many outlets would you like?
There are many codes and guidelines mandating the placement of outlets, which we will always adhere to, plus experience as Calgary electricians has taught us a few things we will always include in your electrical system design to help increase the use and function of your spaces. Outlets are both attractive and functional these days, and come with many options. Given today’s open plans for homes and businesses, it is becoming more and more common to place outlets in the floor. We can install attractive floor boxes in handy locations so you never have to run a potentially unsafe extension cord again. For offices and bedrooms we also recommend outlets with USB ports so it’s easy to keep your devices charged.
Where do you see your furniture being placed?
Placement of furniture also dictates where outlets and light switches should go. Neither are any good when covered up by a couch, desk, or shelves. We never suggest using extension cords as a permanent solution to awkwardly placed electrical accouterments, as many won’t protect you from surges, and they are also a safety hazard. Let us know where you anticipate lamps, televisions, computers, and entertainment systems and we will ensure all of your electrical appliances will be served.
Will you have a security system?
Security systems require power and a phone jack, and panels should also be hidden to make them difficult for burglars to find. Some spots we suggest for security systems are pantries and closets.
Do you have an electric car?
For fast charging, electric cars require a dedicated 240-volt circuit. These are referred to as Level 2 charging stations, and businesses would be wise to install a few for clients as electric vehicles become more and more common.
Don’t forget the outdoors!
Lights near where you will be barbecuing and where you see a seating area being set up will increase the enjoyment of your outdoor space. We can also install motion detectors near doors and gates to for improved safety and function.
Are you considering smart devices?
Smart devices such as programmable thermostats, light occupancy sensor switches, and advanced surge protectors can make your life more convenient and help keep your electrical bills down.
What about solar panels?
Calgary receives a lot of sunlight throughout the year, making it ideal for the use of solar panels. They are most effective when mounted on the south- or west-facing parts of a roof. In 2017 the Government of Alberta created a rebate program for solar panel installation for residential and commercial buildings of 75 cents per watt, which caps out at up to 30 per cent for homes and 25 per cent for businesses of the cost of installation. Warrantees for solar panels can last up to 25 years, which means they are a solid investment.
Lighting Design Tips and Tricks
We are experts at lighting design. We love to layer light, using ambient, task, and accent lighting to really create a comfortable mood and provide all the brightness necessary to carry out jobs and duties. Of course, we always recommend LED lighting for all lamps and fixtures. It’s really a no-brainer. Not only do LED bulbs last about 40 times longer than incandescent bulbs, they also use up to 90% less power.
A-Star are the Calgary Electricians You Can Count On
We at A-Star Electric are certified journeyman or apprentice Calgary electricians who believe what we do can improve other people’s lives. Your home or business’s electrical system is integral to day-to-day life and work, and we believe in making sure your panel and wiring run as efficiently as possible. Contact us today for all residential or commercial jobs.