Electrical Panels: A How-To Guide

By Krush Digital,

Mister Sparky Electrician NWA shows an electrician repairing electrical panels in Northwest Arkansas.

It’s safe to say that most people find electrical panels intimidating, and this is understandable. The average, everyday person doesn’t know how to tinker with electrical panels because the only time people really think about them is when there is a power outage or some sort of random electrical problem. Mister Sparky recognizes this feeling of intimidation most people share towards electrical panels, which is why we’ve put together an electrical panel how-to guide on today’s blog. Two of Mister Sparky’s main priorities are educating our customers and keeping them safe! So let’s get to it.

1. How to find a home’s electrical panel

If you know very little about electrical panels, you should at least know where to locate them in case you need to reset a breaker or direct a Mister Sparky electrician to them. Normally, panels are located in laundry rooms, basements, closets, utility rooms or garages, but there are always exceptions. Sometimes the electrical panel is located outdoors.

A Mister Sparky Electrician is fixing an electrical panel in Northwest Arkansas

2. How to label electrical panel switches

Make sure you label your panel switches if the previous homeowner has not already done so. Having correctly labeled panel switches is just a matter of convenience. There is nothing more frustrating than not knowing which switches control certain areas of the home. To keep this from happening, take note of the following steps.

First, turn off all the circuits, but one. Then take a stroll through your home to look for working lights, appliances or outlets. Once you get an idea of what’s working and what’s not in certain rooms, go back to the panel to label the switch. Repeat until all the switches are labeled and you’re finished!

3. How to reset a circuit breaker that’s been tripped

A circuit breaker trips when there is more electricity flowing through it than can be handled, but the good news is you can reset it. All you have to do is open the panel and look for the circuit sticking out of line compared to the rest of them. Then flip the breaker to the off position and then back on again. At this point, the power coming from this circuit should be back. In the event that a particular circuit consistently trips, there may be too many appliances utilizing the circuit, so either distribute those appliances more evenly or get an electrical panel upgrade.

Mister Sparky Electrician NWA, America’s On-Time Electrician, serves the Northwest Arkansas area with a team of certified electricians. In addition to emergency electrical repair, some of the electrician services provided by the company include electrical outlet/switch repair, ceiling fan installation, lighting installation, aluminum wiring repair, landscape lighting installation and home electrical inspections.

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Spring Electrical Safety At Home

By Krush Digital,

Mister Sparky Electrician NWA electrical safety tips.

New Survey Finds Home Electrical Safety Tips For Daylight Saving Time

The start of Daylight Saving Time is a good time to check the smoke alarms and carbon monoxide detectors in your home, but a new national survey by Mister Sparky®, finds some people may need to change more.

Daylight saving time officially starts this Sunday. Electricians with Mister Sparky® say, as you go throughout your house changing the clocks in your home, it’s also a good time to test the smoke alarms and check the carbon monoxide detectors too. If the batteries are low or haven’t been replaced lately, add new batteries. A recent national survey conducted by Mister Sparky[1] found:

41% of homeowners say they test their smoke alarms each month
34% don’t check smoke alarms monthly or replace the alarm every 10 years, as recommended by the National Fire Protection Association
Two-thirds (66%) of homeowners have a working carbon monoxide detector
43% of homeowners in the south do not have a working carbon monoxide detector
A higher percentage of households with children (71%) have a working carbon monoxide detector

The National Fire Protection Association recommends that smoke alarms and carbon monoxide detectors are installed outside each bedroom and sleeping area and the alarms are interconnected so when one alarm sounds they all sound. They also recommend these are tested at least once a month and replaced every ten years.[2] While our survey results found many people are following the safety recommendations, many others are not. If you need installation help, call a licensed and qualified electrical professional. For more information on electrical safety issues for homeowners contact us.

Mister Sparky Electrician, America’s On-Time Electrician, serves the Northwest Arkansas(NWA) area with a team of certified electricians. In addition to emergency electrical repairs, some of the electrician services provided by the company include: electrical outlet/switch repair, ceiling fan installation, lighting installation, residential wiring repair, landscape lighting installation and home electrical inspections. Call us today at (479) 202-4757 to schedule an appointment!

[1] The survey was conducted online by Research Now with 1,000 consumers. All are 18 years of age or older, a head of household, homeowners and participate in the decision-making process about the electrical systems in their homes. The data was collected between October 21 and 26, 2015.

[2] http://www.nfpa.org/safety-information/safety-tip-sheets

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NWA Electrical Code Compliance

By Krush Digital,

Mister Sparky Electrician NWA works on electrical code compliance in NWA.

Mister Sparky Electrician NWA provides information on electrical code compliance in Northwest Arkansas.

Mister Sparky Electrician’s number one priority is the safety of its customers. This is why our team works extra hard to not only provide the highest quality services but also offer top-notch education for our customers. One of the ways we educate customers is through our Sparky News blogs. Today’s blog addresses everything a homeowner needs to know about electrical code compliance.Even though going through all the steps to ensure a home or property is up to code may seem like a hassle, it could mean the difference between life and death. Taking short cuts through shoddy wiring jobs may cause a home or property to go up in flames! Electrical code compliance is important because we all use electrical devices every day. We need to know that we can safely enjoy electricity in the home because all of the wiring and devices installed to meet the standard of the National Electric Code (NEC).

In determining if your home meets the NEC electrical code compliance, you first need to know when a home or property was built. Electrical codes are updated every three or four years, so cross-checking the year a home was built with residential building codes correlating with the most recently updated year is a smart thing to do. There will likely be changes in standards for wiring, electrical panel connections, and grounding legs or circuits.

Another way to determine if a home meets electrical code compliance is looking up who built the home. Hopefully, the builder’s business is still open. If so, people may request records of construction dates, permits or contracts, which will likely give information about the home’s electrical system materials and configuration.

The best way to determine electrical code compliance is to hire a licensed electrician, like Mister Sparky, to perform a home electrical inspection. Mister Sparky offers home electrical inspections to help customers find safety hazards before they cause problems. Mister Sparky takes out all the guessing and puts the situation into the hands of a professional. The licensed electricians at Mister Sparky have gone through extensive code compliance training, and are able to recognize any type of electrical problem.

To schedule an appointment for a home electrical inspection, click here or call (479) 202-4757!

Mister Sparky, America’s On-Time Electrician serves the Northwest Arkansas area with a team of certified electricians. In addition to flickering lights, some of the electrician services provided by the company include electrical outlet/switch repair, ceiling fan installation, lighting installation, aluminum wiring repair, landscape lighting installation and home electrical inspections.

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Your Electrical Panel And Flooding Safety

By Krush Digital,

Mister Sparky Electrician NWA has Tips for flooding and electrical panel safety.
This winter was warmer than normal because of El Niño. El Niño is a weather phenomenon that happens when warm water shifts from the Pacific Ocean to the coast of South America, creating tropical storms moving eastward. All the warm, moist air due to evaporation from oceans in warm areas causes the thunderstorms, and then those storms eventually move into the United States where they bring warm temperatures and lots of rain.

This spring you may be at risk for flooding, depending on where you live in the United States. Flooding is extremely dangerous and should be taken seriously. Flooding causes risk for vehicle malfunction, catching diseases, drowning, electrical shock and more!

As your most trusted NWA electrician, we’re going to discuss what you can do to protect yourself from electrical hazards before, during and after a flood.

Before flooding:

• Organize and mark each area of your business or home to the corresponding electric panel circuit breakers switches or fuses.
• Remove all appliances from their power source, but DO NOT do this if you have to stand in water while you’re unplugging the appliances.
• For people using generators, refrain from connecting the generator to the home electric system. It is best to only connect appliances, electronics, etc. you want to power on to the generator’s outlets.
• When water is rising and is expected to make contact with your home, power off the home’s main electric panel or breaker box.

During flooding:

• Avoid spaces in your home where water has submerged any electrical cords that are plugged in or wall outlets.
• If you hear buzzing or popping inside of a room, DO NOT go inside. Also, if you see sparks, avoid the area.
• Call your electric company if you see downed power lines and stay away from them. Downed tree limbs are also dangerous since they can conduct electricity
• Steer clear from electrical boxes or panels on ground level.
• Turn your electric panel off before going into a flooded basement or building. Don’t risk going into these spaces if you aren’t certain the electricity is off. Instead call your power company.

After flood waters are gone:

• Call Mister Sparky Electrician to assess the safety of your electrical panel if the panel was covered by water at some point. If you know your electrical panel was fortunate enough to stay dry, still call for a home electrical inspection – just for safety measures.
• If your furnace floods, please call a certified HVAC technician to come out and inspect it for damages.
Stay safe and refer back to this blog if you have any questions about electrical hazards during flooding. Mister Sparky’s number one concern is our customers’ safety and satisfaction. Call us today if you have any electrical problems, questions or concerns! We’re here and ready to help.

Mister Sparky, America’s On-Time Electrician serves the Northwest Arkansas area with a team of certified electricians. In addition to flickering lights, some of the electrician services provided by the company include electrical outlet/switch repair, ceiling fan installation, lighting installation, aluminum wiring repair, landscape lighting installation and home electrical inspections.

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Preparing For A Power Outage

By Krush Digital,

Mister Sparky is the electrician in NWA to call for a power outage.

Mister Sparky Electrician NWA shares these power outage tips.

Winter’s unbearably cold temperatures bring the potential for extreme weather. One of Mister Sparky’s core values is safety, and we want prepare you by providing you with as much safety knowledge as possible. That’s why we’re discussing what you can do to prepare for power outages now, and what actions need to be taken when severe weather is approaching. Then we’ll wrap it up by discussing what to do during power outages.

How to Prepare for Power Outages

1. Put together an emergency kit. Include candles, matches, flashlights, batteries, first aid materials, cash and any other essentials you’ll think you’ll need. Store it in a safe place you’ll remember!

2. Buy a vehicle powered cell phone charger. Many Americans rely on their cell phones as their sole form of communication with family and friends. Don’t put yourself in a situation where you have no line of communication. Invest in a vehicle powered cell phone charger today. They’re inexpensive and plug into cigarette lighters ports.

3. Get a battery-powered radio. Otherwise, in the event of a power outage there will be no access to television, updates on power outages, school closings and other important news. Just buy the radio and put yourself at ease.

Things To Do When Severe Weather Is Approaching

1. Make sure your car’s gas tank is not on empty. In the event of a power outage, you may need enough gas to travel for an emergency situation. Most gas stations have electric powered pumps, so you may not be able to get gas from nearby station. If your car runs out of gas, you won’t be able to charge your cell phone, stay warm, or travel to safety.

2. Trim your tree branches. Take a look around your property and take note of any low hanging branches near power lines. If they hang over, trim them or have them trimmed. Doing this before high winds or a possible ice storm hits will decrease your chances of a power outage.

3. Turn your refrigerator and freezer temperatures down. By lowering your refrigerator and freezer to the lowest temperature settings, food will stay at safe temperatures longer if there is a power outage. Taking thirty seconds to do this could end up saving you lots of money in groceries!

Things to do During a Power Outage

1. If you run a generator, keep it in a ventilated area. You don’t want carbon-monoxide fumes filling up your living space as they can be deadly. Another safety precaution is to never plug in a generator into your home’s electrical system. This is to keep from creating a back feed into utility lines, which can severely hurt or even kill someone working to get your power back on. Instead, plug any electronics or appliances directly into the generator.

2. Unplug all your appliances. By doing this, you decrease your risk for destroying your appliances during a power surge. Remember to leave one light on so you know when the power is back on.

3. Don’t open your refrigerator or freezer very often. Keeping these appliances closed will help maintain a lower temperature, allowing your foods to stay fresh longer. Also, contrary to what you’ve been told, refrain from putting your food outside. The sun can thaw your food and there’s also a chance your food may become completely frozen if it’s cold enough.

Mister Sparky Electrician, America’s On-Time Electrician, serves the Northwest Arkansas(NWA) area with a team of certified electricians. In addition to emergency electrical repairs, some of the electrician services provided by the company include: electrical outlet/switch repair, ceiling fan installation, lighting installation, residential wiring repair, landscape lighting installation and home electrical inspections. Call us today at (479) 202-4757 to schedule an appointment!

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Save On Electrician Service In Northwest Arkansas

By Krush Digital,

At Mister Sparky, we understand the value of a dollar. We have kids to put through college and families to feed just like you, which is why we work hard to give you the very best service for the most affordable prices possible. However, sometimes the unexpected happens and you end up having to pay more than you would like for home expenses like electrical repairs.

The good news in all of this is that you don’t have to dole out a ton of money for electrical repairs with Mister Sparky. That’s right! All you have to do is follow three tips, and we’ll be sharing those with you today.

1) Hire A Professional
Homes are bound to need an electrical repair every now and then, but electrical repairs are not something you should attempt by yourself. Why? It’s too dangerous. Hire a professional electrician company like Mister Sparky NWA. Our electricians are highly skilled and experienced. By hiring us, you’ll eliminate any risk for personal injury and it will be much more convenient for you. Hiring a professional electrician, and getting electrical repairs done right the first time, can actually save you more money in the long run.

2) Avoid Electricians Charging Hourly Rate
Hiring an electrician that charges by the hour is not the most cost savvy way of taking care of your electrical needs. Some electricians take advantage of this and spend a longer amount of time than they should be on certain services, but not Mister Sparky. We let you know the cost upfront, and we don’t charge by the hour, because we have a straightforward pricing policy. Our honest pricing gives you confidence that you won’t be surprised with any unexpected charges or prices you can’t afford.

3) Hire A Company That Stands Behind Their Work
Not all electricians you hire offer guaranteed electrical services, but Mister Sparky is the exception. Any time we do electrical repairs, the labor and parts supplied by Mister Sparky come with a standard warranty of two years. We guarantee your satisfaction on all of our work, and we guarantee that we will be on time to your appointment, or your repairs will be free of charge. These guarantees help make Mister Sparky the smart choice.

There you have it. Follow these three tips, and you’ll save on electrical repairs in Northwest Arkansas. If you need an electrical repair, we’re here and ready to help as your 24 hour electrician. We also offer flickering lights repair, outlet/switch repair, ceiling fan installation, generator installation, lighting installation, home electrical inspections and more. Call us at (479) 202-4757 or visit us at www.mistersparkynwa.com to schedule your appointment today!

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When To Call An Emergency Electrician

By Krush Digital,

Mister Sparky Electrician NWA is on an emergency electrician call to do an electrical repair.

Mister Sparky is an emergency electrician serving the Northwest Arkansas area with a team of certified electricians. We get emergency electrician calls at all times of the day about all kinds of electrical problems in Northwest Arkansas. We’re available as your 24-hour emergency electrician. On the blog, we’re sharing 4 reasons to call a 24/7 emergency electrician just in case you need us, but don’t realize it’s time to call for help.

1. I see electric sparks, smoke or flames.

Anytime you see electrical sparks or flames, there is a possible emergency. In the event of sparks or flames, call the fire department immediately for your safety. If your outlets are smoking, call a 24-hour emergency electrician. Letting this problem persist could result in a house fire and thousands of dollars in damages to your home. Mister Sparky specializes in electrician services like aluminum wiring repair, electric outlet/ switch repair, and electrical panel repair. You will be in good hands with Mister Sparky Electrician, the best emergency electrician in Northwest Arkansas.

2. I see exposed wires.

Please do not use outlets or cords that have exposed wiring. If the wires are live and not insulated, you are at risk of burns, ventricular fibrillation, neurological effects, arc-flash hazards and even death if you touch the wires. Call Mister Sparky Electrician NWA. We are a 24-hour emergency electrician, and we have the area’s most qualified electrical technicians.

3. Electric power outage

Everyone panics when the power goes out. You can no longer spend countless hours keeping up with friends on Facebook or pinning everything on Pinterest. You can no longer watch television or play games on your smart phone when you’re in the thick of a power outage. However, there is no need to panic if the whole neighborhood is experiencing a power outage. In a situation like that, call your electric company and they will help you. Only when your house is exclusively dark is it time to call a 24-hour emergency electrician.

4. Water is getting in contact with wires and outlets.

In the unfortunate event of flooding in your home or some other disaster where water gets in contact with wires and outlets, calling a 24/7 emergency electrician is vital. Obviously, the risk of electric shock is greater in areas that are wet or damp since impure water acts as a conductor. Calling a 24-hour emergency electrician, like Mister Sparky, will put you at ease. We make sure to install ground fault circuit interrupters (GFCIs) once all the water is drained and dried. Hopefully, your home won’t flood again, but if it does GFCIs will interrupt the electrical circuit before a current strong enough to cause death or serious injury occurs.

Mister Sparky Electrician NWA , America’s On-Time Electrician, serves the Northwest Arkansas area with a team of certified electricians. In addition to emergency electrical repairs, some of the electrician services provided by the company include electrical outlet/switch repair, ceiling fan installation, lighting installation, aluminum wiring repair, landscape lighting installation and home electrical inspections.

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