Best Strategic Places to Install Outlets

If you walk into the average home, you’ll find outlets scattered around the room near the baseboards. Sure, they get the job done, but placing outlets in this way isn’t very convenient.

Why are outlets installed this way? Well, contractors will install outlets only where they need to in order to pass the safety inspection. Minimizing outlets also helps them save money. Outlets aren’t installed with the homeowner in mind, but you’re the one who’s going to be stuck with those outlets for years!

Having many strategically located outlets is important because it allows you to live life your way. Their placement doesn’t have to mess with the aesthetic beauty of your home either!

Here are some of the best places to put outlets that will make living your life much more convenient.

  1. Outlets above shelves and tables

Many people put their phones, laptops, and tablets on a shelf or table when they are at home. Why not charge those devices while they’re sitting there?

Entry outlets placed above shelves or tables make convenient charging points, ensuring you never leave home with an uncharged device.

  1. Floor outlets

Ever walk into a room and see wires crisscrossing the floor? These wires destroy the aesthetic appeal of the room, in addition to causing a tripping hazard. Floor outlets can solve this problem.

Install a few extra outlets near the floor and eliminate the need for extension cords. You can even consider installing outlets directly in the floor, to further reduce tripping hazards.

  1. Wall-mounted outlets

Wall-mounted TVs are common in many homes today, which means unsightly cords drooping down the wall to the outlet. You can eliminate the need for such cords by installing a wall-mounted outlet that specifically caters to your TV.

Your TV area will remain clean and uncluttered because you can also use the conduit hidden in the wall to connect your TV to other electronic devices, like DVD players and gaming systems.

  1. Bathroom outlets

From electric razors to hair dryers and straighteners, you can find a lot of electronics in the bathroom. The trouble is, the bathroom can be humid and wet, so paying special attention to bathroom outlets is important.

It is convenient and safe to have specific outlets dedicated to each item. For example, you can have outlets on both sides of your sink so that two people can use electric devices at once without an extension cord.

  1. Outlets for the kitchen

Homebuilders will always have outlets ready for large kitchen appliances, but you might have to install outlets for small appliances on the kitchen counter.

You can have countertop outlets powering toasters, teapots, and blenders. You can also dedicate other strategically placed outlets to power laptops, phones, and TVs. Outlets can be installed on walls, under kitchen cabinets, and directly on the counter, depending on the placement that works best for you.

  1. Outlets for your office at home

Computers and tablets and printers, oh my! Home offices sure do have a huge number of electronics!

These devices run simultaneously, which means extension cords and power strips are common. Unfortunately, these cords are inconvenient, they make an office look messy, and they can even be dangerous.

Instead, place outlets above the desk in your office to eliminate the mess of cords on the floor. Install as many outlets as you need to make sure that every electronic device in your office has its own dedicated outlet and you can avoid the power strips and extension cords altogether.

If you’re looking for a few extra outlets in your home that will make living life easier, call Penna Electric. Our knowledgeable, experienced staff will get your electrical work done right the first time, every time.

Green Inspiration for the Jet Set: The World’s First Solar-Powered Airport

As the world moves slowly toward switching to solar power, Cochin International Airport in the southern part of India has taken a huge leap forward. With 46,150 solar panels spread over a whopping 45 acres, the 4th busiest airport in the country in terms of international passenger traffic takes its place as the world’s first solar-powered airport.

The airport has been running entirely on solar power since August, 2015, and has since become an inspiration to many agencies around the world aspiring to harness the power of the sun.

Reasons Behind Switching to Solar

The power needed to serve the three terminals of the Cochin International airport was huge. On average, the airport consumed more than 48,000 units of power, resulting in a hefty electricity bill of $5,160 daily. The airport authorities found this to be a huge waste of money, and that is when they made a deal with German firm Bosch. The company installed solar panels in the nearby wastelands to cater to the airport’s power needs.

The project kicked off three years ago with the installation of a handful (400) of solar panels on the roof of the arrival terminal and then around a hangar. Seeing the success of this pilot project, officials decided to go independent of the electricity grid, and that is when the world found its first 100% solar-powered airport in Cochin, India.

How Is It Fairing Now?

After switching to 100% solar in August, 2015, the airport has not paid a single rupee on an electricity bill. As a matter of fact, it is earning good revenues from the electricity that is generated from the plant. The airport does not need all of the 50,000 units of power generated daily by the solar plant, so it is selling off the extra power to the local electricity distribution facility, Kerala State Electricity Board.

With the annual savings on electricity bills and the earnings from the electricity surplus, the airport authority (CIAL) is expecting to recover the full investment ($9.3 million) in only 5 years. However, there is roadblock to that goal.

With the new international wing coming up shortly, the power requirements of the airport will increase manifold. The existing power generated by the 13.1 MW solar power station will not only be eaten up but will fall short. Although the airport has earned the title of the first airport in the world to be 100% solar-powered, to continue to be powered entirely by the energy of the sun, it would need to upscale its power-generation abilities.

Therefore, the authorities are planning to extend the solar plant and add more solar panels. Another 10,000 solar panels will be commissioned, which will increase the power generation to 2.4 MW. In addition to this, more panels are set to be installed in and around the airport to take the total capacity of the solar plant to 26.5 MW.

Impact On The Environment

The longevity of the solar panels at Cochin airport will be about 25 years. During this time, the power generated will prevent 3,000,000 tons of carbon emissions caused by coal-powered plants over a similar time frame. This much energy has the equivalent effect to planting as many as 3 million trees or doing away with 750 million miles driving by car.

Impact On Other Airports

Inspired by the pioneer efforts of Cochin International Airport, many other Indian airports are gearing up to go solar. Already, Netaji Subhas Chandra Bose International Airport at Kolkata has planned a similar solar plant spread over 70 acres within airport boundaries, which will meet the total power requirement (15MW) of the 5th busiest airport in India in terms of aircraft movement.

The civil aviation ministry of India has also appreciated this mammoth project undertaken by CIAL and has instructed other major airports to follow suit. The project has received international attention as well. Representatives from Liberia and George Airport of South Africa have checked the feasibility of similar solar projects.

This trend toward solar energy by these major energy-consuming entities hints at a hopeful future for clean energy in the years to come.

The Costly Consequences of a Phantom Load

From a utility standpoint, one of the most wasteful consumer habits is leaving electrical appliances plugged in on standby. Often left drawing energy from the house’s power grid for the sake of convenience, appliances like televisions and laptops can drain just as much power while switched off and plugged in compared to when in use. Numerous tests and statistics indicate that a large chunk of electrical use in both private and industrial settings is completely wasted during inactivity. The power consumed when appliances are on standby is often referred to as phantom load, vampire power, or, in less mythic terms, standby power, all of which are referring to a problem easily prevented with good management habits.

Specifically, phantom load alone accounts for about a quarter of power consumed in private homes according to the Natural Resources Defense Council. When taking into account specific electric rates in sectioned areas, the total running cost amounts to $19 billion dollars in the United States. Consequences from phantom load reach further than just the electricity bill, however. With a large percentage of produced electricity being wasted each day, carbon dioxide emissions and other environmentally destructive effects of electrical generation continue to strain the planet needlessly, as a fraction of this production can be either put to better use or stopped completely.

As a rule of thumb, any electrical appliance connected to an external power source will consume power even when switched off. A widespread example of this includes any cell phone charger. Best practice calls for consumers to always unplug their chargers when not in use, but the habit of leaving them plugged into the outlet is a hard one to shake off. On average, a cellphone charger left in the outlet with no cellphone at the end of it will consume 1 watt of electricity per hour. If there is a fully charged phone connected to the charger, the consumption rate spikes to 4.5 watts per hour.

Another good example of draining devices include any appliance sporting an LED or LCD display. This includes microwaves, televisions, DVD players, and sound systems. Similar to how these displays never really turn off, electrical devices that fall into standby mode as opposed to switching off are the most problematic in terms of phantom load. Cable boxes and televisions that sink into standby mode are common culprits, eating up electricity in the background while nobody is watching. Though leaving the television on standby allows for it to boot up faster, the power costs associated with it are rarely worth the seconds saved. A television box with rear projection consumes 48.5 watts per hour. Computers are also common culprits, being major power drains on stand-by to supplement data retrieval and the motherboard.

The following is a list of electrical devices and the average watts they consume on an hourly basis. These figures are all according to a study done by the Energy Center of Wisconsin:

Watts Electronic Device
5.6 Treadmill
4.3 Printer
4.2 Tool charger
2.6 Battery charger
1.3 TV and CRT
2.4 Desktop
1.2 Monitor
1.5 Modem
0.7 Laptop

If the consequences of phantom load have you fearing for your bank account, look below for a comprehensive list of tips to minimize phantom load:

  • Unplug all appliances that are not in frequent use, making sure to disconnect the power after the time when you do use them.
  • Use a power strip to make switching off the power more convenient.
  • Take your time while shopping to only acquire appliances with low standby.
  • Utilize Smart Grid and Smart Meter technology to keep better tabs on your home’s power consumption.

If you are in need of any type of electrical repairs or installation, call Penna Electric. Our knowledgeable, experienced staff will get your electrical work done right the first time every time.

Electric Cars to Make Noise By September, 2019

Since their introduction, electric cars have been popular alternatives to standard gasoline-based automobiles due to their numerous advantages. Their electric-based engines propel the vehicle without burning any fuel, saving tremendously on upkeep. In addition, electric vehicles are far quieter than their conventional counterparts. However, the National Highway Traffic Safety Authority may introduce a law requiring electric cars to make noise when moving. The law is vague on what exact methods auto manufacturers will use to cause this noise in electric or hybrid car models, whether implemented through the engine itself or an additive sound alert system. As a result of the ambiguity, manufacturers have full discretion on how exactly they’ll put in the noise-making bells and whistles.

US Transportation Secretary, Anthony Fox, says that louder electric and hybrid cars on the road play an integral role in reducing risks of a possible car crash. If the new bill passes, electric and hybrid vehicles must satisfy a 10,000 pounds or less weight limit so that they can make audible noises when moving forward or reverse at speeds of 19 mph or less. For speeds exceeding 19 mph, the NHTSA says that noise alert is not needed as other factors such as the tire and wind noises can provide the adequate auditory warning to pedestrians.

This mandate has been issued in combination with the Pedestrian Safety Law, signed into law by President Obama in 2010. Auto manufacturers have until 1st September 2019 to implement noisier electric car models. However, half of electric and hybrid cars must comply a year before the deadline to insure that the requirements are met. The noise-making addition makes it possible for pedestrians to detect the presence of electric cars much quicker than if the vehicle is silent, and the American Council of the Blind has praised the decision, with noisier electric vehicles playing a part in making the streets safer for the visually-impaired and cyclists alike.

Some auto manufacturers have already taken steps in increasing the noise of their electric car models, but not specifically as a result of an interest in protecting pedestrians or passengers. For instance, Porsche has been working to make its Mission E electric sports Sedan to have some noise. But, the motivation behind their design change was to satisfy customer expectation of an engine growl upon ignition. Other manufacturers like McLaren and Fiat Chrysler also plan to fit their models with artificial auto engine noises, for various reasons.

If you are in need of any type of electrical repairs or installation, call Penna Electric. Our knowledgeable, experienced staff will get your electrical work done right the first time every time.

electric car

California Offers Electric Car Rebates

California has again adjusted its electric car rebates program for buyers of fuel cell cars, plug-in hybrid, and all-electric cars in an effort to augment the sale of low emission vehicles. High-income earners are excluded from getting these rebates while low-income earners will get more money under the Clean Vehicle Rebate program.

These changes are designed to help California reach aggressive goals set by California Air Resource Board and Gov. Jerry brown to increase the number of Zero Emission Vehicles (ZEV) on the State’s highways. Gov. Jerry Brown wants 1.5 million ZEV on California highways by 2025 while the Air Resource Board calls for at least 15.4% of the new vehicles sold in the state to qualify under the definition of Zero emission.

Though California has the highest number of Zero emission vehicles on the road compared to other states, but with only nine years to go until the 2025 deadline, ZEV only makes up 3% of new cars on the State’s highways.

How the rebate program will work

Prospective buyers for hybrid vehicles with less income than 300% of the federal poverty level will receive $3,500 while those buying battery electric vehicles will receive $4,500 and $7,000 for fuel-cell vehicle buyers.  This is $2,000 more per vehicle than they received two years ago and $500 more than they get currently.

300% of the federal poverty level translates into an individual gross income of $35,640 or less and a family of four with an income less than 72,900. These new rules make it harder for high-income earners to qualify. They cancel the rebates for those with income exceeding $150,000 for a single filer, $300,000 for joint filers and $204,000 for the heads of household filers.

Previously, there were no income caps at all. Anyone who bought a vehicle that met the qualifications for being a ZEV received a rebate regardless of the income level. But in 2014, this linkage of income to rebates was enacted through Senate Bill 1275 which also outlined other programs to increase sale in low-income areas.

“A lot of these rebates were going to wealthy folks buying their Teslas and we want to preserve these dollars due to their limited nature by targeting folks who really need them.” Joel Espino, a legal counsel for the Greenlining Institute stated.

But there is a concern about whether or not the rebate program will help California achieve the desired results. According to Jeremy Acevedo, pricing and industry analyst for The results are unpredictable but according to the data, high-income people are buying more of low-emission vehicles compared to the low-income people.

Colin Santulli, a senior manager of transportation at the center for sustainable Energy said, “We want to see different communities buy these vehicles so that more Californians can experience the benefits of driving Zero-emission vehicles and we are hoping to see  a snowball effect that we see on other technologies.”

The changes to the rebate program continues to raise many questions for analysts such as:

Is $500 extra really enough to get the low-income people who have always stayed out of the market? Is there infrastructure in place for the low-income buyers and are there charging stations in low-income people zip codes?

Joel Espino admits that the program comes with challenges but also adds that increasing electric car rebates for low-income buyers is not the only strategy they have taken to get more zero-emission vehicles on the state’s highways.

A financing assistance pilot program called buy down grants has also been launched to offer affordable loans for the low-income ZEV car buyers. Later this years, several automakers will roll out new electric car models at lower prices. Chevrolet Bolt will be priced at about $37,500 while Tesla Model 3 set to debut in 2017 will be priced at $35,000.

“These cars will help you save money on maintenance and gas and who best to benefit from this that the low-income folks especially when you consider the impact of vehicle pollution in these communities.” Espino said. “To us, given the prices of ZEV, it makes sense that a person making $150,000 and above is in a position to afford a ZEV without needing a rebate.” Espino Concluded.

If you are in need of any type of electrical repairs or installation, call Penna Electric. Our knowledgeable, experienced staff will get your electrical work done right the first time every time.

Image courtesy of David Pinter. creative commons

power outage

Top 5 of the World’s Biggest Power Outages

To almost everyone, a power outage is not a new experience, most of us have been trapped in elevators, used the light from a candle to read or stumbled around clumsily in darkness in our homes. Power outages almost always lead to catastrophic and unsettling economic and social consequences but with the many causes of blackouts, it is almost difficult to avoid them. More often than not, power outages occur due to human errors and technical faults but natural calamities such as earthquakes, tsunamis, hurricanes, lightning strikes and flooding have taken their toll as well. Here are the top 5 biggest power outages across the globe.

  1. India, July 2012

This is the biggest power outage in history. It occurred on the 30th and 31st  of July, 2012 affecting the northern part of India. On July 30th, over 300 million people living in nine major states including New Delhi were affected. A bigger blackout followed on July 31st affecting the northeastern, western, northern and eastern grids. In total, over 700 million people in 20 Indian states were affected by this blackout.

The blackout caused traffic lights to shut down causing an uncontainable traffic jam and train failures. Mining and construction work in the northern region were also stopped and surgical operations canceled. This blackout was cited to have been caused by weak inter-regional power transmission cables and overdrawing of electricity in some cities.

  1. India – January 2, 2001

The second largest power outage was again witnessed in India on January 2nd. It affected over 230 million Indians. It resulted in the closure of services and business throughout the northern region and over 80 trains were stranded. This power outage was caused by the collapse of a sub-station in Uttar Pradesh. The use of inadequate and poor transmission equipment also contributed to the blackout.

  1. Bangladesh, November 2014

On November 1, 2014, Bangladesh experienced the third largest power outage in the world. It affected over 150 million people and lasted for 10 hours. This power outage was caused by the failure of the main power transmission line from India to Bangladesh.

  1. Indonesia, August 2005

In August 2005, a massive blackout occurred across Indonesian islands of Bali and Java. It affected 120 million Indonesians, almost half of the population in the country. Jakarta, Indonesian capital city was completely blacked out as well as parts of East Java, West Java and Central Java.

As a result, transport services across the region including domestic and international flights were canceled and businesses closed.

The cause of the 24 hours power outage was linked back to the failure of the power grid connecting Java and Bali that had a capacity of 19,615MW due to the failure of a 500kVolts transmission line between Saguling and Cilegon in West Java.

  1. Brazil, March 1999

In March 1999, the southeastern part of Brazil experienced a power outage for close to six hours after the electricity sub-station in Sao Paulo was struck by lightning. It affected over 97 million people. The incident also resulted in the failure of Itaipu, a major source of hydroelectric power in the world.

This blackout halted business and services in San Paulo and Rio-de-Janeiro, two of the largest cities in Brazil for six hours.

If you are in need of any type of electrical repairs or installation, call Penna Electric. Our knowledgeable, experienced staff will get your electrical work done right the first time every time.

Image courtesy of Dave Hale. creative commons

severe storm

How to Prepare Your Home for Severe Storms

It’s that time of year again…storm season. Temperatures are cooling off and jet streams are changing which sometimes can stir up some nasty storms, especially if you live near a large body of water. We want to make sure that you and your family are safe during severe storms, so we have provided you with some of our best tips for preparing your home for storm season.

  1. Make sure that you have an emergency kit within reach at all times. It should include all the necessary things like batteries, mylar blanket, and a flashlight. Don’t forget to stock any first aid supplies you may need as well such as band-aids, peroxide, gauze, and tape.
  1. During severe storms, there is a high probability that you will lose your power. Make sure that your cell phones are charged and that you can survive without having to charge anything for a good amount of time. It is a good idea to have matches and a stove ready so that you have a feasible way of preparing meals. Stock up on as many canned foods as possible and have some easy to prepare meals on hand just to make life a little less complicated during the storm.
  1. If the storm is severe enough, there may also be a water shortage. Purchase flats of bottled water as well as jugs of purified water you can use for washing, drinking and cooking purposes. Don’t forget to include a little extra water for any pets or animals you may have.
  1. If you are living in an apartment, you should know the location of all the emergency exits. You should also know the exact location of your fuse box in case of an emergency. The possibility of a fire starting will increase if there is damage to electrical wiring, so go over your family’s fire exit plan as well as the locations of all of the fire extinguishers in your home. It’s also a good idea to do a little refresher course on how to use the fire extinguishers. Make it a habit to regularly check the expiration dates on your extinguishers as well.
  1. Take a moment and look out for hanging branches from any nearby tree which may fall on your property or even more important, your house. Trim any branches you feel may cause danger to you or your home.

During the storm, you will also want to take some precautions like:

  • Unplug all major electrical appliances and gadgets such as computers, televisions, DVR’s and stereo systems.
  • If you see a power line lying on the ground, stay away from it. Immediately dial 911 and inform them. Coming into contact with a downed wire can cause serious injury and even death.

In case there is an outage, do the following:

  • Call the helpline number to your power company and inform about the outage.
  • If the storm happens during the winter months, it may get really cold quickly. Wear as many layers of warm clothes as possible. Also, close all the doors and the windows. A candle won’t be enough to keep you warm. You can, however, use it as a light.
  • Make sure to leave at least one light on, so that you know when the power comes back.
  • Finally, when you have ensured your safety, it will be a nice gesture to check out on your neighbors and ensure that they are also safe, especially homebound or elderly neighbors.

When the power finally comes back, keep in mind the following things:

  • Slowly turn on your electrical appliances one by one. If you turn everything on at once, then there may be another outage or surge.
  • Check your property for any damage.
  • Call Penna Electric if you need any repairs done to your wiring or electrical system.

If you are in need of any type of electrical repairs or installation, call Penna Electric. Our knowledgeable, experienced staff will get your electrical work done right the first time every time.


Safe Halloween Decorating Tips From The Pros

Over the years, Halloween decorating has become a hobby to many people and while all the colorful, spooky lights and inflatables look great, they can present a hazard to unsuspecting visitors as well as homeowners. To make sure that your Halloween is not only fun but also safe for everyone, keep the following safety tips in mind when decorating.

Check all the electrical cords for damaged plugs or bare spots. If you doubt the safety of any cord, do not use it. The same applies to extension cords. Also, ensure that cords do not stretch across a pathway where they can become a tripping hazard to trick or treaters.

  • Reconsider the use of candles

Though they are a traditional choice for lighting your jack-o-lanterns, they are too much of a fire hazard, especially when left unattended. Instead, opt for battery-operated candles, glow sticks or flashlights. They cast an eerie glow and they are safe to carry around.

  • Put down the hammer

Do not use nails or staples to tack up light strings as they can puncture electrical wires, exposing them. The result may be electrical shock or even fire. Instead, use specials hangers for outdoor lighting. You can get then at almost every big box store and hardware store, and they can be left up for the next holiday use.

  • Ensure all electrical outlets are grounded

When using outdoor electrical decorations, ensure all outlets are protected by ground fault circuit interrupters (GFCIs) to prevent shock. Also, ensure the decorations have a seal such as CSA, UL or ETL-SEMKO which indicates they have been tested and approved for outdoor use.

  • Avoid using knives

If the traditional jack-o-lantern is on your list of must-have decorations, avoid knives especially if kids will help out. Instead, purchase a set of pumpkin carving tools. They are available in most supermarkets, discount retailers and even in drugstores. After carving, do not leave the pulp and seeds on the ground as they can cause falls.

  • Wear comfortable Costumes

Choose comfortable costumes especially those that do not consist of long trailing fabric as they can easily catch fire or be a tripping hazard. If your child will wear a mask, ensure the holes are big enough so that he or she can see clearly and prevent falls near flammable or dangerous items. If possible, skip the face masks altogether and use make-up to complete the costume.

You can also consider purchasing costumes and accessories which are flame resistant. Though more costly, they will keep your child safe.

  • Talk to your children

Lastly, talk to your child about safety and remind them to stay away from any electrical cords, open flames including jack-o-lanterns with lit candles. Also, give them glow sticks or a flashlight as part of their costume for lighting.

Decorating for Halloween is so much fun for you and your kids, and following the above tips will help create lasting memories for you and your children.

If you are in need of any type of electrical repairs or installation, call Penna Electric. Our knowledgeable, experienced staff will get your electrical work done right the first time every time.


A Million Reasons (or maybe just 5) Why Lighting is Important in Small Businesses

Lighting is one of the most critical components in a business that every small business operator should be be mindful of. Small business lighting, when done perfectly, will ensure the business owner enjoys the results since he can save p to 50% cost of his energy bills. Every business owner loves to save money on operating expenses, right? Your light choices can work to your advantage in this respect. It’s through proper lighting that you are able to increase productivity in order to compete effectively with your competitors in the business industry. Proper lighting in your business can help to make a good impression on how the customers view your business. Choose good lighting that is more welcoming to attract your customers easily.

Technology – Option of using energy saver bulbs

It’s not just enough to be content with the type of lighting in your building, take time to consider  the kind of lighting that is friendly to your business. Ensure that you select the type of lighting technology that supports energy-efficient lighting. You may like a certain look or design of ceiling lighting or table lamps but find out they aren’t really energy efficient.

Controls – Provides flexibility of lighting in necessary areas

All you need is to eliminate excessive usage of light in your office is a way to regulate the level of lighting. With a good control system that suits your business, you’re sure to save as much energy as possible. An extensive control system allows you to choose which lights you want to have on and what level of lighting you need in those areas. This allows you to choose to keep certain lighting off if that part of the room is not in use, saving energy and money in the long run.

Day light – Saves the cost of energy

You don’t have to use the lighting system at all times in the office. There is a way to save your cash. Ensure that your office setting is designed in a way that you access enough natural light through the windows with any office furniture. Use as much sunlight as possible for your office by using appropriate ways to direct it to your work space. You can opt for lots of windows in your offices as well as paint and furniture that will reflect the sun’s natural light. If it becomes too bright, blinds, shades, or curtains can be used to block some of the light.

Design – Provides lighting color options

Your lights don’t just depend on the type of bulbs you choose, there is much more behind it. Consider the colors you choose for your walls. If you have bright colors that help reflect light, you are sure to consume less energy than when you choose darker colors.

High intensity discharge

The HID lamps have a way of adding light to large areas. With the light voltage and watts selection you will be able to light the whole building with few lamps compared to other forms of lighting. They can also be used even from a higher distance in terms of the ceiling height.

If you are in need of any type of electrical repairs or installation, call Penna Electric. Our knowledgeable, experienced staff will get your electrical work done right the first time every time.


Take Your Kitchen Lighting to the Next Level

Whether it comes time for the modification of old light fixtures in your house or you get to start from scratch with a new house, give some careful thought to the type of kitchen lighting you want to invest in. Think about where you plan to do the most work and what type of activities will be taking place in this space. Ask yourself, “What else will be going on in here: homework? Tea parties and coffee klatches with girlfriends? Does someone you sit at the table doing cross stitch while watching TV?” All of these situations require adequate lighting.

People often gravitate towards this room for cups of tea or coffee. Friends gather for a chat. Strangers sit here with tea while you call a tow truck or kids do their homework at the table to be close to mom while she cooks.

There should be enough kitchen lighting for you to see the knife as it slices vegetables or enables a child to focus on homework done at the table. A little research will lead consumers to modern fixtures featuring straight lines and frosted white glass with a choice of metallic finish to match your overall decor. Stretch your budget to higher end styles such as crystals and ornamental glass or stick to basic pendants, but make sure the glow will show through.

Today’s styles are far from the days of bulky fixtures in amber tones that muted light quality; kitchen lighting fixtures can be works of art in their right. Just ensure these fixtures do not compete with others to create a claustrophobic effect. Each aspect of design must complement the next, whether that be tiling on floors and ceilings, paint color or furniture.

Some under counter lighting, while discreet, gives off just enough glow to lead the weary in the early hours of a dark morning or at night, when you need a cup of chamomile tea to fall asleep. They fit inside or underneath cupboards with glass doors. Use them as a gallery would its lighting to showcase works of art. In this case, your pieces might include kindergarten pottery or finger painting by precious little ones.

Remember the ceiling fan too. Not only will you want to pair the light fixture to existing style; the fan itself needs to match color and design. Explore ceiling fans made with single or cluster lighting. With today’s style options, the sky’s the limit when it comes to finding the perfect ceiling fan to suit your needs.

Whether for food preparation, presentation or even as an eating station with bar stools, islands add a stylish quality to large kitchens. Here you can spread out your work like a professional chef if the lighting is right. As an artistic addition, your island deserves good lighting that shows off modern counter top materials and lets you see what you are working on. Dangle ornate umbrella shaped lighting or modern styles with sharp lines, just as long as the glow from the fixture is sufficient.

Kitchen track lighting offers versatility along with practical application. While attractive to look at, these lighting options also allow consumers to spotlight a high-use area. Add lights or change their position and direction depending on where you need a special glow at a given time.

If you are in need of any electrical repairs or installation, call Penna Electric. Our knowledgeable, experienced staff will get your electrical work done right the first time every time.