Los Angeles Electrician Explains EV Chargers

ev charger santa monicaThe level of convenience electric vehicles offer makes them more attractive by the day. More drivers are opting for this green way of driving and reaping the benefits that include cheaper maintenance and no more gas station stops.

Joining thousands of electric car owners isn’t so hard to accomplish. What does confuse owners and drivers still looking to get an EV sometimes, is the concept of charging.

So yes, while you ditched the gas station you still have to power up your vehicle but with a convenient way known as EV charging. There are public EV chargers that you can easily find along your route or even at your workplace. However, being able to charge at home most likely at night is vital for most people.

According to our Los Angeles electricians, you have two options called level 1 and level 2 chargers. Level 1 chargers are easily found in the home, although you need a dedicated circuit for your electric car. They are slow but will get the job done as long as you have got the time.

Level 2 chargers

The most popular home charging option is the level 2 charger. If you are familiar with a 240-volt outlet, then you know what we are talking about. This charger is both faster and more efficient.

Regardless of if you are going for a level 1 or 2 chargers, it’s important to know DIY is not recommended for the installations.

Aside from the technicalities involved that require the expertise of a professional electrician who is experienced with EV chargers and installation, the installation will be inspected once completed. Also, purchasing the electric car or plug-in often comes with incentives that help cover the costs of charger installations. So why take the risk with DIY?

The costs of level 2 chargers vary but with a range from below $500 to above $1000. The cost is influenced by preference to cord length, amperage, installation types, and so on.

You want a charger that comfortably runs from its outlet or switch to your EV. Where you park your EV and where the switch will be located makes up the cord length you want to go for. A rule of thumb is to go for a length a few inches longer than your exact needs. This is because once set up you can’t make any adjustments to cord length without having to get a new set up. 16-18 foot cords are a recommended length.

Amperage for level 2 chargers are usually either 16 amps or 30 amps. 16 amps are great for plug-ins and 30 amps should be a default for future-proof reasons.

To install an EV charger, you must confirm that your home’s electrical system is up to the task. A panel upgrade might be required if your electrician discovers that the current system can’t take the extra load.

Appropriate locations to install your EV chargers are the garage and driveway. For the driveway or any outdoor EV installations, be sure to get a unit with a weatherproof rating.

Contact us at The Electric Connection for inquiries or installation services.

Installing EV Charger in Santa Monica

ev charger santa monicaAn electric car means no more gas worries but you have to fill up on power by charging your car with an EV charging station while you sleep. Public charging is available in Santa Monica but it’s hardly enough or convenient for the average driver. It’s more comforting and efficient to charge at home and charge publicly en route if needed.

Installing an EV charger in Santa Monica can be smooth and easy with the right professionals and rebates offered by the state regardless of if you live in a multi-unit dwelling (MUD), apartment, or condo. Here are some tips for installing an EV charger in Santa Monica:

  • Know what charging level works best for you
    EV home chargers leave you with two options for the installation. The first is a level 1 charge that hardly comes with any additional costs and it requires only a regular 120V outlet. This charging is slow but can be sufficient depending on other factors. The second option is a level 2 charge which requires a 240V outlet and extra costs in its overall installation. A level 2 charge is much faster than a level 1 and is the most common and ideal choice for an electric vehicle driver. To know what level works for you, you must consider factors such as the size of your battery and how many miles you drive. For example, if you drive under 50 miles in a day and also get to park your car for 10-12 hours at night, then a level 1 charger is a good option. Larger miles with less parking time to charge would work with a level 2.
  • Apply for the multi-unit dwelling EV charging rebate program
    Installing an EV charger in Santa Monica or anywhere else can be financially demanding, but with the city’s rebate program it gets easier. In a multi-unit dwelling (MUD), you can get rebates of up to $3000 from the Electric Vehicle Charging Station Rebate program. Following applications, selection for the program is carried out using factors such as the number of residents served by the charging station, nearby charging options, and the income status of the applicant which gives preferences to low-income applicants.

    Rebate programs aren’t the most cost effective solution for everyone so consult with a professional electrician to learn more and if a rebate program is right for you.

  • Select the right contractor
    A contractor for EV charger installation is a professional who should have experience with such installations. Select a good contractor and work with them to obtain a permit for the installation. You can also request for their insight in selecting the right charging equipment. There is a wide range of charging equipment such as ChargePoint Home Flex and the Siemens VersiCharge.
  • Check for electrical capacity in where you stay
    An EV charger can demand a lot. Before carrying out such an installation in your Santa Monica home confirm if there is the suitable electrical capacity for the installation. Sometimes, the panel on the property might have to be upgraded to meet with the needs of the charger.

You can reach out to us at the Electric Connection for your EV charger installation and electrical needs in Santa Monica.

Lighting 101 by Electrician in Santa Monica

If you are redesigning a room in your house, it is important you look beyond the paint color on the walls and the type of flooring in the room. You need to take a long, hard look at the lighting. It isn’t just about replacing tired, old fixtures. It is about making a room pop with the just right amount and right style of lighting. There is no one size fits all when it comes to lighting. Each space requires something a little different explains and electrician. Santa Monica homeowners who are ready to revamp their space with a new lighting look will want to call The Electric Connection to take care of the lighting transformation.

One of the most important considerations for changing up the lighting in the room is determining what the area is going to be used for. This will decide how much and what kind of light you need to make it gorgeous and functional. Using fixtures that match the décor is also an important deciding factor.

Entryways and hallways that have little to no natural light will benefit from lighting directed at the walls and ceilings. Recessed lighting with medium brightness is perfect for these areas says a Santa Monica electrician. Kitchens deserve all the lighting you can put into the space. Bright LEDS on a track lighting system are a perfect choice. You can add some pizazz by installing pendant lights over a center island.

Living rooms are typically best served with a medium to low light scheme. Use table lamps for areas where you need additional light for reading or other focused tasks. Ceiling fans with adjustable lighting are a good choice in this area suggests an electrician in Santa Monica. Have some fun picking out fixtures and then give The Electric Connection a call to have them installed.

Prevent Electric Overloads Says Santa Monica Electrician

Nearly everything you use in your home requires electricity. Wireless headphones, laptops, cell phones and all those awesome kitchen appliances can leave you heavily dependent on electricity and the outlets that provide the juice. If you are one of those people who leaves their chargers plugged in for convenience, you have probably run into the problem more often than not that you don’t have an available outlet. Using one of those handy tools that lets you transform a two-outlet switch into a four or six outlet switch, may seem like the solution, but it isn’t. An electrician in Santa Monica cautions you against using one of those devices. The team at The Electric Connection can explain more.

Think of the safety of your car. You have five seatbelts in the car, but technically, you could probably fit seven, maybe eight people in the car if you needed to. There aren’t enough seatbelts and you know it is extremely dangerous. Your outlets are the same way explains an electrician. Santa Monica residents need to avoid overloading a breaker the same way they wouldn’t overload their vehicle. It isn’t safe and you could be facing serious injury if something goes wrong.

Just because you can plug in six different appliances into a single outlet, doesn’t mean you should. You risk an overload that can overheat and spark a fire. It can also damage the appliances or devices plugged into the overloaded circuit. Instead, you can hire a Santa Monica electrician to install more outlets and upgrade your electric panel to handle your demand for power. Don’t risk causing serious damage to your home or your appliances by trying to cram too many devices into a single circuit. Give The Electric Connection a call today and let them help you be a little more safe while enjoying the convenience of plenty of outlets.

Can Lighting Explained by Santa Monica Electrician

There are always going to be trends in home building. One of the hottest trends that has been around for a while and doesn’t seem to be losing any popularity is the installation of can lighting throughout the entire home. Can lighting, also referred to as recessed lighting, has many benefits. If you are unsure what the lighting is or would like to learn more about it, a Santa Monica electrician is here to explain. The team at The Electric Connection can answer any additional questions you may have on the subject.

Can lighting gets its name from the can-shaped housing unit that slides into the ceiling. The housing is completely hidden within the ceiling. The only thing a person sees in the room is a trim piece that is flush against the ceiling. The bulb is inside the ceiling, which means you lose no headspace. This can make a room appear much larger explains an electrician in Santa Monica. Unlike standard light fixtures that only provide light in the center of the room and take up about six inches of head space, the can lights can be placed throughout the room. You can also use the more energy-efficient CFL or LED bulbs in the fixtures.

You can choose to have the lights directed at a wall to highlight a particular piece of art or aimed directly into the room. Another bonus with this type of lighting is you can choose how much lighting you want in a particular space. Can lighting is safe to use in bathrooms as well explains an electrician. Santa Monica homeowners who like the control over how much light is emitted can have a dimmer switch installed as well. There are many reasons why recessed lighting has become so popular. If you would like to upgrade your old lighting to this style, give The Electric Connection a call today.

Dangers of DIY Electrical by Santa Monica Electrician

There is a real sense of pride and satisfaction when you take on a task that is daunting and challenging and you actually pull it off. Taking on a do-it-yourself task can be fun and rewarding. You learn a lot and you get the experience of working with your hands. Sometimes, DIY projects can be great and other times, they end up being complete failures you can laugh off. However, there are some DIY jobs you should never attempt. Anything that puts your life at risk or risks the overall safety of your home is simply not worth it. Electricity is no joke. If you have a job that requires electrical wiring, it is best left to a certified electrician. Santa Monica homeowners can count on the team at The Electric Connection to take care of any electrical repairs or new installations.

Electrical repairs or installing new light fixtures may seem simple enough on the surface, but one small mistake could be extremely dangerous. It isn’t worth the risk. Always call an electrician in Santa Monica to handle the electrical side of any DIY project and you can take credit for the rest. In many cases, a DIY project that involved electricity is against county and city codes. Permits are generally required for remodels and renovations, which will need an inspection.

You want your home to be safe and don’t want to have to worry about an electrical short due to faulty wiring. This can be avoided by letting a Santa Monica electrician take care of that part of the project while you focus on picking on the new fixture or putting on the paint. Have fun with your next DIY, but always remember safety first and give The Electric Connection a call to handle any electrical work that goes with the project.

Holiday Lighting 101 by Santa Monica Electrician

Tis the season to deck the halls, the lawn and anywhere else you can add a little holiday cheer in the brightest of ways. Bright lights, tall air-filled front lawn decorations and moving figures can really make a lovely show and propel your house to the top of the best decorated list. However, all of those awesome decorations require electricity. Your Santa Monica electrician wants you to be safe and have fun this holiday season and has a few rules when it comes to decorating. The team at The Electric Connection can answer any additional questions you may have.

1. If possible, use LED light strands. They are cooler, use a fraction of the electricity and you will really love how bright the LEDs are. You get more bang for your buck.
2. Never connect more than three strands together. You will end up with flickering lights or half strands in the middle of the string that don’t light up explains an electrician in Santa Monica.
3. Use the right extension cord for the job. Only use cords made for use outside in the lawn. Consider using one of the power strips made for the outdoors to run several lights and decorations.
4. If you are finding outdoor electric outlets to be in short supply, call an electrician. Santa Monica homeowners can have more outdoor outlets installed around their lawn to make decorating a breeze and limit the amount of extension cords needed.
5. Consider putting your holiday lights and other décor on a timer. This ensures everything comes on at the right time and doesn’t inadvertently get left of all day or night.

Have a safe and fun holiday while making your house the best decorated on the block. Give The Electric Connection a call if you need some additional outlets to make your decorating task a little easier and safer.

Home Remodels with Santa Monica Electrician

Have you recently purchased a fixer upper? With all of the home renovations shows on television these days, you may be inspired to invest in a house that needs a little help. Transforming something old and damaged into something new and lovely is exciting. It can be very fulfilling to get your hands dirty and apply your creativeness to a home renovation. It doesn’t matter if you are planning on flipping the home or making it yours to love. Part of any home renovation is going to include some electrical work, which will require the services of a professional electrician. Santa Monica new property owners can rely on The Electric Connection to take care of the electrical portion of the renovation.

Redoing walls and floors is only half the project. Sometimes you may need to bring an old home into the 21st century with new, safer electrical wiring explains an electrician in Santa Monica. Once you know the wiring is safe and ready to handle the demands on the electric panel, you can move on to the good stuff. Choosing floor material, wall colors and cabinetry is exciting, but the electrical is the first big step.

In some cases, you may be removing walls, which are likely to have wiring behind the sheetrock. This will need to be moved or disconnected by a Santa Monica electrician. Part of your planning will include installing new light fixtures and having outlets installed. With the current trend of having large, flat-screen televisions mounted to the wall, it is a good idea to have an outlet placed high up on the wall. It is the little details like these that can take a home renovation from good to great. It’s all in the details. If you are ready to get started on your home renovation project, give The Electric Connection a call today.

Revamping Outdoor Lighting by Santa Monica Electrician

Fall is upon us and it is easy to worry less about the outdoors and focus more on the inside of the house. Even though the weather may be a little cooler, it is still a great time for those outdoor gatherings that carry through into the evening hours. You can ensure your house looks inviting all year with new outdoor lighting that makes your house look fresh again. Your Santa Monica electrician can help transform your old and dated outdoor lighting scheme into one that pops and makes your house look great, even in the dark. All you need to do is call The Electric Connection and schedule your appointment.

Solar lights are great, but with the shorter days of fall and winter, the lights may not be enough to last throughout the night and into the late morning. This is why electric lights are often preferred by many landscape artists. An electrician in Santa Monica can work with you and your landscaper to determine where you want the light and take care of the installation process for you. Lighting up fountains, a play area or the patio are all possibilities and allow you to enjoy the cool fall nights.

There are many things you can do with electric lights that are not possible with solar varieties. If you have a particular shade tree or row of shrubs that you want to ensure is flooded in light for either beauty reasons or to make the landscaping safer, you will want to choose electric lights installed by an electrician. Santa Monica homeowners will love the flexibility as well as the control they gain with electric lights that can be set on a timer. It doesn’t hurt to have solar lights as a backup for power outages. If you are ready to update and revamp your outdoor lighting this fall, give The Electric Connection a call today.

Space Heater Safety 101 by Santa Monica Electrician

It won’t be long before you are dealing with chilly mornings. By the middle of the day, the sun warms everything up, but the mornings can start off a little cooler than is comfortable for some. It seems a little silly to fire up the furnace to take off the chill of a small area when it is only going to be switched back to the air conditioning side later in the day. This is why space heaters can be useful. Before you pull out the space heater that was tucked away a few short months ago, your Santa Monica electrician has some tips to make sure it is in good condition and safe to use. The team at The Electric Connection is on standby to answer any more questions you may have.

1. Check the cord from where it enters the heater all the way to the plug. Look for signs of fraying or any breaks in the protective coating. Don’t use a space heater that has a frayed cord.
2. It is best to plug a space heater directly into the outlet explains an electrician. Santa Monica homeowners should avoid using extension cords if possible. If outlets are an issue, consider having an outlet installed in the area where you need the heater.
3. Keep the space heater at least three feet away from the wall, curtains and furniture.
4. Keep the heater and the cord out of any direct pathways. This can help eliminate trip hazards and the heater being knocked over and potentially starting a fire.
5. Only use heaters that are in good working condition cautions an electrician in Santa Monica. The investment into a new heater is well worth it to avoid any serious safety concerns.

If you have any more questions or would like to have a new outlet installed to make your space heater usage more convenient and safe, give The Electric Connection a call today.