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Dowdy Electric, Co. will arrive at your job on time and provide a beautiful job, Done Right the First time, with our Up Front Flat Rate pricing you will know the full cost of the job before we began.  We will install your product (fans-lights-range tops-dryer circuits) or we will provide all the materials,  no job too small or too large. Call NOW for service today  !

North:   317.255.1150

South:   317.784.9986

East:   317.862.5370

West:   317.271.4450

 

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Enjoy a Safe Start to Spring.

As the spring season officially begins, many will welcome the warmer weather by thoroughly cleaning and organizing their homes. The Electrical Safety Foundation (ESFI) recommends that homeowners inspect the safety of their homes in tandem with their spring cleaning to ensure that electrical hazards are eliminated along with dust and clutter.

The kitchen is the leading area of origin for home structure fires. As you clean your kitchen, follow these simple safety tips from ESFI to identify and correct potential hazards before someone gets hurt:
• Keep your stove and oven clean. Clean the exhaust hood and duct over the stove regularly.
• Keep the cooking area around the stove/oven clear of combustibles, such as towels, napkins, and pot holders.
• Locate all appliances away from the sink. Plug countertop appliances into ground fault circuit interrupters (GFCIs).
• Keep appliance cords away from hot surfaces like the range or toaster. Unplug the toaster and other countertop appliances when not in use.
• Make sure there is room behind the refrigerator for air to circulate.
• Vacuum refrigerator coils to eliminate dirt buildup that can reduce efficiency and create a fire hazard.
• Any electric shock from a major appliance can indicate an extremely hazardous wiring condition. Turn the power to the appliance off at the circuit breaker, and do not touch the appliance until it has been checked by a licensed, qualified electrician.
Another important area to inspect in the home is the basement, which houses two additional leading causes of home fires: heating equipment and electrical distribution systems. Keep your home safe from the bottom up by following these important basement safety tips:
• Check the label inside the door or cover of your electrical service panel to see when your electrical system was last inspected. If the date has passed or is approaching, contact a licensed, qualified electrician and schedule an inspection.
• Be sure circuit breakers and fuses are correctly labeled with their amperage and their corresponding rooms, circuits or outlets. Use correct size and current rating for breakers/fuses.
• Increase your fire protection by having a qualified, licensed electrician replace your standard circuit breakers with arc fault circuit interrupters (AFCIs).
• Have your furnace cleaned and inspected annually by a licensed, qualified professional.
• Make sure all fuel-burning equipment, such as furnaces, stoves, and fireplaces, is vented to the outside to avoid carbon monoxide poisoning.
• Check for excessive vibration or movement when the washing machine or dryer is operating, which can put stress on electrical connections.
• Make sure the area around the dryer is free of clutter, and clean the dryer lint filter after each load.
And lastly, make sure smoke detectors and carbon monoxide detectors are installed on every level of your home and outside every sleeping area. Test these alarms to ensure that they are in working order, and replace the batteries if necessary.

10 WAYS TO WINTERIZE YOUR HOME

You’ll get a season’s worth of savings and peace of mind by taking a few steps in the fall to get your home ready for cold weather.
So you’ve pulled your sweaters out of mothballs and found your mittens at the bottom of the coat closet. But what about your house — is it prepared for the cold months ahead?
1. Clean those gutters
Once the leaves fall, remove them and other debris from your home’s gutters — by hand, by scraper or spatula, and finally by a good hose rinse — so that winter’s rain and melting snow can drain. Clogged drains can form ice dams, in which water backs up, freezes and causes water to seep into the house, the Insurance Information Institute says.
As you’re hosing out your gutters, look for leaks and misaligned pipes. Also, make sure the downspouts are carrying water away from the house’s foundation, where it could cause flooding or other water damage.
2. Block those leaks
One of the best ways to winterize your home is to simply block obvious leaks around your house, both inside and out, experts say.
First, find the leaks: On a breezy day, walk around inside holding a lit incense stick to the most common drafty areas: recessed lighting, window and door frames, electrical outlets.
Then, buy door sweeps to close spaces under exterior doors, and caulk or apply tacky rope caulk to those drafty spots.
Outside, seal leaks with weather-resistant caulk. For brick areas, use masonry sealer, which will better stand up to freezing and thawing. “Even if it’s a small crack, it’s worth sealing up.
3. Insulate yourself
“Another thing that does cost a little money — but boy, you do get the money back quick — is adding insulation to the existing insulation in the attic, Regardless of the climate conditions you live in, in the (U.S.) you need a minimum of 12 inches of insulation in your attic.”
Don’t clutter your brain with R-values or measuring tape. Rule of thumb on whether you need to add insulation, if you go into the attic and you can see the ceiling joists you know you don’t have enough, because a ceiling joist is at most 10 or 11 inches.
A related tip: If you’re layering insulation atop other insulation, don’t use the kind that has “kraft face” finish (i.e., a paper backing). It acts as a vapor barrier, and therefore can cause moisture problems in the insulation.
4. Check the furnace
First, turn your furnace on now, to make sure it’s even working, before the coldest weather descends. A strong, odd, short-lasting smell is natural when firing up the furnace in the autumn; simply open windows to dissipate it. But if the smell lasts a long time, shut down the furnace and call a professional.
It’s a good idea to have furnaces cleaned and tuned annually
Throughout the winter you should change the furnace filters regularly (check them monthly). A dirty filter impedes air flow, reduces efficiency and could even cause a fire in an extreme case. Toss out the dirty fiberglass filters; reusable electrostatic or electronic filters can be washed.
5. Get your ducts in a row
According to the U.S. Department of Energy, a home with central heating can lose up to 60% of its heated air before that air reaches the vents if ductwork is not well-connected and insulated, or if it must travel through unheated spaces. That’s a huge amount of wasted money, not to mention a chilly house.
Ducts aren’t always easy to see, but you can often find them exposed in the attic, the basement and crawlspaces. Repair places where pipes are pinched, which impedes flow of heated air to the house, and fix gaps with a metal-backed tape (duct tape actually doesn’t stand up to the job over time).
Ducts also should be vacuumed once every few years, to clean out the abundant dust, animal hair and other gunk that can gather in them and cause respiratory problems.
6. Face your windows
Now, of course, is the time to take down the window screens and put up storm windows, which provide an extra layer of protection and warmth for the home. Storm windows are particularly helpful if you have old, single-pane glass windows. But if you don’t have storm windows, and your windows are leaky or drafty, they need to be updated to a more efficient window.
Of course, windows are pricey. You can purchase a kit that has plastic sheeting that’s affixed to a window’s interior with double-stick tape. A hair dryer is then used to shrink-wrap the sheeting onto the window. (It can be removed in the spring.) “It’s temporary and it’s not pretty, but it’s inexpensive (about $4 a window) and it’s extremely effective.
7. Don’t forget the chimney
Ideally, spring is the time to think about your chimney, don’t put off your chimney needs before using your fireplace, Eldridge advises. A common myth is that a chimney needs to be swept every year. Not true. A chimney should at least be inspected before use each year.
One other reminder: To keep out cold air, fireplace owners should keep their chimney’s damper closed when the fireplace isn’t in use. And for the same reason, woodstove owners should have glass doors on their stoves, and keep them closed when the stove isn’t in use.
8. Reverse that fan
Reversing your ceiling fan is a small tip that people don’t often think of. By reversing its direction from the summer operation, the fan will push warm air downward and force it to recirculate, keeping you more comfortable. (Here’s how you know the fan is ready for winter: As you look up, the blades should be turning clockwise.)
9. Wrap those pipes
A burst pipe caused by a winter freeze is a nightmare. Prevent it before Jack Frost sets his grip: Before freezing nights hit, make certain that the water to your hose bibs is shut off inside your house (via a turnoff valve), and that the lines are drained.
Next, go looking for other pipes that aren’t insulated, or that pass through unheated spaces — pipes that run through crawlspaces, basements or garages. Wrap them with pre-molded foam rubber sleeves or fiberglass insulation, available at hardware stores. If you’re really worried about a pipe freezing, you can first wrap it with heating tape, which is basically an electrical cord that emits heat.
10. Finally, check those alarms
This is a great time to check the operation — and change the batteries — on your home’s smoke detectors. Detectors should be replaced every 10 years, fire officials say. Test them — older ones in particular — with a small bit of actual smoke, and not just by pressing the “test” button. Check to see that your fire extinguisher is still where it should be, and still works.

10-Point Checklist For Fall Furnace Maintenance

As heating season approaches the Indianapolis area, it’s time to get out your fall maintenance checklist. High on your list should be a comprehensive furnace tune up. Annual furnace maintenance by a qualified HVAC professional will save you money on energy costs and extend the life of your system, as well as help keep you warmer and your family safer this heating season. Here are 10 important maintenance tasks your HVAC professional will perform:
• Check and tighten electrical and gas connections to ensure your system operates safely.
• Check operational pressures.
• Clean condenser coils.
• Measure the current and voltage on the motor.
• Check safety switches.
• Clean and lubricate all moving parts to reduce friction.
• Check your thermostat for accuracy and proper operation.
• Check and clean blower assembly.
• Clean condensate drain lines.
• Check and replace the air filter.
In addition to a professional tune up, there are some things you can do this winter to help keep your system running smoothly and safely:
• Stock up on furnace filters and change your filter monthly to ensure proper airflow and extend the life of your furnace.
• Keep the area around your furnace clean and accessible in case of an emergency.
• Change the batteries in your smoke and carbon monoxide detectors, and test them to make sure they’re working properly.
• Keep the emergency number of your gas company posted on your furnace and call immediately if you smell gas around your unit.
• Know where your emergency gas shutoff valve is, and make sure it’s easily accessible.
Taking steps to maintain your furnace will help prevent carbon monoxide leaks, prevent breakdowns and save you the cost of replacing the unit.
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Is Your HVAC Ready For Winter?

Again, winter is on its way – and getting ready sooner rather than later is always a good idea. In fact, the change of seasons is a perennial trigger for doing things that should be done on a regular basis any way to help maintain the value of the investment you make in your home. For example, is your heating, ventilating and air conditioning (HVAC) system ready for the cold weather that’s surely on the way?

Among the things to do to get ready: replace or clean all the filters in your HVAC system (this really should be done monthly). Dirty filters aren’t all that effective and they restrict free flow.

Adjust the registers on your HVAC system, recognizing that hot air rises and cool air falls; open some supply registers on the first floor and close some on the second floor. Also adjust your thermostat and humidistat for winter, and maybe even change the times of day for different temperatures if you have that option. (Don’t ever set your thermostat temperature higher than you really want just to heat up space faster on occasion; that just doesn’t happen and your furnace will simply pump out excess heat.)

Ideally, your HVAC system should be checked twice a year by professionals to ensure efficient, reliable and safe operation. They can check filters; inspect working parts such as belts, motors, and electrical switches and contacts; make sure that thermostats and humidistats are set and working properly; check gas pressures and replace or add refrigerants in accordance with EPA guidelines.
So take advantage of a routine maintenance agreement we offer to be sure that your seasonal checkups are done on schedule.

Pools and Electrical Safety

According to the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission, electrical hazards in and around swimming pools were to blame for 60 deaths and nearly 50 serious shocks over the past 13 years. The CPSC, in conjunction with the American Red Cross, has compiled the following electrical safety tips for preventing backyard fires, or any other potentially dangerous or life-threatening electrical situations that may occur.
Inspections

Before the warm weather arrives, have an electrician inspect the pool, spa or hot tub. Make sure all the equipment is in accordance with both the local codes and the National Electrical Code. Follow up with any necessary upgrades or repairs.

Locations

According to the NEC, all electrical wires and junction boxes need to be at least five feet away from the water. It is also important to know where all electrical switches and circuit breakers are located in case of an emergency.

Battery-operated devices

Having electronics around the pool can be dangerous. The CPSC recommends you use battery-operated devices around water instead of cord-connected devices.

Emergency plan

Have a detailed emergency plan posted around the pool, spa or hot tub area. This plan should outline the necessary course of action you should take if someone is suffering from an electric shock.

Weather ready

Do not swim or hang out near the water before, during or after a thunderstorm. Water and lightning are a dangerous combination.

Summer Electrical Safety Tips for Kids

summerSchool’s almost out for summer, and that means that kids are out having fun in the backyard, the local pool and parks. Parents can share a few electrical safety basics with their children to ensure a happy, healthy summer.

That safety basics checklist includes:

  • Be aware of power lines around you and always assume that wires are “live and dangerous.” Never touch an outdoor wire with any part of your body, toys or other objects.
  • Do not throw items such as gym shoes onto electric lines and equipment or try to retrieve items from around aerial power lines.
  • Fly kites and model airplanes and other toys in large open areas such as a field or a park – safely away from trees and overhead power lines. Also, do not attempt to retrieve balloons, kites or other objects that may get stuck on power lines or other electrical equipment.
  • Do not climb trees near power lines. Even if power lines are not touching the tree, they could touch during climbing when more weight is added to a branch.
  • Never climb a utility pole, or play on or around electrical equipment.
  • Never post or tie signs, hang banners or tie ribbons or balloons onto utility poles or other electrical equipment. This can be dangerous to you and endanger utility workers.
  • Do not go into an electric substation for any reason – even on a dare. Electric substations contain high-voltage equipment, which can kill you. Also, never attempt to rescue a pet that goes inside. Instead, call your local utility company.
  • Never try to rescue a family member, friend or pet that has come into contact with any electrical equipment — Call 911 immediately.
  • Keep electrical toys, appliances and tools at least 10 feet away from pools and wet surfaces.
  • Never touch any electrical toys, appliance and tools while you are wet or standing in water. Energy flows easily through water, like a puddle or a pool.

Tips on maintaining your air conditioner

ac unitIt’s almost time to get those air conditioners tuned up and ready. The hot summer months are right around the corner.

Heating and cooling a home adds up to nearly half of a homeowner’s annual energy bill – about $1,000 a year.

Here are four A/C operating tips that will help you keep your air conditioner working efficiently and cost effectively through this summer and many more to come.

 

  1. Keep it maintained: Have your system tuned up by an HVAC-system professional at the start of each cooling season. He will change the filter, but check it regularly as the cooling season      progresses. As soon as it looks dirty, change it, as a dirty filter impedes airflow and makes your air conditioner work too hard. (If you did not have a tune-up this spring, it’s not too late!)
  2. Provide enough clearance: Your air conditioner’s condenser needs plenty of  airflow to run well. Make sure it has at least 2 feet of clearance on all sides. It should also have 5 feet of open space above it. Trim trees, grass and other vegetation away from the unit.
  3. Reduce sources of indoor heat: Close the drapes to keep out sunshine that raises your indoor temperature. Pay particular attention to windows facing south or west, as they get the most sunlight.
  4. Use your A/C and appliances wisely: Keep your thermostat set as close to 78  or 80 as possible. Each degree you raise your thermostat could lower your cooling bills by as much as 5 percent. Use your ceiling and space fans to keep the air circulating

ELECTRICAL SAFETY TIPS

Electical SafetyU.S. fire departments responded to an estimated average of 44,800 reported home structure fires involving electrical failure or malfunction in 2009.

  • Avoid running extension cords across doorways or under carpets.
  • Consider having additional circuits or outlets added by a qualified electrician so you do not have to use extension cords.
  • If outlets or switches feel warm, frequent problems with blowing fuses or tripping circuits, or flickering or dimming lights, call a qualified electrician.
  • Make sure your home has ground fault circuit interrupters (GFCIs) in the kitchen bathroom(s), laundry, basement, and outdoor areas.