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Special Report 06: Interviews with electricians - Electronic Edition

Special Report 06: Interviews with electricians - Electronic Edition
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Author: Mark A. Smith

[This is the Special Report 06 in Adobe Acrobat (PDF) Format. Our electronic products download immediately to your computer upon purchase.]


Today's house designs are dependent on sophisticated electronics and communication systems. But you don't want Sparky to "overcharge" you. Look in on our explorations of their craft. Eight pages, revised and updated with new reader tips, web links, and comments.

Topics Include:

  • Central vacuum installation
  • Running power to a rural site
  • Should you do your own wiring?
  • Elements of an electrical plan
  • Web links for load calculations
  • Huge savings on lighting fixtures
  • Internet suppliers
  • Use of jobsite generators

Excerpt from Report:

"...Q: What do you suggest for a good job?

A: Make sure your boxes are right, wire size is right, service sized right, meet code.

A: Did Marshall Romney home theatre. In customs, we do unit pricing off a set of plans. Rule of thumb, $2 per sq. foot on customs. Have adequate plugs and switches, recessed lighting in hallways, kitchens, eyeballs in living rooms, TV, telephone, etc..

A: People who are experienced, know the code, find out what customer desires are, and expectations and follow-up. Electrically, I do a walk through, mark it out the way that meets code and the customers wants. We exceed the minimums. I watch out for the pattern of living and movement, and place switches in best locations for customer.

A: Look at trying to make a neat panel, length of your wire extending out of your outlets. Level of your plates, horizontal and vertical positioning. Suggestions to owner on type of lighting needed in each situation. Wiring practices, compliance with code, minimizing punch list items. Be responsive to punch list items. Attitude is the same whether small or large home. We do subdivisions with same quality throughout. Code allows a 14-2 wire, we use a 12-2 or 12-3 gauge depending on the circumstance. Compare apples to apples. Scrutinize any offers you may get. We try to be transparent at the beginning We count all the elements from a cost standpoint, and in the proposal we spell it out. We do a walk through right after the framing and allow the owner to make changes there, and do an 'as-built' afterward. You will be able to see room by room. No misunderstanding. We guarantee our workmanship and materials for one year. And we service with integrity.

Sample Reader Tip Excerpts:

"Electricians are one of the most exorbitant per hour."
Joanne & Jerry C.
San Jose, CA

“I went to a lighting store and looked for fixtures. I have found the sliding scale on prices to be very fluid, it’s amazing how just about anybody can undercut the first price you get. Even an electrician told me he could easily beat the prices I get.”
Judy K.
Perrysburg, OH

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