The 3 Differences between Commercial and Residential Electricians

If there’s something strange (or weird) with your home or building’s wiring or other electrical components, who are you going to call? Nope, you don’t call the Ghostbusters, but the – electricians! In general, an electrician is a highly-skilled tradesman who is adept at installing and repairing wiring and all the components in any electrical system, including lighting, computer networks, air conditioning and security systems etc. However, electricians differ in skill sets and working environments. Let’s look at the top 3 differences between residential and commercial electricians.

They Differ In Their Areas of Specialization

Although a commercial electrician and a residential electrician have one thing in common, which is they take care of a home or building’s wiring and other electrical components, they somehow differ in their areas of specialization.

A retail electrician is a highly-skilled professional who works for the construction, servicing, restoration and review of electrical and insulation systems of a residential building. On the other hand, commercial electricians specialize in the areas of electrical installations, safety checks and servicing in manufacturing, retail and other commercial workplaces. A retail electrician designs and schedule electrical systems which comply with industry standards and city or town electrical codes.

They Differ in Duties and Scope

A commercial electrician‘s duties and responsibilities slightly differ that of a residential electrician. For starters, the duties of commercial electricians include new construction of new equipment or repair of existing equipment, repairs of cooling and heating facilities, installation of security systems (like alarms, switches and lights), installation of cables which comply with city guidelines and codes, and handling a team of trained electricians. But, they all do these in a commercial setting like in a factory, mall, high-rise office block or warehouse.

A retail electrician‘s duties are nearly almost the same as that of commercial electricians, but they do these in a residential building like a the typical suburban house, rental apartment or town home. Their responsibilities and duties include the preparation of technical drawings and interpretation of electrical plans, ensuring the proper operation of a home’s electrical components in compliance with city guidelines, installation of new cables; wires, lighting and electrical components, maintenance and diagnosis of electrical systems, and replacement of damaged or old electrical components.

They Differ in Working Environments 

A retail electrician is either self-employed or working for a construction firm. They go to work in a residential building and work either alone, or with a team of skilled electricians. Any new electrical components and cables, as well as existing or older systems, may be installed by the residential electrician.

On the other hand, commercial electricians are inside factories, malls, office buildings or warehouse blocks (or in any other large business entity or corporation). But, just like residential electricians, their work is also very physically demanding, because sometimes need to enter small spaces, move around a lot, and spend a lot of time standing or crouching!

I hope after reading this, you’ll somehow learn to differentiate the skill sets between a residential and commercial electrician, as well as have a greater appreciation of what they do!

Time to Test Your Safety Switch

One of the essential parts of modern life is electricity, but people tend to disregard how high-risk it can also be. With this, it is a must to protect your business from electrical hazards such as electrical fires, shocks, and arc flashes. An excellent way to prevent these serious incidents is to check the condition of your safety switch, also known as RCD, (residual current device). While you can perform the testing easily, registered professional electrical services can provide you with extensive work and a detailed report.

What Is the Difference Between Safety Switch and Circuit Breaker?

Both safety switches and circuit breakers are integral components that help your place free of electrical hazards. A safety switch protects people from hazards by shutting the electricity off if it detects a problem, while a circuit breaker cuts power to protect appliances and wiring in case of a system overload or fault. They are also similar in appearance, but a safety switch comes with a test button, which is absent in a circuit breaker. A safety switch typically monitors the electricity flow through a circuit.

When there is a power point overload, the circuit breaker creates a short circuit override, and protects your computer, toaster, coffee maker, and other appliances from electrical surges, helping to prevent damage or fire. However, it cannot keep an electric shock from happening to you. This is because a safety switch is the only one that can turn the power off as soon as an electrical issue occurs, in approximately 0.03millisecond.

For example, if you touch a live conductor of an oven, electricity will run through your body as a conduit to the ground, causing your heart to stop. A well-functioning safety switch can provide you with life-saving protection by stopping the electricity in 300 milliseconds.

Where Can You Find the Safety Switch?

In general, safety switches are inside fuse boxes or switchboards, in the same location where meter readings often are. Not all safety switches look the same, depending on the manufacturer. For maximum safety and protection, install a safety switch on each circuit breaker in the property. In other words, you need a safety switch for the air conditioning, lighting, power points, pool, hot water, etc. They will be your additional line of defence against electrical failures.

Ways to Test a Safety Switch

The safety switches in your circuit boards need regular inspections every six months to make sure they function properly. It is best to call an Electrician for a comprehensive report and efficient testing.

The first thing that the electrical expert does is to locate the switchboard on your property. They will check its door hinge and clean the general area of the locking mechanism and exterior of the switchboard. Next, they will test the safety switch usually using these two processes:

  • RCD testing. This method refers to the checking of the RCD safe tripping to determine if it can quickly do its job of avoiding hazards. The RCD should be able to trip in about 30 milliseconds. This quick tripping produces only a small shock, so it is a safe process.
  • Push-button test. During ground leakage, the specialists at the electrical services will test the RCD trips to ascertain their operational status. The testing will determine if the safety switch can protect people from electric shock or electrocution, and if it can break the circuit. When the expert presses the button, the residual current device should disconnect or power off if it detects an imbalance. If your electricity takes longer to trip off than a millisecond or stays on, then you have a faulty safety switch.

Comprehensive Report

Your electricians should record all the results of their testing and recommend a proper course of action to ensure safety in your property. The report also includes information regarding the location of your safety switch and if it has failed or passed the test. You can take the best approach to keep everyone safe within your premises, based on the information you get from the test results.

The risks of electricity-related injuries and accidents are real. Installing safety switches is a must on all circuits, whether you rent or own the place. If you want to be sure that your commercial property is safe, call an electrical contracting company immediately because it is best to leave this kind of job to the experts.

3 Key Signs Your Office Needs Electrical Maintenance

Regular electrical maintenance is crucial to avoid dangerous hazards and keep safety at a high level. Besides safety, it also improves energy efficiency, thereby reducing power costs. The best way to ensure you get the benefit of electrical maintenance is to schedule regular checks. However, if you haven’t done so yet, look for signs that your office needs electrical maintenance.

To keep your office cost effective, Azz Industries, the ultimate electrical contractor offering the best electrical services in Brisbane and the surrounding area, has come up with five key signs indicating you need an electrical contractor to conducting a maintenance check.

Top 3 Signs You Need Electrical Maintenance

  1. Flickering Lights

Even though people see flickering lights as a trivial issue, when it happens constantly, it is a sign of a potential major issue. Not only will persistent flickering lights distract office staff from their tasks, but it will also lead to vision problems, headaches, and reduced energy levels. Plus, your power bills are likely to increase.

That said, consider that an independent specialist can do an inspection, preferably an electrical thermal scan, to identify the cause and any other potential electrical hazards. Luckily, Azz Industries is the number one electrical contractor offering thermal inspection so they easily and quickly get the job done.

  1. Sparks when Plugging or Unplugging Devices

The second sign of the need for electrical maintenance and an outlet check are sparks when plugging or unplugging devices. However, if this happens only from time to time – like a brief spark – it can be normal due to a rapid draw of power.

But if there are sparks every time you plug or unplug a device, you should definitely seek professional help. There’s a high chance of a serious problem, pointing to either excessive heat in your outlets – which could eventually lead to melting wire insulation and a potential fire – or water exposure that could short out the circuit.

  1. Circuit Breaker Trips Frequently

Finally, the circuit breaker might trip occasionally and you usually will just reset it. However, if it happens regularly, it may be a sign of an underlying electrical issue to address as soon as possible. Most of the time, circuit breakers trip as a result of either a circuit overload or a circuit shorted to ground.

A circuit overload can be quite complex and needs special equipment to test and identify the cause, which could lead to serious injury in case of a short circuit. The latter indicates an issue in the electrical conductors, including the wires, but the issue could also have its roots in other components. This is why you need a professional inspection specialist offering electrical services to carefully check wiring and connections and determine the cause of the problem.

The Bottom Line

The most common signs your office needs electrical maintenance include, but are not limited to, flickering lights, sparks when plugging/unplugging devices, and tripped circuit breakers. If you notice any of these or other suspicious occurrences, or you simply want to avoid hazards and ensure safety, don’t hesitate to call Azz Industries to schedule your office electrical maintenance.

 

Choosing between Halogen vs. LED Landscape Lighting

When planning and designing your outdoor areas, one of the most important things to consider is lighting. And, when it comes to landscape lighting the most important decision you should make is using LED or halogen lights. To help you make an informed decision, AZZ Industries – the number one specialist in the Electrical Industry offering electrical services throughout Brisbane – has come up with the following comparison of LED and halogen landscape lighting key categories to help your decision.

Halogen vs. LED Landscape Lighting

  1. Cost

Even though many people consider LED lighting as a better option in most categories, the truth is, halogen bulbs win in the first category – initial cost. On the other hand, even though LED lights could cost you a bit more at the beginning, they will save you money over time due to the fact that they are extremely energy efficient and don’t require frequent replacement.

  1. Energy Efficiency

As we mentioned above, LED lights are the hands-down winner regarding their energy usage. Statistics show that if you use only LED bulbs in your household, you could see your energy bills drop by as much as 80%. Halogen bulbs use more energy and most of it they give off as heat which is why they get hot and don’t last as long. On the contrary, the heat produced by LED lights is drawn away from the bulb increasing its lifespan.

  1. Colour Output

In general, landscape lighting design requires warm light which is why you may decide to use halogen or other incandescent bulbs since they produce light in a warm yellow hue. But, you shouldn’t rule out LEDs because they have improved a lot in terms of colour. Although they were just bright white in the past, modern LED lights come in more calming hues which are also suitable for landscape lighting.

  1. Longevity

This is something we’ve already mentioned, but now let’s dig a bit deeper into it. LED lights can last up to a whopping 40,000 hours. So, when you compare halogen’s 2,000 to 5,000 hours, LEDs are obviously a better option considering longevity. But, what determines the end of their lifespan? Halogen bulbs either burn out or fail whereas LEDs experience light depreciation.

  1. Maintenance

The great thing here is that both halogens and LEDs require very little maintenance. However, you may remember that we already said how halogen bulbs require more frequent replacement compared to LED lights. Depending on usage, you should replace halogens every one to two years, whereas LED bulbs should be usually replaced in 10 to 20 years. Remarkable difference, right?

  1. Warranty

The last category you should have in mind when choosing between halogen and LED landscape lighting is the warranty. Namely, halogen landscape lighting systems don’t usually come with a warranty. On the contrary, LED landscape lighting typically comes with one. To ensure you have a warranty, just ask your professional electrician, preferably one from AZZ industries, and he’ll explain everything you need to know before installation.

Now that you know everything needed about halogen and LED landscape lighting, it’s time you make the right decision and contact AZZ Industries today!

What Makes a Good Commercial Electrician?

Deciding on the best electrical services contractor can sometimes be a little confusing because there are SO many different types of electrical contractors and independent specialists who specialize in different aspects of the industry. So, before you even start searching make sure you know exactly what you need and make your decision based on your requirements.

In case you are looking for electricians offering commercial electrical services, for example, installations and maintenance, then make sure that when you search online for electrical services near me, you choose companies who specialize in commercial services – just like Azz Industries. Due to their experience and diligence in large scale electrical work such as Retail, Commercial Offices, Shopping Centres, and Strata Title Buildings – Azz Industries became Brisbane’s leading contractor for commercial and industrial electrical services some time ago.

Let’s have a closer look at what makes a good commercial electrician.

What Makes a Good Commercial Electrician?

Here’s a list of the top traits of a professional commercial electrician:

  1. Creativity

First of all, a good commercial electrician will be creative when it comes to thinking of solutions quickly.

  1. Experience

In general, having basic electrical skills isn’t enough to be a leading commercial electrician. Namely, it requires lots of time and hard work to gain the experience needed. What’s more, the truth is that only experienced electricians can be adaptable and creative in their solutions.

  1. Communication Skills

Another key trait that makes a good commercial electrician is having great communication skills since commercial constructors typically work on big projects and have to communicate effectively both with the owner who hired them and other builders or contractors working on the same site. Also, they should be able to explain their job in clear language without using too technical words so that everyone can understand what they say.

  1. Professionalism

Last but not least, when hiring or conducting business with any type of service provider, professionalism is probably one of the crucial characteristics that help you make a decision. The same goes for hiring a commercial electrician. A good electrician will always present himself professionally and complete work efficiently and neatly regardless of the project.

Even though this isn’t an exhaustive list, we hope it gives you a good idea of the traits you should look for when hiring a quality commercial electrician. And if you want for the best, just contact Azz Industries!

 

Why is Commercial electrical Maintenance Important for your Business?

In every business, electronic equipment and digital products help to keep your company operational. Failure of any of these electrical devices might render your business temporarily out of action, costing you time and money. In this article, we will go through some of the reasons why regular electrical maintenance is so important for your company.

Safety and Health

Electrical hazards are top on the dangers in the workplace list. Broken electrical devices and poor maintenance can easily lead to electric shocks, or even worse, to electrical fires, and endanger both you and your employees.

When you are doing hazard and safety inspections, it is important that you take every electrical item as a hazard itself. Make sure that each electrical item is positioned properly, with all of its components well maintained and wires correctly insulated.

In order to avoid unpleasant situations, such as electrical shocks or fires, the best solution for you is to find a good company and schedule regular electrical maintenance for your business.

Poor Energy Efficiency

When operating with defective, misfiring or old electrical devices, it can lead your company into extra costs

Preventing Major Electrical Problems

Regular electrical maintenance might just save you from much bigger electrical issues at your workplace. Luckily, you can always contact a professional company, as they can detect smaller issues and fix them before they become big, ugly and cost you a lot of time and money.

Preventing Disruptions to your Business

As a commercial property or business owner you are likely always looking to cut costs. While spending a little extra money on electrical maintenance might appear to be an unnecessary cost, it is quite the opposite. In fact, electrical maintenance services are specifically designed to save you money. If your systems undergo regular maintenance, you’ll be able to closely monitor your equipment, and stay on top of any fixes you require, and in the end, you will have fewer repair costs.

To conclude, undergoing regular commercial electrical maintenance is crucial for your business and for prolonging the lifespan of your electrical systems. We aim to save you money on repairs and replacements while simultaneously protecting your staff and yourself from hazards. So, don’t hesitate – contact the best brisbane electrical contractor – Azz Industries. Our services are guaranteed to be of the highest quality, as we only use the latest technologies. Contact us today, and schedule your regular electrical maintenance.

Converting from Halogen to LED

People all over the world are switching from halogen lighting systems to LED (light-emitting diode) technology. So, the number one specialist in the Electrical Industry offering the ultimate electrical services throughout Brisbane – AZZ Industries – has decided to illuminate us and provide reasons why you should convert from halogen to LED lighting.

Yet, let’s first have a word or two about these two different types of lighting:

Halogen Lights

Halogen lights are the traditional incandescent bulb that uses heat to produce light. Halogen bulbs last longer than the older incandescent ones, up to three times as long, which is one of their main advantages along with being cheap, compact, and bright.

However, their major disadvantage is the fact that they are extremely hot, you can even burn your skin if you touch a halogen light. Plus, they emit infrared (IR) and ultraviolet (UV) radiation.

LED Lights

LED lights do not use heat as a source for light, but use electrons to produce light. The light-emitting diode technology results in electroluminescence, not incandescence.

This lighting system is not only used for decorative purposes and house lighting but is also found in different industries, for example LEDs are used as the car’s headlights.

So, let’s have a look at the four main advantages and benefits of LED lighting systems which will definitely convince you to convert from halogen if you haven’t done so already.

  1. LEDs are Energy-Efficient

In general, LEDs use 90% less energy than halogen lights. The reason for this is that a traditional bulb uses lots of electricity to produce heat before producing light. On the contrary, once electricity passes through a LED light, it immediately produces light. And, since less electricity is needed to light a space, rather than heat a material which will then light a space, energy savings increase and so your energy bills reduce.

  1. LEDs Have a Long Lifespan

Typically, halogen light go out regularly and thus you have to replace them quite frequently. Fortunately, you won’t have to perform this annoying and boring task if you switch to a LED lighting system. The truth is, LEDs last 20 times longer when compared to halogen bulbs and that’s the main reason why electrical contractors offering professional electrical services recommend installing a LED lighting system.

  1. LEDs don’t Require Fitting Changes

Another great reason why you should opt for LED lighting is that you can replace almost every type of light fitting with a LED one. Popular light fitting options include spotlights, downlights, Edison screw, bayonet, strip lights, etc. In other words, you will save a decent amount of money by not having to do any retrofit work. If you are planning changes to your lighting or electrical systems, make sure to hire a professional team, like AZZ Industries, and just name your requirements – everything is possible with LEDs.

  1. LEDs are Eco-Friendly

Finally, as we already mentioned, LEDs use less energy which results in decreased overall energy demand. This won’t make much of a positive change to the environment if only a single household switched to LEDs. But, imagine how energy demand can reduce if we all install LED lights. Remarkably, right? Plus, another proof that LEDs are eco-friendly is the fact that they can be recycled.

Still need some convincing to switch from halogen to LED? Contact AZZ Industries and ensure you get professional information and recommendations.

Why Do You Need Preventative Maintenance?

We can all agree that it’s better to detect equipment or electrical issues and solve them before any major failures occur. Undetected problems can cause serious damage to electrical equipment which sometimes cannot be repaired. 

Luckily, you can now rest assured your business is safe by hiring the leading contractor for commercial and industrial electrical services throughout South East Queensland – Azz Industries. And, since we only use the latest technologies, our electrical services are guaranteed as one of the best.


One of those latest technologies is thermography imaging which is highly beneficial in preventative maintenance to detect temperature changes in electrical systems. So, let’s have a look at the top reasons why your business should have regular thermography inspections:

  • Detect Faulty Components

First and foremost, thermography imaging is beneficial for detecting faulty or failing components which can be detected early without affecting your business negatively. The ability to find irregularities thanks to temperature measurements really comes in handy especially with concealed equipment and no warning signs. 

  • Low Maintenance and Replacement Costs

Another great benefit of having regular thermography inspections is that your business can save lots of money on replacing failed equipment by catching the problems early and solving them without paying a fortune. In the long run, performing regular thermography imaging on your equipment will ensure longevity and fewer replacements.

  • Reduce the Risk of Fires or Injuries

This is probably the most important reason why your business should have regular thermography inspections since some issues can lead to safety hazards and, unfortunately, be lethal. For instance, if faulty breakers or loose wiring is left untreated, a fire will likely break out. Similarly, faulty equipment increases the risk that your employees suffer from an injury. Hence, make safety your priority and protect your business and staff from any electrical hazards.

  • Protect from Downtime

This is probably the worst nightmare for every business-owner – shutting down operation for days, weeks, or months, and all because of a minor operating or equipment failure. However, by having regular thermography inspections performed on your equipment, you can ensure you avoid loss of production time and keep operations running smoothly and productively.


Schedule Your Regular Thermography Inspections at Azz Industries

To conclude, regular thermography inspections are crucial for prolonging the life of your equipment, saving money on maintenance and replacements, protecting your business and staff from hazards, and avoiding downtime. Hence, don’t hesitate – get help from the best of the best electrical contractors – Azz Industries. Contact us today or request a service! We offer no less than a seamless, no-fuss, practical, and affordable experience.

 

The Most Common Dangerous Electrical Hazards

The truth is life without electricity today is impossible. We all need electricity to use our gadgets, to see at night, to cook our food and use our appliances. Hence, you’d better seek professional electrical services from AZZ Industries – the leading electrical contractor for commercial and industrial electrical services throughout Brisbane.

Being aware of potential electrical faults and taking the steps necessary to avoid electrical hazards is crucial to keep your loved ones safe. But, in order to eliminate those hazards, you have to know what some of the common most dangerous electrical hazards are.

For that reason, the experienced team at AZZ Industries have come up with the following list of the most common electrical issues that you may come across in your home. Whether you have faulty appliances or unsteady lights, make sure you check if the problem has anything to do with any of the following:

1. Faulty or Poor Wiring

First and foremost, in order to keep electrical safety standards high, high-quality wiring is essential. Otherwise, if you try to save some money and have poor wiring in your home, the risk of power surges, fireside, arc faults, and other electrical issues, immediately increases.

So, make sure to hire electrical contractors to get the job done instead of checking your skills with DIY projects. Here’s a brief list of the most common wiring issues:

  • Hot wires or cords
  • Worn extension cords
  • Pinched wire insulation
  • Cracked wire insulation
  • Improper connections
  • Broken electrical appliances
  • Damaged electrical wire

2. Electrical Circuit Overload

Second on the list of the most common electrical hazards you should be aware of is electrical circuit overloads. But, what is this exactly? Namely, all circuits are designed to handle a certain amount of electricity. Hence, if you draw more than it can handle, the electrical circuit overloads, the circuit breaker trips, and the power to the entire circuit shuts off.

Luckily, you can prevent circuit overloads by knowing the layout of your electrical system. Again, the best solution is to call electrical contractors to explain everything you need to know about the load ratings of your home electricity system. Here are the common signs to help you recognize an electrical circuit overload:

  • Breaker tripping
  • Power shuts off
  • Buzzing outlets or switches
  • Dimming lights
  • Scorched plugs or outlets
  • Appliances lack power
  • Burning smell from outlets or switches

The bottom line is, whether you’ve already experienced some of the electrical issues mentioned above or you simply want to take preventative measures to ensure safety, the best thing you can do is call AZZ Industries. We always get things done right the first time, communication is open and honest and we are overall committed to providing the highest quality electrical work in Brisbane.

What is Thermal Imaging and Why is it Important for your Business?

Thermal imaging is actually a diagnostic technique which allows us to quantify and visualize different changes in electrical equipment’s surface temperature. Over time, your electrical systems will age and experience wear and tear. The Thermal Imaging infrared camera converts heat (infrared radiation) which is emitted from an electrical equipment surface into electrical impulses that are mapped as colours and represent different temperatures.

So, let’s take a look at reasons why is it so important for your business:

Thermal image scans are important as they can easily identify various equipment flaws as well as pinpoint any hot spots which are usually invisible to the naked eye. These scans will help you reduce the chance of electrical fires, especially within switchboards, as well as discover any loose connections from overheating.

If you want to avoid any fires and discover issues before they become a severe hazard, you should definitely get a professional thermal image scan to avoid any future problems. Luckily, the professionals at Azz Industries are always here to help. They are the leading contractors for industrial and commercial electrical services based in Brisbane.

What are the main benefits of thermal image scans?

Using thermal image scans will facilitate early equipment failure detection, as well as:

  • Cost savings – Thermal imaging will definitely help you protect your business and cut costs, as no other preventive method is as efficient and cost effective as thermal image scanning
  • Minimise hazards at your workplace and reduce the possibility of fires
  • Early detection of a variety of different potential faults
  • Non-destructive scans – With thermal image scanning we can easily detect any heat related external anomalies without having to disconnect or destroy any of your equipment, as well as identify any internal equipment failure.

How often does electrical equipment need to be scanned?

As the only way to find out that there is a problem with your electrical system is failure, the answer to this question is as frequently as you can.

All electrical components heat up before they burn out, so early detection with thermal image scanning can save your business from serious problems, before they cause total system failures or even worse, fires.

The bottom line is, thermal imaging can easily detect various problems and allow you to fix them before a much bigger issue arises, which will be far more difficult for you to handle. Many insurance companies actually recommend performing regular thermal image scans, as it is recognized as one of the most efficient methods of fire prevention.

If you want to ensure a higher level of safety at your workplace and reduce the possibility of any unwanted fires, contact Azz Industries today, and make sure you get the best services in South East Queensland.