Ensure That Your Houston Indoor & Outdoor Lighting Are Up To Safety Standards

Christmas And Holiday Fire And Electrical Safety Tips

To help ensure that you and your family have a very safe as well as Merry Christmas, we want to share some very important safety tips that you need to be aware of for the holidays.

Holiday Fire Statistics

The National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) reports that:

  • 38% of house fire deaths and 30% of all house fires occur during December, January, and February.
  • Christmas, New Year’s Eve and New Year’s Day are the leading three days for candle fires in the home.
  • Lighting equipment or electrical distribution was involved 40% (two out five) Christmas tree home fires.

In 26% of all Christmas trees as well as 80% deaths, there was some sort of heat source, like electrical equipment or a candle, that was too near to the Christmas tree. Every year from 2011-2015 fire departments responded to around 840 home structure fires that started with holiday decorations, excluding Christmas trees. Whether caused by electrical equipment, an open flame, heating or cooking, during this time of the year fires are more severe and more frequent. In particular, Christmas tree fires are very damaging, causing serious injuries and fatalities per fire increasing fivefold.

In addition to fires occurring in the home, decorating injuries and falls also occur frequently during the holiday season. The Electrical Safety Foundation International (ESFI) reports:

  • An estimated 5,800 people are treated every year in hospital emergency rooms to treat injuries that they sustained from falls that involved holiday decorations.
  • Another 4,000 individuals are taken to emergency rooms to be treated for injuries that involve extension cords.

That is why we recommend that you hire a Houston outdoor lighting professional for outdoor light and Christmas displays, along with learning extension cord, ladder, and lighting safety.

Christmas Electrical And Fire Safety Tips

Before hanging your mistle and check the final names off of your Christmas list, make sure you go over the following electrical safety and holiday fire checklist so that all of your family members, guests, and home are kept safe:

  • Check your extension cords, electrical decorations, lights, switches and outlets for directions on how to use them properly. Never use any frayed or damaged electrical devices or ones showing exposed wiring. Get rid of any damaged or worn electrical equipment. Look for an electrical device recycling program at your local home improvement stores.
  • Whenever you are buying electrical devices, make sure to check to see if the device has been tested by an independent testing laboratory, like Canadian Standards Association (CSA), Intertek (ETL), or Underwriters Laboratory (UL).
  • If you notice any outlets or switches smelling strange or that feel warm when you touch them, call an electrician immediately and don’t use them. Shut the power off at the breaker box to that circuit until an experienced electrician has inspected it.
  • With incandescent lights, don’t every connect over 3 strings together. Make sure to follow the instructions from the manufacturer at all times, and don’t ever connect more strings of lights together than are stated on the package.
  • Don’t attach several extension cords together.

Keep in mind that extension cords are just temporary solutions. So call a licensed electrician if you need to have more outlets.

  • Before you go to sleep or leave home, turn your Christmas tree lights as well as other electrical decorations and blow out all of your candles.
  • Every 30 days, test your ground fault circuit interrupters (GFCIs) and arc fault circuit interrupters (AFCIs). All outdoor outlets need to be equipped with GFCI protection.
  • Make sure you are very careful whenever you are around power lines and learn basic ladder safety. Before climbing, always look up first, and stay 10 feet away at least from power lines. If you have trees around power lines that need to be trimmed, contact your local utility company (upon rest they should be able to come out and trim your tree).
  • Avoid overloading your circuits. Make sure your Christmas lights are not tripping the breaker. Make sure you know how to replace blown fuses and reset your breaker safely. If the fuse keeps blowing or the breaker keeps tripping, call a licensed electrician immediately.
  • Keep all decorations and items that could potentially burn 3 feet away at least from all heating sources and open flames, like cooking equipment, fireplaces, and space heaters.
  • If you have a real Christmas tree, make sure to check the level of water every day and water the tree as needed.
  • Never use electricity close to water.
  • Don’t sleep with electronic equipment such as cell phones underneath your pillow. Don’t ever leave space heaters, candles or fireplaces on when one is there.
  • Never run wires or cords underneath furniture, rugs, carpets, or through doors and windows. Don’t nail or staple cords, lights or any other types of electrical equipment.
  • Every 30 days, test your carbon monoxide (CO) and smoke detectors. Install CO and smoke detectors on each level of your house and outside of every sleeping area. Replace the batteries if your alarm starts to make chirping sounds.

Some carbon monoxide is produced by all fuel-burning processes. In large amounts, it can even be fatal. Never grill indoors! It is estimated by the Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) that around emergency room-treated injuries due and 20 deaths due to carbon monoxide (CO) poisoning result from using a charcoal grill.

Don’t ever attempt to do electrical work yourself. An experienced and licensed electrician should always be hired to do electrical work.

For more information, contact us or call Robert Huff Illumination & Outdoor Lighting today!

Robert Huff Outdoor Lighting Addressing Home Electrical Safety

Electrical Safety Tips to Consider for Your Home

When you are looking to change up the electrical systems in your home, you may think that you can and should just dive right in and work on it yourself. While you may be fully capable of doing most construction work yourself, elec trical systems can be complicated and dangerous if you are not an expert.

Before you jump right in and start changing out indoor or outdoor lighting in Houston or trying to rewire your entire project yourself, you should get to know a few basic electrical safety tips to help you out in the process. Then you can be sure that you are as safe as possible whether you decide to do the work yourself or hire someone to do it for you.

Understand Different Types of Outlets

Whether you are looking to install a new outlet, replace current ones, or you just happened to notice that you have a lot of things plugged into a single outlet, it can be helpful to understand the different types of outlets that you may find in your home.

If you have an older home, you may have noticed that many of your electrical outlets, for example, only have two slots for prongs rather than three. These are known as ungrounded electrical outlets and can be quite dangerous.

Grounding an electrical outlet means to give it a safe way to return to the ground in the event of an overloaded circuit or power surge. Essentially, it is a protective barrier that can prevent fires, shock, and damage to the appliances or other items plugged into your outlet.

These older two-prong outlets lack that grounding. It is not enough to just plug in an adapter to these outlets. You need to replace them with grounded three-prong outlets, which requires rewiring in your home as the grounding element must be wired as well.

Label All of Your Circuit Breakers

On a dear day, when there will be little chance of a lightning strike or other power surge, you may want to take the time to get to know your home’s circuit breaker. The circuit breaker is a box of switches usually found in the basement or utility room of your home.

It is the central hub inside of your home for your electrical system, and each switch is for specific appliances or areas of your home. If your circuit breaker is not already labeled or the labeling is unclear, it is time to add labels to your circuit breaker box. Turn on the lights and, if possible, appliances in your home.

You can have a family member help you find which area of the house turns off as you flip each breaker (or you can go around the house and look for yourself). Then, label each one with the appropriate label (i.e., living room, master bedroom, etc.).

Knowing which area of the house is attached to each circuit breaker can help you when you do electrical work throughout your home. To rewire a lighting fixture or change outlets, you will need to shut off the electrical current that goes to that area of your home to avoid shock, fire, and injuries.

Having those circuits labeled will make it easier to remain safe no matter what electrical projects you work on throughout your entire home.

Now that you know a few key safety tips to utilize when you are doing electrical work throughout your house, you can be sure that you are doing everything in your power to remain as safe and injury-free as possible. Even if you have a professional come to help you with your electrical work or outdoor lighting, these tips can help keep them safe as well.

Call or contact us today to start your project! Visit our blog for more lighting tips!

The History On Christmas Lights By Robert Huff Illumination

An Introduction to the History of Christmas Tree Lights

Have you ever wondered about the history of Christmas lights? You probably understand that electricity was not around at the birth of Jesus; so, when did the populace begin associating electrical lights with the birth of the Savior?

Christmas Lights Began with Fire

Christmas lights, also known as fairy lights, are used around the world in Christmas displays and decoration during the holiday season. The tradition started when Christmas trees were lit using candles. The light from these candles was to symbolize Christ as the “light of the world.”

Early Germans (1500 to 1800) were the first people to bring Christmas trees indoor and decorate them with candles. However, because the candles used to light the Christmas trees posed a fire hazard, Christmas trees were not brought into the home until a couple of days before Christmas and immediately disposed of following the holidays. The Germans attached the candles to the Christmas tree using either melted wax or pins.

The danger associated with using candles was so great that Christians would keep constant watch and have buckets of water or sand on hand to douse the tree should a fire occur. Additionally, the candles were only allowed to burn 15 to 30 minutes before they were extinguished.

Additionally, Christians placed candles in their windows to let passersby know that a Christian resided in the home. These candles were an invitation for other Christians to enter the home and worship with them. Finally, Yule Logs were used in Germany as early as 1184.

Early Christmas celebration often used Yule Logs, Christmas trees lit with candles and candle in the windows; however, light has played an important role in Winter festivals even before the birth of Jesus.

During the winter solstice, fire and light were used. Lighting fires and candles during the darkest day of the year not only provided warmth but was also thought to encourage warmth and light to return from the Sun.

The Invention of Modern Christmas Lights

Thomas Edison was an inventor, showman, and businessman. He would entertain investors and businessmen on the first floor of the Menlo Park Laboratory with his phonograph concerts. Additionally, Thomas Edison was the first person to ever use electric Christmas lights during the holidays.

Edison kept an incandescent light bulb burning for thirteen and a half hours in 1879. Later the same year, he was able to invent bulbs that continued to burn brightly for more than forty hours.

By the Christmas holiday of 1880, Edison hung the first electric Christmas lights in his home and around the Menlo Park Laboratory. According to an article in the New York Times on December 21, 1880, Edison hosted a private exhibition for approximately forty gentlemen, including those in the New York City government, to explain the principles behind his electric lights and showcase his display.

While the purpose of the private exhibition was about business and replacing the city’s current gas lights with new electric one, many reported that they were impressed that the glass globes were shiny and clean. The 800 lights used was a sight to behold, according to attendees.

Many have debated whether Edison’s original intent was to associate his electric lights with Christmas; however, the timing of the introduction of these strings of electric lights made people associate them with Christmastime.

At the end of his demonstration, he held a private phonograph concert and a meal featuring roasted turkey, duck, ham and chicken salad.

It wasn’t long until Edward H. Johnson, Edison’s partner, used these electrical lights to eliminate his own Christmas tree. Eighty red, white and blue lights were hand-wired and strung on to his Christmas tree. Mr. Johnson’s illuminated Christmas tree was visible through the windows in his home and crowds would gather outside to witness this electrical engineering feat.

Nowadays, Christmas tree lights are used to illuminate homes, windows, villages and Christmas trees around the world. In Texas, Houston Christmas lighting is one of the most important things. Those bright, twinkling lights are found throughout the city both inside the homes and outdoors, signaling the beginning of the holiday season.

For more lighting tips, tricks, and trends call or contact Robert Huff Illumination & Outdoor Lighting today!

The Proper Lights To Use This Christmas In Houston

Choosing The Right Outdoor Lights For Christmas

Christmas is fast approaching. Most people start celebrating the holiday season shortly after Thanksgiving, meaning that now is the perfect time to start hanging decorations. One of the best parts of celebrating Christmas is coming up with a fabulous display of lights on the outside of your house.

If you are looking for the highest quality Christmas lights currently available, consider reaching out to Robert Huff Illumination. Because we only employ the most skilled lighting experts, we are able to create some truly dazzling light displays for the holidays. We have spent a lot of time figuring out which lighting choices are the best for Christmas and are more than happy to share that information with you. New technology is constantly being introduced to the field of lighting. Because of that, we are going to focus primarily on the basic types of lighting rather than on any specific brands.

The Ideal Outdoor Lights For Christmas Outdoor Lighting Houston

LED Lighting Is A Great Choice

When it comes to just about any type of lighting, LED is the way to go. Not only are LED bulbs extremely energy-efficient but they also last for a long time. You can string together multiple strings of light without having to worry about overloading the circuit breaker. They also come in just about every color of the rainbow, meaning that you can create whatever type of lighting display you prefer. If you want, you can even add flashing lights to really draw attention to your home.

The only drawback to LED lights is that they are a little bit more expensive than standard incandescent lights. However, when you consider how much longer they last and how much energy they can save, they are actually a really good investment even with the higher price tag.

In terms of efficiency, there is no comparison with other types of Christmas lights. They also last far longer than other lights, meaning that you can get a lot more use out of them for your investment. Although we have a lot of different types of LED lights available, some of the most popular that we carry are the wide-angle conical lights. These LED Christmas lights are truly beautiful to look at thanks to their ability to refract the light.

In the past, one of the biggest complaints that people had about LED lights was that the color of the light was too cool. Today, however, LED light manufacturers have found a way to create lights that have the same warmth and richness as traditional Christmas lights. You can choose just about any color temperature that you want when you use LED lights.

Consider purchasing Energy Star rated lights that also carry Underwriters Laboratory (UL) labels. Underwriters laboratory independently tests products that use electricity to make sure that they are safe to use. It is extremely important to only buy electrical products that have been tested by this agency or one like it.

The Top Reasons To Choose LED Christmas Lights in Houston

  • Durable and capable of standing up to the weather.
  • Long-lasting.
  • Compared to incandescent bulbs, LED lights are as much as 90% more efficient.

Rectified LED Lights

When choosing LED lights, you may want to consider buying rectified lights. Also known as full-wave lights, these high-quality lights won’t flicker like some cheaper sets do. They flicker at a rate of 120 Hz per second, which is faster than the human brain can register. Lower quality lights, on the other hand, flicker at a rate of about 60 Hz per second, which can sometimes be visible to the human eye. Choosing higher-quality rectified LED lights can eliminate any problems with flickering. Both types of lighting are extremely energy-efficient. The primary difference is that rectified LED lights don’t appear to flicker, making them a good choice for your holiday lighting needs.

Incandescent Lights For Christmas

Although incandescent Christmas lights were popular in the past, more and more people are moving over to LED bulbs, simply because incandescent bulbs aren’t as efficient and don’t last as long. Instead of wasting energy using traditional incandescent bulbs, you may want to consider using highly-efficient LED bulbs. This can cut your energy usage, saving you money on your power bills. It can also allow you to add multiple strings of lights to a single outlet without having to worry about tripping the breaker.

If you decide to have incandescent Christmas lights installed on your property, make sure that you ask the company that installs them about the steps that they take to maintain them. These bulbs are more likely to burn out during the holiday season, meaning that they may require ongoing upkeep and maintenance.

Call today or contact Robert Huff Illumination for more information on our outdoor lighting solutions.

Prepare Your Outdoor Patio With Professional Houston Outdoor Lighting

5 Tips To Help Get Your Patio Ready For Parties Including The Outdoor Lighting

Everybody these days is more focused on staying indoors due to all of the many comforts that are provided, from flat-screen TVs to video games, high-tech computers and much more. We spend so much of our attention on creating the perfect environment inside of our home, that we have a tendency to spend less time outdoors, especially kids. However, with some creative lighting design, a comfortable seating area, and a few decorations, an outdoor lighting Houston TX specialist can help make your outdoor living area be as comfortable and as inviting as the interior of your home.

Landscape Lighting in Houston

Your patio is an excellent place to start when it comes to transforming the outdoor living area. Having a well-lit and well-designed patio can help to inspire your entire family to want to spend more time in nature to breathe in all of that fresh air, benefit from the sun, and enjoy better health and beautiful trees swaying in the wind. Also, having a party-ready patio helps to encourage more social interactions and entertaining with neighbors, family, and friends. Just think of all of the fun activities you will be able to enjoy when you have the right patio ambiance: camping in the backyard, enjoying a nice glass of wine while reading, playing board games, evening barbecues.

Our professional lights installers are aware of the power provided by outdoor lighting along with all of the different options that are available. For example, battery-operated patio lights are perfect for areas that don’t have power sources. They are energy-efficient, easy to install, and may be placed in different areas throughout your patio area to provide more illumination. When you hang patio string lights overhead, it creates a cozy and charming environment, by wrapping them around trees and deck rails. Energy-efficient LED lights are best used for stairs and pathways, to increase visibility and safety at night.

Create Or Buy An Outdoor Bar

Having an outdoor bar on your patio is practical and also decorative. You can easily host intimate gatherings or dinner parties without needing to back inside each time someone’s drink needs to be refilled, which allows you to participate fully in your party without needing to sacrifice any of your great hosting skills. There are different bars to choose from including a wicker cart-like bar, contemporary polyethylene bar or port one that can be moved from one area to another. There are some patio bars that have drawers included for storing extras such as accessories and napkins or even serving dishes.

Fire Pit For Providing A Warm Glow

One very cozy addition that you can add to your patio area is a fire pit. Just think of your skin being caressed by the warmth of a fire on a crisp, cool evening.Just the flickering sound can help you relax at night with a companion. It isn’t very complicated or time-consuming to build a fire pit. You can use brick, concrete blocks or stones. A fence post sized hole of around 3 feet deep will need to be dug and then filled in with gravel. To ward off fumes, dry-stack the stones rather than using adhesives.

Use More Greenery

You might be surrounded by greenery, after all, we are discussing the outdoor. But you still might want to think about adding foliage to your actual patios such as colorful vines, flowers, and potted plants. There can even be wall plots adorning the walls of your home that surrounding the patio or aromatic greenery can be hung to provide the entire area with more depth. When greenery is added to your patio is provides more privacy, to leverage small trees or shrubs to block the view of your neighbor’s house. Just adding a few plants really can go a very long way towards creating the ideal retreat for your entire family.

Revive Your Outdoor Furniture

We recommend that you give your old furniture new life. It tends to take a real beating from the sun and rain. From rust and discoloration to nicks and scratches, there is plenty to get cleaned up. Lounge chairs might have ripped mesh or loose screws that need to be repaired.

Call us now or contact us today for more information regarding starting or finishing a new or existing outdoor lighting project of yours!

Outdoor Landscaping & Lighting Trends In 2017

What’s New In Landscaping? 2017 Trends To Watch

A lot happened in landscaping this year; in particular, there was a trend toward green. When most people think about the upkeep of their yard, they don’t necessarily think in terms of trends. However, flowers, trees, and other greenery can certainly be trendy; consider everything that must happen in order for landscaping to flourish. The soil must be healthy, for example. There has to be an appropriate amount of sunlight for the plants in the yard to grow as well. However, keep in mind that there is a lot that encompasses landscaping. Landscaping isn’t just flowers, plants and trees; it is the whole area that you are working with. That means that pathways are a part of landscaping. So is decor and furniture. Finally, don’t forget about outdoor lighting; Houston landscape lighting services are a huge part of the process as well.

Just one year ago, landscaping was all about color. If you took the time to look at lawns in your area, you may have noticed a variety of color interspersed in both the front and back yards. Things have gone in a different direction in 2017, and green is now the dominant color. However, because there are many shades of green, there is still quite a variety to see!

Natural is all the rage these days as well. Before this, there was a minimalist focus. That trend toward modernism is a thing of the past, however. Now, it is not unusual to see free-form patios and a fluidity in design. One difference we’ve personally seen is that there is a lot more wood when we go to do lighting installations.

Nature is the focus everywhere, including in the decor, the plants themselves, and more. There is also a focus on the environment, as landscapers try and plant foliage that is native to the region.

If you are considering installing outdoor lighting, pick an energy efficient option. Not only is it good for the environment, but it is less expensive for you in the long run. In particular, if you have a commercial property, you could save a bundle. There is a lot of space to work with, which is why it is important to be conscious of how much energy you are using. For example, if you own a strip mall or a health care center, you could save a lot of money if you pick LED lights for your outdoor areas. And, regardless of the weather outside, your property will always be aglow and will always look its best!

Outdoor lighting in Houston is a crucial part of any landscaping project. Not only is it aesthetically pleasing, but it also serves an important purpose. Lighting helps you to see better and therefore stay safer, particularly when it is very dark outside. We can help with any lighting project, regardless of the scale. We work closely with you to ensure that you get what you want. We know how to make the process as painless for you as possible, even when there are additional challenges that present themselves along the way.

Get in touch with us or call Robert Huff Illumination & Outdoor Lighting today and let us know how we can help you going forward! We are happy to talk about your options with you.

Setting Up An Outdoor Living Space With Houston Outdoor Lighting: Tips For Success

Why Outdoor Lighting In Houston Is A Necessity For Your Outdoor Living Space

When you set up an outdoor area, you extend the living space of your home. This is particularly beneficial if you have a small house or you just don’t have enough room to store all of your things. When you create a purposeful area outside of your building, there is no limit to what you can do. You can set up a place to go when you are feeling stressed. You can set up a place to entertain others. Keep in mind that outdoor areas generally improve your curb appeal, so if you plan to sell in the future, you’ve got a feature that will be attractive to buyers. Just think of it; you could have your own place to do yoga, become one with nature or even just read.

If your family includes kids, you definitely need an outdoor living space. This area will give them a place to imagine, a place to run and jump and a place to enjoy nature. You can put up a play structure if you want. A tree house is a possibility as well. And, of course, if you think you will be outside in the evenings, it is a good idea to utilize Houston outdoor lighting services by getting them done correctly. Lights add visibility, which means it will be safer to play outside at dusk. Ultimately, an outdoor living area can help you relax and enjoy life. It also comes in handy when you need to sell your home.

We have worked in the Houston area for several years, and we enjoy lighting up the night for our customers. We’ve installed path lights, pool lights, and accent lights, and we feel confident that we can turn your outdoor living space into something amazing. Based on the work we’ve done, we’ve come up with several tips to help you create the outdoor living space of your dreams.

1. Come Up With A Design First

Before you get started on anything, make your design. You don’t want to dig up part of the yard without having a clear plan for what you want to do going forward. As light installers, we always design a plan first and present it to our clients. We then discuss and revise as necessary, making sure that we adhere to their vision of what they want from the project.

Robert Huff Outdoor Lighting | Residential Outdoor Lighting Houston2. Set A Goal

The size of your house and the size of your yard doesn’t matter. What does matter is that you have a goal and an idea of what you want to see happen in your space. Lighting projects are all different. That’s because the homes and properties are all different as well. You never know what you might run into while on a job. Sometimes, we may need to bring in other professionals to help with your lighting project, like an engineer or an architect. This is done to ensure that you get the best outdoor space possible.

3. Go Green

Eco-friendly lighting is always the best option. You help the planet and you help your wallet as well when you choose to go green. We have LED lighting options that conserve energy and that won’t break the bank. There are even a variety of color options to choose from, so you don’t have to stick with the normal blue, green and red if you don’t want to.

LED lights are useful in a variety of ways. They can set a mood. They can light up an area or simply mark a walkway. They conserve energy and there are so many fixtures that you can choose from as well. Talk to your Houston outdoor lighting services professional and find out what you can do with your space.

4. Get Creative With Seating

You don’t have to keep everything uniform in your outdoor space. Why not set up a few metallic stools and then add some wooden benches as well? Don’t forget your children, either; there is plenty to choose from in the way of kid’s outdoor seating. Get creative and express your personality. Also think about how and who will use the space. You may enjoy lounging in a hammock, for example, while your spouse might prefer a bench. The only caveat here is to make sure that you don’t include too many patterns. In addition, have an overall theme that you can build around.

5. Have A Focal Point

Outdoor living areas should have a focal point. You can incorporate any number of decorative elements, as long as there is a focal point that the eye is drawn to.

Call us now or contact Robert Huff Illumination & Outdoor Lighting today for more information regarding the services we provide!

Houston Commercial Outdoor Lighting Done Right With LED Lighting

What Can Outdoor LED Lights Do for Your Commercial Property?

There are many decisions to make when it comes to landscaping and this is also true of the lighting. One option that you would certainly want to consider, however, is using LED lights. Not only are they environmentally friendly, they cut costs because of their energy efficiency. For those that own a business, staying within a budget is of prime concern and using LED lights is certainly going to push the needle in the right direction. The savings can be used in many other areas of your business, including marketing.

We are going to talk about some of the benefits of using LED lights but before we do, it’s important to know about the energy savings. You may see up to an 80% reduction in your electricity usage when using LED lights because the bulbs are more efficient. That is one of the reasons why it is recommended that all of your outdoor commercial lighting uses LED lights.

How much longer will they last? A typical incandescent lightbulb will last approximately 1000 hours but LED lights may last anywhere from 30,000 up to 50,000 hours. According to some sources, that number may be much higher and could be upwards of 100,000 hours. Another benefit of having these long-lasting bulbs on your commercial property is the fact that it reduces maintenance because they don’t need to be replaced as frequently.

Most people don’t know what makes LED (light emitting diodes) lights unique in comparison to an incandescent bulb. An LED light is a semiconductor device and when you pass electrical current through it, it creates the light that you see. There really is no comparison, because LED lights will last longer, run more efficiently and are a much better choice than a regular bulb. You even have differences in color, with the primary choices being red, blue and green. Did you realize that there isn’t actually a white LED light? When you see a white LED, it is because of a mixture of colors and phosphor material.

One of the downfalls of LED lights is that they aren’t ideal for lighting up an entrance or other areas that need a broad light. They shine in one direction, so that does make them ideal for lighting up a sign or using in landscaping. It is that unidirectional effect of an LED light that helps to make them more efficient. An incandescent bulb throws light in every direction, using much more energy as a result.

LED lights can be found in many different industries. You can find them in your home when you open your refrigerator or when you use a camera flash. They can also be seen in many areas throughout your local area, including traffic signals, aviation lighting and headlamps in your car.

Incandescent bulbs will produce heat when they produce light. When you use an LED fault, on the other hand, there is very little heat loss and they only work when they’re cool enough. They are designed specifically for this type of efficiency.

If you’re considering installing LED lights on your commercial property, it is always a good idea to contact the best outdoor lighting company Houston TX has to offer. They will ensure that the LED lights are not only well-suited for the task but are also compliant with any standards that may be involved in your industry. In addition, you can tell them what you want to have as an end result and they will take your vision and bring it to life. It doesn’t matter if you want to light up the walkway, advertise your sign on the building or shine some light up through the trees for beauty, they will make it a reality.

All types of businesses around the world are now making use of outdoor commercial LED lighting. When you use it at your place of business, it allows your advertising on a property to work for you 24 hours a day. This can be a real benefit because it gives you marketing without having to put extra money out of your pocket. Of course, you would want everything to be designed appropriately for your business and that is another reason why you should have professional designers and installers for your landscape lighting.

Along with using your property for advertising, you can also improve your curb appeal and brand your business using LED lights. They come in many different shapes, sizes, and types including different colors, mini lights and even specialty lighting that will really help to make your landscaping pop. There are even some commercial options available that are very low voltage and those with a strobe effect that will really make heads turn.

When you use a professional landscape company to design and install the lights, there is another benefit that you should keep in mind. Since those companies often work directly with the distributor, they can get you a much better price than what you would pay directly. This savings is passed on to you and can be recirculated in your business for a variety of purposes.

In addition, you don’t want to have your business down and out while the landscaping is taking place. Using the best outdoor lighting company Houston TX has to offer can get the job done quickly so that you can be backed up and running without a hitch. They will even respect the nearby landscaping so that they don’t disturb anything that you may have worked hard to achieve.

It’s time to consider LED lighting for your commercial space. Contact us or call Robert Huff Illumination for more information as to how you can use LED lights to improve your property and your business.

How To Protect Your Outdoor Lighting From Power Surges

Protecting Your Home And Your Outdoor Lights From Surges

Here in Texas, the weather is always unpredictable and often very intense. Some days there are severe lightning storms, other days there is large hail, and some days there are winds that surpass 100 MPH. Unfortunately, none of these conditions are ideal for outdoor lighting fixtures. The weather happens to be responsible for much of the damage they incur.

Understanding The Electrical Surge

Robert Huff Outdoor Lighting | Protect Your Outdoor Lighting From Houston WeatherAn electrical surge occurs when there is a large spike in voltage that happens very quickly. These surges are actually happening around us all of the time. Whenever you enter a room and turn on the light there is a sudden electrical surge in your home’s system. Such small surges are extremely common and nothing to worry about. It’s how the circuits are designed to work and there is no danger to your wiring or to your lights. That being said, over a long period of time, these constant surges can lead to the degradation of equipment.

There are certain electrical surges that should worry you. These are the large surges that are very strong and often originate outside of the house. They may come from a lightning storm or a downed power line. These surges are so sudden and powerful that they could fry every electronic that is connected to the same electrical circuit.

You may have heard of homeowners who unplug their electronics during storms. They do so to avoid these large surges. However, that is not their only option. An alternative is to use a powerful surge protector.

Protecting Your Home And Outdoor Lights

You don’t want to go outside and unhook your outdoor lights every time there is a storm. Instead, you want to rely on a powerful surge protector to protect your lights as well as the rest of your electronics. Your two options are whole-house surge protectors and plug-in surge protectors. Let’s consider each of these individually.

1. Whole-House Surge Protectors.

These offer the best possible protection for your electrical devices. As the name implies, they protect everything that is connected to your home’s electrical circuit. That includes lights, electronics, fans, oven, and any other appliances.

A whole-house surge protector must be installed at the circuit breaker by a professional outdoor lighting company in Houston. They rely on metal oxide varistors (MOVs) to lead the spike in voltage away from the home’s circuit and into the ground. These surge protectors will eventually degrade over time. It’s important that you have them regularly inspected and maintained by a professional. They can typically handle several severe lightning storms with large surges before needing to be replaced.

2. Plug-In Protectors.

A plug-in, or point-of-use, surge protector, on the other hand, can usually only handle a single large surge before they require some maintenance or replacement parts. They are great for protecting a single device or even a group of appliances in the same general area but aren’t efficient enough for the entire home. Furthermore, they can’t really protect outdoor lighting unless it has a plug-in that can connect to the surge protector.

Protect Your Outdoor Lights.

Protecting your outdoor lights from serious surges can save you a lot of money over the years. This is especially true in Texas, where the storms can be extremely severe. Your best option is to utilize an MOV surge protector installed by a professional outdoor lighting company in Houston. Of course, even that won’t protect your lights from a direct lightning strike. Direct strikes aside, surge protectors from Robert Huff Illumination & Outdoor Lightning can protect your outdoor lights from the largest of surges.

Call now or contact Robert Huff Illumination for more information regarding our outdoor lighting services!

Most Common Causes Of Circuit Breaker Problems

Learn Frequent Causes Of Circuit Breaker Trips, Short Circuits, And Overloads

Your fuse box and/or circuit breaker is a critical component of your larger electrical system. It gives your electrical devices and wiring protection from prospective damage or excessive current that might trigger a fire to start.

The main function of your fuse box and circuit breaker is protecting your electrical system from things like damage and fires by first shutting off any current when there is a short circuit or an overload. Without a circuit breaker, unlimited amounts or levels of electricity might flow into your house and start a fire. A tripped breaker or a blown fuse often seem like a nuisance, but it’s still much better than having irreparable damage to costly appliances and electronics, or worse yet, a fire in your home.

Any fuse that cuts off power has to get replaced. However, a circuit breaker can just be reset. Learn what steps are necessary to replace any tripped circuit breaker or replace blown fuses.

Do your breakers trip very often? Learn three of the most common causes behind tripping circuit breakers, as well as what you might do about it.

Just Why Do Your Circuit Breakers Get Tripped?

There are two main reasons why a circuit breaker trips. The first is an overloaded circuit, which is just too much power. The second is a short circuit, which is when the electricity goes down an incorrect pathway. The third reason is often aging circuit breakers that have to get replaced.

Robert Huff Outdoor Lighting | Outdoor Lighting Preservation in Houston TexasReason For Overloaded Circuit:

When any breaker trips, it’s usually a result of one overloaded circuit. Each of your electrical panel’s circuits was designed so they could handle specific amounts of power or electricity. That’s typically 15-amp circuits. Some areas of your home might need to actually handle larger loads. That’s often rooms like your laundry, your kitchen, or bathrooms. Those typically have 20-amp circuits instead. Large appliances might also get dedicated circuits, like water heaters or HVAC systems. Those are often served by 30 or even 50-amp circuits.

All these various circuits have limits, which are measured in amps. If the demand for power exceeds the level or amount of electricity which a breaker can handle safely, then it detects a discrepancy and trips the breaker prior to there being a hazard of overheating or even fire.

You can easily identify the maximum current rating for every circuit, just be looking at your breaker. Each handle should have the maximum amperage written on it.

When you happen to overload any circuit, then it means you’re trying to push an excess of power through a single circuit. That often happens if you’re running a pair or more of big energy-consumers simultaneously. That could be a vacuum and a space heater, a microwave and a television, or a toaster with a window air conditioning unit.

Given that most circuits are built for 15 amps, asking for 20 is going to trip your breaker so you don’t have overheating or a fire hazard.

How you can solve this issue:

If you happen to be overloading any circuit, there is a reason behind it. If you want to keep it from occurring again, then plug one of your biggest energy consumers into one of the other circuits. You might also just stop using one device. In winter, circuits often get overloaded by space heaters. If there are times where you are warm enough, consider unplugging your space heater for a short while.

Older and/or damaged appliances are also potential causes, so it’s critical that you do rudimentary maintenance. It’s a good idea to have an annual electrical safety inspection to make sure that all your installed hardware is still in robust condition. If your home has exterior lights or outlets, use a Houston outdoor lighting professional for your inspection to be sure about everything.

Short Circuit:

Can you think back to science classes in elementary school? You might just remember that closed circuits let currents flow and that open circuits shut the flow off. A short circuit, alternatively, happens when an unintended and direct connection between a pair of points occurs. Electric current always takes a path of least resistance, so a short circuit is most likely going to happen given that electricity is inherently ‘lazy.’

Any short circuit is going to indicate a black or ‘hot’ wire has started touching another wire, which is either another hot wire or a ‘white’ neutral wire. Another scenario involves a hot wire becoming grounded, which might cause the breaker to then trip.

Warning: When any hot wire interacts with any other wire inside your electrical system, then an excess of current gets generated. That creates an abundance of heat and can trigger overheating, circuit damage, and even possibly a fire. Since there’s nothing there to absorb that electricity, any heat buildup is going to happen quickly. That’s just one of many reasons it’s critical to have circuit interrupters in your electrical system.

How you can solve this issue:

If a short circuit is what you have going on, then it’s critical to check out all of your receptacles, light switches, and plugged-in cords for damage. Find the tripped breaker to investigate the circuit which it’s connected to. Make sure the circuits are labeled inside the electrical panel if they haven’t been already, or just confirm the labeling is right.

If you don’t discover issues in your home, consider that outdoor lighting or exterior outlets are an issue, and call in a Houston outdoor lighting professional to check things out.

Should your nose pick up the scent of burning plastic, which might also smell like sulfur or a rotten egg, then you need to call in a professional electrician anyway. Light switches or outlets with burning smells often indicate dangerous wiring situations that might trigger electrical fires. Other signs of possible damage include black or brown discoloration and/or switches or outlets that are sometimes hot when you touch them.

Also look for damaged appliances and frayed cords. In some cases, the short circuit happens inside the appliance itself.

If a short circuit is what you suspect, then you need to turn off any power to that circuit from your electrical panel and then wait until you can have a qualified electrician come out to inspect the circumstances before anyone turns the power back on. When electrical components or wires get crossed, the results are very hazardous, so you need an electrician. More than likely, that professional can replace your bad breaker or let you know which specific appliance is causing issues.

Are your breakers frequently tripping? You might have faulty wiring or loose connections inside the electrical system. A tripping breaker is a strong indication that you need to have an electrician look at your electrical system. If any parts of it go to the exterior of your home, then you might want to get a Houston outdoor lighting professional on the case, as they can handle electrical and wiring issues both inside your home and out.

An Older And/Or Weaker Circuit Breaker Panel:

Short circuits and overload conditions account for most of the tripped breakers that happen. A third potential cause is an older electrical panel which just gets weaker and trips since it can’t handle an electrical load safely any longer.

In Conclusion

Robert Huff Illumination and Outdoor Lighting provides the best solutions for outdoor lighting here in Houston. You will be at peace knowing you are getting your projects done the right way by Houston’s best professionals in outdoor lighting services. Call now or contact Robert Huff Illumination here.