Gas & Electricity Vs Conservatives

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If you smell gas in your home…then you just might have a problem. You likely have a gas leak. I’m not referring to gasoline here but I’ll suggest (with my tongue firmly planted in my cheek) that if you smell gasoline inside the living space of your home, then you might want to consider parking your car outside or in the garage. Seriously, though, the smell of gas inside your home is no laughing matter.

Gas is used as a fuel to operate many different systems in modern homes. Gas is most often used by systems that heat the home such as furnaces and boilers. Gas-fired waters heaters are very common. It can be used as a fuel for cooking such as with ranges or cook-tops, for fireplaces to provide heat or for decoration, and for other uses e.g. clothes dryers. It is, after all, an efficient fuel and is readily available in some form in most geographical locations. Two types of gas are in common residential use…natural gas and Liquefied Propane (LP) gas. Each has its own properties and each is unique in various ways. Let’s examine the two different types of gas.

Natural gas is a carbon-based fossil fuel that is typically piped directly into a home by a public utility operator. It is lighter than air which means that, if it leaks, it will readily dissipate into the atmosphere.

LP gas is also a carbon-based fossil fuel. It has more available energy per unit measure than does natural gas and it is readily able to turn to a liquid state. LP gas is heavier is approximately 1.5 times heavier than air…which means that, if it should leak, it sinks to the floor or grade level and will collect in low areas (more on that later).

It is worthy of note that, in their natural states (conditions), both natural gas and LP gas are virtually odorless. To enable people being able to readily detect gas leakage (using their nose), processors of both products add a chemical called Methyl Mercaptan to the gas mixture. Methyl Mercaptan has been described as smelling like something akin to rotten cabbage or rotten eggs. Listen up…this is important! If you smell rotten cabbage, and you’re pretty sure you don’t have any rotten cabbage lying around, then that odor should cause an instantaneous alarm to go off inside your head. If you suspect that there’s a gas leak inside your home, there are some things you need to do…and quickly. There are also a few things not to do.

Things NOT To Do:

• Panic…you’re well-being depends on you keeping a clear head and systematically doing what you need to do in a timely manner. If you freak out as soon as you smell gas, you won’t be thinking clearly

• Light a match or cigarette lighter…this may seem like a no-brainer but, well, it has happened and the results weren’t pretty

• Do not operate any electric devices to include light switches, appliances, or your even your hard-wired telephone…any potential for any electrical spark should be completely avoided

• Don’t connect or disconnect any electric cords from power outlets…this could also create a spark

Things To Do:

• If the odor is strong, round up all living creatures that you love…spouse, kids, Grandma and Grandpa, Fido, cats, birds, etc. (the fish will probably be alright assuming no explosion…in which case the fish probably won’t be the primary concern anyway)…and leave the house immediately

• If the odor isn’t very strong, then you could consider opening a window or two, on your way out the door, to allow some fresh air to dilute the concentration of gas in the air

• If you are at all technically inclined and know where and how to do so…and you should know…then turn off the gas supply at the main valve. The main gas valve is usually located at the gas meter in the case of natural gas or at the tank in the case of LP gas

• From your cell phone, or from a neighbor’s phone, call the gas company or gas supplier. Particularly in the case of natural gas, the utility company often has a 24 hour emergency phone number that you can call and many LP gas suppliers have such an emergency number as well. It is recommended that this number be kept in a readily available and accessible location.

Remember my mentioning that LP gas is heavier than air? And that it will collect in low areas or spaces? I believe this deserves just a little bit more emphasis. Because of the fact that LP gas will collect in low areas, it’s imperative that you be specifically cognizant of that fact. For instance, if your home has a basement, and there is gas leakage in that area, then the gas can collect in sump pits or other low areas where ventilation isn’t readily accomplished and there are normally some types of electrical devices down in the basement. We already established that gas and electric sparks aren’t a good combination. No need to be scared…just be cognizant. There is a reason, a very good reason, why an LP gas tank isn’t allowed to be stored in the hull of a boat…it’s because the hull of a boat could fill with gas and be ignited resulting in another one of those situations where the outcome just isn’t pretty. Again, be smart…be educated…be cognizant…be aware.

As a Raleigh Home Inspector, and during the performance of any given Raleigh Home Inspection (of homes that are served by gas, of course), our clients have often confided that they are afraid of gas; I can’t tell you just how often that fear has been shared with me. My answer, always, is that there’s no reason whatsoever to fear gas. However…gas should be respected; in fact,. gas demands your respect. One should only be scared, though, if they are under-educated and under-prepared. Insofar as gas is concerned, respect necessarily includes a couple of basic related tenets of general safety.

First, be educated. It is important to properly maintain any and all gas-fired appliances…the equipment on the market today is designed, tested, and approved for that fuel. If the equipment is well-maintained, by professionals in accordance with the manufactures recommendations, it should provide safe and problem-free service with respect to any fuel-related issues.

Second, be prepared. It is of the utmost import that you be educated about the potential safety related issues of any of the complex systems and appliances in your home…that just makes good common sense, wouldn’t you agree? Just like it’s wise to have a formal safety/evacuation plan in place in case of a fire, it’s also smart have a plan for what you will do if you smell gas in the home and be ready to execute that plan at any time. It is recommended that all occupants of the home participate in a practice drill to ensure that the plan is effective when put into action. It is said that practice makes perfect…and you know that it does. You’ll want your plan to be as close to perfectly executed as possible and that means that it needs to practiced and rehearsed.

In conclusion…you should know how to identify a gas leak and know what you are going to do should you smell gas inside your home.You should be knowledgeable about all of the gas-fired equipment in your home, be respectful of the fuel without being afraid of it, and have a formal and readily executable plan in case your built-in olfactory sensory, gas detection, and alarm system (that being the more or less prominent protrusion on the front of your face) ever detects the odor of gas inside you home. You’ll feel confident and secure that you are prepared for what could be an emergency. Your life…and the safety of your loved ones…may very well depend on it!

A home electricity energy monitor is an easy way to see how much electricity you’re consuming – as you use it – and what it costs. It provides prompt, convenient feedback on electrical energy consumption. Some devices may also display cost of energy used, and estimates of greenhouse CO2 emissions in real time. It is also known as a “real time display”. People who adopt home energy monitors tend to find that their energy usage drops by between 5 percent and 15 percent in the first year of using them. Various studies have shown such a reduction in home energy consumption.

A wireless smart electricity monitor is a device used to monitor electricity consumption, adopting the wireless technology. In a typical wireless electricity monitor configuration, a unit that measures energy output is connected to the electricity meter in a home meter box, and that unit transmits information about energy consumption wirelessly to a display unit. The display unit shows the amount of power being used, the cost of the power and the greenhouse gas emissions caused by the electricity being consumed. Some units also display other information such as ambient temperature and humidity.

Wireless electricity monitors are easier to use than wired electricity monitors because they allow users to place the display unit anywhere in their homes. This way, users can frequently check the amount of energy being used without having to walk to a meter or run wires through their homes. Wireless electricity monitors are usually battery-operated, though some units have direct current (DC) adapters that enable them to be plugged into wall power.

Most people who use a wireless electricity monitor do so to reduce energy consumption. Having a constant visual reminder of how much energy is being used at any given time, how much the energy costs and how much of an effect the energy use has on the environment can help people stay mindful of their energy use and remind them to turn off appliances when they aren’t using them. The monitors can also be used to figure out how much energy particular machines and appliances are consuming so users can determine how they can best reduce their energy use.

Sometimes, a wireless electricity monitor only shows how much energy is currently being used, but many wireless electricity monitors also store usage data and enable users to review their daily, weekly and monthly energy use. This tracking ability can help users review how they’re using electricity, stay motivated to continue using less electricity and develop strategies for reducing consumption. A wireless electricity monitor is not very expensive, and many users say they recoup the cost of the monitor in just a month or two by using less energy.

Some wireless electricity monitors also have the ability to connect to a personal computer. The transmitter unit can stream energy usage data to a device connected to the computer, usually through a universal serial bus (USB) port. Computer software that comes with the data receiver typically enables detailed electricity tracking and reporting.

More and more homeowners in the world have installed solar power system or wind micro generator in their homes to generate clean power, reduce the electricity consumption cost and protect the environment as well. Photovoltaic Solar Power is, in it’s simplest definition, the energy created by converting solar energy into electricity using photovoltaic solar cells. Solar power cells are made out of materials known as semiconductors, usually silicon. A semiconductor has the properties of an insulator, but when exposed to light or heat is capable of conducting electricity.

The electricity energy monitoring and control system with home solar plant monitoring function works 2-way and is developed specially for households installed with home solar plant, providing a good solution for the home owners to monitor both the home electricity consumed in total and the energy produced by solar. Meanwhile, the system displays the balance between the consumption and production to the family members and provide wireless remote control of home electrical appliances when the family members want to respond to unsatisfactory balance data.

How the system works?

The clamp of one power transmitter is attached to the cable from your electricity meter. The current is then measured and transmitted wirelessly to a monitor with display screen that you can keep anywhere in your house. The clamp of the other power transmitter is attached to the cable from the solar power plant to measure its yield. In this case, the data for the consumption and solar production is attained respectively and the comparison is possible.

When the home electricity consumption is higher than the electricity production of home solar system or wind micro generator, the controller of the electricity control system provides an alarm warning, reminding the family members to act to reduce the power consumption.

The LCD screen of the controller display home power consumption data, production output by home solar system, balance data, cost data, history data. It also shows time and date.

The system supports up to 12pcs sensor plug sockets, that means it can wirelessly monitor and control up to twelve connected electrical appliances.

With this system, you can keep track of how your solar system is performing, how much money you are saving in electricity costs, and how much your system is benefiting the environment.

The wireless electricity monitoring and control system with Home Solar Plant monitoring function is consisted by 1pc controller with power adapter, 2pcs transmitters with sensor clamp, A number of sensor plug sockets and 1pc RJ45-USB data cable to provide computer link

* The controller receives data from the transmitters and sensor plug sockets, displays the real time and history information on its LCD screen and sends powering on/off instruction to the sensor plug sockets.

* 1pc of transmitter will be used to monitor the electricity output of the solar home plant, the other transmitter will be used to monitor the electricity consumption of the whole home.

* The sensor plug sockets detect the electricity consumption of connected electrical appliances. The sockets detect the energy consumption data and send it to the controller. The sockets can be controlled remotely and wirelessly by the controller to switch on/off the connected electrical appliances. One system can support up to 12pcs sensor sockets.

* The RJ45-USB data cable (available with software) serves to provide connection between the controller and the computer so that the user can view the real time data, the history data from the computer or remotely switch on/off electrical appliances.

Prepaid Texas Electricity product offerings are becoming a great electric product for low end as well as high end consumers and businesses in Texas. Due to ease of service, customer requirements, and product offerings, when making a utility choice, one should take into consideration the new prepaid products in the marketplace.

Prepaid electricity, prepaid electric, and prepaid power does not discriminate. A lot of times a customer has a past due balance with a previous company, has no credit, or has been quoted a large or unsatisfactory deposit to commence service. With a prepaid provider none of these issues are a problem and prepaid electricity solves all of these issues.

Prepaid electricity is fast, easy, and efficient. Customers are usually turned on in 1 to 3 days. There are no questions asked. A customer simple gives a REP or Retail Electric Provider a name, address, and optional phone number or email address. Once the service order is sent to market a customer is usually contacted by the service provider with a due date for service to start or the consumer can call the provider to receive the start up date and time information.

Prepaid Electric Providers cater to customers unique needs. Often times Retail Electric Providers that cater to prepaid customers have specialized call centers to help the customer. Often times there are more call center representatives in the company to serve the prepaid electric needs of the customers. Typically there is 1 call center representative for every 500 to 750 customers.

There are many ways to receive information about your electricity service. If you give your cellphone number to your provider they can send you optional balance information as well as suspend, restore, and disconnect information in real time to your phone. A paper statement or disconnect notice can be provided, sometimes upon request.

Often times select prepaid electric, electricity, and power providers have great rates. Many prepaid Retail Electric Providers rates are either the same rate or very close to the same rate as postpaid providers for customers with little or no credit or negative credit.

Prepaid electricity is becoming attractive for customers with good credit as well as no credit customers. Individuals as well as businesses with great credit can choose to pay in advance, avoid a long term contract, avoid credit checks, save time, and get a reduced rate per kwh for paying in advance. Also, by electing to enroll on the internet as well as receive an electronic statement, further savings can be realized. Customers and businesses with great credit can receive a “buyers club” or “wholesale price” for simply agreeing to pay in advance. Paying automatically each month by auto draft of checking account, credit card, or debit card can increase the savings as well. Optional email monitoring and energy buying recommendations can be sent to the consumer or business as alerts giving renewal options based on market indicators such as NYMEX natural gas prices.

Retail Electric Providers catering to prepaid electricity and electric power offers often times have extended hours. Most Retail Electric Providers are open well into the evening. Also, on weekends and holidays the prepaid providers often times have extended hours.

Thee are two main methods in which prepaid electricity and power is billed is vastly different than postpaid electricity. One option is estimated once a month billing and payment, the other is a real time usage based product that can be paid daily, weekly, or monthly.

Consumers will receive a monthly estimated amount to pay to get service established based on the address of the location as well as the last 12 months historical usage of the dwelling. Weather factors as well as square footage and dwelling type are often factors in determining the startup amounts. The monthly estimated amount billed to the consumer is based on dwelling information. Once the Retail Electric Provider receives actual meter read data from the Transmission Distribution Service Provider, or TDSP, a true up credit or debit amount will appear on the consumer’s bill as an adjustment on an estimated prepaid product and will be reflected on the monthly paper statement.

If the consumer or business has a smart meter and prefers to elect a real time prepaid product instead of a once a month billed estimated product, then a Texas PUC 25.498 prepaid electricity product can be chosen. This product works similar to a prepaid calling card. A customer or business will pay in advance for electricity. Once the kwh usage is received, typically once every 15 minutes by the Retail Electric Provider, a real time true up or deduction will be debited from the customers prepaid balance on their account. When the balance is getting low a text message, email, or even outbound recorded or live call will be made to the consumer or business advising them to make a prepayment in order to avoid disconnection of electricity. However, if no payment is made service is suspended or disconnected in real time once the balance reaches zero or a minimum amount established by the Retail Electric Provider.

For apartment residences, apartment managers, and apartment leasing agents, prepaid electricity products can solve many problems. If there are any red tag issues with the TDSP, prepaid electricity removes the tagging issue almost immediately when the service order is sent to market. Leasing agents are happy as often times commissions and quotas are met based on occupancy rates. Due to the fact that 100 percent of customers wanting to establish service are approved, occupancy rates improve as getting power established in the residence’s name is no longer an issue.

Many Retail Electric Providers specializing in prepaid electricity have master agency, agency and referral programs for sending business to the providers. There are many ways to make part time or even full time income. Check with different providers to see if they offer an indirect sales or referral program program.

Most major cities that are deregulated in Texas have prepaid offers. Fort Worth, Arlington, Houston, Dallas, Corpus Christi, El Paso, as well as many other major cities in Texas offer prepaid products. Often times you can find providers advertising in penny shoppers, yellow pages, online, as well as television, radio, door to door sales teams, and mailer post card advertisements.

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