The finished project is the best part of any renovation. Hopefully, it turns out just the way you envisioned it. However, when you are thinking about what it is going to look like in that finished room, the part many people overlook is that it takes planning to get those lights and outlets in just the right place so that they are usable, aesthetically pleasing and code compliant. Remember that you cannot see inside your walls so don’t follow the old adage – out of sight, out of mind – it is easier to do the electrical component of your renovation while the walls are open.
- The starting point is always the panel. Before starting any renovation, you need to know that your panel can handle the additional load required once the renovation is complete. There are also some panels that cannot handle the new code requirements. The age of your home is a major consideration as technology and codes have changed over the years and newer appliances require dedicated circuits. So you need to know that your panel can handle those extra circuits that you may require. This is also the best time to think of future renovations as well. Now is the best time to ensure that your panel is safe and properly sized to handle whatever you plan on doing over the next 20-25 years.
- Practicality – it is a good idea to plan where you will likely need power. Ontario code has guidelines, but depending on the usage of your renovated area, you may need to consider items such as the following to avoid being disappointed later:
- Do you want to hang a flat screen TV? – now is the time to hide those wires.
- Are you planning on a home office in a corner? How many and at what height should the outlets be at so you don’t have to crawl looking for somewhere to plug in your computer?
- Do you want to add in USB ports to charge you phone?
- Do you want extra outlets for seasonal displays?
Keep in mind what you want to do in your room when it is completed. Once everything is hidden behind walls, it gets expensive to get another circuit in there and your electrician may need to cut holes in your new drywall to get them in.
- Ambiance – Once again – you need to know what you want to do in your finished room. For example, do you love to cook? Your dream kitchen may need more lighting in certain task areas. You may want a brighter light if you have sight issues. Are you a crafter/artist that needs extra light in certain areas? Do you want pot lights, wall sconces or lamps? How and where do you want them turned on? Do you want a painting accented?
- Use a licensed electrical contractor. We have seen renovations when the cupboard installer or local handyman have done the electrical work to make things cheaper. In the first place, this is against the law in Ontario and in many cases, it has not been done in a safe manner for the homeowner. If you are considering a renovation – use a licensed electrical contractor that will provide a Certificate of Inspection by The Electrical Safety Authority to help ensure your safety
If you are considering a renovation, call the professional electricians from Nu-Tek Electric to help you design and execute the electrical component of your renovation in a safe, stylistic, and economic manner!