It’s all about reputation….

iSparky are thrilled to share that we have now reached over 100 reputation report cards on checkatrade.com. This achievement is well deserved and proves we have continued to provide a high quality service to all our customers. Here’s to the next 100!

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Fibaro releases improved sensors

Fibaro have now launched their improved motion sensors, now enhanced with Z-Wave Plus!

Features of Z-Wave Plus:
  • 50% improvement in battery life
  • 67% improvement in range
  • 250% more bandwidth
  • Three RF channels for improved noise immunity and higher bandwidth
  • New Plug-n-Play Network-wide Inclusion feature
  • Improved self-healing and fault tolerance with Explorer Frame feature
  • Standardized method for Over the Air firmware updates (OTA)
  • Improved product information capture for product certification databaseunnamed

iSparky brings you the future of home automation

iSparky are extremely pleased to announce we are now an Authorised Dealer for Fibaro . Fibaro is a wireless home automation system which can control almost anything in your home – this could be as simple as lighting or electric blinds and curtains, to electric gates, security equipment, heating and appliances – if it uses power, Fibaro can probably control it – you can even write your own custom scenes for specific rooms/areas. iSparky can use Fibaro to give you a Smart Home whilst remaining affordable and simple to use. Because all the devices are so compact and work wirelessly, it only requires minimal disruption to your home to get the system up and running. So if you are tempted to make your home – or indeed any other building – a smart building, contact iSparky now to find out more. We are very excited about this new area, we are in the process of building a new webpage on our site specifically for the Fibaro products, so come back soon to read more about why you should have Fibaro installed in your home.

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**NEW** – Unique LED under-cabinet lighting…

We are pleased to share with you details of a new LED lighting solution from JCC which we have recently discovered…The new Skyblade range is ultra slim and specifically designed for under cabinets, giving you a stylish lighting solution for your home or office. It comes in options for single or double cabinets, and in a choice of warm or cool white.  Skyblade will save you half the energy used with a standard T5 fluorescent.  So if you would like to find out more about this cost-saving, energy efficient product, please contact iSparky for further information.

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iSparky is Expanding….

We are excited to announce that iSparky Electrical Services has recently grown and is now offering services to a wider area, covering South Bucks, East Berkshire and parts of Surrey and Greater London.

Due to this expansion, we are also in the process of improving the variety of services we can offer our customers….more information to follow soon.

The importance of electrical earth and bonding

Why on earth does my bonding need checking?

Have you decided to have additional electrical socket outlets, new lighting points, a new circuit installed (such as an electric shower) or any alterations to electrical circuits in your home?

If so a NAPIT registered electrician is required, prior to starting work, to verify the earthing and protective bonding arrangements are adequate.

After completion of the electrical installation work no matter how small the job, the work shall be inspected and tested and a certificate issued. Part of this process is to verify that the earthing and bonding conductors are correctly sized, installed and terminated correctly.

Earthing and bonding explained

Earthing is used to protect people from the risk of electric shock. If the earthing arrangements within your electrical installation were defective or inadequate, you could receive an electric shock from the equipment or appliance metal casing.

The purpose of earthing is to provide a path for electric fault current to flow safely to earth to enable the circuit breaker or fuse to operate.

Bonding is the connection of the incoming metal gas and water pipes to the main installation earthing terminal and is vital for your protection from electric shock.

In a correctly earthed installation, any appliance or equipment developing a fault to the metal casing, will be quickly disconnected by the operation of the circuit fuse or circuit breaker.

Supplementary bonding explained

Supplementary bonding is often found in bathrooms or any other room containing a bath or shower. This is to reduce the risk of electric shock where people may touch two separate metal parts, such as radiators and water pipes, when a electrical fault occurs in the electrical installation.

In these locations supplementary protective bonding conductors connect together the circuit protective conductors of electrical equipment e.g. electric shower to hot and cold metal water pipes and any metal radiators or towel rails.

As illustrated this arrangement was common on installations up to June 30th 2008. With the introduction of new IEE Wiring Regulations BS7671 (2008), after this date the need for supplementary bonding has been reduced, as all electrical installations in rooms containing a new bath or shower need to have their circuits additionally protected by a Residual Current Device (RCD).

What do I need to do?

Correctly installed earthing and bonding can protect you from the risk of electrocution and fire caused by faulty equipment or appliances.

A NAPIT registered electrician can advise you on whether your earthing and bonding installation requires improvements to maintain your safety in the event of an electrical fault occurring.

 

Isparky Electrical Services

 

 

RCDs Explained

What is a residual current device (RCD)?

An RCD a safety device that automatically switches off the electricity if there is a fault. It’s far more sensitive than normal fuses and circuit breakers. It can be a lifesaver, reacting quickly to prevent electricity causing a fatal shock.

An RCD constantly monitors the electric current flowing along a circuit. If it detects electricity flowing down an unintended path, such as through a person who has touched a live part, it will switch the circuit off instantly, reducing the risk of death or serious injury.

RCDs can help protect you from electric shock in potentially dangerous areas such as bathrooms and gardens. Using electricity when you may be wet significantly increases the risk of electric shock. If you are wet and make contact with the ground, it’s easy for electricity to flow through you. So it’s very important to have RCD protection when using electrical equipment in these areas. If you don’t, a job like mowing the lawn could turn into a deadly disaster should you cut the lead.

RCDs are available as fixed, socket or portable.

Fixed RCDs

These are installed into the fusebox and can provide protection to individual or groups of circuits. A fixed RCD provides the highest level of protection. It protects all sockets and connected appliances on any circuit.

Socket RCDs

These replace a standard socket. They provide protection to anyone plugging electrical equipment into that socket.

Portable RCDs

These plug into any standard socket. An appliance can then be plugged into the RCD. These are useful when fixed or socket RCDs are not available. But again they only provide protection to the person plugging electrical equipment into the socket.

Are RCDs reliable?

We’ve found that fixed RCDs are about 97% reliable. This improves if they are tested regularly. If you have fixed RCD protection, it will reduce the risk of electric shock to you and your family. It can also protect your home against the risk of fire caused by faulty wiring or appliances.

Remember – Although RCD protection reduces the risk of death or injury from electric shock it does not reduce the need to be careful. Have your wiring checked at least once every 10 years to ensure the safety of you, your family and your home. If you find a fault with your wiring, or an appliance, stop using it immediately and contact a registered electrician.

Don’t forget to test

You should test all fixed and socket RCDs about every three months. Manufacturers recommend that portable RCDs are tested every time you use them.

A good tip is to test them regularly, like when putting your clocks forward, or back. Especially as many electric clocks and timers have to be reset anyway.

Beware

If you hold the test button in for a long time and the RCD does not switch off the electricity supply, then get advice from a registered electrician.

The new UK standard for safety

Since July 2008 virtually all circuits in new or rewired homes have been required to include an RCD under the latest edition of BS 7671.

The Electrical Safety Council has electrical safety advice on a range of different areas

Marshall-Tufflex Boiler Management Systems intelligently control the cycling of boilers to maximise their efficiency

This reduces unnecessary boiler firing during low load conditions, known as dry cycling, whilst still delivering the heat and hot water levels needed.

How does it work?

The principle of variable thermal response is used to achieve energy savings and two electronic sensors are fitted to the flow and return pipes of the boiler. Central heating systems are designed to operate with a variance of approximately 11 degrees centigrade between the outgoing and returning water temperature to the boiler when under full demand, i.e. during cold weather. The boiler firing pattern will be modified based on this variance.

The smaller the variance the less the boiler will fire as this would be ineffective and wasteful. As the variance increases again the boiler will begin to fire more. At a variance of 11 degrees centigrade or more the boiler firing modification is minimal. This means you get better and more accurate control with your central heating at a significantly reduced cost.

  • Reduces energy usage and carbon footprint
  • Reduces boiler firing cycle and therefore saves money without compromising on the provision of heating or hot water
  • Compact and unobtrusive
  • Easy to install by a qualified electrician
  • Typical payback within 2-3 years
  • Typically reduces the annual cost of a boiler by 20% (subject to boiler usage pattern).
  • External weather sensor available for even greater savings

Domestic Boiler Management

The Domestic Boiler Manager is compatible with mains gas, LPG and oil boilers so would be suitable for the majority of domestic households with traditional and combi boiler types.

The Domestic Boiler Management product is Energy Saving Trust Recommended. For more information visit energysavingtrust.org.uk

Commercial Boiler Management

The Commercial Boiler Management is typically installed in commercial environments with mains gas, LPG and oil boilers. It is suitable for single boilers and linked pairs of boilers under a common header where the boilers output exceeds 30kW.

Ideal for use in situations where a building management system is installed (BMS), as it will not compromise the maximum flow temperature as set by the boiler thermostat or BMS. An integral 7 day programmer with auto British Summer Time correction is incorporated.

Voltage optimisation – Voltis Home

Voltis Home offers substantial savings on domestic electricty bills and also helps you to be kinder to the environment.

  • Reduces energy usage and carbon footprint
  • Increases the life of household appliances
  • Easy to install by a qualified electrician
  • Greater savings compared to other systems

How is Voltis Home installed?

The unit is installed between the electricity meter and consumer unit. Installation is very straightforward, but must be carried out by a qualified electrician. Voltis Home will start saving money from the moment it is installed.

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Click here for more information on Boiler management
Click here for more information on Voltis home