Commercial Electrician

What can you expect from a job as an electrician? 


An electrician is any skilled tradesperson who designs, installs, maintains, and repairs the electrical systems and products used in residential homes, businesses, and factories. Electricians work inside or outside buildings to ensure lights, industrial equipment, and appliances operate safely and reliably. There are many special types of electricians, including residential electricians, who install wiring and solve electrical problems in homes, and inside electricians, who maintain and repair control systems, motors, and electrical equipment in businesses and factories.

The Difference Between an Industrial and Commercial Electrician

If you’ve been looking into becoming an electrician, you may have seen or heard different job titles tossed around and been curious about the difference. Two titles in particular sound like they would be for the same job: industrial and commercial electricians. Why do both these positions exist?

It comes down to where you work: The main difference between industrial electricians and commercial electricians is the kind of building or worksite you perform your tasks in. However, training for both positions is similar, with industrial requiring a more extensive education of the two.

What Is an Industrial Electrician?

Industrial electricians get their education either by becoming an apprentice or going to trade school. As an apprentice, you will spend four years in the classroom as well as complete on-the-job training. Classroom hours will run about 144 per year, and on-the-job training is around 2,000 hours per year. Going the associate’s degree route will help earn credits that can transfer toward the apprenticeship program. Since it is illegal to do any electrical work without a license—unless it’s on your personal property—passing a licensing exam is required.

Industrial electricians work on all things electric within the industrial setting. Your job is focused primarily on maintenance and installation of electricity for manufacturing and production. Duties will vary depending on who your employer is, but most industrial electricians have a similar job description. You will run tests and inspections on the building’s electronics, work on the building’s circuit board by either cleaning or repairing it, and install outlets and fixtures, making sure everything is grounded correctly. You are also responsible for repairing systems that have completely shut down.

What Is a Commercial Electrician?

Just like industrial electricians, commercial electricians are required to have either an associate’s degree, apprenticeship, or a combination of the two. You will need to be licensed, as well.

You work in environments such as offices, restaurants, and retail stores—basically, anything the public can readily access. Neither you nor an industrial electrician do residential work in people’s homes. On the job, you will either work from or create a blueprint of the building’s electrical system. You will install the conduit or run the electrical wiring according to the plan and make sure it’s up to code. The commercial electrician is the one who makes the power, heating, and lighting work within a building.

Typically, you use standard tools such as screwdrivers, drills, and pliers to complete your tasks. However, you may use varied power tools, as well. So, be familiar with all the tools of the trade and know the proper usage of them.

What Commercial Electricians Do ?

Commercial electricians install, maintain, inspect and repair electrical systems in commercial buildings. These are any buildings that are not used as residences, so they are generally larger than the buildings in which residential electricians work. An exception is a large apartment building, which may be considered commercial rather than residential. Some of the duties of these electricians are:

How to Become an Electrician ?

Like many professionals, electricians fall into two categories: generalists and specialists. The latter category includes commercial, industrial and maintenance. Regardless of the category, electricians must be able to perform electrical repairs and maintenance in both business and residential buildings. Electricians are trained to work on building assessment, connectivity, heating and security systems

Becoming an electrician entails entering a certified apprenticeship program. But before you do that you need to meet the following minimum prerequisites:

Here’s how to become an electrician:

•             Decide what kind of electrician you want to be (generalist or specialist).

•             Join an electrician apprenticeship program sponsored by the International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers (IBEW), National Electrical Contractors Association (NECA) or Independent Electrical Contractors (IEC). These programs include both classroom courses and on-the-job training, and take about 4 years to complete.

•             Earn a certificate in a technical vocational school or training academy. If you go this route, you will learn the classroom theory in the vocational school, and will then have to look for an apprenticeship to develop the on-the-job skills.

•             Continue your education. Electricians must keep up-to-date with the latest developments in technology, National Electrical Code changes and, if you’re a specialist, the latest developments in your field.

•             Get licensed. Some state and local governments require electricians to be licensed. In addition, if you plan to be an independent contractor, you may need an additional license.

•             Train to be a supervisor or manger. As you advance in your career you may want to be a supervisor or manager, or even start your own business

What Makes a Good Commercial Electrician?

If you are hiring an electrical services contractor it can sometimes get confusing deciding which type of electrician you really need. In fact there are many different types of electricians who specialise in different aspects of their trade so as important to know what you are looking for before making a decision.

Oddly enough there are some electricians who have spent a long time working in construction and who specialise in commercial work. After having been out of the mainstream for a long time you might be surprised to hear that some electricians have difficulty re-adapting.

Without exaggerating the situation, it is important to choose an electrician who is competent and has plenty of experience in the type of work you need to have performed. Although someone with commercial experience may eventually be able to adapt to general household work, the time taken to complete the tasks may not be to your liking and the price may also be considerably higher because of this.

On the other hand, if the work you need to have done involves installations and laying of cables, then a commercial electrician could be just what you need and could have fact save you time and money.

Use Indoor Lighting Fixtures To Improve Your Interior Decor

When it comes to proper room decor, you need to make sure that your lighting sources don’t give that ugly and annoying glare that can irritate your eyes. You can find lamps in all sorts of shapes and forms, including some more artistic and others rather traditional, yet each can easily improve the appearance of any room.

When it comes to the materials that the lighting fixtures are made of, you can find them in steel, plastic, fiber or wood. Depending on the material at hand, the illumination will be stronger or weaker. This is due to the transparency level of the material and how much illumination it allows through.

One of the most popular indoor lighting types is the alcove lighting, which offers indirect lighting, giving general illumination for the room. You can find this type either in the form of fluorescent or rope lighting.

Ceiling mounted lights are also very popular for indoor lighting and they are known by the name of recessed lights. The also give indirect lighting, as opposed to wall sconces, which give more of a task illumination for highlighting either a particular task that is being done, or an object of art. The wall sconces usually offer upward illumination, and they are also used quite a lot in bathrooms for shaving, or applying make-up. For wall lights in the bathroom it is important that the material allows plenty of light through, so you don’t cut your face during shaving or you don’t smear and smudge your make-up during application.

Beautiful and Stylish General Lighting

General lighting is the ambient lighting that is used to illuminate an entire room. General lighting is normally switch operated and consists of lighting fixtures installed in common rooms such as entryways, bedrooms, and bathrooms.

While some lighting fixtures and other types of general lighting fixtures can be bland and virtually blend away into the surface of the ceiling, other lighting fixtures can make a bold statement or be selected to accent your décor beautifully.

There are many different styles of lighting fixtures to choose from including fixtures that are ideal for home decorating styles such as Mission, Traditional and Contemporary. You can choose from many different color schemes and patterns such as geometric shapes, floral patterns, and Tiffany styled lighting fixtures.

Changing your existing lighting fixtures is probably one of the easiest and least expensive ways that you can spruce up your home décor, and it doesn’t take a genius or a home improvement guru to get it done right. In fact, almost anyone can dramatically change the look of their interior space by changing its existing ceiling fixture, and it only takes a couple of steps.

Here’s how:

  • 1.Shut off the power to the entire room where the fixture is located. If you’re not sure which breaker or breakers control the lighting fixture, turn off the power in the entire house to be on the safe side.
  • 2.Remove the globe or diffuser, and the bulb(s). Remove the screws or the cap nut holding the canopy in place, and drop the fixture down. Disconnect the black and white wires. Check wires for cracks in the insulation.
  • 3.Connect the black and white wires and the ground wire of the new fixture to the wiring in your ceiling, coil them up into the box, and push the canopy into place so the studs poke through. If the unit does not easily push up flush to the ceiling, drop it down and rearrange the wires. Secure the canopy by twisting cap nuts onto the studs.
  • 4.Screw in the bulbs and attach the globe to the canopy. Restore power to the room.

See, changing a ceiling fixture is barely enough to break a sweat, and the effect created by your new ceiling fixture will be noticed right away. So, if you are looking for a way to inexpensively and easily spruce up your décor, perhaps you should add that special design element with new lighting fixtures.

What Are The Advantages Of Installing LED Light Fixtures?

There are far too many. Compared to fluorescent lights which are far more economical than the incandescent lamps, it can save you up to 30 – 40 percent savings compared with the use of fluorescent lamps. So if you are planning about putting up LED fixtures in your home but not sure if this is more practical, here are the benefits you should know about the Light Emitting Diode lighting system.

Common Benefits of Installing LED Light Fixtures Over Fluorescent Lights

  • · With regards to the savings on LED fixtures, you will be able to save up to 40 to 50 percent energy compared to fluorescent (FL) lighting. This is because these lights have 10 to 15 percent lower temperature than the FL so it consumes much less energy. Lighting on office establishments usually account to 30-40 percent of the operation bills. If you change all your lighting fixtures with LED that makes up the same value savings on the office’ operational cost.
  • · You won’t need to change bulb with LED fixtures unlike the FLs and the incandescent lamps. This is because LEDS do not burn out like fluorescent lights, do not have fragile parts, and have larger operating temperature range so you can even use them on very hot to very cold climate without the worry of burn outs. It can only burn if improper voltage is applied directly to their terminals.
  • · Fluorescent lamps (FL) have fixtures like ballast and starters which the LEDs do not have. FLs also emit heat that ranges from 95 – 120 degrees and LED has less than 10-15 percent of these values.
  • · Standard FLs generally operates at 3500 Kelvin (sometimes referred as Celsius) to be able to produce bright light and this value declines as the light gets older. With LED, it can operate from 3500K to 6500K with lesser electric consumption and very minimal drop of brightness. Also, the higher the LED bulb temperature gets, the warmer the white light the bulb will produce while the energy consumption remain almost constant.
  • · If you already have a large establishment with lots of fluorescent light fixtures in it, installing the LED fixtures will not really be a hard task. By just removing the whole FL fixtures, the LED light fixtures are ready to be installed. By just connecting their terminals and screwing the case on to the wall or ceiling, you can operate your LED light fixtures just like that. Usually, these lights are arranged in strips so there could be many LEDS in one strip. But for light fixtures, these strips are encapsulated in solid cases and you can choose any case designs to fit your room interior.
  • · FLs and incandescent lamps can break easily so you have to take absolute care in installing and cleaning them. LED lights fixtures do not use glass, no filaments, no vacuum seals and don’t have gases or chemicals like the FLs. They are purely made of Solid State Light construction which eliminates moving or breakable parts.
  • · Light emitting diode can have a life expectancy of 100,000 hours while FLs can last only from 8,000 to 20,000 hours. Imagining just the difference can really make your mind to choose the LED.

The advantages of installing LED light fixtures are far too many if compared with the use of the fluorescent lights. You get a brighter and widely distributed light, they don’t burn, and they emit lesser heat and can save you 40 to 50 percent on your energy bill. They are tough, dependable, last 10 times longer and far from breaking. You can also choose case designs unlike with fluorescents lights that have limited styles. So installing LED fittings is really a practical approach to more innovated and more economical lighting systems.