Look again at your electrical plans!

Cheryl Kees Clendenon Interior design 4 Comments

Trends in Homebuilding

 

Many innovative design trends for homebuilding and remodeling in 2012 can be found in the lighting and technology arena. This means working closely with your builder and electrician to implement new ideas and plan effectively ( i.e. get it right on the plans)  for your home to boast the latest in inspired design!

 

LED Lighting

There is no escaping the fact LED lighting is the buzzword for 2012. LED ( light emitting diodes) technology has been around for some time but has found it’s way into the mainstream of home building.  People are more savvy about the energy savings LED lighting can provide ( up to 50% over florescent and 85% over incandescent) and manufacturers are launching new decorative fixtures designed to utilize the compact size of the bulbs in artful designs previously limited by the larger traditional bulbs. LED lighting can be found almost anywhere but is often utilized in under cabinet lighting in kitchens, unique decorative fixtures, outdoor lighting, and even recessed can lights. (Phillips lighting)

 

Built in USB ports 

Enjoy the convenience of USB outlets right where you need them, built right into the wall. Designed to replace a traditional receptacle, this 110v outlet means no more AC adaptors or charging  devices on your computer. They certainly cost more than a typical receptacle so get out those plans and add them where you think you could really use them and keep the rest standard.(www.fastmac.com)

Uber cool!

Pop up receptacles 

Key for kitchen island installations where standard outlets are not feasible or unattractive, GFCI rated pop up receptacles are great problem solvers and can  eliminate the potential safety hazard of dangling cords and the angst over cutting into the decorative panels on your beautiful new cabinetry. Look for one that is UL rated and meets current codes.

In this large island, a pop up outlet worked great. The sleek style of the cabinetry and doors on all sides did not leave a good place to mount on the sides. Designed by In Detail Interiors

 

 

Smart thermostats

The “Nest” thermostat seems to be the hip new guy on the street. This sleek and stylish, internet ready device actually learns your temperature preferences, programs itself and keeps up with any detected changes. Designed by the same man who headed up the team that created the ipod, the intuitive interface makes it easy for a DIY installation.  But the real kicker is that it really does “learn”  how your family lives and adjusts the temperature accordingly even if you leave on vacation.  Detecting no movement it will enter into an “away” mode until you return.  Compatible with most heating and cooling systems. (www.nest.com)

Next post will be on looking at electrical plans…and how to be ready for your electrician!

Comments 4

  1. Another thing to watch out for with LED under-cabinet lighting is how the lighting is hooked up to the transformers.  I use a puck light that MUST be wired in series not parallel.  Most under-cabinet lighting uses parallel so there may be some confusion if your electrician is accustomed to that.  

    Bottom line: new technology means new “standards”.  Double check before the walls are closed in and you can’t make changes.

  2. We should work closely with an electrician to map out the electrical plans for our homes to ensure that our homes are safe from fires caused by faulty electrical wiring and  cost- and energy-efficient while being stylish at the same time.

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