Meet Marty: Our Master Electrician
Marty Zonneveld is Quality Homes’ master electrician. He’s the guy who turns on the lights in every home we build. We recently spoke with Marty about the electrical components in our homes and what the current industry trends reflect.
Quality Homes uses a 200-amp service with an 80-circuit panel with the option of a surge suppressor that protects all of your home electronics and appliances from outages caused by lightning strikes and voltage spikes from the power grid. While most conventional homes use 100-amp with a 40-circuit panel (minimum code), we’ve selected the higher amp/circuit program with lots of capacity and ample room for future expansion (like hot tubs and swimming pools) to give you total peace of mind.
We install a 2-inch “convenience” conduit that runs from the basement to the attic in case something needs to be added at a later date. While this is not required by code, it makes it easier for our customers to provide for current as well as future needs.
All of our bathroom receptacles get a dedicated feed that exceeds the standard electrical code to ensure adequate electricity to feed your power-hungry blow dryer, curler, straightening iron, etc.
We also use a device called a megger that applies 500 volts to test the insulation on our electrical wires. This is above and beyond the practice of most builders.
Currently we are using LED light bulbs (light emitting diode) which are much more efficient than the old incandescent bulbs. LED bulbs last a lot longer too (up to 30 years!).
Marty offers some good advice for homeowners who want to save money and contribute to an environmentally better world.
1. When purchasing appliances check the Energy Efficiency rating on them. And try to use them in off peak hours to save money and energy.
2. Homeowners should consider purchasing master control Power Bars that prevent electronics from consuming parasitic loads while they are off but still plugged in.
3. Power monitors that can be installed on a panel or individual circuit let you know exactly how much power you are using. (Eyedro is one manufacture to offer this). Hydro One also has a website that lets you see your usage in real-time.
4. Lower your furnace or raise your AC a few degrees and save a lot of energy in the long run.
5. Install a master control switch with a contactor to turn off all the lights and receptacles in your home when you leave, with one switch.
Marty believes that in the future, homes will have a Power Cell like the Tesla home, which has solar shingles that charge a lithium battery pack built into the home. This will run all appliances and supply all the electrical power your home requires including the charging of your electric vehicle in the garage.