Electrical Schmelectrical

posted in: home improvements 0

We’re just emerging from one of the big house projects, which is a major upgrade to our electrical service, taking our whole two-family house from 200-amp service to 400A. This involves bigger meters on the outside, bigger panels on the inside, and an even bigger payday for the electrician. Also, bigger and better circuits and power in the house.

And the first of the two new meters…

One of the things this is making possible is getting rid of our 30-year-old Caloric gas range with its accompanying hydrocarbon fumes and replacing it with a GE Profile induction range. We’ve been wanting to do this for a while, but the driving factor was to spare our lungs from the insidious pollution of natural gas and replace it with the mind-altering effects of strong electromagnetic fields… no, wait—I mean, replace it with a cleaner, more climate-friendly, and better-controlled cooking experience. Seriously, we’ve been doing at least half our cooking for the last six months on a portable induction “hot plate” sitting on top of our gas range. We love it. Cleaner, safer, less waste heat, and way better control of the cooking. The only downside was having to buy a couple of new pans. We’ll be getting a nice rebate for the induction range.

Also part of this project was putting in some switching to make possible the use of a backup generator in the event of a prolonged power outage. For now, the backup is the little generator in our campervan, but in the fullness of time, we’ll upgrade that, as well. (But while the power was off during the work, I did keep two refrigerators and a freezer going with the camper gen. And it should keep the heat on, as well, since the gas-fired steam boilers only require a small amount of current to run.)

The job took so long, I thought we were going to have to offer the electrician a room to stay in. The major work is done now, though we still have a couple of small things for him to do. In the meantime, I think we’re close to agreement with the outside contractor to build new front porches on the house. I’m not doing any of this work myself, but I feel tired!

Here’s our new range. It will go downstairs with us when we move.

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