Seattle Commercial & Industrial Electrical Contractor
4826 B Street NW Suite 101 Auburn, WA 98001
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18 May 2017
save energy with kirby electric in seattle, wa

Save Energy in Commercial Buildings This Summer

With the spring temperature rising, keeping your office cool can be expensive. As your company works toward keeping itself cost-efficient this upcoming summer, try considering alternative ways to save energy. Here are four tips to save energy in commercial buildings this summer.

Ventilate

Ventilation of commercial buildings can help to lower high energy costs and protect the environment. Natural ventilation, as discussed by the Construction Specifier, shows how businesses can make the most of their mechanical ventilation system while also lowering their energy bill. Such natural ventilation systems require little maintenance and can keep the building cool for employees during the warm summer months.

LED Lighting

LED lighting lasts longer and uses less wattage than other forms of lighting. The U.S. Department of Energy states that more commercial buildings are choosing LED lighting as their form of commercial lighting. They provide a more environmentally and economically friendly product. They found that LED lights can save about 75% more energy and last up to 25 times longer than other electrical lighting. LED lighting can help lower your company’s electrical bill and provide an alternative energy source.

Motion Sensitivity

Motion sensitive lighting shows to be effective in saving energy as it automatically functions based on occupancy of the building. Boston’s Challenge for Sustainability emphasizes the inexpensive installation of motion sensors and that your overall savings percentage can increase. Motion sensitive lighting can help especially in areas of your building where there isn’t much activity or where lights can end up being left on. Benefits of switching to motion sensitive lights, according to Challenge for Sustainability, include energy savings that can reach around 75% and total savings that can be around 35% to 45%.

Retrofitting

Inadequate lighting or electrical problems in your commercial buildings can lead to increased electrical costs. Save energy by retrofitting your buildings. We can help install electrical bundles that best fit your building’s needs while also protecting the environment. Schedule your energy audit here to start the process of saving energy for the summer today.

Save Energy with Kirby Electric

As Seattle’s premier electric company, Kirby Electric specializes in commercial and industrial contracting. We offer electrical services that best fit your building’s needs and present energy management solutions. Such solutions provide economically and environmentally beneficial services. Contact us today and request a quote at 253-859-2000 or online here to learn more about our services.

12 Apr 2017
office lighting

Office Lighting: 4 Costly Mistakes to Avoid

As you may know, there are countless lighting options available and every office space has its own lighting needs. Unfortunately, there are common mistakes that people tend to make when it comes to lighting that works best for their own office environment. Here at Kirby Electric, our services will provide our customers with more efficient lighting, while making sure they save money every time the lights turn on. Read on to discover the four costly mistakes that people make when choosing office lighting and learn how to avoid them.

Choosing the Wrong Type of Office Lighting

When choosing lighting for an office space, one should keep in mind that not all areas of the office can rely on one standard type of lighting. For example, the entrance might require a different type of lighting compared to the receptionist area or the executive’s office. It is important to select just the right wattage of lighting in order to encourage a productive and positive work environment. If the wattage is too low, it can create a gloomy atmosphere. When the wattage is too high, the lighting can be too harsh and taxing on the eyes.

Selecting Lights Without Planning

In order to choose the correct type of lighting, it is crucial to clearly plan out what type of lighting will work best for your office and to list all the factors that may affect your buying choices.  Like any other add-ons in the office, lights must be well planned for before they can be purchased. Also, it is advised to plan and figure out where the lighting should be installed and what the budget for lighting would be to avoid overspending. Having a strategy and a working plan will help you select the best lighting for your work space. Best of all, it will minimize the risk of making misguided lighting selections and facing disappointments down the line.

Not Taking Advantage of Natural Lighting

A common mistake that people make in regards to office lighting is not taking advantage of natural lighting.  Incorporating more natural light in your office creates a comfortable and healthy environment for employees, customers, and potential clients. Natural lighting can help save on energy costs, which equates to spending less money. Office workers who are more exposed to natural lighting tend to be healthier, happier, more productive, and alert. If there are windows in the office, it is a good idea to encourage employees to utilize and rely more on free light as much as possible.

Improper Installation

Although it might be tempting to install lighting in an office by yourself, it is generally advised to leave the installation to professionals. Occasionally, there are those who attempt to install and fix the lighting in an office themselves, which often results in lights being handled in the wrong manner. Lights should always be installed by professionals, since being around electric accessories could be dangerous. If not installed properly, one could face possible hazards such as burns, shocks, and electrocution. Improper lighting installation can also result in the lighting system failing to work, or it may not light the office as expected.

About Kirby Electric

Kirby Electric, Inc. is a premier electrical contractor specializing in commercial and industrial electrical construction. Our dedicated and knowledgeable team of electricians, low voltage technicians and office staff are led by senior leadership whose core philosophy is consistently delivering exceptional service. Kirby Electric offers a wide array of services to meet the needs of our customers and ensure a smooth operation of their facilities. Learn more about our services by contacting us online or calling 253-859-2000.

20 Mar 2017
Low Voltage

Low Voltage Products at Kirby Electric

Did you know Kirby Electric offers low voltage systems along with their other great electrical services? Kirby Electric is pleased to offer clients fire alarm design and installation, 24 hour UL Fire monitoring service, security, CCTV, and telecommunication cabling services in the commercial and industrial markets. Explore this blog to learn about our low voltage products that can benefit your building today.

Fire Alarm Systems

Installing low voltage fire alarm systems helps save lives, protect people, and minimize costly business assets from being destroyed. A fire alarm system is crucial to ensure safety of everyone on the premises, while minimizing property loss in the event of a fire. At Kirby Electric, our installation teams are trained and certified in addressable fire alarm systems, voice evacuation systems, UL Fire RF radio communications, Area of Rescue/Refuge Assistance Systems (AOR), and Emergency Responder Radio Communications Systems (ERRCS). We also work with local fire departments to help meet individual needs and codes of each community.

CCTV Video Cameras

Information is key and with a CCTV Video camera system recording the happenings around your business, you can have the information you need. Here are some of the CCTV solutions that Kirby Electric offers: Indoor/outdoor cameras, mini-dome cameras, night vision cameras, Pan/Tilt/Zoom cameras, Digital Video Recorders (DVR), Network Video Recorders (NVR), and flat panel monitors.

Voice and Data Network Cabling

To have a successful communications system, it is important to have reliable structured cabling. We offer innovative low voltage cabling solutions for commercial sites. Expect to receive proper installation of industry-leading products to ensure that everything is performing at its peak. Plus, we have worked with a variety of industries for our voice and data network cabling in the Seattle, Tacoma, and Bellevue areas such as healthcare, education, travel, tourism, and government institutions. Our voice and data network cabling teams will provide you with the best customer service and equipment available.

Security Systems

We also strive to provide you with the most advanced state-of-the-art low voltage security systems in the industry today. Our security experts work with you to recognize the security needs of your business and provide you with customized solutions that are right for your business—nothing more, nothing less. No high-pressure sales pushing products you do not need.

About Kirby Electric

Kirby Electric, Inc. is a premier electrical contractor specializing in commercial and industrial electrical construction. Our dedicated and knowledgeable team of electricians, low voltage technicians and office staff are led by senior leadership whose core philosophy is consistently delivering exceptional service. Kirby Electric offers a wide array of services to meet the needs of our customers and ensure a smooth operation of their facilities. Learn more about our services by contacting us online or calling 253-859-2000.

 

15 Feb 2017
Excellent Electrician - Kirby Electric

Which Qualifications Make For an Excellent Electrician?

When it comes to being an electrician, there is more to the job than being certified. While certification is mandatory, an excellent electrician typically has all of the following qualities and characteristics that we look for when bringing on someone new.

Academically-Minded

We understand a college degree is not necessary in order to become an electrician, but a high school diploma certainly is! At Kirby Electric we stress the importance of having a studious background and an ongoing willingness to learn and adapt. The following intellectual skills are what we look for in an excellent electrician.

Basic Algebra – It is typical to encounter some form of algebra throughout day-to-day work activities as an electrician. If you are feeling unsure about your algebraic capabilities, enroll in your local community college to brush up on your skills.

Reading & Writing Comprehension – Blueprints, documents, memos and more. All of these are part of your daily job as an electrician. What we care about is how well you can effectively communicate to others along with understanding written and verbal communication in return.

Critical Thinking – Assessing a situation, critically thinking, and analyzing before acting can save you time and money. That is why on every jobsite this may be the most important skill to master. Smart decision making is why Kirby Electric is the best in the Greater Puget Sound region.

Time Management

An excellent electrician can manage his time wisely. This is a skill often learned not taught, but an important one to say the least. We care about our customers, and consider their time just as valuable as ours. When we set a date of completion, we mean it.

Team-Oriented

When joining Kirby Electric, you are joining a team of highly trained and skilled professionals. An excellent electrician has the ability to seamlessly integrate their work style with others. Along with a team-oriented mindset, comes great communication and listening skills as well.

Superb Customer-Service

Nothing wows our customers more than our excellent customer service. Our dedicated and knowledgeable team of electricians is led by senior leadership whose core philosophy is focused on consistently delivering exceptional customer service.

Kirby Electric is Hiring!

Did you know Kirby Electric is currently hiring? If you are looking for a vibrant work environment that offers career growth and full benefits, including paid vacation, a 401K plan, health benefits and paid holidays, consider a future with Kirby Electric. Our open positions can be found here.

Join Our Team – Apply Online Today

Do you think you have what it takes to be an excellent electrician or employee with Kirby? Apply here. Kirby Electric is a premier electrical contractor specializing in commercial and industrial electrical construction.  With over 20 years of experience serving the Greater Puget Sound area and Western Washington, we have acquired a solid, loyal growing customer base. Help us grow even more!  Learn more about our services here. Have questions? Contact us online or by calling 253-859-2000. We look forward to hearing from you.

20 Jan 2017

Energy Saving Solutions for Commercial Buildings

It is no secret that energy bills for commercial buildings can run rather high. Moreover, businesses may find it rather difficult to find efficient solutions to reduce them. According to the American Council for an Energy-Efficient Economy, 20% of the energy consumed nationwide is from commercial buildings. Explore our blog for the top 4 energy saving solutions to help your commercial building reduce energy bills today.

Incorporate Efficient Lighting

One of the easiest and economical ways to reduce energy bills is installing energy efficient lighting solutions. LED technologies continue to improve and advance, which makes energy solutions vaster than ever before. Options include re-lamping, retrofitting, incorporating replacement products, and more for commercial buildings to accomplish substantial savings through efficient lighting.

Implement Reduction Strategies

Two main ways to save money on energy bills are:

  1. Figuring out how to pay for less energy = supply side savings
  2. Figuring out how to use less energy = demand side savings

Shifting energy usage habits will provide great results. Meaning, reducing top demand with more energy efficient lighting, pumps and vital strategic solutions will aide in energy bill savings. The lower the top demand and/or capacity, the less you pay for power.

Energy Usage Analysis

In order to figure out how a commercial building consumes energy, it is imperative to understand the power usage patterns. Understanding where and how energy is consumed can result in reduced energy costs and consumption overall.

Energy Products

Nowadays, one top trend for businesses is to meet sustainability initiatives. For example, implementing wind technology or solar panels are great technologies that reduce energy usage and will help businesses become less dependent on utility companies. For inside, LED light bulbs (light emitting diode) for lamps and other utilities that require light bulbs are beneficial for energy efficiency as well. In comparison, incandescent bulbs cost approximately 5-10 times the initial price of the bulb alone. LED light bulbs will last up to 10 times as long as compact fluorescents and the cost of the bulbs. Overall, smart energy products are efficient ones.

About Kirby Electric

Kirby Electric, Inc. is a premier electrical contractor specializing in commercial and industrial electrical construction. Our dedicated and knowledgeable team of electricians, low voltage technicians and office staff are led by senior leadership whose core philosophy is consistently delivering exceptional service. Kirby Electric offers a wide array of services to meet the needs of our customers and ensure a smooth operation of their facilities. Learn more about our services by calling 253-859-2000.

24 May 2016

All About LED Lighting

In recent years, there has been advanced improvements in lighting technology for light-emitting diode (LED) bulbs. Known for energy-efficiency, LED bulbs continue to excel in durability and lighting quality. According to energy.gov, LED lighting has the greatest potential impact on energy savings and the future of lighting in the United States. Explore this blog to get all the information you need to know about LED lighting and how it can benefit your home.

Energy Savings

Did you know that residential LEDs use approximately 75% less energy and last 25 times longer than incandescent lighting? Plus, by selecting a quality LED bulb, they can last beyond 25,000 hours, which is equivalent to over three years if used the entire 24 hours each day! Moreover, regular light bulbs discharge 90 percent its energy as heat, while LED bulbs retain heat and use energy more efficiently. Starting in 2012, relatively $675 million dollars was saved when approximately 49 million LEDs were equipped in the U.S. Shifting to LED lights altogether for the next 20 years could save the U.S. $250 billion in energy costs and can also positively impact the environment by evading  1,800 million metric tons of carbon emissions!

LED Lighting Differentiation

Light source: Compared to other light bulbs (such as incandescent and CFL’s), the LED light source size is miniscule compared to the size of a pepper fleck. Also, the light source colors are combined with red, blue and green to produce a white light.

Direction: LEDs also radiate light in a certain direction, which lessens the need for diffusers and reflectors that are used to trap light. Also, this component helps with efficiency for a variety of uses (such as recessed downlights or task lighting).

Kitchen Under-Cabinet Lighting

LEDs are also excellent for kitchens, countertops and reading recipes. Essentially, the color can appear more “cool”, which is typically preferable for kitchen areas. It is important to understand that there could possibly be “shadowing” in your selected space and also always check and compare which products will best fit your preferences.

Recessed Downlights

Recessed downlights are regularly used in a variety of spaces such as bathrooms, hallways, offices, kitchens, and beyond. According to energy.gov, DOE has estimated that there is about 500 million recessed downlights in U.S. homes that have already been installed and over 20 million are sold every year. Not to mention, CFL and LED technology is able to reduce downlight wattage by 75% or more.

Visit energy.gov/energysaver/led-lighting for more information regarding LED technology and the additional benefits for your home.

About Kirby Electric

Kirby Electric, Inc. is a premier electrical contractor specializing in commercial and industrial electrical construction. Our dedicated and knowledgeable team of electricians, low voltage technicians and office staff are led by senior leadership whose core philosophy is consistently delivering exceptional service. Kirby Electric offers a wide array of services to meet the needs of our customers and ensure a smooth operation of their facilities. Learn more about our services by calling 253-859-2000.

22 Apr 2016

Incorporate Green Lighting With Lighting Retrofits!

Did you know lighting accounts for more than 25% of energy used in most buildings? Together we can change this. Try making a difference this Earth Day and go green. Get your lighting package upgraded with Kirby Electric’s lighting retrofits. Check out how you can make a difference and what is in it for you.

Safety

As an employer, safety should be a top priority. Poorly lit warehouses can not only be dangerous, but extremely uninviting and unpleasant to work in. Create a more enjoyable and safer atmosphere with a new lighting package supplied and installed by us for you. Plus, well-lit workspaces keep your employees energized throughout the day, potentially increasing productivity!

Lower Utility Bills

Cut costs potentially in half with more efficient warehouse lighting! With over 20 years of experience, we have been on the front end of offering customers the most effective green lighting solutions for their buildings. By opting-in for a greener lighting retrofit, you can save money every time you switch on the lights.

Rebates

When you install green lighting, it can result in to rebates for your office building or warehouse. We work  in concert with the utility companies to provide lighting rebates back to you for implementing upgrades to your lighting.

Customization

Seeking a unique look and feel for your office space? We offer experienced administration, estimators, a design specialist and project managers that work with general contractors and owners to present a comprehensive green lighting design with competitive pricing.

The Planet!

Do your part. Give back to the planet by cutting down on energy consumption in your warehouse or office building. Some of our projects have reduced energy consumption by over 50 percent! Remember, resources are limited. This Earth Day, discover your options for green lighting with Kirby Electric.

About Kirby Electric

Kirby Electric, Inc. is a premier electrical contractor specializing in commercial and industrial electrical construction. Our dedicated and knowledgeable team of electricians, low voltage technicians and office staff are led by senior leadership whose core philosophy is consistently delivering exceptional service. Kirby Electric offers a wide array of services to meet the needs of our customers and ensure a smooth operation of their facilities. Learn more about our services by calling 253-859-2000 or contacting us online.

28 Mar 2016

How to Save Energy in a Commercial Building

Did you know the average commercial building wastes 30 percent of the energy it consumes? Additionally, $200 billion is spent annually on electricity and natural gas for commercial buildings, which contributes to nearly half of our nation’s greenhouse gas emissions. As startling as that reality is, there’s plenty of ways to save energy.  Read on to check out some low cost improvements that can be made for reducing energy consumption in your office or commercial building.

Perform a Nighttime Audit

For a commercial building, it is likely a large portion of excess energy is being wasted at night. This is why an energy audit conducted after hours could help determine which sources of waste could be minimized or all together eliminated.

Monthly Maintenance

Each month, make a habit of checking and maintaining the cooling and heating equipment used in the commercial facility. This will help make sure everything is working correctly and efficiently.

Limit Lighting

Are lights turned off when they should be? It’s estimated that lighting consumes 25 to 30 percent of energy in commercial buildings. Depending on the space, free natural lighting from windows can even suffice over traditional lights. Not to mention, it’s free! Keeping lights off when not in use can not only reduce energy consumption, but it can also lower lighting expenses by 10 to 40 percent.

Enable Sleep Settings

Each office computer is equipped with a power management function. This should be enabled on each monitor so that it instantly goes to sleep when not in use. Additionally, all sleep functions should be enabled on printers, fax machines, copiers, scanners, and other various devices.

Unplug

Even when equipment is in standby or sleep mode, it still eats energy. For example, one building found that eight percent of their annual electric bill was allocated to their standby power alone. Luckily, there’s an easy fix to this, unplug what’s not in use! Talk with your office’s IT department or your office manager about whether unplugging certain products at night is a viable solution to saving money and energy.

Heating & Cooling

Set the thermostat to a lower temperature when the commercial building is not occupied. Have you checked the filters? They can help reduce energy usage by changing them out monthly. Also, make sure your vents are completely unblocked. As much as 25 percent more energy is required for air distribution when vents are blocked by furniture.

Educate!

There is no more affordable way to limit energy consumption, than basic energy education! Make it known how much energy is being wasted when certain actions occur. Plus, prospective employees want to work for an environmentally conscientious company.

Commercial Energy Management Programs

Did you know you can lower your business’s energy bills without engaging in a substantial investment? Puget Sound Energy offers commercial energy management programs that can be tailored to fit your building’s needs. The programs help identify problem areas, and provide suggestions along with incentives that can cover some or all of your implementation costs.

About Kirby Electric

Kirby Electric, Inc. is a premier electrical contractor specializing in commercial and industrial electrical construction. Our dedicated and knowledgeable team of electricians, low voltage technicians and office staff are led by senior leadership whose core philosophy is consistently delivering exceptional service. Kirby Electric offers a wide array of services to meet the needs of our customers and ensure a smooth operation of their facilities. Learn more about our services by calling 253-859-2000 or contacting us online.

(Photo courtesy of pixabay.com)

08 Feb 2016

4 Preparation Tips for Workplace Power Outages

Workplace power outages happen.  Are you aware of an emergency plan at your work in case of a major power outage? According to the American Red Cross, around 40 percent of small businesses do not reopen after major disasters occur due to insufficient preparation or lack of a proper backup system. In contrast, having an adequate plan arranged ahead of time will ultimately help eliminate the difficulties of doing business during a power outage. To make sure your business and employees are safe and prepared, here are 4 quick tips to keep in mind if the power goes out at work.

1.Door Signage

At times, workplace power outages may require the business to close down for the day because work is unable to be completed or continued. It is imperative for staff to post a sign on the front door that allows customers and employees (who have not arrived yet) understand why the business is closed during regular business hours.

2. Stock Flashlights

One essential item you must have is a flashlight. Make sure there is one stored in the office and the stock room at all times. Also, having backup flashlights is an additional light source that will help you recognize which switches you need to flip to potentially bring the power back on. During workplace power outage, flashlights can bring security for workers and less panic as everyone can function and navigate around the room. Most importantly, don’t forget to have additional batteries in store just for convenience!

3. Prepare for Security Risks

Some businesses may encounter security risks during power outages. If you have security cameras or any electric powered protection devices, you may want to be cautious and contact local authorities to make sure your business and fellow employees are safe. You never know how long the electricity could be out of service. Make sure you act accordingly!

4. Food/Water

You never know how long a power outage will last. For safety’s sake, stock-up on extra food and water for employees and/or customers. Authorities may require you to stay inside your business for security or safety reasons during a workplace power outage, so always prepare for the worst and hope for the best.

About Kirby Electric

Kirby Electric, Inc. is a premier electrical contractor specializing in commercial and industrial electrical construction. Our dedicated and knowledgeable team of electricians, low voltage technicians and office staff are led by senior leadership whose core philosophy is consistently delivering exceptional service. Kirby Electric offers a wide array of services to meet the needs of our customers and ensure a smooth operation of their facilities. Learn more about our services by calling 253-859-2000.

Image Courtesy of www.Pixabay.com

04 Jan 2016

Ways You Could be Losing Energy in the Winter Time


When winter arrives, the chilled weather causes people to stay inside to keep warm and cozy. Unfortunately, this causes a lot of folks to use a ton of energy. Whether it means using a furnace increasing electricity use, bills tend to be higher in the winter because of this. On top of holiday spending with purchasing gifts, you don’t need extra bills to dampen your seasonal spirits! Discover how you may be losing energy in the winter and how to avoid costly energy bills.

  1. Close your Windows and Doors

According to The Energy Information Administration, approximately one-third of heat loss in homes occurs from just your windows and doors alone. With that being said, one of the best ways to prevent heat loss is to simply add blinds or draperies to help trap the heat to establish a thermal barrier. It is also critical to note that indoor cooling won’t occur when blinds or draperies are open during the early day time. This actually brings direct solar gain to your home to eliminate the cooling.

  1. Thermostat Set Too High

A common mistake everyone may go through in their homes is setting their thermostat high for various reasons such as: trying to make the house warmer the fastest way possible, or to maintain the heat throughout the day. Energy experts have acknowledged that households during a 24 hour period can save around 3 percent on energy bills for every lower degree you set on the thermostat. Also, do you have a digital programmable thermostat? You can actually adjust when you want your thermostat to turn on and off any time of the day. One suggestion is to have your thermostat placed at a moderate temperature of 68 degrees as you are up and about. Then, set it lower while you are out of the house or sleeping. This way, you can save around 5% to 15% a year on your heating bill!

  1. Inefficient Lighting

Are you using LED/fluorescent bulbs in your household? It may be time to do so if you haven’t considered them for the winter! Adding these bulbs could essentially save you $75 per year. Also, another reason to consider LED holiday lights is because older lights use approximately 10 times the energy of newer lights. Plus, LED lights are safer because of the fact they are cool burning.

  1. Electronic Tips

Staying at home means lounging around, which will probably cause you to watch TV and use all sorts of electronic devices. Here are a few ideas to keep in mind on how electronics are contributing to energy usage in your home:

  1. Standby mode on electronics: Even if you turn off plugged in devices and set to standby mode, this is still using energy to power little things such as displaying the time.
  2. Try considering purchasing a laptop over a desktop computer; laptops initially use less energy and don’t need to be permanently plugged in.
  3. Make sure to unplug fully charged electronics or batteries. Even at 100%, some chargers will continue to charge even when the device is not plugged in.

Want more tips? Check out energy.gov for more incentives on how to save up on your energy bill this winter.

About Kirby Electric 

Kirby Electric, Inc. is a premier electrical contractor specializing in commercial and industrial electrical construction. Our dedicated and knowledgeable team of electricians, low voltage technicians and office staff are led by senior leadership whose core philosophy is consistently delivering exceptional service. Kirby Electric offers a wide array of services to meet the needs of our customers and ensure a smooth operation of their facilities. Learn more about our services by calling 253-859-2000.

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