The 6 types of fire extinguisher & when to use them
All Australian workplaces must comply with the fire safety standards set out in the Work Health and Safety Regulation 2011, with many states having their own additional regulations around fire safety and emergency training. Yet, according to research, only 13% of people know what class of extinguisher to use on what kind of fire.
In the following we set out the 6 basic types of extinguisher installed in industrial and commercial premises in Australia and the class of fire they can be used on. It is important to understand that using the wrong type of extinguisher on a fire can be highly dangerous.
Class A extinguishers are used on fires that involve paper, fabrics and textiles, wood-based products, plastics and rubber-based products.
Class B extinguishers are used on fires that started as a result of flammable or combustible liquids, such as chemical-based cleaning products, electrical contact cleaner and lubricants.
Class C extinguishers are used on fires started by flammable gases and can potentially extinguish the fire before pressure builds.
Class D extinguishers are used for fires started by combustible metals, such as sodium, potassium, uranium, lithium, plutonium and calcium, and are often used in laboratories. The most common Class D fires involve magnesium and titanium.
Class E extinguishers are used to stop fires in electrically energised equipment, including fires in equipment that requires electricity or a circuit to operate.
Class F extinguishers (fire blankets) help to control fires caused by cooking oils and fat-based products, such as could occur in a commercial kitchen.
To meet Australian Standards and workplace OH&S regulations, you must have the correct portable extinguishers installed in your workplace and personnel who are trained in their use. This training must be refreshed every two years.
One way to protect your business and employees against the risk of electrical fire is to ensure you adhere to a regular test-tagging schedule, where the safety of any electrical equipment is assessed by qualified electricians. If you work in a ‘high-risk operating environment’, such as a kitchen, warehouse or factory, you need to have your equipment test-tagged every 12 months.
To book your electrical equipment safety test, call the experts at Caslec on 1300 659 273 today.
Cat 5e, Cat 6 & Cat 6A Cable: which is best for your network?
One of the most common questions asked when it comes to industrial and commercial network design and data cable installation is, which category of cable is best suited to my needs? In the following we describe the differences between Cat 5e, 6 and 6a cable, and why you might choose one over the other.
All three categories of cable look the same from the outside and they all have the same RJ-45 end, which can plug into the Ethernet jacks on your computers, routers and switches. This, however, is where the similarity ends, as each has distinct differences that can impact on which one you decide to install.
Firstly, there is a noticeable difference in price, with each category costing more per metre than the previous category. However, just because later categories are more advanced in terms of performance, doesn’t necessarily mean you have to install the more expensive cable; this very much depends on the current and future demands placed on your network.
About 15 years ago, when it was first released, Cat 5e cable (the ‘e’ stands for ‘enhanced’) was the first glimpse of the potential of a 1 Gigabit network, although at that time, the hardware required to support it was prohibitively expensive for the average user. Over time, as the cost of the hardware decreases, 5e has become the minimum standard in data cable, eventually rendering Cat 5 obsolete.
Made up of 24 gauge twisted pair wires, the 5e delivers 1 Gigabit network speed at distances up to 328 feet. While Cat 5 was potentially capable of 1 Gigabit speeds (dependent on the network connections), 5e incorporated improvements in isolation between the wires, reducing the level of ‘crosstalk’ — the interference between the wires — and increased the frequency of the cable up to 100MHz.
Although Cat 6 cables have been around for just for a few years less than Cat 5, historically the 10 Gigabit cable has been used for the backbone of networks, with 5e being run to individual workstations. This is not only due to cost but also because the bandwidth of the Cat 6 can only run to 164 feet. Beyond this distance, the bandwidth can rapidly decrease to 1 Gigabit, the same as the 5e.
Physically, the Cat 6 is made up of either 23 or 24 gauge twisted pair wires, with 2 plus twists per centimetre (as compared to 1.5–2 in the 5e). The frequency in the Cat 6 has increased to 200MHz, which can also potentially increase crosstalk. For this reason, the Cat 6 cable has an internal nylon spline and is contained within a thick exterior sheath. In some cases, this can eliminate crosstalk completely.
The Cat 6a (‘a’ stands for ‘augmented’) is the most advanced version of data cable, anticipating a future where the 10G network is the standard. It not only has a bandwidth distance of the full 328 feet of Ethernet cable, but its frequency has doubled to 500MHz, which further improves its range. That said, Cat 6a is also the most expensive of the cable options.
Which cable should you choose?
Generally, the consensus seems to be that Cat 5e 1GB cable is currently adequate for a network where most servers are based in the Cloud, but may not support network demands in the future. Again, this is very much dependent on your business or industry’s needs in terms of network design and use.
Cats 6 and 6a clearly future-proof your network in terms of faster data speeds, greater range and reduced crosstalk, but gaining these benefits relies on your router being gigabit-compatible and your computers being gigabit-capable. It’s also important to point out that data speed is not the same as Internet speed. Upgrading your data cable to 6a is not going to have an impact on the speed of your internet; rather it will improve data transfer, upload and download times. Therefore, the choice of cable really boils down to what you’re using your network for, and how you think you’re going to use it in the future.
Before making any decisions about data cable installation or upgrade, talk to an expert Caslec electrician and we’ll help you find the right solution for your business or industry’s network needs. Call us on 1300 659 273 today.
How to reduce your business’ energy use & save money
Keeping costs down is a concern for any business. Effective management of costs means increased cash flow, and that can only mean good things for the company. As it turns out, one of the most effective ways to cut costs for your business is to keep your energy use down.
Who’s Your Supplier?
If you are looking to reduce your energy costs, you might want to consider changing suppliers. Check out some of the deals being offered by suppliers in your area, most of which will have negotiable tariff rates. Do a bit of research and talk to a consultant or two about your particular business’ energy use, so you can work out a plan that not only meets your needs but reduces your costs.
Most of what you can do to reduce your energy usage relies on making a number of simple changes within the workplace. There are probably many habits you and your colleagues have, which are increasing business energy costs. For instance, if you routinely keep computers and other electronics on at night, make it a rule that everything is switched off at the socket when the office is empty. Or engage your commercial electrician to install motion sensors to switch the lighting on and off when staff enter or leave a room. These simple steps will dramatically reduce energy consumption and save on your power bills..
A particularly effective means of reducing the power usage in your business is having an energy efficient electrical installation. If you use a professional team of electricians who really know what they’re doing, you’ll find yourself with an installation that is set up from the start, to be much more efficient in its use of energy. This means that most of the hard work is done for you. Along with concerted efforts to reduce your energy usage, you can
save your business a great deal of money in the long-term.
Main causes of power outages
No matter where you are, power outages can happen anytime. That’s why in today’s blog, commercial electricians from Caslec would like to point out some major causes of electricity failures and who you should contact when such event occurs.
Nothing brings the household together quite like an unexpected electricity outage. While playing games or eating dinner under candlelights can be fun for children, power faults are no joke.
Electricity power outages usually occur without any warning and can be stressful if you don’t know the proper steps to getting out of the dark. To make things easier for you, we prepared this article, so you will know what to do when the power is out.
Common causes of power outages
Sydney’s weather can be a real problem when high winds or flying debris damage power lines. Torrential rains and flooding can also damage electrical infrastructure.
A temporary increase in the power supply voltage can result in an electricity outage. These are usually caused by lightning strikes, tripped circuit breakers or short circuits.
Motoring accidents resulting in broken poles or causing power lines to touch can lead to an outage.
For the safety reasons, electricity supplies are often disconnected in bushfire emergency.
What you should do if there is a power outage
When the power goes out, calling your retailer might be your first thought. While your retailers sell electricity to homes and businesses across the country, they are purchasing it from the commercial power distributing companies. These companies own and operate the poles, wires, etc, so they are responsible for their maintenance.
Your retailer will usually help you to get in touch with the right people to get your electricity back; they actually can’t do as much as distributors.
Alternatively, during an outage, they can provide you with information about when the power should be switched back on.
If the outage is widespread, the phone lines could be busy with many people calling for information. In this case, electricity distributing companies often prepare pre-recorded messages offering updates on the situation.
3 tips on how to find good industrial electricians.
In today’s article, Caslec industrial electricians would like to tell you about the differences between residential and industrial electricians, so it could help you find the right professional for your needs.
You would typically assume that the rules of finding a good industrial electrician are the same for every type of specialist in the industry. In a sense, you are correct, but at the same time, it’s worth becoming familiar with the set of skills that an industrial electrician has and the type of training they undertake to get where they are in their profession or trade.
Industrial electricians work in specific environments and over time, either by training or through experience on the job, have distinct, knowledge of particular electrical installations and types of equipment. For example robotics and other highly specialised electrical equipment that might be used in the mining or manufacturing industry.
As the field of expertise is very broad, most of the industrial electricians choose to specialise in certain areas. One of the very popular in the last ten years is the motor vehicle industry. As you would probably be aware, every model of the vehicle produced these days has new and specialised electrical equipment and naturally, this requires highly specialised technical expertise to install, repair and maintain.
So what are the characteristics of a good industrial electrician that might make choosing one easier for you?
Let’s take a look at some of the things you should pay attention to:
- Good industrial electricians have the experience and knowledge and, most importantly, the training required to work with highly specialised pieces of electrical equipment. It is of particular importance to check that their training is of sufficient depth to be able to work with the equipment required efficiently.
- They should always possess the capacity to communicate well and be a good team player so that they can work as a part of a harmonious work environment.
- Working as a part of an overall team is one thing, but specialised team members such as industrial electricians should also be able to communicate effectively with customers where necessary.
Naturally, every work environment has particular skill requirements and supervisors need to be careful to ensure that the industrial electrician they choose ticks every box, not just those listed above.
If you are still not sure about which industrial electricians you should choose.
How to buy and use energy efficient appliances
Using energy efficient appliances has become very popular in Australia over the last few years, but it can be hard to know what to look for.
In today’s article by Caslec commercial electricians, we would like to list some simple steps that can help in choosing the right product.
Energy star rating
The item’s energy star rating can help in making a quick judgement about its energy efficiency. The more star, the more energy efficient the appliance is.
Guides and product manuals
Many appliances have energy saving functions built in. It’s important to read the manual to learn how these can be used as it can save you a lot of money.
Electrical appliances can be hazardous to dispose of, so it’s worth to find a retailer that can collect old items when they deliver the new product.
If your primary motivation for investing in energy efficient products is to save money, then remember the appliances that are not in use should be unplugged rather than left on standby. New televisions should also be set for the ‘home use’ mode which lowers the brightness on the screen and saves power.
For a free assessment of your circumstances contact Caslec Commercial Electricians in Sydney.
What’s involved in Energy Audit Report?
A comprehensive Energy Audit Report obtained by Caslec Industrial Electricians is an in-depth study into power consumption within your company premises.
Scope of Work:
· Applying a data logger to the main switchboard for approximately 7 days, monitoring power, lighting and air conditioning system which measures and records the amps, voltages and harmonics being drawn from each circuit.
· Entering every room throughout the premises to count all electrical equipment.
· Identifying sub-boards and whether they require further data logging to measure accuracy.
· Producing a graphical interpretation of the monitored results.
· Formal presentation of the results and assistance in the implementation if required.
Energy Audit covers power, lighting, air conditioning and all other circuits that are used in your company buildings. Monitoring the power consumption over a week or longer will identify peak usage periods, highlight wastage, such as consumption in the evenings and weekends as well as inefficiency through load balance.
Have a look at some of our most common findings, our easy solutions and some more complexed ones.
Are you sure that your timers and sensors are working correctly? Did you know that due to power outages or human intervention they might not be working at all??
It’s time to check it.
On many occasions we have found hot water urns left on boil 24 hours a day, 7 days a week…wasting a huge amount of energy. Newer models are already programmed to turn off during out of hours or retrograde a timer onto older units.
Implementing energy saving company policies is an easy solution that saves a lot of money. Also, timers and sensors on lighting to ensure only security lighting system is left on when the building is not in use or upgrading older equipment to newer, more energy efficient products.
For a free assessment of your circumstances contact Caslec Industrial Electricians in Sydney.
Knowledge is power – electrical safety
In today’s blog, we would like to discuss electrical safety in your workplace. As the commercial electricians company in Sydney, the safe work environment is the priority for us. So we would like to give you a couple of tips that could protect you and your staff from potential electrical hazards.
If you are working on electrical circuits or with electrical equipment, you need to follow some golden safety rules.
Commercial Electricians in Sydney Safety Tips
- Stay away from energised electrical circuits.
Sounds obvious yes! But if something bad happens you probably won’t get a second chance.
- Think about electrical devices as if they were live or energised
- Make sure you always disconnect the power source before servicing or repairing any electrical device
- Use only equipment with non-conducting handles
- Don’t use metallic rulers or pencils.
- Take off rings, watches etc when working with electrical devices. Unfortunately, this rule is quite easy to forget.
- If it’s necessary to handle some plugged in equipment, make sure your hands are dry and if possible wear protective clothes
- If possible, work with one hand only.
Have you ever read about current passing through human body??
Here’s more info:
- Try not to use electrical equipment in cold rooms or other areas where condensation is likely.
- If water or a chemical is spilt onto equipment, shut off power at the main switch
- If someone comes in contact with a live electrical conductor, don’t touch the equipment or the person.
- Devices that produce a “tingle” should be reported for repair
- Drain capacitors before working near them and keep the short circuit on the terminals to prevent electrical shock
- Don’t touch another’s person equipment unless instructed to do so
- Secure all electric contacts and conductors so no one can accidentally get in contact with them
- Don’t handle electrical equipment when your body is wet or when standing on a wet floor
- If it’s necessary to touch electrical equipment use the back of your hand. To avoid “freezing” to the conductor
- Don’t keep highly flammable liquids near electrical equipment
And for the end please have a look at a typical example of ignorance when it comes to basic electrical safety
Need professional help in your industrial area??
Energy efficient company buildings – Caslec Commercial Electricians
As a leading commercial electricians company in Sydney, we would like to come up with weekly advice on how to make your business a better place to work for you and your employees.
Industrial properties in Sydney are one of the main electrical energy consumers in Australia. Heating, lighting, and office equipment use large amounts of energy. However, in today’s article, we would like to give you a range of steps companies can take to make their buildings more energy efficient.
- Industrial properties should have energy management plans that regulate the use of lighting, cooling and heating. The energy saving strategy should include optimising the usage of appliances to minimise costs while meeting the needs of tenants.
- Energy efficient lighting should be installed together with control sensors used to ensure that lights are on only when they need to be. The interior design of industrial buildings should favour the daylight over artificial one.
- Server rooms should be cooled efficiently with fans or located off-site.
- Offices also should be equipped with energy efficient devices. Old copiers and computers should be replaced with power saving modern alternatives wherever it’s possible.
Studies done by Caslec Commercial Electricians show that also employees are happier and more efficient when working in a healthy office environment.
Need professional help in your industrial area??
Find good industrial electricians in Sydney
I’m sure the idea of finding a decent industrial electrician must stress you out and you have no clue where to start from. It can be quite time-consuming as well. Commercial electricians who specialize in this field develop a different set of skills over time so general household electrical work can sometimes take time for them to adapt to.
Keep it in mind that industrial electricians in Sydney work on building sites, house and land developments or in high-rise construction. The situations which they face every day are totally different to those that may occur in a general household. So it’s good to understand their skills before you decide to choose one.
Industrial electricians have a quite exciting profession as in commercial field they are often challenged to find new creative solutions to problems that arise on-site. Whereas general house wiring is in most of the cases quite straightforward process.
In today’s article, we would like you to pay attention to some characteristics that are important when looking for a good industrial electrician in Sydney.
- A good industrial electrician should be able to adapt to problems as they occur. They work in an environment that is based on constant change. Sometimes it’s hard to work with creative architects and designers who seem to be often changing their mind at the last moment. For example changing the areas of electrical fittings.
- Clients have high expectations that must be met, no matter how unreasonable they sound, good industrial electricians will maintain composure and be able to come up with a solution fast and instill a sense of confidence in the client.
- In a commercial environment, there are many different providers working side-by-side so good industrial electricians in Sydney need to be able to communicate effectively across a wide range of trades and professions.
- A good presentation is also very important because clients expect professionals to always look appropriate. Also, a friendly and helpful attitude is well perceived.
- Previous experience is also an important characteristic of good industrial electricians. As mentioned above, many specialist tasks require specific knowledge and a construction site is an evident spot for it.
- Versatility is the final factor we would like to mention. The best industrial electricians are adaptable and capable of moving between, for example, new factory installation and high rise building site all on the same day.