Your Business



Articles in this section are intended to help electrical contractors grow and improve their businesses, from financial and legal advice to creating a service and maintenance department. You’ll find articles on estimating projects and more below. 

Fluke 1730 three-phase energy logger

Productivity loss, equipment damage, facility downtime and increased energy use are only some of the problems that poor power quality (PQ) can create.

The solar power industry, like much commerce today, thrives on innovation and the drive to do more with less. Recently, one industry leader set a new standard when it announced a solar-panel technology with unprecedented levels of efficiency.

While employment in the construction sector has generally enjoyed steady growth over the last 20 months, one element has remained stubbornly weak: the number of skilled workers. The problem is not new, and it persists.

The high price of renewables relative to traditional fuel sources is their biggest drawback. Although the alternative-energy industry has made great strides in bringing down upfront costs, the perception remains that it is a long way from parity with fossil fuels.

More on Your Business

The Energy Bar

Power supply design determines an appliance’s energy profile On the plane coming home from the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers Power Engineering Society meeting, I was proofreading a paper that proposed to convert our way of looking at power-quality phenomena from sags, swells, tra

Tips of the Trade (Show)

Trade shows are a big part of our industry. The current economy means contractors and vendors are being more prudent with company spending. Executives are questioning why they should attend conventions. There is a simple answer, especially during these difficult times: value.

L.A.'s New Landmarks

Los Angeles has two new landmarks, dramatic additions to a town replete with drama. Both are designed by PritzkerPrize-winning architects: Walt Disney Concert Hall by Los Angeles-based Frank O. Gehry and the Cathedral of Our Lady of Angels by Spain’s Jose Rafael Moneo.

The Sleeping Giant

In our 2004 Survey of the Electrical Contractor, published in last month’s issue, we found on average 46 percent of our respondents’ revenue came from design-build projects.

Required: Revised Thinking

It’s important to change with the times Project specifications have evolved over the years, but nothing has equaled the proposed revisions to the specifications section that have developed recently.

In a Rush

Inrush and the laws of physics Trying to explain power quality phenomena and even electrical concepts in general often results in attempts to translate them into a different domain, such as the mechanical world.

System Performance Criteria

Customers are increasingly using performance specifications to define power, communications and control systems for commercial, industrial and institutional facilities.