More Android Apps for Construction Management

If you liked our post on Top 3 Android Apps for Home Improvement Professionals, read on.

Software reviewer Derek Singleton has published an extensive list of must-have apps for architects, engineers, and contractors.  They’re all under the realm of “construction management,” and each review includes average user ratings, device compatibility/OS requirements, and pricing.

Apple’s famous “there’s an app for just about anything” slogan seems to ring just as true for Androids.  The list includes apps to help you:

  • Provide project estimates
  • Prepare for the LEED certification exam
  • Calculate voltage drop (for electricians)
  • Interact with contractors in your community
  • … and more!

Follow the link to read Derek’s post: Android Apps for Construction Management

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Wanted: Your Photos

All lighting project photos are welcome!

We love it when you share your photos of lighting projects with us.  Whether it’s a picture of the new under cabinet fixtures installed in the kitchen or one of you wearing an LED head lamp on your latest hiking trip, it’s exciting to see where all our orders end up.

By now, we’ve received quite a few photos from customers of completed lighting projects.  If you’ve already shared with us, thank you. If you haven’t yet, now’s your chance to be featured in your very own blog post!

Send in your photos via our Contact form (When you see Topic of Question, select “Submit Project Photos”) or just post them on our Facebook wall. We will display them in all their glory here! Also, we’ll send a coupon your way for a discount off your next order.

Thanks again, and can’t wait to see your photos!

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Thank You Lutron – A Great Customer Service Experience

Excellent Customer ServiceWhen I moved into my new home in September 2009 I undertook a number of lighting projects.  The dimmers are probably my favorite addition.  In fact, I wrote a blog post about my dimmer project in my New Home Project series of posts.

One of the coolest Maestro dimmers, in my humble opinion, is a combination light and fan dimmer for ceiling fans.  Lutron calls it a Dual Digital Fade Dimmer / Fan Control and according to the Lutron website

At the touch of a button, dimmer can go immediately to a favorite preset light level, fade-to-off, or adjust manually. Dual controls also consolidate light switches and save space. For fan controls, users can similarly cycle between favorite speeds or adjust manually.

I have nine of these light/fan dimmers in my house to go with my nine ceiling fans (oh yea, we love ceiling fans too – perfect for those NC summers).  Unfortunately, the one in my home office started to have problems last week.  It was really strange.  When I tried to turn on the light the light on the ceiling fan would flash.  It was like my home office was a disco dance floor…not the greatest thing to see bright and early in the morning.  It is kind of fun with the kids later on in the day, but definitely not what I want to see before my first cup of coffee. (more…)

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As Seen on TV: Our Xenon Light Strip

Have you ever seen a cove lighting installation in action?  Our xenon low voltage strip was featured on the DIY network TV show Rescue Renovation!  The episode features a young man who bought his first home from 1000 miles away.  Needless to say, it turned out to be quite a “fixer-upper.”

In this clip, you’ll see the Rescue Renovation team coming in to help.  They use the light strip behind crown molding to accentuate the home’s original cove ceiling.  View the video after the jump! (more…)

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New Home Project: Dimmers

This is the fourth blog post of my New Home Project post series. This series of posts details the lighting projects that I have undertaken in my new home. I had high hopes for these posts.  One of them was that I would write a post shortly after I actually did the project.  Throw that goal out of the window.  I moved into my new home in September 2009.  I guess better late than never…right?

First, a recap of my other projects:

Now, on to my dimmer project (pics below).
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Thomas Kinkade, Before & After

My last post was about artwork lighting, so I thought it would be perfect to show these photos of a Thomas Kinkade painting, before and after a lighting remodel project.

Thomas Kinkade is known as the “Painter of Light,” so it’s only appropriate that his works of art are properly showcased with accent lighting.

As you can see in the “Before” photo, the painting hangs over a brick mantel with no accent lighting of any kind.  (The reflection on the lower part of the painting was caused by the camera flash).

Before

After

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New Home Project: Over Cabinet Lighting

Over Cabinet LightingThis is the third blog post of my New Home Project post series.  This series of posts details the lighting projects that I have undertaken in my new home.  My first post reviewed the installation of our under cabinet lighting and my second post covered the use of microfluorescent T4 fixtures as pantry and closet lighting.  This post will also talk about microfluorescent T4 fixtures, but this time using them as over cabinet lighting in my kitchen.

While my house was under construction, I had the electricians install electrical outlets on either side of my kitchen directly above my cabinets.  These outlets are controlled by a single wall switch.  Once we moved into our home, I measured the total length of the cabinets where I could place the microfluorescent fixtures.
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Beautiful Kitchen Remodel

Check out those fabulous under cabinet lights!  One of our customers recently remodeled his kitchen – copper & walnut countertops, cream cabinets, a new refrigerator, oven, sink, etc. and our xenon under cabinet lights.  He posted pictures on the Garden Web forum of the results, but we wanted to share them on the blog as well! The xenon lights seem to bring out the warmth of the countertops, and the effect is truly fantastic.

Xenon is always a great option for under cabinet lighting because it’s dimmable and doesn’t give off as much heat as halogen. The particular model in these pictures is the Xenon Line Voltage Thin Under Cabinet Light – it’s extremely low-profile and gives off a bright white light.

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New Home Project: Pantry and Closet Lighting

A couple of months ago I wrote my first blog post for my New Home Project post series.  This post series is about the lighting projects I have undertaken in my new home. That first post was about the installation of our kitchen under cabinet lighting. I had hoped to make these posts a little more frequent, but you know how that goes…time gets away from you. Either way, I am finally writing my second post for this series and it is about using Microfluorescent T4 fixtures as pantry and closet lighting.

As a I stated in my previous post, some of my lighting projects I did myself, and others I had professional electricians perform. Adding my pantry and closet lighting was a mix of both.  During the construction of my new home I had the electricians install electrical outlets that were controlled by a light switch in our two kitchen pantries.  One of these pantries was in the kitchen, and the other was actually a coat closet beneath our stairs close to our kitchen that we had the builder convert into a pantry (we call this our “big pantry”). I had these electrical outlets included so that once we moved into the house I could easily install Microfluorescent T4 fixtures around and above the interior door frames of each pantry. The Microfluorescent T4 fixtures come with a cord and plug and you can also purchase flexible linking cables to link two or more fixtures together, which is what I did.  Why did I choose these fixtures? I think this customer comment says it all…

The T4 is sleek, compact, easy to install and provides a generous amount of light in a very small footprint.

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