Author Archives: BG_Property_Maintenance

Gymnasium Lighting Upgrade

B&G Electrical Contracting recently upgraded the lighting in a local Bellevue school’s gym from 250w Metal Halide lamps, to more energy efficient LED lamps.   The old Metal Halide lamps not only used 18,290 less kilowatt hours per year saving an estimated $1657.39 in utility costs, it also created a brighter sport court, assembly space and meeting area.   A feature the maintenance staff appreciates is that the lights turn on and off immediately and do not have the warm up time and constant hum of the Metal Halide fixture.   A project like this typically takes 4-5 years to pay for itself through energy savings, averaging around 18-20% ROI per year.




Harbour Point Exterior Painting

B&G recently painted the Harbor Point Building located in Mukilteo, Washington.   The building was drab and plain and didn’t really stand out in the scenic wooded area just off the Mukilteo Speedway.   The new colors both brighten it’s appearance as well as blending it better to the natural backdrop of the Pacific Northwest landscape.   Tenants include UniEnergy Technologies and ABC Special Event Rentals .  For leasing information please call RosenHarbottle Commercial Real Estate at 425-454-3030 or online at .IMG_8822 IMG_8823

Hall Creek Office Building Exterior Painting

B&G recently completed painting the exterior of the Hall Creek Office Building located in Mountlake Terrace, Washington.   This is a three story office complex with good access to both I-5 as well as Highway 99.   Current tenants include Homewatch Caregivers The University of Washington and Vanguard Cleaning Services .   For leasing information, please contact Rosen Properties at 425-454-3030 or


Kent Business Campus Exterior Painting

B&G recently painted the Kent Business Campus, located on N. Central Way in Kent, Washington. The four building complex is class ‘A’ office in the heart of Kent. The new exterior color scheme by Freiheit and Ho Architects makes the largest of the four buildings stand out with great street visibility. Tenancy includes Project World Relief Associated Behavior Health Rainier Title among others.

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For leasing contact Rosen Properties at (425)

Incandescent vs CFL vs LED Part I

Not too long ago light bulbs were light bulbs. No matter you had to spend, you really had only one choice when it came to interior and exterior lighting options for your home or business: Choose the wattage based on the fixtures wattage rating and head to the hardware store.

In recent years environmental awareness and technology has brought new material available to the public at reasonable prices.    CFL and LED bulbs are more readily available than ever and with a price point that drops quarterly.   Not only are these new options more energy efficient, they can also last years, or even decades longer than the standard incandescent light bulb.

Prices for LED bulbs started out extremely high, upwards of $100 at start.  They have since dropped considerably and are now in definite competition with all other types of bulbs out there.  Since there is a movement to discontinue incandescent bulbs by the year 2020, prices for newer and even more efficient LED bulbs will continue to drop.   B&G Electrical Contracting can provide free estimates for all projects to upgrade home and business lighting to a more efficient, cost effective, long lasting lighting solution.

Incandescent CFL LED
Approximate cost per bulb $1 $2 $8 or less
Average lifespan 1,200 hours 8,000 hours 25,000 hours
Watts used 60W 14W 10W
No. of bulbs needed for 25,000 hours of use 21 3 1
Total purchase price of bulbs over 23 years $21 $6 $8
Total cost of electricity used (25,000 hours at $0.12 per kWh) $180 $42 $30
Total operational cost over 23 years $201 $48 $38

How to Recycle Compact Fluorescent Lamps in Seattle, Bellevue and Kirkland  

Knowing how to properly dispose of compact fluorescent lamps in Western Washington is important if you or your company replaces bulbs and ballasts on a regular basis.  Compact fluorescent lamps, or CFL’s, are energy efficient light bulbs that contain very small amounts of mercury that could be harmful to the environment.   Due to the potential for contamination, the lamps cannot be put directly in your trash and should not be destroyed or broken. The King County web site has a page providing tips and information about the make-up and disposal of CFL bulbs, including the mercury content and other hazardous material they contain.

Below are some options when deciding how to dispose of lamps properly.

  • Drop off up to 10 bulbs per day, at no cost to you, at your local Household Hazardous Waste Facility. For a list of all locations and hours of operation please call the Household Hazards Line at 206-296-4692.
  • The Take It Back Network offers convenient, cost-effective and environmentally sound recycling options. A list of Take It Back Network recyclers who accept CFLs can be found here.
  • Many King County communities sponsor periodic residential recycling collection events. Restrictions may apply and quantities accepted may be limited.  Call or check out their website to confirm.
  • Recycle where you purchase your material. Contact your local home improvement retailers such as Home Depot or Lowes or even Bartell Drug’s stores around the region to see if they accept CFL tubes and bulbs for recycling.


Mercury in CFLs
CFL bulbs contain approximately 4 milligrams of mercury – about the amount that would fit on the tip of a ballpoint pen. This small but critical amount of mercury is what enables CFLs to operate up to 75% more efficiently than traditional incandescent bulbs and last up to 10 times longer.

Mercury is safely sealed within the bulb’s glass coating while intact and in use. Environmental contamination occurs when the bulbs break and mercury is released. Precipitation washes mercury into surrounding bodies of water where it is absorbed by naturally occurring bacteria and aquatic organisms. Mercury travels up the food chain as predatory fish consume smaller contaminated fish. Species at each successive level of the food chain consume higher concentrations of mercury because they are unable to eliminate toxins faster than they are consumed.

Humans are exposed to mercury almost entirely by eating contaminated fish and wildlife. Those most at risk are pregnant women and small children. Exposure to mercury can cause damage to the central nervous system and contribute to developmental disorders in children.

Despite concerns over mercury content and contamination issues, policy makers, manufacturers, and scientists are in agreement over the greater environmental and economic benefits of CFLs. When recycled properly, nearly every component of a fluorescent bulb can be separated and reused – even the mercury.

According to the EPA, electricity from coal-fired power plants is the main source of U.S. mercury emissions. By using CFL bulbs in place of incandescent, we can decrease the demand for coal-fired power and in doing so, significantly reduce the amount of mercury released into the environment.

Electrical Tip Of The Day – ‘Do I Need A Permit?’

There are always important questions to ask and a lot of confusion regarding build permits in Western Washington.  I was recently told by one of our clients that it would be nice to know how all this “permit business” actually applies.

From the City of Seattle web site:  “You need an electrical permit any time electrical wiring is installed, altered, extended, or connected to any electrical equipment. As long as the circuit wasn’t altered or changed, and met the code at the time of installation, you don’t need an electrical permit to replace:

  • Snap switches
  • Fuses
  • Lamp sockets
  • Receptacle outlets
  • Electric ranges
  • Cook tops
  • Wall heaters
  • Baseboard heaters

You may not need a permit for some residential and minimally-sized communications systems”.

Now, making that more specific to the electrical world.  We are typically required to pull an electrical permit and have an inspection as follows:

  • Whenever the electric service must be disconnected to do the work
  • Whenever the electrical meter must be pulled to do the work
  • When making alterations to service entrance equipment, typically including repairs
  • When performing total building remodels
  • When making changes of structural nature or “re-purposing ” of any occupancy
  • When more than 100′ of new wall is constructed or the construction process is structural in nature
  • New construction projects / new buildings / new build-outs (which can also require a State permit as well as a local one)

So who can pull a permit you ask?  It can work out a couple of ways.  A homeowner or property owner can usually pull a permit for any project they own.  In the case of an electrical contractor, the company doing the work must have current bonds in place and current licensing on file (if required) with the municipality or county issuing the permit in order to be able to make application.   As I have stated in earlier entries, do you homework when hiring an electrical contractor.  Make sure they are licensed and bonded in the. State of Washington.