Is your home’s electrical system operating correctly? If so, you may not see a need for an inspection of your wiring, outlets, and fixtures. Regardless of how well your system may appear to be working, it’s still important and necessary to have regular inspections done to ensure it continues to work efficiently and to avoid any underlying issues that you may not notice from worsening.
Unfortunately, electrical hazards such as electrical fires can happen quickly and provide very few warning signs. Here are some very important steps you can take to avoid a catastrophic electrical problem for both your home and your pocket.
Your homes circuit breakers are automated electrical switches that are able to stop the current flow of electricity when signs of an electrical hazard are displayed. In the case of an overloaded circuit, the breakers immediately cut the flow, or “trip”, to prevent any damage to the wiring or fixtures they’re connected to.
Everyone has experienced a breaker tripping and an occasional occurrence shouldn’t be a cause for concern, but if your homes circuit breakers begin tripping frequently, it can be a sign of something worse you may be dealing with including an overloaded circuit, a short circuit, or ground fault surges.
An overloaded circuit can occur when there are multiple appliances or fixtures connected to one circuit that simply cannot provide enough power to all. This can lead to the circuit becoming overloaded, overheating, or even fire. If your breaker is faulty and cannot do its job properly, this can easily result in an electrical fire.
A short circuit occurs when a wire that’s live encounters a wire that’s neutral. This contact causes too much electrical current to travel through the circuit, resulting in more heat than the circuit can handle.
Ground fault surges occur when a wire that’s hot comes in contact with a ground wire and produces a similar situation as a short circuit. This can also become a major electrical hazard which is why it’s supremely important to get a regular inspection of your breakers.
An important step to take when checking electrical safety is ensuring that all light fixtures have the proper wattage of light bulbs. You can do this by inspecting the brightness of your lights or by noticing if light fixtures are flickering often. If some lights are bright while others are dim, it could mean that you’re using different wattages of lightbulbs that can be incorrect for the fixture. This can also mean that there is a bad main neutral connection for these lights.
Bad lighting can also be a sign of bad wiring on a specific circuit or the main circuit, a low-quality light bulb, incorrect wattage, a blown fuse, a tripped circuit breaker, or insulation that is too close to a fixture.
In order to avoid these issues from occurring or worsening, it’s important to get your lights inspected regularly. Something that may seem as insignificant as a lightbulb could be the catalyst for an electrical problem.
If your home’s outlets are not properly and frequently maintained, they can provide a multitude of issues. Outlets are the source of electrical power to the appliances in your home and have a variety of moving parts that can wear down over time. Over time, this wear and tear can cause friction and heat buildup which can ultimately lead to a circuit breaking or tripping.
Some signs that your outlets need to be fixed or replaced can be when the outlet becomes warm, when you notice an unpleasant burning smell, if the outlet becomes loose in the wall, or if the outlet becomes broken and/or discolored.
All of these scenarios can lead to electrical problems that you’ll surely want to avoid for safety and economic reasons. We suggest getting a thorough electrical inspection if you’re experiencing any of these problems with your outlets.
Your electrical service panel holds the circuit breaks or fuses to your home’s electrical system. It’s important to have your service panel inspected frequently, even if there is no problem. An issue with your service panel could end up being costly and a major safety hazard.
Some things to take into consideration when trying to avoid service panel problems are the age of your panel, moisture around the panel, and inadequate clearance. An old panel that is out of date and has tremendous wear and tear can malfunction, causing a number of potential problems. Moisture around your panel can be especially dangerous as moisture and electrical work certainly do not mix well. Having inadequate clearance for your panel can also be dangerous if you cannot access it in case of an emergency.
Because of the reasons listed above, we highly recommend scheduling an electrical safety inspection for your home today. If you’re experiencing any of the issues mentioned, it’s important to schedule an inspection immediately. If you’re looking to prevent any of the issues mentioned, or any electrical problems whatsoever, don’t forget to schedule frequent inspections with one of our skilled, experienced, and knowledgeable professionals.