Don’t let your home’s electrical problems catch you on your bad day. Did you know that electric malfunctions are a leading cause of house fires – roughly 50000 annually- but the majority of these fires were preventable. Faulty wiring is usually the main cause but this goes unnoticed due to homeowners failing to recognize the warning signs.
Here are 6 signs that your household wiring needs an upgrade:
- Old Fashioned Fuse Box
A lot of modern homes are built with modern circuit breakers that have replaced the old-fashioned fuse box. It’s pretty common for a circuit breaker to trip and turn off a circuit automatically, when this happens you simply have to turn the switch back on. If your circuit breaker tends to trip frequently, you may be overloading and exceeding its safety capacity. This can also mean that you have a short somewhere in your wiring which could lead to a fiery problem in the future.
- Frequently Flickering Lights
This is a common problem in old homes, especially ones that house the newer appliances such as microwaves and computers. This is not the case though as sometimes it may just be a faulty or flickering light bulb. After you have tested out the light bulb and it still does not stop flickering then it is possible that you have a serious wiring problem. Talk to your electrician to have a check-up done to see whether your home electrical system needs an upgrade.
- Putting on the Wrong Breaker
Most household circuit breakers are designed to hold a 15-amp breaker for maximum protection. A lot of homeowners tend to replace their original 15-amp circuit breakers with 20-amp breakers. This is a fatal mistake as 20-amp breakers are designed for major appliances and not for household products for everyday use.
Installing the wrong circuit breaker allows overloads to occur without tripping your breaker; this increases the risk of serious overheating and possibly a fire.
- Dead Outlet or Outlet that is Hard to Touch
All electrical outlets in your home should not be hot to touch, have burn marks, or be humming at all. If you happen to experience any of these issues then there is a strong possibility that there is bad wiring near or inside your electric outlet. If your outlet is not working then this is another sign that a wire is loose or possibly one of your DIYs has not been done properly. Always use a licensed technician to do your electrical jobs.
- Ground Fault Circuit Interrupters (GFCIs)
Ground Fault Circuit Interrupters(GFCI) are required by code anywhere an electrical current comes into contact with the ground or is located near running water. GFCIs save lives by preventing the chances of deadly shocks. Modern GFCIs are constructed with built-in testers and should be tested on a regular basis. If one of yours is not working properly, it may be due to a faulty GFCI. But on a more serious not, it can also be due to faulty wiring.
- Faulty Cable Splices
Faulty cable splices or frayed wires can be an extreme fire hazard and are often a sign of an amateur electrical job. A problem like this usually goes unnoticed. If any wiring work was ever done in your home by an unlicensed electrician, you should have that work reviewed and corrected by a professional.
If you’ve noticed any of the above problems in your wiring at home, then you have some serious problems that need immediate attention. For this, you need the help of qualified and licensed professionals who specialize in residential electrics. I hope this article was useful.
Author Bio: Jeson Pitt works with the marketing department of D&F Liquidators and regularly writes to share his knowledge while enlightening people about electrical products and solving their electrical dilemmas. He’s got the industry insights that you can count on along with years of experience in the field. Jeson lives in Hayward, CA and loves to explore different cuisines that the food trucks in the Bay area have to offer.