7 Signs Your Home Has an Electrical Problem
According to research studies, faulty electrical equipment and wiring are among the common causes of residential fires in the United States. Although scheduling an electrical inspection and maintenance for your residential property may not be something you regularly think about, it can be a lifesaver. It can help you prevent damage to your belongings and home.
An electrical inspection is an examination of your property’s electrical system. It ensures your home’s electrical appliances, wires, and systems meet safety regulations. However, how often you schedule this inspection depends on various factors since every homeowner has different needs and requirements for their electrical systems. Experts recommend having an electrical system assessment annually, but it also depends on the different types of buildings. For instance, commercial buildings need annual inspections, while residential properties and industrial buildings should get inspected every three to five years and three to six months, respectively.
There are many benefits of scheduling regular inspections for your home. They can save you money and help you prevent electrical issues and damage to your property. However, besides benefiting from yearly electrical inspections, you might run into problems that need professional assistance. Electrical problems can range from minor inconveniences to major electrical emergencies. Below are tell-tale signs your home needs an electrical system inspection.
1. Tripping Circuit Breakers
Circuit breakers and fuses are designed to safeguard your home and appliances. They trip or blow when the load is exceptionally high. Tripping prevents an electrical overload and might protect against a fire or damage. If your circuit breaker regularly trips when you turn on a particular appliance, the appliance might be faulty. But if it trips when you use a particular outlet, it may indicate an overloaded circuit. In addition, connecting multiple high-wattage home appliances to one power source can cause circuit breakers to trip more regularly.
A circuit breaker can also trip due to malfunctioning or faulty outlets. If the problem persists, seek advice from a licensed electrician. The professional can thoroughly inspect your electrical system and give valuable recommendations. If you have an overloaded circuit, your electrician can upgrade the circuit system or add a new circuit to solve this problem. However, if your wiring is faulty or you have an old and malfunctioning circuit breaker, the professional may recommend upgrading your wiring system or replacing your circuit breaker.
2. Strange Noises
Your electrical circuit should not produce any noise during operation. Therefore, it’s not normal to have loud humming or buzzing noises when using electrical appliances. The main culprits of strange electrical noises are loose connections, defective appliances, or faulty wiring. Low, steady buzzing or humming in household devices or appliances is usually nothing to worry about. However, if you notice the sounds are becoming louder than usual or notice sizzling, crackling, or other strange noises, unplug the device or appliance immediately and have it checked by an electrician before further use.
If the electrical noises come from your walls, you might be dealing with frayed wires. However, if you notice the noise is coming from an electrical outlet or light switch, the issue might be current skipping gaps across the loose connections. The solution to unusual electrical noises can range from simple tasks such as changing electrical outlets to more complex jobs like rewiring your entire house.
3. Burning Smells
It’s common for newly installed appliances to produce unfamiliar odors. However, electrical outlets, fuse boxes, and electric panels shouldn’t emit odor. If you detect burning smells, follow where they come from using your nose. If you cannot identify the source of the fragrance, your wiring may be the problem. A burning smell indicates fire damage that needs immediate attention. Most electrical wiring has plastic insulation. The burning smell means the wiring is heating up, causing the plastic covers to melt. When not addressed in time, faulty wiring can result in electrical fires. If you notice burning smells in your home, stop using all electrical outlets and switches and unplug all devices from the sockets before calling your electrician for assistance.
4. Hot Electrical Switches and Sockets
Along with burning odors, any heat originating from your electrical switches, outlets, or wiring should be a matter of concern. Sometimes it’s normal to have some warm spots, particularly when you plug something into a socket. Nevertheless, if it becomes too hot, have your electrician check it. Also, pay attention to whether one or more electrical outlets get hot, even when no devices or appliances are plugged into them. In this case, you may be dealing with a wiring problem. So, again, stop using that electrical socket and have an electrician inspect your wiring to determine the primary cause of the problem.
5. Loose Outlets and Switches
Electrical wires, outlets, and switches may become loose with time. Walk through your residence and check all light switches and electrical outlets. The wiring behind your switches and outlets may get worn out and eventually loosen up over the years. The problem with loose outlets or switches is that they can catch fire easily, especially if you are still using them. If you notice any open sockets or switches in your home, stop using them and schedule an electrical safety inspection immediately.
6. Wrong Sockets
All electrical outlets are not the same for all rooms in your home. For example, rooms or spaces with water supplies, like kitchens and bathrooms, need different electrical outlets compared to the other rooms. That is because water is a good electricity conductor and can be dangerous in case of electrical faults. These particular outlets are known as GFCIs, or ground fault circuit interrupters. You can easily recognize these outlets because they contain two central buttons. If your bathroom or kitchen outlets are similar to the other ones in the other rooms, then you need to have them inspected and replaced by a licensed technician.
7. Extension Cords
Using many extension cords indicates a need for more electrical outlets in your house. Similarly, having several home appliances running from one multi-socket shows you don’t have enough electrical outlets. Although you can use electrical cords to provide power to a device temporarily, it’s not a safe way of powering your appliances.
Excessive use of electrical cords can cause electrical shorting, twisted cables, and poor connections. Electrical extension cords can also get in the way, leading to falls and trips. Go around your house and check how many electrical cords you use. Do you significantly depend on electrical extensions to power your devices and appliances? If yes, it might be time to have a licensed electrician assess your electrical system and add more electrical outlets.
Partner With Professional Electricians Today!
Electrical issues are common, and they’ll not only ruin your residential property but also put the lives of your family at risk. Therefore, getting your house’s electrical system inspected at least once in a while is advisable to prevent electrical-related accidents. Regular inspections enable the electricians to detect underlying issues in your home’s electrical system and recommend the best possible causes of action before the problems become major electrical emergencies.
Whenever you need a thorough electrical safety inspection, don’t hesitate to call our electricians at Arc Angel Electric. Our team of experienced and certified electricians can handle a wide range of commercial and residential electric projects. We also offer light fixtures, generators, electrical installations, indoor lighting, electrical panel, surge protection, and commercial light maintenance services to the residents of Cumming, GA, and the surrounding area. Call us today for professional electrical services.