Most of us will suffer some electrical problems from time to time. As current passes through wire there is a tendency for the conductors to contract, very noticeable in aluminum wiring. This movement over time may loosen connections but most problems are mechanical. Dimmer Switches, switches, outlets, over loaded circuits and recessed lights are on top of the list for DIY intervention.
Electrical Power Distribution System
Overloaded outlets or circuits can be addressed through load distribution. Spreading out the draw lowers the load and will usually take care of the problem. Dimmer switches are a problem if they are cheaply made using subpar craftsmanship or shoddy materials. Change them out for a more solid component when addressing the problem. Frequently blown bulbs are usually the result of using a high wattage bulb not matched to the socket. LED’s reduce the power draw but can be brighter without overload concerns. Recessed lights flickering on and off, indicates the heat protection circuitry is trying to compensate for the wrong bulb. Check the bulb specs and buy a bulb for recessed fixtures.
Turn Off Circuit at Breaker When Doing Electrical Work
Never tackle an electrical problem without turning off and taping the breaker for the circuit you’re working on. A little tape indicates to others not to reset the breaker. Check the outlet by using a “non-contact pen-style electric tester” this will ensure you turned off the right breaker and ensures a dead circuit. When undoing wires recap them with the wire nuts until you’re done. Moisture and electrical power don’t mix and are not a positive factor for your well-being.
When is a Licensed Electrician Required?
Dimming and flickering lights indicating a loose connection demands the expertise of an electrician for fast detection of the problem and resolution. Frequent tripping of the breakers indicates either a short or bad breaker. Shorts are fire hazards and need to be addressed sooner rather than later. ASAP! (As Soon As Possible).
Buzzing, burnt or loose outlets. Plugging and unplugging are a mechanical process. Mechanical processes cause wear and tear. Plugs loosen, an appliance short can case burning of the outlet, needing replacement. Outdated two prong low load wiring may cause significant problem and should only be tackled by a pro. If your living in that dream antique house it may have knob and tube wiring, or unsafely installed aluminum wiring are very dangerous. Building codes evolve over time and are based on experience and some are bad. Outdated wiring was installed before wiring codes became the standard or when codes where not as inclusive as they are now. Modern appliances and electronics have upped the required power availability substantially in the last 40 years, older home wiring just may not be up to the demand. Back in the day a 60-amp service was sufficient, no longer. 200-400 amps is becoming the standard. Anytime your dealing with water and electrical power in the same environment it is best to turn it over to the pro.
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A home built before public gas showed up will be an all-electric home and will have high circuit demands especially for major appliances like water heater, stoves and ovens, clothes dryers and air conditioning. It is always best to be safe than sorry, if in doubt call a professional. Sentry Electric can handle all your electrical needs.