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Electrical Gremlins And Old Homes


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Electrical Gremlins And Old Homes

When I bought an old house because I fell in love with the charm, I was completely unprepared for some of the issues that come along with homes of that age. One of the biggest surprises to me was the electrical issues I experienced. Everything from having to unplug everything in the kitchen to use a compressor in the garage to tripped breakers from a single air conditioner left me frustrated and confused. I called an electrician and learned a lot during his inspection. If you are thinking about buying an old house, this blog is for you. I hope that my knowledge and first-hand experience can help you avoid some of the disasters that I faced.

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3 Things That Should Tell You It Is Time To Call An Electrician

When you have a functional and well-maintained electrical system, you do not have to worry about short-circuiting, sparking, and other fire hazards in the home. That said, you might have to handle many problems if you haven't invested in proper care and maintenance of your electrical systems. For example, you might experience frequent appliance failure, problematic outlets, and more. Further, your home could even turn into a safety hazard. Here are the top three indicators it is time to call an electrician to analyze and fix your domestic electrical issues.

Experiencing Electric Shock When You Plug in an Appliance  

Plugging into an outlet can result in an electric shock in case of an uncontrolled power surge from elsewhere. In addition to damaged or faulty wiring, unprotected outlets can also contribute to these surges. Given this, you can install a circuit interrupter in your home to prevent electrical shocks and fires by cutting off power to an electrical circuit if an abnormality is detected. You can also install safety covers for electrical outlets to reduce the risk of electric shock for young children.

Having Chipped and Cracked Outlets  

Insulation is what makes electrical systems safe and durable. Note that an essential aspect of electrical insulation includes the plastic or rubber coating of electrical wiring and outlet covers. However, damaged or missing outlet covers put the wiring inside walls in danger of dust accumulation and water damage. Further, the risk of electrocution, fire, and other electrical hazards increases when wires are exposed, especially if sparks can escape from the outlet and land on flammable materials like rugs. So, call an expert to remove any parts of the wiring that don't have insulation and replace them with well-insulated bits. Additionally, the expert should replace any covers that could be missing.

Dealing With Outlet Covers That Give Off a Burning Smell 

Be keen about the odd smells your wiring gives off when you turn on some appliances. First, all electrical outlets and switches must be safe to touch. However, if they feel hot, the wires could be overheating and might soon short circuit. Note that short-circuiting damages appliances and can lead to electrical shock. When this occurs, consider unplugging and turning off the power supply to prevent heat buildup. Also, if you notice a burning odor coming from an outlet, turn it off immediately and contact an electrician.

These are warning signs that your electrical system has issues requiring immediate attention. Consult an electrical contractor for more information.