Three Things You Should Know About Electrical Problems
Owning a home requires a lot of responsibility. We all know that on a surface level, but most of us think that the responsibilities of owning a home are more about paying bills and keeping the house clean. If a major problem jumps out at you, you’ll be sure to fix it. But otherwise, you can handle the basics — can’t you? Unfortunately, some of the biggest, most dangerous problems that can confront a homeowner are practically invisible. This is why so many people, each year, find themselves with electrical problems. Electrical wiring is vital to the running of a home. Sometimes, however, electrical problems can be quite serious without our knowledge. As long as appliances run well, we think that there aren’t any issues to worry about. Many of us don’t know when to call an electrician at all, let alone how to prevent the kind of problems that can lead to serious issues like expensive repairs and even house fires. Below, we’ll discuss a few of the things to keep in mind as a homeowner. From calling in a professional lighting contractor for serious replacements and repairs to installing the right kind of detection equipment, there’s a lot you can do to keep your home safer.
1. Take Part In Regular Inspections
Regular inspections by a professional electrician or lighting contractor can do a lot to prevent serious electrical problems. You may find these inspections tedious, but if your home is a certain age or meets specific criteria, they’re entirely necessary. For example, if a home is over 10 years old and has undergone recent renovations or had appliances installed, you should have the wiring inspected by a lighting contractor or electrician. However, if your home is 40 years old or older, a lighting contractor should stop by whether or not the home itself has undergone recent changes or shown signs of issues. Again, many electrical problems don’t show themselves in obvious ways. You might not think that electrical wiring repairs are necessary, but you can’t actually know until the proper inspections are done. These potential problems are certainly not worth the risk. While an inspection may cost money, the repairs that will be necessary should a small problem grow into a big one will be much more substantial. You can also take measures to prevent things like electrocutions on a basic level by installing ground fault circuit interrupters. In fact, ground fault circuit interrupters could prevent over two-thirds of the 300 yearly electrocutions that happen within homes.
2. Take Detection Measures
While the prevention of problems is very important, there’s no guarantee that every measure will be effective. With that being said, it’s important that detection measures are put in place should an electrical fire actually happen. In bedroom circuits, arc-fault circuit interrupts should be installed. Smoke detectors should also be installed in bedrooms, and for that matter they should be installed in hallways within 15 feet of bedrooms, and on every level of a house.
3. Know What Causes Electrical Fires
On a basic level, we know that electrical fires are caused by issues in electrical wiring and appliances. But if you’re more familiar with the specific causes of such electrical fires, you can be more proactive in preventing them. This is very important. It’s believed that in 2011 alone, 47,700 house fires involved some kind of electrical failure or malfunction as contributing factors to ignition. Over half of the house fires from 2007 to 2011 involved electrical distribution or lighting equipment. Overall, wiring and related equipment were responsible for 63% of 2007 to 2011 house fires involving electrical distribution or lighting equipment. Lamps, light fixtures, and light bulbs account for 20%, following at second. Cords and plugs come in at 11%, and transformers and power supplies account for 6%. If you’re responsible, this knowledge means that you’ll be able to take some extra steps in prevention and awareness.