When To Call an Jake Electric
Have you ever had your lights flicker and not give it another thought? Have you gotten used to the tangle of cords running through your living room, kitchen, or office?
There are some electrical symptoms we tend to ignore. Little do we realize that little flicker can be a warning sign of potential problem hidden behind the office wall or underneath the carpet.
Because so many of us have a limited knowledge of electrical wiring and how electricity works, we may not fully understand and appreciate when and why it is important to seek the services of an electrician to carry out electrical repairs and ensure the safety of our homes or offices.
Unless your home was recently built, it's likely that the electrical system needs some upgrading or repair. The electrical safety of homes is increasing as a result of new electrical codes; therefore, it's important to keep up with these code changes. And with technology accelerating at an ever-faster pace, the need for power grows every day.
Older homes are especially hard-pressed to keep up with today's electrical demands. The symptoms are obvious, but are often overlooked or ignored. So, what sorts of electrical symptoms indicate that you should call Jake Electric?
Your fuses blow or circuit breaker trips frequently.
Do the lights go off every time you plug in your hair dryer while the coffee maker is on? If you’re continually blowing a fuse or trip your circuit breaker, your circuits are drawing more current than they can safely provide. It is not a matter of repeatedly replacing fuses or resetting circuit breakers. This may indicate a potentially dangerous fault in one (or more) of the circuits in your home.
The lights flicker.
If your lights flicker each time you change the setting on your hair dryer or the lights dim every time you plug in the toaster, there’s a sure chance your circuits aren’t properly wired for those appliances. Many motor-driven appliances draw a lot of current and should be wired on dedicated circuits. Small appliances may also cause problems, in which case you might like to consider installing an additional line in order to service them. So, if you notice flickering or dimming lights when you plug in your coffee maker, it is a good idea to call Jake Electric.
Your outlets and cords are a tangled mess.
Your electrical system is working beyond capacity if power strips and extension cords are strangling your outlets. If there are power strips filled with laptop and cell phone chargers and cords to other appliances all around your home, you should call Jake Electric. While power strips may be convenient, having too many devices plugged into them can cause your electrical system to be overworked. In fact, such arrangements can force the electrical system to work far beyond the capacity at which it is designed; therefore, you need to call Jake Electric to create additional circuits and receptacles to make your premises safe.
There are multiple wires running under your carpet.
If your living room looks like a snake farm with wires running under the rugs and furniture, a dangerous condition exists, and you definitely need more outlets. Not only could people trip on hidden wires, but constantly stepping on them is never a good idea. If some of those wires are extension cords, the outlets you have are too far apart. Consider installing more outlets so wires don’t have to run under your carpet to reach the closest outlet. Trailing wires are tripping hazards and may trigger an electrical fire. Wires shouldn’t need to be covered with carpets and rugs, they should make your life easier, not more difficult. Call Jake Electric and have additional outlets installed to not only improve the appearance but make your home or office safer.
Three into two won't go.
Many older homes have outlets that won't accept three-prong grounded plugs. This is a bigger problem than not being able to plug in the microwave oven-it could indicate that your electrical wiring system is not fully grounded, and you're not completely safe. Ask Jake Electric to upgrade your wiring.
Your wires are cloth covered.
Do you find bits of black rubber in the box when you remove an outlet or switch cover? Are the wires covered in cloth instead of plastic? If you have an older home and the answers are yes, it means the insulation on the wires is antiquated and dangerously deficient for today's electrical needs. Antiquated wiring pose a significant risk.
You feel warm or get a shock when touching a light switch.
Walk around your home or office and lightly touch switches, outlets, and any other electrical system surfaces. Do any of them feel warm to the touch? Other important signs to look out for are blackening or discoloration on switch plates and wire ends or mild shocks. This could mean that these circuits are being overworked, or it could be a sign of something more dangerous. If your home or office was built or wired during the period from 1965 to 1975, it may have aluminum wiring. Some older homes still have aluminum wiring which means that it is necessary to have the electrical wiring of your home regularly checked, but warm surfaces or those that provide a shock should always be seen to by an electrician.
You have aluminum wiring.
According to the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission, there have been numerous hazardous incidents and fires throughout the U.S. that involve aluminum branch circuit wiring. In fact, according to a survey, homes built before 1972 that have aluminum wiring are 55 times more likely to have wire connections at outlets that reach fire hazard conditions than those that have copper wiring.
Your kitchen or bathroom is on its last legs.
If your kitchen, bathroom, or utility room hasn’t been updated for some time, you need to be vigilant. Call an electrician if your home or office isn’t code compliant. Wetter areas, as well as grounded areas like your basement or garage, now require outlets protected by Ground Fault Circuit Interrupters, or GFCIs. Easy retrofit installation will make your home code compliant and safe. If GFCIs have already been installed near sinks and dishwashers, test their reset buttons to be sure they're working properly. Call Jake Electric to look over your wiring and to ensure it's up to code.
Your outlets or switches don’t work.
Whether it’s one outlet or all the switches in a room, nonfunctioning switches or outlets are usually signs of bad wiring.
Rust is slowly taking over and the service panel is wearing down.
If you notice rust or moisture on or around your home’s service panel, this could be a sign of deterioration or problems with the wiring inside. Deterioration of this type could indicate further problems throughout your electrical system and needs to be flagged up as soon as possible.
Upgrade for safety.
If your home, office, or property is more than 25-years old, and you've never upgraded your electrical service, you may be living with an inadequate and possibly hazardous wiring system. Your system may not be fully grounded. An electrician will inspect and assess any electrical flaws or age-related damage, bring your home or office up to standard, and restore you and your family’s safety and security.
One light is brighter or dimmer than the others.
If one light seems to be dimmer than the others or much brighter than the others, this could be a sign of a poor neutral connection.
Your light bulbs keep popping.
Popping light bulbs are also a sign of a poor neutral connection.
Your appliances die sooner than average when used on the same outlet.
If you’ve noticed a pattern of your appliances going dead before their warranty is up after using them on the same outlet, there’s probably a problem with that outlet or again, a poor neutral connection.
You own a number of expensive electronics.
You may already have surge protectors to take care of your expensive laptop or stereo system, but did you know that an electrician can install a whole-house surge protection unit to make sure that all of your electronics are safe? Consider calling the experts at Jake Electric and keep all of your electronics safe.
Whether you’re moving into a new home or office, you’ll want an electrician to inspect your property for any electrical issues that you’ll want fixed before you move.
Consult Jake Electric to find out the safest and most efficient solution for your electrical blunders. We can help pinpoint any problems and figure out the best ways to get your home’s electrical systems running properly.
Because electrical systems are so dangerous (and yet we are surrounded by them in our homes and workplaces), it is very important that qualified electricians are engaged to ensure the electrical safety of your home or workplace. Only a qualified and insured electrician, such as Jake Electric, can safely provide electrical testing services and a range of other electrical services necessary to guarantee safety and protection.