Our daily use of electricity can sometimes make us feel like it’s simple and safe. It’s true that routine functions like replacing bulbs or even resetting breakers can be handled by a homeowner. However, it is very important to not overstep your abilities and qualifications by getting involved in the more complicated electrical work that your home may require.
A good rule of thumb is that you should let an electrician company handle anything involving electrical components that can’t be seen without removing panels or covers of some kind. At that point, you are exposed to live electrical components, and the danger of electrocution is very real. Many people attempt their own repairs because problems develop during the night or on weekends and they are desperate to get their home functioning again. Because of this, it is important to have the number of a 24-hour electrician standing by so that you know how to get immediate help. With this basic information, you should have a pretty good idea of how to handle electrical issues in the home. Let’s go back over things in detail so that you will feel confident and prepared to deal with problems.
Know Who Can Help Before You Need Them
As we’ve mentioned, it’s vital to have someone in mind for repairs before something actually goes wrong. Research Raleigh, NC electrical repair providers now and decide who you want on your list. Investigate things like their experience, qualifications, availability, and prices. There are plenty of private rating services online, but a good first step could also be the Better Business Bureau. Records at the BBB go back many years and will give you a more accurate picture than most online reviews which can easily be distorted and exaggerated. Once you have selected a company, keep the number posted in a prominent location.
Learn Some Basics
A rudimentary understanding of home electrical systems is essential for any homeowner or renter. Knowing what you can safely and effectively deal with can save you a lot of money later on so do a little research. For example, a tripped breaker could be a sign of an electrical problem or simply a matter of an overloaded circuit. If a breaker trips, see what has quit working. If you’re running energy guzzling items like space heaters or vacuum cleaners on a circuit that’s already supporting a TV, you may have simply put too much load on it. Unplug the culprit, find another outlet on a different circuit, and reset the breaker to see if that’s the case.
Know When It Is Serious
Part of your understanding should include the ability to determine when an electrical problem is an inconvenience and when it could be dangerous. As a rule, anything that goes on and off or flickers could be a sign of a serious problem with the exception of a loose bulb or a plug not fully inserted into a receptacle. If you have eliminated these simple reasons, you should check in with your electrician and see what they recommend. Of course, anything that sparks, arcs, smokes, or overheats is a reason to call the fire department, followed immediately by the electrician.
Be Prepared to Describe the Situation
You wouldn’t go to the doctor unprepared to describe symptoms, so don’t contact an electrician without information on your problem. Check your breaker box to see if anything has been tripped. A tripped breaker is indicated by an off-center switch position with an orange square visible. Take a simple item like a radio to various outlets and see which ones have power. Make note of what you were doing at the time of the problem and what actions you have already taken to try to correct it. Think about any previous repairs or problems you’ve had in the home even if they don’t seem related to the current issue. The more you can tell your electrician, the faster and more accurately they’ll be able to make repairs.
Electricity is a vital component of a home. It creates comfort, convenience, and safety for us so when it malfunctions, we lose all those benefits. If you rent or own a home, it is essential that you know a few things about how those important systems work and who to call when something goes wrong. Learn some basics of what should and shouldn’t happen with your electrical systems, and know who is available to respond immediately and restore normal operation of these essential home systems.