It’s not uncommon for homes to have some sort of electrical problems, especially when they are older. Unfortunately, even seemingly minor electrical issues can be extremely dangerous. Surges, shorts, and other issues can lead to sparks, electrocution, and fires. Because of this, when an issue does occur, it’s imperative that it gets fixed right away in order to avoid a bigger problem in the future. These are five of the most common electrical problems that you may see in your home.
Light Switches That Don’t Work
When you flip on a light switch, the lights should go on. If they don’t, your first instinct may be to change the bulb. However, if the light still doesn’t turn on after switching out the bulb, there may be some sort of electrical problem that is causing it. If you don’t have experience with electrical systems, it’s best to have this issue addressed by a profession.
Electricity Bills That Are Abnormally High
A lot of things can drive up an electricity bill. This can include using your air conditioner, heater, or clothes dryer more than you did in the previous month. Leaving appliances and devices plugged in when they’re not in use can also drive up your bill. Old appliances also tend to draw more electricity than newer, more energy-efficient models.
However, if your appliances are all in good repair and you aren’t doing anything differently from one month to the next, you may still notice a surge in power usage. If your electricity bills still seem to be abnormally high and you can’t figure out why, you may need the assistance of residential electrical solutions to see what’s going on. An electrician can take a look at your system and trace where the drain is coming from. With that information, you can make a plan for fixing it.
Circuit Breakers That Trip
When a circuit breaker is overloaded, it will trip. For most people, this might happen on occasion, such as when they plug a space heater into an outlet on an already maxed out circuit, but it shouldn’t happen regularly. If you find yourself having to reset the breaker every single time you use certain outlets, no matter what you’re plugging in, you probably have an electrical problem that needs to be addressed.
Keep in mind that you could also damage the devices or appliances that are plugged into these outlets if the circuit breakers keep tripping when you are trying to use them. If you have certain outlets that you know are problems, don’t plug anything into them until you have had them looked at by a professional.
Bulbs That Burn Out Frequently
Bulbs will eventually burn out, no matter how long-lasting they are. However, most bulbs should last at least a month, and many should last much longer than that. You shouldn’t have to replace bulbs more often than that no matter how much you use a light. You can look at the bulb container to see how long your bulbs are expected to last.
When the bulbs are frequently burning out much faster than that, there could be an issue with the light socket or the wiring. It could also be that materials around the fixture, such as insulation in your ceiling or walls, are getting overheated, and the lights shut themselves off to prevent a fire hazard.
Outlets That Have Become Loose
Your outlets should be securely attached to the wall with screws. Overtime, they may become loose with repeated use. If you just ignore loose outlets, they will eventually come off of the wall completely, which is obviously not something you want.
Additionally, you may have outlets that don’t grip plugs correctly. Plugged in cords may slip out partially or fully while they’re in use. This can cause sparks, which can be very dangerous, especially if you have young children playing in the area or anything flammable nearby that could catch the sparks.
If your outlets are old or poor quality, you may also notice that they have become cracked. While this may seem like a simple cosmetic issue. However, it can be very dangerous. If it breaks enough, it can expose the inner workings of the outlet. This can cause electrocution as well as sparks and fire. If you notice a cracked outlet face, it needs to be replaced as soon as possible. It’s also possible for the body of the outlet to crack, though you won’t see this without removing the cover and looking inside.
Some electrical issues may seem minor enough that you can fix them yourself, and you can likely find tutorials for fixing them online. However, if you don’t have experience working with electrical systems, it’s usually best to seek out professional residential electrical solutions. Mistakes when you’re making electrical repairs can be dangerous. You may end up electrocuting yourself, which could be fatal, or you could accidentally start a fire. Instead of risking it, work with an electrician. They can take care of both major and minor issues.
An electrician can also perform a comprehensive check of your electrical system. This is especially important for those with older houses. If you have an older house that hasn’t been updated recently, there could be many hazards hidden within your walls. Having your electrical system check can give you and your family some peace of mind.
Don’t ignore any of the common electrical problems mentioned above. If you do notice that there’s something going on with the electricity in your home, it’s a good idea to get it taken care of right away. The problem will probably only get worse and cost you more if you put off getting it fixed.