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Top 5 Most Common Electrical Issues in Your Home
Home electrical problems are one of the most serious issues for New Jersey residents, because of the risk of house fires. So, it’s a good idea to be aware of the most common issues that cause people to call for home electrical repairs in New Jersey. Let’s look at the kinds of electrical problems most frequently reported to DK Electrical Solutions by our customers and how to determine if you need an electrical repair.
Most Common Electrical Problems
It’s important to know the signs of electrical problems in homes. Here are the signs and symptoms of the most common electrical problems that people in New Jersey call DK Electrical Solutions to have repaired:
All the electrical circuits in your house are connected to the breaker panel. Each circuit breaker on the panel is designed to bear a specified amount of electrical load, and when the circuit is overloaded, this causes the breaker to trip. This means that the breaker has broken (stopped) the flow of electricity through the circuit. If a circuit is frequently overloaded and tripping its breaker often, that can lead to major electrical damage. To help prevent overloaded circuits in your home:
Make sure your house has enough outlets to accommodate your needs.
Don’t use extension cords as a long-term solution.
Don’t plug too many electrical devices into the same outlet.
Don’t plug extension cords into power strips.
Know the amperage used by the devices you’re plugging in.
Know the amperage delivered by the power strip you’re plugging into.
Upgrade to 200 amp service, if necessary, to run your major appliances without tripping breakers.
The health and safety risks and the potential for property damage from house wiring can be very serious. The most extreme consequences of electrical wiring problems include house fires, electrical shock, or electrocution. Old knob & tube wiring presents a higher level of electrical safety risk.
Some home insurance carriers will not insure a house wired with a knob & tube or other outdated electrical wiring. If you have an older home, or if you suspect an electrical issue in your newer home, have an electrical inspection to ensure that your home’s wiring is in good condition.
The symptoms of a lighting issue are often easier to spot than other problems with electrical systems. Lights flickering off and on or emitting only dim light are typical, obvious symptoms of electrical issues. Often, flickering or dim lights are not necessarily because of a malfunction in the light fixture or a bad bulb. The problem may be:
A bad circuit breaker.
The absence of ground wire or bad grounding.
Low amperage coming into the house.
Drawing too much power from the circuit.
If your electrical system is exhibiting signs or symptoms of a problem, call a licensed electrician for an assessment. It’s much better to discover the issue before a more costly repair is needed later.
Frequent Power Surges
Electrical surges during storms are common. But, more often, power surges are caused by turning on a high-draw appliance or device (like a microwave, clothes dryer, oven, or hairdryer) along with others already in use on a circuit. Almost anything in your home that draws a lot of electricity can cause a power surge. It’s more likely to happen when a high-draw appliance is not powered through a dedicated circuit.
When power surges happen often, or they’re too strong for the wiring to bear, the consequences can include damage to major appliances and the destruction of electronic devices. To help prevent frequent, potentially damaging power surges in your home:
Have an electrical inspection to confirm your home wiring is safe and updated.
Limit the number of amps being drawn on a circuit wire.
Use appliances that don’t draw more power than your electrical system can deliver.
Make sure your electrical system is grounded properly.
The recommended way to eliminate frequent power surges is to have a licensed electrician install a system for whole-house surge protection.
Inadequate Electrical Panel
Modern life involves much more electricity use than homes required in earlier times. Today, we use more advanced HVAC systems, more lighting indoors and outdoors, more kitchen appliances, computers, and TVs in every room, and so on. But, in an older home, you may have an old outdated breaker panel that was made for the level of electricity that made sense two decades ago, but not today.
An old breaker panel is likely to be insufficient to meet all your household electricity needs safely. This can result in breakers tripping frequently, problems using some appliances, and potentially more hazardous issues.
If you’re not sure how old your breaker panel is or if it is sufficient for your electricity use, schedule an evaluation by a certified NJ electrician to determine whether you need an upgraded breaker panel.
For Home Electrical Repairs, Call DK Electrical Solutions.
We are New Jersey Master Electricians. All our electricians are certified, licensed, bonded, and insured. DK offers financing for larger electrical jobs, with 0% interest for qualified credit. All our pricing is upfront — no sticker shock! We offer options to suit your budget. See the DK news blog for an abundance of current information about home electrical issues, installations, safety practices, general electrical knowledge, and more.