Unlike a system such as plumbing, where you would literally see water spraying from your pipes, it can be a bit trickier to know when electrical systems aren’t working properly. For that reason, a lot of homeowners and business-owners tend to downplay their electrical problems until an emergency arises. Out of sight, out of mind, you might be inclined to think, but even though your electrical system hasn’t suffered a major emergency, it may still need repairing.
A properly functioning electrical system is, broadly, one that goes unnoticed; there are no outages, sparks, flickering, tripping, shocking… just a well-functioning house, full of appliances that work without issue. By contrast, it’s time to call a local electrician in Littleton when your home or place of business starts throwing off “warning signs”.
In the interest of educating property owners, we here at Attaboy Electric Services figured we would enumerate a few of the electrical warning signs. Read the following list, and if one or more of the items on it sounds like your property, don’t hesitate to give us a call. If things are working in tip-top shape now, remember these warning signs for the future.
1. Flickering Lights
It can mean one of two things when the lights in your house start flickering: either your house is haunted, or you need electrical services! (Ok, maybe that first one is a little far-fetched). Flickering can be indicative of a problem with your wiring. It may even be a dangerous problem, like a loose circuit connection creating a high resistance point, which can it turn cause overheating and a potential house fire. The thing is, until you get professional electrical services to come take a look, it’s tough to tell the source of your flickering lights – that’s why it’s better to be proactive.
2. Tripping Breakers
Your breaker is there to protect you from excess loads of electricity, which can potentially cause fires. Its tripping is often a defence that shuts down the electrical flow, and sometimes it can be a short circuit or ground fault. Therefore, if your breaker keeps tripping, there is some kind of deeper problem, and it’s best to call for electrical diagnostics. Here at Attaboy, we are great electrical detectives and can help determine your problem in no time.
3. Lumpy Rugs
Some homes have electrical cords snaking all the way along the ground, under the rugs – this is not a good idea. It could be for a lack of outlets, or that the proximity of your outlets isn’t ideal, necessitating long and unsightly extension cords throughout the house. Whatever the reason, not only are these lumpy rugs ugly, but they also pose a (you guessed it!) fire hazard.
4. Warm, Sparking Or Shocking Outlets
It should go without saying that, if your outlets are sparking, if they are warm or shock you when you touch them, there is something wrong. There might be too much demand on your circuit, or there could be a broader issue with your wiring. It could also indicate something systemically dangerous, like aluminum wiring. Speaking of…
5. Aluminum Wiring
The price of copper shot up in the 1960s, leading builders to turn to a material they thought would be a good replacement. After all, copper had been used for quite some time and had caused no problems, so there was no reason they shouldn’t trust aluminum. They were wrong. Being a much softer kind of metal, aluminum oxidizes easier, contracting and expanding, therefore causing it to loosen, which is never a good thing.
A home with aluminum wiring is 55 times more likely to experience an electrical fire. If your house was built around the 1960s or 1970s, or you suspect that it has aluminum writing, see if we service your area and let us come take a look.
6. Rising Electricity Bills
It’s not always about mitigating or avoiding electrical dangers; sometimes, you just want to save a few bucks. Those looking to shave some dollars off their electrical bill will often call us to install new, energy efficient light fixtures. Of course, you have to eat the upfront cost, but after a few months seeing the number shrink on your electricity bill, you’ll know you made a wise investment. Besides, you can take comfort knowing that you are doing your part to curb energy consumption.
7. An Old System
Age is usually a virtue – at least we like to think so, given that our staff is so wise and experienced! But as far as your electrical system is concerned, age might not be such a virtue. If your wiring is older than 25 years, regardless of whether it appears to be working fine, it is a good idea to call for professional electrical services to come and inspect. There might not be anything wrong, but it’s not worth the risk. Thankfully, we offer worry-free estimates with the exact cost of your project, so there are no hidden fees or surprise costs. And if you aren’t comfortable with the estimate, there’s no pressure.
No, problems with your electrical services will never be as apparent as other facets of your house. If your garden looks dead, you call a gardener, and if the paint is chipping off your walls, you call a painter, but no such apparent indicator exists for electricity. Instead, you have been on the lookout for clues and signs that indicate a deeper problem.
If your lights are flickering, your breakers tripping, your rugs lumping, outlets sparking, wiring loosening, electricity bill rising or your house is ageing, you might need an electrician. Luckily, if you live in the Denver Metro area, you have access to the best electricians you can find – yours truly. If you find what you think is an electrical problem (or oddity) call Attaboy Electrical services and we will professionally, affordably and transparently fix your problem.
Hopefully, this list of common problem signs has been helpful, and, as always, check out our website blog for more info on everything electrical!