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Do you typically either live with the electrical system you’ve got, or do little DIY repairs on an as-needed basis? Is the idea of going beyond what your home was originally built with something that you don’t think your budget could bear? Perhaps you just haven’t had any trouble with your outlets, lights, and wiring, so you haven’t thought much about calling an electrician for anything. If any of these apply, at Mister Sparky of Wilmington, NC we’re ready to open your eyes and show you why many people call electricians and keep us nice and busy. There’s a lot we can do for you, and we’d love to tell you about it.
1. Tripping Breakers or Popping Fuses
Your electrician will tell you, a tripping breaker can mean an overload or a faulty breaker, but either one is a big concern. A combination of the two is especially dangerous, as an overload combined with a faulty breaker means at some point, there could be a fire. If you’re replacing fuses, you might be tempted to use “slow-blow” versions but your best answer is to modernize and get a proper electrical panel with circuit breakers installed. You’ll thank yourself later, when your home is easier to upgrade and remodel thanks to your foresight.
2. Iffy Outlets and Flickering Lights
Intermittent connections are often at the root of outlet problems and flickering lights, causing not only rebooting computers and other damage but sparking, heat buildup, and loose wires in contact with metal nearby that present fire and shock hazards. It’s not always “just a loose connection,” and it’s always a good time to call an electrician.
3. Feeling the Zing of Stray Power
Wiring problems, bad GFCI units, wet or moist surfaces, and other factors can contribute to feeling the zing or zap of stray power where it shouldn’t be. It’s possible that a mild shock such as this is your good fortune: you found out about the problem before your other hand was grounded and the current passed through your heart with potentially lethal effect. This is a situation for shutting off the circuit breaker if known and calling an electrician right away. Even if nobody gets hurt, stray power has many other ways of doing damage.
4. Obviously Old Wiring and Outlets
If you happen to notice cloth-covered wiring or outlets with only two prongs or other signs that your wiring is quite outdated, there’s no need to wait for problems that are likely to come. Our team can easily run replacement wire that meets modern specifications and isn’t ancient, and that also carries a ground wire that can be used in the replacement grounded outlets. A lot of equipment requires that three-pronged approach, and for good reason, so this is a worthwhile project to get underway as soon as possible.
5. Missing GFCIs in Kitchens, Bathrooms, or Outdoor Outlets
GFCIs detect current going where it shouldn’t in areas that tend to be wet or damp such as the kitchen, bathroom, and outdoor areas. While one GFCI can serve several nearby outlets, if there are none present, it’s time to get some installed as this is critical protection against shock. GFCIs typically have one or more LED lights and two buttons, one to test and one to reset. Your electrician can install them easily and explain how they work so if they sense a fault and interrupt that circuit’s power, you’ll know what to do.
6. Electrical Panel Issues
If the panel is rusty, damaged, or making noises or smells, it’s time for a prompt inspection and possible replacement. What looks wrong outside is probably even worse inside, and this is where all of your power is passing through, so it needs to be just about perfect.
7. Preparing for an Inspection
If you’re planning on a new buyer or insurance inspection, it’s common for homeowners to avoid surprises by getting the home checked first. Our professionals can help you identify and fix problems ahead of time.
8. Upgrades and Renovations
When it’s time to renovate your space, wire it for everything you’ll need! That can mean outlets, lights, extra power for music and computers, even network cabling.
9. Octopus Outlets and Power Strips
The overuse of cheap extension cords, t-style junctions, power strips, and other ways to build piles of plugs connected to a single outlet is one of the main reasons for an important electrical code change. It now requires each room of new construction to have enough outlets to provide easy connections. If the six-foot spacing is not enough in itself, installing quad outlets instead of doubles can help while still providing proper electrical safety. There are just so many ways that an “octopus” can go wrong, from excessive current drawn and heat problems to loose connections exposed to prying fingers, metal, or water. These kinds of situations also lend themselves to damage as they snake across the room, presenting shock and fire hazards. The solution is simple: plan and install the right circuits and outlets to do the job.
10. Something Electrical Doesn’t Look, Sound, or Smell Right
Acrid smells, smoke, buzzing sounds, and of course outlets and lights that flash or aren’t working indicate that something needs attention and possibly repair by one of our expert electricians. These symptoms typically indicate that wires are improperly connected, broken, or routed and the symptoms may temporarily disappear at times but the danger will not. It’s important to have your concerns checked out by an electrician to be sure you and your home are safe.
For Electrical Upgrades, Additions, Inspections, and Emergencies, Call Mister Sparky of Wilmington, NC
Our expert electricians serve the Wilmington, NC area with skilled, friendly service that helps you enjoy your home with the right electrical solutions, and quickly answers any questions about electrical concerns you may have. Give us at Mister Sparky of Wilmington a call to arrange a visit or ask questions, we look forward to hearing from you.