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Electricity is a crucial aspect of everyday living since it is a source of light, heat, and entertainment. When purchasing a new home, it might be easy for homeowners to get lost in that almost perfect property and put their blinders on. Despite how good the property looks on the outside, it is wise to have a look at the structural condition before closing the deal.
As a soon-to-be homeowner, you should consider hiring a professional electrician to conduct a thorough electrical inspection. Even with a new property, faulty wiring installations and other electrical problems that pose safety hazards are common.
The purpose of the inspection is to ensure the electrical system is fully functional and safe for the home’s occupants. Below are the reasons why you need to perform a thorough electrical inspection before signing the dotted lines.
Inspect the receptacles
Commonly known as outlets, receptacles require an inspection to ensure they are properly grounded. That will enable you to make sure they do not become hazardous whenever you plug-in appliances. Defects such as loose screws and cracks could mean there is no enough tension to hold the cord when plugged in. Also, the outlets might not be supplying enough power to appliances or are passing through excess voltage that can reduce the lifespan of your fixtures. You can only detect these issues during an electrical inspection.
The technician can also check whether the outlets have a burning smell, are emitting sparks, or feel hot to the touch. Also, kitchen outlets might require extra testing since they supply power to various appliances. If there is an underlying issue, your electrician will guide you through the best call of action to take.
Identify any faulty wiring
Faulty wiring is a common cause of injuries by electrocution or fire. The location of electrical wiring is usually behind walls and beneath floors, so it can be hard to notice if there is an underlying issue. It is quite common for some electrical contractors to install substandard wiring to save on the cost of installation. That reduces the lifespan of the wiring and makes it prone to fires. Substandard wiring also destroys appliances if the voltage passing through the wiring is too high. Your local Wilmington, NC, electrician can check if the wiring installed is good enough for the amperage that is passing through.
It will suit you to inquire if the previous homeowner had regular electrical maintenance services since electrical wiring has a certain lifespan, and you can gauge whether you will need to conduct a maintenance check soon. In most cases, you will find that many old homes have outdated wiring. Buying a home without conducting an electrical inspection may cost you thousands of dollars in replacing the old wiring. To avert that situation, contact a competent and certified electrician for a full-scale electrical check-up.
Detect overloaded circuits
Electrical circuits are designed to have a limited amount of electrical current. When there is more demand than it can safely handle, it ends up becoming overloaded. Homeowners with limited outlets might feel the need to use multiple powerheads, which increases the energy demand from the circuit. When the limit is exceeded, the circuit breaker ought to trip, shutting off the power and removing the threat to your safety. However, if the circuit breaker fails, the circuit will overload. That may result in the overheating of the wiring and melting of its insulation, as well as a fire.
In some old homes, the wiring used was not designed to hold multiple appliances in use today, so the circuit can become overloaded. Some of the common signs of an electrical overload include buzzing outlets, burning smell, switches being warm to the touch, and appliances that seem to lack power. During an electrical inspection, the electrician can identify the electrical demand of the circuits and provide solutions in case there is a problem.
Examine the light fixtures and components
Just like outlets and switches, light appliances and components require a thorough inspection. Wall and ceiling-mounted light appliances should be correctly installed. If wrongfully mounted, fixtures such as chandeliers may fall on someone and cause serious injuries. Poor installation can also lead to a power outage since the circuit breaker may trip time and again. Some fixtures may also have physical defects, including exposing live wires that can cause electrocution.
Light bulbs need a proper inspection to determine wattage and damages. In some cases, the previous house owner could have installed a light bulb on a fixture with the wrong wattage. If that is the case, there is a high probability of the burning of flammable materials that are in proximity. It is also vital to ensure that the light fixtures are of good quality for a longer life span. Your electrician can also advise you if the light appliances are energy saving to minimize your electric bill, or they may guide you on the right brand of fixtures to guarantee quality.
Watch out for aluminum wiring
During the 1970s, most homeowners used aluminum wiring to meet their electrical needs. However, modern building codes no longer recommend aluminum material for wiring. That is because aluminum is quick to oxidize, causing it to corrode faster hence can be hazardous. Aluminum is only safe to use over a short period since it is more prone to electrical fires over time.
Before purchasing a new house, find out when it was built and have your electrician look at the types of wires used. If it is an ancient house, you might have to rewire it. That will help you in bargaining the purchase price. Your electrician can then rewire your home using copper wires that are more durable and less prone to corrosion.
Trust the experts
Founded in 2010, Mister Sparky of Wilmington provides prompt, reliable service to leave you satisfied each time. We serve Wilmington, NC, and the surroundings, providing quality services to meet all your electrical needs. Our team of electricians is skilled and commits to solving your electrical problems on time. You can count on us whenever you need electrical services, even during emergencies. Do not hesitate to give us a call.