The most recent statistics from the National Fire Protection Association are shocking. Between 2015-19, there were 46,700 house fires involving electrical failure or malfunction, so calling electric company is important . They cost $1.5 billion in property damage but far worse, they claimed 390 lives.
Electrical safety is something that every homeowner needs to take extremely seriously. If you have any suspicion that there’s an electrical fault in your home, call an emergency electrician immediately.
What are the signs you need to look out for? Let’s take a closer look at some of the most common signs of electrical problems that you should never ignore.
CIRCUIT BREAKERS CONSTANTLY TRIPPING
A circuit breaker that keeps tripping may just seem like an annoyance at first. But circuit breakers are there to prevent fires and ultimately save lives. They constantly measure the current and shut it off if there are any abnormalities.
This prevents you or your family members from getting electric shocks that could prove fatal. But if it keeps tripping, it’s telling you that something serious is going wrong somewhere in your electrical system.
Electrics are no place for amateurs. The Colorado Department of Regulatory Agencies allows homeowners to carry out electrical installations. But they must apply for a permit and have their work inspected to check it’s in line with the National Electrical Code.
Calling an electrician is almost always simpler and safer than trying to do it yourself.
YOU’VE SUFFERED WATER DAMAGE
We all know that water and electricity don’t mix. If you’ve suffered a roof leak, a flood, or even a leak from your clothes washer, are you sure that your electrical system has not been affected?
The safest route is to call electrical services to take a look at your system and thoroughly test it. They can replace any damaged components. If major water damage has occurred, you may need more extensive rewiring for safety.
If you live in a flood risk zone, this could be an opportunity to get your outlets raised to a higher level, so they’re less likely to be affected by flooding.
SPARKS WHEN YOU PLUG IN APPLIANCES
An electrical current can pass through the air when two conductors are close to each other. This can happen when you plug a device into an outlet. A momentary blue spark is emitted in a phenomenon called arcing.
This can be a sign of an overloaded circuit or a faulty panel. Your outlet may simply be old and have degraded over time. Whatever the cause, you need to investigate it.
An electrician will test the outlet and advise on how to make it safe again.
When components in an electrical circuit start to overheat they can emit an odor that smells like fish. There are many reasons why electrics start to do this, including:
- Old wiring
- Overloaded electrical circuits
- Loose wires
Overheating circuits pose a huge fire risk. These kinds of electrical issues need the equipment and expertise of qualified electricians.
An even more scary smell is a burning smell you can’t identify. Your circuit breaker should detect these issues and shut off the current long before they get to this stage. But if you’ve got a faulty circuit breaker then you’re vulnerable to an electrical fire.
If there’s a strong burning smell, evacuate, and call 911.
If the smell is not strong, shut down the main power supply to your house. Call an emergency electrician immediately.
WARM LIGHT SWITCHES
When light switches are working properly, it’s normal for them to get slightly warm. That’s because inside, there’s a small semiconductor device called a triac. This regulates the amount of electricity that reaches the light fixture and it can get a little warm.
But if your light switch is hot, that’s not normal and you need to call an emergency electrician immediately. Electrical issues at play could include:
- A triac that is failing and therefore overheating
- Faulty wiring
- Overloaded switch
There is a genuine risk of fire here, so do not wait until it’s convenient. Get a home electrician out to fix it as soon as possible.
If you can hear a buzzing sound coming from your electrical system, that’s not normal. It means that there are loose connections, loose screws, or an overloaded circuit.
If you’re not sure whether the buzzing sound is coming from your electrics, perform this simple test. Shut off the power to your home and listen carefully. If the buzzing has stopped, it’s the electrics.
You can narrow down the fault by switching the breakers back on one by one. Call an electrician, tell them what you’ve found out, and they’ll investigate.
Flickering lights tell you that there’s an intermittent disruption to the flow of electricity to the lighting circuit. Pests can chow down on electrical wires, causing these kinds of electrical issues. It could also be a sign that your circuit is overloaded.
Don’t overlook this as a minor annoyance. It could be a warning sign of a serious issue that could lead to a fire. A home electrician will be able to quickly identify and fix the issue.
CHOOSE Doctor Fix It Plumbing, Heating, Cooling and Electric AS YOUR EMERGENCY ELECTRICIAN
We may put off calling an electrician because we think problems are relatively minor. But small issues can quickly escalate into big problems. Electrical systems can be extremely dangerous if you don’t get them checked out.
If you’re in the Denver, CO area, Doctor Fix It Plumbing, Heating, Cooling and Electric is your go-to emergency electrician. We’ve been providing outstanding plumbing, heating, and electrical services since 1978. We have locations in:
For same-day electrical repairs – an electric company in Westminster, CO, call us at (303) 993-1550. If it’s not an emergency, schedule a service online today!