Electrical systems are essential for our daily activities. But as with most things used every day, these systems will eventually experience wear and tear and develop problems. Issues with electrical wiring often put our homes and businesses at risk, as they can become fire or electrocution hazards.
As a home or business owner, you should learn how to spot these problems. Recognizing them on time can help prevent more complicated issues from happening. Read on to learn about signs you should be calling electric contractors.
Your System Has Rusty Parts
Any visible symptoms of rusting on your electrical system, such as red or brown marks on the surface of your breaker box, are a cause for immediate concern. This often indicates that your circuitry had been exposed to high levels of moisture.
It’s important to find out why your system is rusting, as it may be caused by a leak, which can short circuit your wiring. Call your electrical contractor immediately to help you trace the root of the problem and take steps to protect your circuitry from moisture.
Your Light Fixtures Are Flickering or Dimming
Flickering or dimming lights are a common problem people often underestimate. Many tend to ignore the issue until it worsens and becomes a burden to their daily activities. A little flickering seems like a minor problem, but it may be a symptom of a bigger issue. This includes old and frayed wiring or a faulty main service cable connection. It’s best to address the issue as soon as possible.
Try to observe the fixtures that have this problem. If the flickering or dimming doesn’t recur, it may not be a cause for concern. But if it happens multiple times, then it’s an indicator that you should get your wiring checked and properly analyzed by a professional electrical technician.
Your Wall Plates Are Unusually Warm
Whenever you plug something into a socket or turn on a light, try to feel the wall plate cover of the switch or outlet. If it seems warm or hot to the touch, it’s a definite sign there’s something wrong. Unless you’re handling a dimmer switch, which can naturally become warm when in use, it can indicate that there’s faulty wiring beneath the plate. Stray electrical currents leaking from these loose connections can jump onto the cover and heat it.
This is a serious problem since it’s a huge fire and electrocution hazard. As soon as you notice this happening to any of your wall outlets or light switches, stop using them. Turn the lights off or if the issue is with a socket, unplug anything that’s attached to it. Warn the people around you and tell them not to touch these fixtures. You should also go to your breaker box and cut off the power leading to that particular circuit before calling an electrician to have it fixed.
You Notice Sparks Coming From Your Outlet or Light Switch
Another clear indication that there’s loose or frayed wiring in your outlet or light switch is sparking. The sparks are coming from the stray currents jumping between the loose connections.
The sparks can often jump out from around the toggle when you turn the fixture on for light switches. In the case of electrical outlets, though, it’s quite normal to see a little blue spark when plugging in or pulling out a power plug. But if the sparks last longer than normal and are white, yellow, or any color other than blue, then there’s something wrong with the socket. Cut off the power from these problematic outlets and switches and get them repaired as soon as possible.
Aside from loose wiring, sparking can also indicate that the particular circuit or socket is currently overloaded. This happens when there are too many gadgets and appliances plugged into the system. So, be aware of each electronic device’s voltage requirement and only hook up what your system can support. Make sure to unplug items that are not in use.
These are indicators that you should call electric contractors to come and check out your system. Look out for these signs, so you can recognize a potential problem immediately and prevent bigger issues that may cause more damage to your wiring or property.