Electrical issues in the home can lead to fires that destroy property and put lives at risk. Learn the signs of an electrical problem so you’ll know when to take action.
Circuit Breaker Issues
A circuit breaker will trip when overloaded, cutting power to any connected electrical outlets. The circuit breakers prevent wires from overheating and starting fires. Occasional tripping of breakers is normal but if it happens frequently, contact an electrician.
Flickering Lights are Signs of an Electrical Problem
Flickering lights are a sign of a faulty or loose fixture or light bulb. Replace the light bulb with a new one and call an electrician if dimming or flickering persists. Apart from loose connections, flickering lights can stem from voltage surges. You may notice that bulbs burn out quickly or fluctuate in brightness.
Electrical Shocks and Sparking
An electrical shock indicates poor wiring or grounding for a device. You can get shocked when touching lamps, ceiling fans, or metal appliances that are connected to the home grid.
Electrical outlets that spark can lead to house fires. The sparks may sometimes make popping sounds and crackles, indicating faulty or loose wiring. Appliances should be repaired or replaced if they produce sparks when plugged into a power source.
Signs of an Electrical Problem Include Hot Outlets
Some appliances become warm when in use, but the outlet they are plugged into should never feel hot to the touch. If you notice a hot outlet, unplug all appliances and contact an electrician. This could indicate overheating and a serious electrical problem.
A Burning Smell May Mean You Have an Electrical Problem
A burning odor is a sign that wires are getting too hot and the plastic covering is beginning to melt. If you detect a burning odor within the house or coming from a specific appliance, turn off the main power and unplug the device. Contact a certified electrician to troubleshoot and make needed repairs.
Regularly inspect the electrical wiring and appliances in your home, looking for defective or worn-out devices or damaged wires. Contact a professional electrician to handle diagnosing and repairing problems.