Curious how to fix all those annoying little electrical problems around the house? It’s common for homeowners to come across pesky electrical “gremlins” that make daily routines irritating. There are certainly some electrical-related tasks you can handle yourself. Go ahead and replace light bulbs. Check your breaker box when you have a partial power loss. But for anything that requires you to handle wires, do not consider it for a DIY project.
Here are our top five tips for how to fix electrical problems without getting electrocuted:
Tip #1: There are several problems that can be fixed by simply resetting a circuit breaker. The primary issue that leads to a tripped breaker is that too many devices and appliances are drawing power from one circuit at a given time.
If this happens to you, first switch off all the devices affected. Then go out to your breaker panel. Find the switch that is not in line with the rest of the switches in its row. Some breakers also have orange lights that illuminate when they are tripped, so those are easy to find. Turn the switch all the way off, and then back on. In the future, be mindful of the number of devices you run at once. The only long-term solution for a frequently tripped circuit breaker is to upgrade the switch to a higher capacity.
Tip #2: This tip is more of a “don’t” than a “do.” If you have a three-prong device that you need to plug into a two-prong outlet, do not cut the round prong off the cord. The oddball prong is the ground. It protects your device or appliance from getting destroyed by a power surge. It also protects you from electrocution, should you drop your toaster into the dishwater.
Instead of cutting off the prong, get an electrician to install a three-prong outlet for you. The current standard for new homes is to have grounded outlets installed throughout the home. Consider this a great opportunity to upgrade your home’s electrical system.
Tip #3: Sick of flickering lights playing tricks on your eyes? A good first step is to check the light bulb. Is the filament damaged? If so, try replacing the bulb and see if the flickering stops. For fluorescent lights, it’s harder to tell if a bulb is going bad. Try switching it out for a new one. Problem solved? Good. Not solved? There could be loose wiring or a bad circuit breaker to blame. Both of these issues call for a certified electrician’s help.
Tip #4: Dimmer switches are awesome. There’s no faster way to alter a room’s entire mood than to bring the lights down and light a few candles. If you bought a home that came full of dimmer switches, you should consider yourself lucky. Otherwise, we encourage you to bring in an electrician with a bag full of dimmer switches. He or she will make quick and safe work of your dimmer switch installations, and you won’t have to run the risk of electrocution. Just imagine the possibilities for your next dinner party or date night.
Tip #5: HVAC systems are expensive, complicated, and totally necessary. Heating and cooling your home is probably one of your biggest monthly expenditures. You want to do everything you can to make sure your HVAC equipment is operating efficiently. This requires routine inspections and maintenance tasks for your air conditioner and furnace. And if you don’t already have a smart thermostat, you should think about getting one.
A programmable thermostat could save you a small fortune on your utility bills. There are even thermostats out there you can control from your smartphone. Tuning up your HVAC equipment and installing a smart thermostat are both best left to your certified electrician.
Arc Angel Is Your Atlanta-Area Electrician of Choice
If you own a home in the Atlanta area and you need some electrical repairs done, Arc Angel Electric can help. Since 2000, we have taken excellent care of Atlanta’s residents by fixing their electrical problems. If you have any doubts about what’s causing your electric issues, call us first. We know you like DIY projects, but when electricity is part of the equation, it’s just not worth the risk.
Arc Angel’s highly qualified electricians undergo constant training to keep their skills at the cutting edge of the industry. Pair that with our total commitment to customer satisfaction and our family values style of doing business, and you know we have a winning combination. To find out more about how to fix electrical problems safely, call Arc Angel at 770.889.9243.