As with normal wear and tear in your home, your electrical wiring system may also require repair or maintenance every now and then.
The electrical systems in older homes can deteriorate over time and create an increased risk of fire, leading to both property damage and personal injury.
Electrical issues frequently cause fires in Canadian homes, and many times it is faulty wiring that is at the root cause of the problem. Approximately ten people in British Columbia die or are injured every year from electrical fires.
It is important to stay one step ahead of your home’s electrical system to prevent serious problems. Although it would seem as if any potential issues are easy to spot, the trouble is that much of the electrical wiring in your home is hidden behind walls or in spaces between floors, so it can be difficult to pinpoint problems when they occur.
Despite this, there may be a few obvious signs that your house needs rewiring. Here we’re going to look at five of the most obvious ones.
Circuits used for lighting typically have a lower rating than circuits used for outlets, so they’re the first to show signs your house needs rewiring.
A light bulb that is not properly connected or simply needs to be changed can flicker or dim when it isn’t connected properly. However, the problem may contain more serious indications, such as faulty wiring, especially if you have lights flickering throughout your home.
The wiring can degrade over time and cause problems with your lighting, especially with outdated electrical wiring, such as aluminium wiring or knob-and-tube wiring, which is deemed a significant fire hazard by home insurance companies.
Generally, aluminium wiring is more susceptible to problems, such as overheating where copper connections are present.
It was popular to use aluminium wires from the mid-1960s to the late 1970s because copper prices rose, and technological advances made it became more affordable to mine. According to safety experts, aluminium wiring in houses built before 1972 is associated with a more than doubled risk of an electrical fire.
The outer jacket of the cables at your electrical panel will probably contain the letters AL, ALUM, or Aluminium, which indicates an aluminium wiring system. Symptoms of aluminium wiring problems include scorching or strange odours emanating from outlets. Houses built in the 1950s and earlier often have Knob & Tube wiring, sometimes called Open Wiring.
Since a ground wire is not present, there is an increased risk of fire and electrical shocks, and no electrical equipment or appliances with three-pronged plugs can be used.
It is important to keep in mind that merely because the electrical wiring is old does not mean unsafe.
A certified electrician should carry out periodic inspections of an owner-occupied residence every ten years and a rental unit every five years or whenever occupants change.
The only way to properly determine if your home needs rewiring is by choosing an electrician who is qualified & honest. In an older property with the original wiring and is more than 30 years old, you will probably need to update it to comply with current standards.
If your outlets and switches appear discoloured, the problem may be due to a loose connection or indicate that you need to rewire your house.
A loose connection may cause an outlet or switch to become blackened or brown, which could cause electrical arcing, resulting in a small fire that causes surface burns. It is also possible for this discoloration to occur in conjunction with a burning smell. Whenever such an event occurs, it is imperative to turn off the source’s power and contact a professional electrician immediately.
Moreover, one of the problems with outlets is that they tend to come loose from the wall and become exposed over time. If you don’t act quickly, this can be extremely dangerous, so you should seek the services of a licensed electrician as soon as possible.
Whenever you plug in an appliance, you may hear sizzling or buzzing sounds which require prompt, professional assistance.
When you are plugging in an appliance and feel an electric shock, even a slight tingle, it could mean that there is a problem with your home’s wiring that you should have checked by a professional immediately. There is also a possibility of seeing electrical sparks near your outlets.
The fact remains that a “safe shock” does not exist. A severe shock can result in extensive muscle contractions, breathing difficulties, and even death in the most extreme cases. Electrical shocks can cause burns and cause long-term consequences such as numbness and even memory loss.
If a circuit exceeds the amount of power that the circuit breaker can handle, a circuit breaker is designed to trip and shut down the power as a safety measure. That prevents the system from overheating.
The frequently tripping circuits may be a sign of a problem with the appliance. However, it is important to note that a breaker that trips repeatedly can indicate a serious issue and can tell you have a faulty electrical system or need to rewire your house.
You must look for signs that your home’s wiring is experiencing problems to take action to protect your family from fire and electric shock, which can both be potentially lethal.
The minute you notice any signs that your home may need rewiring, call a qualified electrician who can carry out an electrical safety inspection and risk assessment of your property and help you decide if professional assistance is required.
If you wish to rewire your home safely and efficiently and enjoy a night of peaceful sleep, an experienced electrician can provide you with peace of mind that your family and your property are well protected from any electric dangers. In addition to increasing safety, rewiring is also an opportunity to meet modern convenience needs, such as adding extra switches and outlets for new appliances and electronics in the kitchen.
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