Electrical Hazards Every Homeowner Should Address
Your home may be your castle, but even the coziest castles can harbor scary secrets — especially when it comes to your electrical system. Wires, circuit breakers, outlets, plugs -- are you sure everything is safe and up to code?
WATCH: Ensure Home Electrical Wiring System Safety
Some possible electrical dangers to be aware of:
- Wires not properly grounded: All home wiring should have a wired connection to the ground. An electrical current always seeks the path of least resistance to the ground, and grounding provides a safe access route in the event of a product failure. An ungrounded circuit may allow current to stray from this intended path, increasing the risk of electric shock and serious injury.
- Aluminum wiring: It's been illegal in most applications since 1978, but aluminum wiring -- cheaper than copper -- was popular in the early '70s. Unlike copper, aluminum is soft and malleable, can get overheated easily and poses a potential fire hazard.
- Older homes or homes with remodeled additions: If your home ever underwent a do-it-yourself remodeling, or if the work was performed by a contractor who didn't secure the right permits or follow proper codes, you may be at risk. Ask a licensed electrician to perform a safety inspection and address any hazards.
- The wrong size circuit breakers: Circuit breakers are safety devices, designed to trip -- or turn off the power to a particular item or outlet -- if too much electricity is flowing through a particular wire. Danger can result if there's a mismatch between the size of the circuit breaker and the size of any wire.
Don't Wait to Fix Big Issues
Don't take unnecessary chances. Call in a licensed electrician to make an inspection or repairs:
- If you suspect your house might have aluminum wiring, have a professional electrician investigate – this is not a DIY job
- If your home has been remodeled in the past, and you don't know the history of the renovation
- If a particular outlet is not functioning or functions intermittently
- If an appliance or switch gives you an electric shock
- If your lights dim when the AC or another appliance comes on -- a sign something is drawing too much current
- If you experience a burning smell or lights flickering in your home
- If you repeatedly trip circuit breakers
Direct Energy offers an easy, cost-effective way to give your family an extra measure of protection against electrical costs and possible calamities. Browse our home electrical protection plans or call us at 1-888-733-1683 for more information.
Protection from the Unexpected
Direct Energy's Electric Essentials plans fill the gap left by your homeowners insurance. Get maintenance and repair coverage you can depend on. Get protected today!Enroll Now