Email Us
Business Hours
Monday – Friday : 8:00AM – 9:00PM
Saturday : 10:00AM – 7:00PM
Sunday : 1:00PM – 9:00PM

Call Us Today
(786) 477-5975

10 Electrical Safety Checks Homeowners Should Do Every Year

by | Apr 18, 2022 | Blog, Home Improvement

Every home is precious, and when it’s your own home, it becomes even dearer to you. So, you take all the measures to keep it safe. With all the checks you keep in mind about decor, cleaning, and safety, make sure you add electrical safety checks to your to-do list.

Remember, it’s essential to run an electrical safety check at your home even before purchasing the house. However, if not done by the date, remember to keep a review occasionally from now on.

Here are a few things to remember for keeping your home safe and secure from electrical damage.

1. Working Switches

Make sure all your electric switches are working correctly and in good condition. First, check if all switches’ wires are connected and perform the right function. Once you are sure all buttons are working, use your senses to identify serious problems. For example, place your hand above the switches to check that there isn’t extreme heat. Also, make sure there isn’t any hot/burnt smell or crackling sound coming from the outlets.

2. Breaker Panel Inspection

Carefully check your electric panel and its surroundings. There should be sufficient space (ideally, 3 feet around the board) and an easy-to-find battery-operated light source available when the light goes off. Next, open the panel and examine the breakers for rust, rodent activity, or any sign that creates breaks. Additionally, you can flip the circuit breakers on and off, ensuring none are sticking and preventing them from operating correctly.

3. GFCI Testing

Any switchboard outlet which is water exposed should be a ground fault circuit interrupt (GFCI) protected. This can be in the form of a single outlet farther from the same circuit, an individual outlet, or can be by a break-in panel. Regardless of the location of the GFCI on the circuit, you must be able to press the test button and ensure all switches can be turned off without any trouble.

4. Overloading

We all have a bad habit of overloading switches with tons of chargers, and it’s a bad practice. Don’t overload a single switch with multiple high-wattage appliances, and ensure a single outlet receives a decent load. Try to rearrange the plugged switches into different outlets to balance the load. To make sure you and your electrical systems are safe, install some new outlets in your home that allow a high-power supply.

5. Inspect Loose Wires

If your wires are visible, take a closer look and look through them closely. Carefully check if these wires are free of cracks, splits, and rodent activity. See if there are signs of cuts, burns, cracks, rodent activity, or even splits. Then, take the necessary steps to cover the exposed wires and use tape or electric glue to fix the defaults.

6. Check Extension Cords

Extension cords are lifesavers but make sure you use them only when necessary. There are high chances of overloading the outlet so make sure that the cords you use are within the amperage rating. Also, add examining them frequently for any cuts, nicks, or other damage in your safety checklist.

7. Test the Outlets and Tightness

Any outlet made of metal can get rusted or non-functional over time. One simple way to check your outlets is with a receptacle tester, also known as a ‘cube’ or ‘block tester.’ You just need to plug the device in, and it will display lights that indicate common outlet wiring issues. A very affordable and useful solution!  If the plugs are loose in the outlet, they slip out enough and can cause a fire outbreak, so check the tightness.

8. Voltage Test

If you notice flickering or dimming lights, you should check the voltage. Use a voltmeter or multimeter to check the power of an outlet. For example, the reading should be between 110 and 130 volts for a standard 120-volt outlet. Anything beyond that, you might need professional help.

9. Exterior Outlets

Frequently check on your exterior outlets to ensure they are sealed against natural elements or animal disturbances. If something is connected to that outlet for a long time, check if the outlet is not exposed to moisture. Use covers with access holes to secure them properly.

Last but not least, always keep a fire extinguisher handy!

10. When in Doubt, Call Experts

Electrical damage can cause massive problems, so don’t hesitate to get professional help from experts like Atlantic Building Inspections. With over 20 years of experience in this, we can help get regular inspections done to keep you and your home away from all problems!