When buying any kind of property, it is important to conduct a proper inspection of the property that includes checking electricity equipment and infrastructure. Issues with gas and electricity are all too common these days and not only can they hike up your utility bills, but they can also seriously compromise your and your family’s safety, so be sure to organize an electrical safety inspection.
In this post, we will cover some of the most common electricity issues aspiring homeowners need to keep in mind when inspecting their potential new home. You don’t need to be a qualified professional with Skills TG Training to identify the most common issues, though you need to call in an electrician to resolve most problems.
Defective Light Switches
Defective light switches are reasonably common in older homes. It is not uncommon for homeowners to wait to call in an electrician until it gets to the point that the switch no longer turns on the light at all. If the switches don’t turn lights on and off properly without flickering, it’s a sign there is a fault in the electrical system. Buzzing or other sounds coming from the switch is also an indication that something is wrong.
Most commonly, switch issues are caused by wiring and circuit faults. Furthermore, fixing these faults is the responsibility of the current homeowner, so you are entitled to request the seller to have an electrical outlet and switches replaced or repaired before finalizing the sale.
Circuit Breaker Trips
When a homeowner uses multiple power-draining appliances, there is a good chance the circuit breaker will trip. This can happen if you have a habit of using the microwave, hairdryer, washing machine, and other high-power appliances at the same time. There is nothing wrong with the circuit breaker tripping periodically, as it is designed to ensure your safety. If it trips when you use too many high-power appliances at the same time, it is simply doing its job in keeping you safe.
However, if the circuit breaker keeps on tripping for no reason, then this is likely an indicator of a bigger issue. When you are inspecting a new home, check the circuit breaker, and test its effectiveness when handling multiple appliances.
Extremely Bright or Dim Lights
Another electricity issue to look for before buying a new house is overly dim or bright light. If you notice extremely bright or dim light, then it may be an indication of an electrical issue and is something that needs to be checked during the home inspection.
Overly bright or dim lights can happen for two reasons:
- The wattage of each light is different
- Poor neutral connection
Wattage isn’t going to be an issue as you can switch out the light bulbs and replace them with a wattage that you prefer. However, if all the lights in the house are too bright or dim, it is probably due to a poor neutral connection, and this issue will need to be addressed. A qualified electrician will need to inspect the main neutral connection of the home, and from there they will be able to identify the root cause of the problem.
Electrical shocks can range from mild to life-threatening. In all cases, getting an electric shock isn’t a pleasant experience. You can experience an electrical shock while switching an electrical appliance on or off or sometimes when touching light switches or other parts of the electrical system.
The most common reason for electric shocks is a faulty electrical device, but they can also occur because of poor wiring. To detect the cause of the issue, you can plug another electrical appliance to the same outlet. If you experience the same electric shock, then the wiring system needs to be assessed as soon as possible. You don’t want to move your family into a house with faulty wiring!
Electrical surges do not even last a second, but can severely damage your appliances. If you experience electrical surges quite often, this indicates a major issue in the wiring system, electrical appliances, or power line. Lightning strikes are another cause of electrical surges.
Despite lasting for only a microsecond, an electrical surge can cause damage to your home appliances, especially if this happens frequently. Surges can also affect the life span of your electrical appliances, so this should be assessed as part of the home inspection before you finalize the sale. For electrical surges caused by a fault in the wiring system, this will need to be fixed by a professional electrician.
The electrical issues we have mentioned above are the common problems that often go unnoticed. An aspiring homebuyer may finalize the sale without inspecting the home for potential electrical issues. It is worth noting that even minor electrical issues can cost you thousands of dollars, adding significantly to your moving budget. Not to mention that this is a safety issue, so it is important to be vigilant in this area.