Homeowners concerned about maintaining their home electrical systems have good reason to do so. Keeping electrical appliances and systems working efficiently with regular care makes them last longer and helps bring you peace of mind. After all, the safety of your family and home are at stake.
While veteran homeowners may know the importance of regular home electrical maintenance, first-time homeowners may not. For that reason, here is a handy checklist of tips for tending to your electricity.
- Check that outlets and plugs are in good working order. Outlets within 6 feet of wet locations, like the bathroom and kitchen, should be Ground Fault Circuit Interrupters (GFCI). These outlets prevent electrocution and should be tested regularly to ensure they work.
- It doesn’t hurt to familiarize yourself with all light fixtures in the home. Check each one for maximum wattage and ensure each fixture is fitted with appropriate bulbs.
- Regularly clean lampshades, bulbs, and glass fixtures. Dust accumulates over time, often into a greasy film, resulting in less than adequate lighting. Unplug lamps before unscrewing bulbs and wipe with a damp cloth, then a dry one. Ensure your hands are dry before replacing any light fixtures. Also, dust shades and glass fixtures regularly for optimal lighting.
- Older homes may require wire upgrades. Wiring deteriorates over time and must be inspected to prevent serious electrical hazards.
- Take note if breakers frequently blow or trip. This is a sign to hire an experienced electrical contractor to perform an inspection.
- Unplug appliances before cleaning electrical cords with a damp cloth. Let dry before plugging back in sockets.
- Codes change all the time. Tamper-resistant outlets are now required in new homes. Put protectors in outlets or replace them for the safety of your children and grandchildren.
- Replace worn or frayed wires throughout the home.
- Plugs should never hang loosely in a socket. Have them replaced immediately.
- In addition, check all plugs and cords are located a safe distance from heat sources like a fireplace or space heater. Steer cords clear of furniture and carpets.
- Organize a safe place, such as a tote, for storing extension cords. Leaving extension cords plugged in can create a dangerous fire hazard.
- Take note of any lights throughout the home that flicker or dim. This can signal a problem with wiring and requires the expertise of a certified electrician.
- Bulbs or tubes that still look dark after cleaning should be replaced. Dispose of old bulbs and tubes the eco-friendly way by dropping off at an appropriate recycling depot.
Emphatically, electrical appliances last longer if you take good care of each one. Keep a folder of instruction booklets handy or bookmark online versions for future reference. Then, when repairs are required, you have the manufacturer and model number at hand.
A final maintenance tip is to hire a licensed electrician with the experience to check your electrical systems. Just as you would schedule an annual checkup for your health, it’s important to do the same for your electricity in the home. He or she can check your electrical panel, tighten wires, and perform repairs and upgrades safely.
Call us today at 250-740-0970 to have one of our licensed electricians help you to upkeep your home’s electrical maintenance.