The electrical system in your home helps power your home appliances, offers heating solutions during cold days, and enables proper lighting. However, the electrical system can prove catastrophic if not carefully managed or maintained.
Electrical faults are responsible for many fire outbreaks in homes. The incidents result in deaths, property damages, and serious injuries. According to Electrical Safety Foundation International (ESFI), there are 51,000 electrical fires each year leading to 500 deaths, over 1,400 injuries, and loss of property worth over USD 1.3 billion.
As your home ages, the electrical system also dilapidates. There’s also the fact that people buy more home accessories as families become bigger. Therefore, electrical systems need regular maintenance to enhance safety and ensure they operate optimally all the time.
Let’s look at some tips for Electrical System Maintenance.
1. Look for Signs of Ageing or Defective System
When maintaining your home electrical system, you don’t need to call a qualified expert to inspect it. You can observe carefully to identify areas that need improvement.
Below are some areas you need to check:
- Defective bulbs- Do a full house scan to establish whether all the bulbs are working. If you detect flickering lights or intermittently dim and bright lights, it may be the time to act. This can be solved by replacing the old or dysfunctional bulbs. It can also be a sign of a system fault.
- Dysfunctional Sockets- These are used on a daily or a more regular basis. Ensure they’re in top condition. Non-working system accessories like these can signify either power surges or defective parts.
- Pay heed to strange sounds- Do a thorough scan of all your electrical outlets to ensure no funny sounds are being emitted. Such sounds can be found in the main switch, bulbs, or in power sockets. These can point to bad accessories or defective systems.
Observation should be done regularly. It’s advisable to always stay alert and take swift action whenever any tell-tale sign is noticed.
2. Avoid Using Water or Washing Near Electric Appliances
Water can dangerous if it comes in contact with electrical appliances. Water can result in fatal electric shocks. Also, check appliances that are often used near electric points which pose extra risks.
For instance, if you’re using a kettle to boil water, ensure you keep a safe distance from power points. You should also wipe your hands or your body when operating electrical appliances.
Sinks and bathrooms require extra caution. Electric shavers should be used with care. Turn off the water when operating them.
3. Use Quality and Certified Products
Poor quality products can increase the risk of fire, be prone to breakages, and increase the cost of maintaining your house in the long run. If you’re in Australia, a qualified electrician adelaide can help you buy quality products from reputed shops. This advice can be obtained when conducting maintenance.
Below are ways you can do this: –
- Wiring- Visit authorized dealers of quality wiring to ensure you get good quality wires that meet the required standards. Poor wiring may have high resistance that may result in a power surge. Poor quality wiring may not be able to resist excess power and damage your home accessories. Such incidents may lead to power problems or fire outbreaks.
- Quality Accessories- This includes bulbs, power sockets, main switchboards, and other installed power accessories.
Poor quality bulb holders can increase power costs or require regular maintenance. This can also increase your power handling risk.
- Extension Cords- These are regularly used in homes and form a high-risk area or function. Ensure you obtain quality extensions from trusted and certified sellers.
Quality and certified products go a long way in ensuring and enhancing safety programs.
4. Never Overload Power Outlets
Another reason for electrical malfunctions is power overload. This can happen in vulnerable areas like the kitchen.
Appliances like a toaster, fridge, microwaves, ovens, and dishwashers need to be handled well. In the morning rush, you may plug too many items into one socket resulting in overload. The ideal and safe way is to ensure that each item accesses power from a different point.
There’s also the need to install power breakers in accessories that consume a lot of power. The power breakers can prevent fire outbreaks in case of power surges.
An electrician can help you design power sockets or install additional power points. This is good for the overall health of the electric system in your house.
5. Maintain All aspects of your Electrical System
It’s advisable to maintain your electrical system regularly. This can be done in consultation with or by a qualified electrician to help you with the task.
Caution tip: When making any changes in the electrical system, it’s important to turn off the power source. This can help enhance safety and reduce the risk of electric shock.
These are the areas that need to be checked regularly: –
- Replace Old and Worn-Out Wires- Worn out and old wiring can pose a huge risk to your home. The maintenance of wires should be done at least once in two years. It can help rectify or replace defective or low-quality wires that were originally installed.
- Do a full scan of extension, power cords, and sockets- Being sources of power, these items need to perform optimally. Damaged sockets need to be replaced with good quality and certified accessories.
- Ensure Harmony in Watt or Voltage- One of the causes of damages in the electrical system is overloading the system. This can be caused by bulbs or other appliances that don’t match the load or the capacity of the wires. Work with an electrician to set this right.
The purpose of regular maintenance is to ensure that risks don’t compound. It also helps to prolong the life of your system.
Is It Difficult to Maintain an Electrical System?
The task of maintaining an electrical system involves several steps, many of which are obvious. You can avoid electrical fires by avoiding overloading or keeping electrical points away from water. This isn’t costly and only requires careful observation.
On the other hand, a certified electrician can help install quality and certified parts. The professional can also help you conduct scheduled maintenance of the electrical systems in your home.