8 Warning Signs That Your Home is Having Electrical Problems

Electrical problems in your home can be difficult to spot. If you notice any of these signs in your home, contact an electrician near you to take a look at your wiring before things get out of hand.

1. Frequent Circuit Breaker Trips

Your circuit breakers will almost certainly trip once in a while. After all, they’re designed to shut down the power to a circuit when it gets overloaded. The occasional trip is nothing to worry about, but if your circuit breakers trip a few times a month or more, there might be a problem with your wiring that needs to be addressed.

2. Flickering Lights

A flickering light is a sign of a loose electrical connection. If the flickering is confined to a single light fixture, you probably don’t have a lot to worry about. In some cases, you just need to replace the lightbulb or tighten the wiring in that one fixture. If you notice flickering in several rooms in your house, you likely have a larger wiring problem.

3. Hot Outlets

Even though most electrical appliances generate heat when they’re being used, the outlets they are using should never generate heat. If you notice heat coming from an outlet that you’re using, immediately unplug whatever appliance is plugged into it and contact a licensed electrician to deal with the problem. The same goes for light switches and dimmer switches that are hot to the touch.

4. Scorch Marks On or Around Your Outlets

Even if you don’t think you have electrical problems in your home, take some time to check all of your outlets for scorch marks or any other discoloration. These marks are signs that an outlet has been generating too much heat and could cause an electrical fire. Unplug anything in a scorched outlet and do not use the outlet until you can fix the problem.

5. Burning Smells

Faulty wiring often heats insulation until it starts to melt. You might smell burning plastic when this happens. This is a very dangerous situation that should be addressed immediately. Find the source of the burning plastic, shut down or unplug anything that could be affected by it, and contact a licensed electrician to fix the problem as soon as possible.

6. Messy Wiring

Wiring doesn’t need to be perfectly neat and organized to work properly, but too many tangled wires could be a sign of shoddy electrical work. If the wiring in your electrical box looks like a rat’s nest, consider having your wiring redone, especially if you’ve noticed any of the other signs that we’ve discussed.

7. Buzzing Sounds

A healthy electrical circuit shouldn’t sound like anything. On the other hand, faulty wiring might cause a light fixture or appliance to buzz when it’s turned on. You might get used to the buzzing in time, but it’s still a sign that something is not right with your wiring.

8. Chewed Wiring

Rats and mice can chew through wires and cause serious electrical problems even when your wiring is otherwise in good shape. If you notice obviously chewed wires or mice droppings near any exposed wiring, you might need an electrician along with a pest control service.

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