When Is The Last Time You Had A Home Electrical Inspection?

The last thing you ever want to have to deal with in life is a fire. Fires not only completely destroy your personal possessions, but if you are not careful, they can take your life. Unfortunately, many fires start around the electrical components of your home. As a homeowner, you can help reduce the risk of fires in your home by hiring an electrician to conduct a home electrical inspection. What they find may make a major difference in your life.

Why Do You Need A Home Electrical Inspection?

The National Fire Protection Agency estimates that approximately seven people die as a result of a fire at home each and every day. These fires cause approximately 6.9 billion dollars in direct damage. While cooking equipment overwhelmingly caused a large percentage of the fires and injuries, if you combine other electrical things around your home, these will make up a large percentage of the remaining fires. Some of these include:

  • Your heating equipment
  • Electrical distribution and lighting equipment
  • Your washer and dryer

A home electrical inspection will help you identify these risks. 

While you can request one at any time, there are times that it is highly recommended that you have one. This is when you:

  • Are performing a major renovation on your home
  • Install a new major appliance
  • Add a pool, hot tub, spa, or any other outdoor consumer of electricity
  • Install a home security system
  • Purchase a new home
  • Are adding major holiday light displays, or other types of outdoor decorations, which will require multiple connections or high levels of power

In an effort to keep your electrical system updated, you may also want to request an inspection of your home if your home is 40 years old or older.

What Is A Home Electrical Inspection?

This is a complete examination of your home's electrical system. This will help to ensure all of your wiring, sockets, and even appliances meet the National Electrical Code, which outlines the minimum standards across the United States. 

As a rule, the major components of a home safety inspection will:

  • Ensure the safety of any electrical components being operated inside, as well as outside, of your home
  • Look for, and help to identify, the most common electrical mistakes made by electrical contractors
  • Identify outdated electrical wiring
  • Inspect fuses, breakers, or other electrical components which could be the source of an electrical fire
  • Examine outdoor electrical systems

An electrician will also look for small but important components during your inspection. These include:

  • Proper light bulb wattage
  • Switch and outlet conditions
  • Proper outdoor grounding
  • Safe outdoor and security lighting connections
  • The placement and operation of your smoke and carbon monoxide detectors, and more

Once your home electrical inspection is complete, you should be provided with a detailed report covering all areas reviewed during the inspection.

What Are The Warning Signs Of Electrical Problems?

You may also want to request a home electrical inspection anytime you begin to see signs that your electrical system may be overloaded, shorting out, or having other types of problems. Some of these include:

  • Burning odors within your home or coming from your appliances
  • Repeated thrown breakers or blown fuses
  • Outlets that are warm to the touch or that spark when you attempt to use them
  • Dimming or flickering lights

If you experience these, or any other symptoms which cause you concern, call a licensed electrician immediately. They will come perform an inspection to help ensure your home is not at risk of having a fire.

In addition to having a professional inspector perform a home electrical inspection, you should also be performing a room by room inspection every six months. To do this there is a wonderful checklist which is produced by the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission. It will help you walk through your home room by room in an effort to increase your family's safety.