Many individuals pay little attention to what is happening behind the walls of their home. However, every time you flip on a light switch or use your microwave, you are drawing on your home’s internal wiring and if your wiring is damaged or outdated big problems can occur. 

According to Electrical Safety Foundation International, electrical malfunctions cause more than 50,000 house fires each year. These fires result in more than 500 deaths, 1,400 injuries, and account for more than $1.4 billion in property damage.

However, many of these fires can be prevented simply by understanding basic electrical safety principles and recognizing a few common warning signs of faulty electrical wiring. 

Whether you are renting or a homeowner, recognizing these five warning signs of dangerous, outdated wiring will help keep you and your home safe.

Frayed wires 

Frayed wires can be caused by excessive heat, bending, corrosion, or age. This may potentially cause issues because the protective exterior of the wires carry the current and, if damaged, can catch fire from the heat of the wiring.

If you are unsure of how to solve this issue, ask a home electrician for their professional opinion. 

Buzzing or crackling sounds 

Should electricity make a sound? In general, no. If working properly, electricity should flow smoothly and quietly between connections.

However, if your home has frayed wires or if your outlets and prongs are loose, the electrical current throughout your house could jump, causing a buzzing or crackling sound.

If you hear these sounds from your outlets, switches, or appliances, there could be a serious problem. It is important to turn off the electricity around the affected area and ask an electrician for help right away. 

Dimming or flickering lights 

Are your ceiling lights dimming or flickering when you vacuum or turn on the washing machine? This could be occurring because other major appliances are wired to the same circuit which may be overloaded.

Check the wiring and the circuit breaker for that particular section in your home or speak to a home electrician about moving lights to different circuits. 

Loose connections 

Over time, the connections between electrical wires, switches, and outlets throughout your home can become loose. It is important to make sure all outlet covers, switch plates, and wires are secure and in good condition. 

Frequently blown fuses or tripped breakers 

If you find that you are constantly resetting your circuit breakers, they are likely being overloaded. This occurs when a circuit is attempting to draw a greater electrical load than it is designed to carry.

If a vacuum or hair dryer routinely trip a breaker regardless of where they are being plugged in, the appliance itself is likely the culprit. However, if a single outlet causes a fuse to blow repeatedly, the circuit is probably being overloaded.

Simply moving a few appliances and devices to other circuits may solve the issue, but it may be necessary to ask an electrician to help you assess the situation and make recommendations. 

If you think you may be facing some of these issues or if you want to protect your home against any potentially harmful problems, Elite Electric can help. 

Visit our services page to learn more or give us a call at (402) 350-7925.