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Most Common Electrical Problems Found During Home Inspections

A critical part of the home buying process is the home inspection. The home inspection is what can make or break the sale. The purpose of these inspections is to identify potential repairs that need to be done. The buyer is responsible for paying for the inspection, but they have the right to waive it altogether. Waiving the inspection is not recommended due to the possibility of potentially costly and dangerous repair work that may need to be completed.

Who Does a Home Inspection?

When a request is made, an inspector comes to the home and does an inspection. Professional home inspectors conduct inspections to ensure the safety and efficiency of a home. Although the buyer pays for the inspection, the inspector doesn’t work for either party in the sale. Their sole purpose is to ensure the safety of the home. For your electrical inspection, you should turn to the expertise of a licensed electrician.

What Are Common Electrical Problems Found In Inspections?

Electrical problems can create safety risks. The most commonly found issues in homes that failed their electrical inspections are:

  • Switches wired incorrectly- shock hazards are the result of hot and neutral wires being reversed when wiring is installed for switches. This problem often occurs when someone tries to DIY the wiring or hires a less experienced electrician.
  • Ground Fault Interrupter (GFI)- the primary use of a GFI is to trip the circuit when an outlet is located close to a water source. Many people ignore it when these need replaced, which can increase the risk of electrocution.
  • Breaker overloading- most circuit breakers are designed to hold single wires, not multiple. If more than one wire is attached to a single breaker, not only are there concerns about the electrical load but the potential for fire.
  • Lack of grounded outlets- many older homes do not have grounded electrical plugs. These are the outlets that have the two slots as well as the round hole for the ground wire. The use of grounded outlets helps minimize fire risk if there is ever an electrical malfunction within the circuit.

Why is Having an Inspection By a Licensed Electrician Important?

Electrical inspections are something that should be done when certain milestones are reached in the lifespan of a home. New homeowners should always have the electrical system inspected when purchasing a home, anyone who has a home over 40 years old, if a new appliance is being added, and when there are significant renovations done to the house.

Why are these inspections so necessary?

These inspections:

  • Confirm components are functioning properly and safely
  • Ensure electrical mistakes haven’t been made by previous owners, yourself, or contractors
  • Review existing outdated wiring to determine if it needs to be upgraded
  • Analyze wiring and other components to determine if they have degraded and require replacement
  • Check fuses and breakers for size and potential replacements to prevent fire risks
  • Make sure there are no fire and safety hazards present within the electrical system
  • Look for energy efficiency improvements or upgrades which could help you save money on utility costs

Professional electricians are trained and knowledgeable in all things electrical. Not only can these professionals identify a problem, they know how to fix it. You can gain real insight from an electrician during an inspection about what danger your family is in with the wiring in a home.

What To Do When You Need An Inspection

When you require an electrical inspection, you should always trust a licensed professional to handle it. Many people try to go what they consider to be the “easy route.” They use sub-par contractors to complete the inspection or do DIY repairs, but the truth is, these only create more problems that can become expensive.

If you are a residential homeowner who needs an electrical inspection or repair, LiveWire has the expertise to handle your requests. There is no job too big or too small that can’t be handled. Call today and find out what LiveWire can do for you and your home!

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