Home Improvement

7 Common Electrical Issues and How to Fix Them

Did you know that more than 50,000 home fires occur each year in the United States due to electrical problems?

Electrical fixtures make life more convenient but they can also cause hazards if they aren’t cared for.

If you want to ensure safety in your home, there are a few simple problems that you should know how to repair.

Continue reading to discover some of the most common electrical issues that you can likely fix yourself!

1. Fix Faulty Switches

One of the most common electrical issues homeowners deal with is faulty switches.

When your on and off switches aren’t properly working, it can be frustrating to live in the dark. Dimmable switches also stop working for several reasons, most of which have an easy solution.

Loose wiring, aging, and arcing are the typical causes of faulty wiring. Take a look at your electric sockets and light switches after ensuring the power is off. You can determine what steps to take next based on the condition of the sockets.

To fix this issue, you can replace your switches. If you need assistance, American Electric of Jacksonville can help.

2. Tighten Loose Outlets

Have you noticed that when you plug in the vacuum or your phone charger that the outlets move?

Although the outlet cover may be secure, the layer beneath the cover could be coming loose. This is an important repair to make since the damage can become dangerous and put you at risk of shocking yourself. Another problem that could result from this issue is arcing, which can be a significant fire hazard around wood and dust.

To fix this issue, turn off the electricity and verify that no current is running to your outlets. Then, remove the outlet cover, and below you will see the outlet receptacle. These pieces typically have 2-3 screws holding them in place.

Depending on the damage, you may need to tighten the screws or replace the fixture if it broke.

3. Replace Electric Covers

Whether you want to update your electric sockets to include USB ports or make them more secure from water damage, there are covers to get the job done.

After you turn off all of the electricity in the house or section of the property, you can use your screwdriver or flat head to remove the old panel. You’ll want to find compatible outlet covers for the area you want to replace. Make sure you get the right cover for the openings for light switches, USB ports, and outlets.

4. Repair Overlamping Damage

Most people don’t realize it, but if you place a high-wattage bulb in a low-wattage fixture, it can cause a hazard.

Overlamping occurs when the lightbulb wattage is too much for the light fixture to handle. You must always follow the recommended wattage rating and directions for light fixtures to avoid the intense heat. Overlamping can cause fires or burns because of the heat they conduct.

If you start noticing that your bulbs are getting warm, immediately turn off the fixture and unplug it. Let the fixture cool down, you may have to turn off the electricity if it’s a built-in bulb. Once the electricity is off and the bulb is cooled, you can replace it with a lower wattage.

5. Popped Circuit Breaker

When your circuit breaker becomes overwhelmed by wiring and powering household items, it can stop working.

If your circuit breaker is taking on more wiring than it can handle, you’ll want to replace your panel with a larger one. This is a common problem in older homes that have had electrical wiring run through and not all of the wires are being used.

Since replacing wiring subpanels can be dangerous, you should contact a team for help. Don’t risk your safety trying to fix this issue if your power keeps switching off.

6. Cover Junction Boxes

It’s common for junction boxes to be uncovered, which can be fire and danger hazards.

Junction boxes can be a dangerous place since they hold all of the wires that have been spliced together. Without perfect fusions and coverage, it’s easy to get shocked. Fortunately, you can turn off your electricity and purchase a cover.

Measure the length and width of your junction box. You can typically find cover at home repair stores. Make sure you aren’t violating any codes and contact an electrician for guidance.

7. Flickering Lights

Wind, snow, and rain can impact your lights and make them flicker through the evenings.

This can be a frustrating issue but it often has a simple solution. Frayed wiring can occur from weather or animal chewing on it. By repairing these power lines, you can ensure consistent lighting and prevent energy waste.

You’ll need help from an electrical team to repair outdoor wiring. If there aren’t any issues with the exterior wiring, you may need to check what’s underneath your fixtures. Loose wiring and bulbs can increase flickering, resulting in an uptick in your energy use.

Don’t Let These Common Electrical Issues Shock You

Learning about common electrical issues can help you become a smart and prepared homeowner.

The most critical thing when dealing with electricity is to turn it off before handling any wires or light fixtures. You can repair most problems with replacements, but sometimes professionals are needed. Don’t be afraid to get help with electrical problems, professionals can safely get the job done.

Addressing electrical wiring problems early on can prevent fires and serious injuries.

If you want to learn more about electrical issues and maintaining your home, check out our blog for the latest info!


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