You don't need to wait until the power goes out in your home to need the services of an electrical contractor, as very often a home's wiring or other devices will need an upgrade or repair even while they're still providing power. There are certain signs that suggest you need an electrician so your home is not in any danger of an electrical fire. Ultimately, it's good to call such a contractor the minute you notice any of the following signs in your home or outlets.
1. Lack of three-prong outlets
The third prong on cords and the third opening you see for plugs are for grounding the electricity, which in turn makes it safer. There is less chance of being shocked when you plug something into one of these outlets, even if your cord doesn't have that third prong for grounding.
If you notice a distinct lack of three-prong plugs in your home, this may mean that the wiring behind the walls is not grounded properly. This in turn can put your home at risk for an electrical fire if you were to use an appliance that demanded too much electricity; the wiring could easily be overloaded if it's not grounded as it should be.
2. Lack of GFCI outlets
Ground Fault Circuit Interrupters, or GFCI, are special interrupters used on outlets that are near water. These are like a second circuit breaker that are meant to shut off the power if there is a sudden surge, such as if you dropped a hair dryer in a wet sink. Check the outlets near sinks in the bathrooms and kitchen of your home. Contractors can retrofit these outlets with such interrupters, which will keep you safe and bring your house up to code.
3. Rust at the panel
When checking your circuit breaker panel box, note if you can see rust or any signs of moisture or water. This typically means that there is a water leak near the panel and in turn, the risk of damage to the circuits and wiring. The water behind the panel can also conduct electricity as it flows through the circuits and in turn, your home may be at increased risk of an electrical fire. An electrical contractor like Smart-Safe Electrical Services can replace the panel and any older wiring and note the source of the water leak so that too can be repaired.