In this article, learn more about the reasons people call an electrician, and why electricians are so important.
Why Are Electricians So Important?
Electrical issues might be an inconvenience when they appear, but it’s a potential danger that should be treated with the importance it deserves. Electricity is essential in everyone’s daily routine, and small problems with the electrical system can seem almost debilitating to the homeowner.
In today’s world, going without any commodities like lighting, appliances, or internet can be annoying or even detrimental. This is where electricians can help get minor inconveniences back on track, but minor electrical issues can also become life-threatening quickly.
While the avid DIYer might think that they can solve electrical problems on their own, maintaining or repairing their electrical wiring, it is both unwise and dangerous to do so. This is where an experienced and licensed electrician comes in.
Electricians are trained to handle a multitude of problems, and they understand how electricity flows, how cable wiring and power circuits work, and even building codes to ensure that everything is functioning correctly and is up-to-date.
How Long Does it Take to Become an Electrician?
To become a fully licensed master electrician, it can take years of on-the-job experience and schooling. Depending on the state, the requirements might be different, however, many electricians spend a minimum of four years in schooling and on-the-job apprenticeship training before they can take jobs on by themselves.
Some electricians may be in the field for a decade before they take the next step to getting their master electrician license, while others might be on the fast-track to progress within their career.
Every electrician should have a minimum of a few years of experience before working on electricity in any residential or commercial environment or be a part of an apprenticeship with another electrician working on the job with them.
Common Reasons People Call an Electrician
Electricians are called out to jobs for a wide variety of reasons. Electricity is dangerous to handle without the proper equipment and experience, even within the average household. (1) Calling an electrician in, even for simple fixes, isn’t a testament to your lack of DIY prowess, but to your willingness to keep you and your family safe from fire hazards and electrical shock.
Electrical systems can be very complex, and even simple fixes can be dangerous if you aren’t confident in what you are doing.
Electricians handle any part of the electrical system, from the fuse box to the outlet and everything in-between. Furthermore, if the home is older, it may be using a type electricity that is no longer considered a safe method, and must be updated to minimize the risk of fire danger.
Flickering and Dimming Lights
If the lights flicker and dim frequently, then it may be time to call an electrician. While this can sometimes be caused by a problem with your electric company or with the weather, it may also be something more insidious with the home’s wiring. Try changing the bulbs, and if the problem, persists, an electrician can help you resolve the issue.
An overloaded circuit can be the guilty party for this problem. When there are too many electrical appliances plugged into a single circuit, it can drain more power than the circuit can provide, which causes lights to flicker and dim. This is a particularly common problem in older homes with outdated or loose wiring that wasn’t built to handle the demand of modern-day appliances.
Circuit Breakers Trip
Circuit breakers were built as a failsafe for electrical problems. These boxes signal that there is a problem in the circuit by shutting off or ‘tripping’. This provides an additional safety measure to prevent damage or fire hazards.
When any part of the electrical system within your home begins to overheat, one of the first signs is the breaker shutting off to prevent further heating. If your circuit breaker trips frequently, it could also mean your home needs a circuitry upgrade to handle a higher demand for power. A professional electrician be able to help you identify the issue with the circuit breaker for good.
Too Many Extension Cords in One Outlet
Every home has at least one extension cord. Whether you need additional outlets, or you are looking for a little extra cord length, extension cords are common in today’s households. Some people, however, might rely on these in ways that are unsafe.
Plugging in too many extension cords into one outlet can cause the voltage to drop, impairing the functionality of your appliances. Overuse, or overcrowding of extension cords may also cause overheating as more power surges through the cords than intended, leading to potential fire hazards.
Unlike wiring within your walls, an extension cord does not have the same type of fire hazard or damage protection and can lead to exposed wires or excessive heat starting a fire.
This is especially true if the extension cord is plugged in at one site but must travel to another part of the home. If the extension cord is placed near carpeting, rugs, drapes, or other fabric, it has an increased chance of causing a home fire if stray electricity sparks from the plug or the cord overheats. This is one of the top causes of modern house fires.
If you find yourself using extension cords for access to more outlets, then it is highly recommended to have new outlets installed in your home, rather than relying on extension cords permanently.
Outlets Aren’t Compatible with Three-Prong Plugs
A common problem in older homes, three-prong plugs are a relatively new standard that helps ground the device and prevent electrical hazards. Unfortunately, for homes that are out-of-date with current building codes, outlets may only accommodate two-prong plugs.
These outlets should be replaced with three-prong plugs, as two-prong plugs only have connections for heat and the neutral wire. Aside from the convenience of being able to plug in any type of plug, there is no place for unstable electricity to disperse safely.
A three-prong outlet, on the other hand, has a grounding connection that protects your appliances and home from sudden electricity surges.
Preparing for an Inspection
As a part of the home buying process, an inspector will look at the electrical wiring. If the wiring is of particular concern, a certified electrician may come out to provide an in-depth inspection of the circuitry and wiring of the home. These inspectors look for visible defects in the home’s wiring and take not of any potential safety hazards, or systems that are out of date.
If there are problems with the wiring, it can lower the home’s value or cause buyers to walk away from the property if the damage is extensive enough. To demand the highest price for the home, updating the wiring can help prepare the seller for a home inspection, and even use newly-updated wiring as an attractive feature for homebuyers.
What are the Three Main Types of Electricians?
Electricians can typically be categorized based on their current certification and level of expertise. An apprentice electrician is still in their training phase, and may be learning the trade under the supervision of a more experienced mentor while attending a trade school.
The length of the apprenticeship varies from the state to state, but it is generally agreed that thousands of hours across four to six years are required as a bare minimum.
After the apprenticeship program is complete and they acquire their license, they become a journeyman electrician. At this level, they have earned their license and are allowed to work without the supervision of their mentor.
Once they meet certain requirements as a journeyman electrician, they may then move on to become a master electrician. After years of experience, this master electrician has the training required to work in industrial settings, or as project managers.
Do You Need to Call an Electrician? Let Us Help
If you don’t have an electrician on stand-by who takes care of your regular maintenance, inspection, and repairs, then it might be time to look into it before it’s too late.
If you need to find a reliable electrician near you, look no further than Same Day Pros.
Our directory can help you find professionals for any type of service, all within your service area. Everything from electricians to painters and roofers, we have you covered.
Never spend days looking for an electrician for that burnt outlet or frayed wiring again, call one to come out same-day and keep your home safe.
These pros are ready to take on your project; all you have to do is compare quotes and find the company that best matches your project’s needs.
- Forbes, How to Find the Best Electricians Near You, https://www.forbes.com/home-improvement/home/best-electrician-near-me/