03: The Hidden Cost of Faulty Wiring

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The Hidden Cost of Faulty Wiring

A Must-Have Article About Your Home’s Electrical System: Article 3 of 10

[/vc_column_text][vc_empty_space height=”22″][video_embed url=”https://vimeo.com/335580017″ border=”yes”][vc_empty_space height=”22″][vc_widget_sidebar sidebar_id=”hb-custom-sidebar-schedule-homeelectricedusale”][vc_separator color=”custom” accent_color=”#ffe300″ css=”.vc_custom_1577421655064{margin-top: 20px !important;margin-bottom: 20px !important;}”][vc_column_text]Faulty wiring can be an incredibly expensive problem in your home, and it is the nature of electrical wiring that most of the specific problems are probably hidden from view.

Fire is possibly the most dangerous and most costly potential hazard of faulty wiring. Electrical shock represents an even broader risk of injury or death than a fire though it is generally not as great a threat to property. There are numerous faults that can increase the danger of fire or electrical shock. They range from easily remedied issues to problems that require extensive rewiring or replacement of component parts.

On the simple and relatively inexpensive end of the range is the need to replace light switches or outlets, and replacing standard outlets with GFCI (Ground Fault Circuit Interrupter) outlets. Bad light switches and outlets (including the absence of GFCIs where needed) present a serious threat of electrical shock, but with properly functioning breakers, the risk of fire is minimized. Most homeowners can complete the replacement of a light switch or outlet themselves in a short time as long as they follow a few basic safety guidelines.

Insufficient electrical outlets is a problem that can be far more expensive to remedy. Insufficient electrical outlets present problems primarily because the average American home has a much higher demand for consumption of electricity than was the norm only a few years ago. When there are not enough outlets to meet demand, we deal with the problem by using extension cords. And extension cords can present problems for a couple of different reasons.

First, using extension cords makes it more likely that we will overload a circuit, causing a breaker to trip. That is not usually dangerous, but it is inconvenient. Also, when allowed to persist overloads due to extension cord usage can present a dangerous problem. The heavy use of extension cords increases the possibility that an overheated or frayed extension cord could lead to a fire.

Running new circuits to increase the number of electrical outlets can be a very expensive modification of your homes wiring.

There is a systemic problem in some houses that is extraordinarily inconvenient and costly to remedy. That involves the use of smaller wires than the system requires. Undersized wires (smaller diameter than needed), heat up with use. The problem becomes worse when the wiring goes through a hot attic or bundles of wires are routed through holes in framing. When bundled wires become individually overheated, their proximity to other overheated wires increases the likelihood of fire.

Unfortunately upgrading wire gauge requires pulling new, larger gauge wire through the entire run of the circuit at significant cost.

This sampling of hidden electrical problems is ample evidence of the multiple hidden issues that might be the cause of significant costs as you work to make your home both comfortable and safe. If you are already living in the home you will need to determine the schedule of repairs based on the danger and your ability to pay for the modifications. If you are looking at a home to buy and you uncover some of these hidden issues, be sure to take the cost of repairs into consideration when you determine what you are willing to pay for the house.[/vc_column_text][vc_widget_sidebar sidebar_id=”hb-custom-sidebar-schedule-homeelectricedusale”][/vc_column_inner][vc_column_inner width=”1/3″][vc_column_text]

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