While many homeowners prefer a do-it-yourself approach to repairs and projects that pop up around the house, working with electricity is a different story. The fact is that electricity is tedious to work with, and one wrong move may cause physical harm and leave your home in a potentially dangerous position. A home’s electrical system doesn’t leave much room for error, and attempting to install, change, or repair wiring yourself may lead to shorts and ultimately fires.
Homeowners should, however, be aware of what to avoid when working with electricity to ensure their homes are safe and sound. Let’s look at the most common mistakes homeowners make when it comes to their home’s electrical systems.
Loose outlets are causes for concern as they can shift, resulting in wiring coming loosened from the terminal. If an outlet is unsecured, wires may overheat and arc, creating a potential fire hazard. An excellent way to check that your outlets are secured is by touching the screws to see if they move. If the outlet shifts, you can add plastic spacers to the screws to ensure they fit tightly into place.
Creating Connections Outside Of Electrical Boxes
Sometimes, homeowners attempt to tackle a wiring project, such as installing an outdoor light, and there isn’t an electrical box where needed. While it may be tempting to wire a new connection outside or outside the box in another location, this shouldn’t be attempted. Instead, a junction box should be added to the site where the light is installed. The primary consideration should be protecting the connection from any damage and containment of sparks and heat.
Wires Cut Too Short
Cutting electrical wires too short is a typical DIY mistake homeowners often make when installing a new outlet or switch. Not only do short wires make connections more challenging to make, but they can be dangerous as well. Always make sure that wires are long enough to protrude at least three inches out of the box. Wires that are already too short can be extended by using six-inch extensions on the existing wires if needed.
Opt For Professional Electrical Assistance
Unless you are experienced working with electricity, you may be putting your home and your family at risk if you try to manage specific electrical projects yourself. When you need to make electrical repairs, changes, or additions to your home and property, it’s always best to call a professional electrician to ensure that the job is completed safely.