Not knowing how to spot a compromised wiring system is dangerous and can cause serious accidents. In fact, in 2018 alone, there were 29,312 accidental fires in England, with defective wiring accounting for 18% of them. There may have been warning signs, but, in all probability, no one knew what they meant. Even if the residents had seen strange bouts of energy fluctuations or power surges, they would have had no idea what these signified.
Here are the signs you should watch out for to help you detect and prevent a potential fire from happening in your home:
The smell of something burning
Wires that heat up as electric current passes through them give off a burning odor. This could cause the plastic covering to melt and has the potential to start a fire.
However, do not attempt to repair electrical problems on your own as you may wind up making things worse. If it is not an electrician who does the work, your home might not pass fire safety standards. If you rent your home, ensure you inform your landlord before trying any DIY fixes yourself.
Wires made of aluminum
Aluminum wires are sometimes used as a replacement for copper as they are more cost-efficient. However, the former oxidizes easier than the latter, so the sheathing could easily come off and overheat the exposed wires.
This is a fire emergency waiting to happen.
Lights are flickering
Every time the lights flicker, some people usually think that the power company’s supply is fluctuating. In reality, though, this is caused by a loose electrical connection within your house’s system. If it is just one area, then it only needs a simple fix. If it’s the whole house that’s flickering, the problem can probably be found in the breaker box or an outdoor power source close to your home. This is one disrepair issue in your home you can’t afford to ignore.
Outlets are hot to the touch
It is important to check the wattage of your desired light fixture before purchasing one. Otherwise, your outlet and fixture might overheat.
Your power outlet gets hot to the touch when the electrical wiring generates too much energy. When this happens, quickly unplug your appliances and avoid using the outlet until it has been fixed.
The buzzing sound that electrical wirings make happens if part of the sheathing has peeled off. Usually, when this occurs, the wall outlet also sparks when an appliance is plugged in. This could cause an electric shock and eventually become a fire hazard.
Circuit breaker keeps tripping
It probably is a wiring issue if the circuit breaker trips and you have done all you can to lessen the load that it handles. What you can do is move some appliances to another area so they can use another circuit breaker.
A circuit breaker that keeps tripping is most likely caused by overloading. It cannot handle the wattage that it is carrying. Turn off the power to cut off all the electricity supply—and to prevent an electrical fire.
An improperly ground gas line can explode. To prevent this from happening, make sure the clamp for grounding is not clipped onto the gas line.
This is why only a professional should handle matters related to electrical wirings. A wrong placement or installation could cost you your house.
UL stickers are fake
Fake UL labels indicate that the electrical items have not been subjected to a thorough safety inspection. Because these phony systems are often sold at low prices, you must ensure that what you are purchasing is not a counterfeit product.
Although tangled wires are not firing hazards per se, they are a sign of disorganization on the side of the electrician. The messy wires might not be too much of an issue but may be an indication that the job was done in a rush, and this could mean other power supply-related jobs could have haphazardly been implemented as well.
Make sure your electrician organises the wires as rodents can find a group of tangled wires a perfect spot for their nests.
Wires have been chewed on
Aside from building their tiny nests within the web of wires, rodents can chew on them until the conductors are exposed. Exposed wires can cause short circuits, causing the cables to spark and overheat. Additionally, watch out for droppings and urine as these can conduct electricity too.
Your electric wires should be stored in a circuit board box and seal it so the rodents will not be able to nest on them.
Whose responsibility is faulty electrical elements?
If you rent your home, fixing electrical issues and wirings is your landlord’s responsibility. If the problems are not addressed promptly, this could be a cause for fire in the property.
If you have been repeatedly requesting them to fix your electrical wirings but they have been ignoring you, you can seek the help of the housing disrepair experts at Disrepair Claim. They can bring a housing disrepair compensation claim forward on your behalf and force your landlord to fix any faulty electrical wiring. You may also be entitled to thousands in compensation if you win your case.