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How to Solve Common Electrical Problems

Most common electrical problems can be solved with either a screwdriver or a telephone. Let’s discuss some DIY solutions, because you may be surprised at what you’re capable of handling yourself. 

And the moment you feel like you’re in over your head, contact us to handle any common electrical problems you have — and the complex, difficult problems too.


Relying on Power Strips

That tangled web might not be a hazard if you are using heavy-duty cords, but it may present a fire risk and it sure looks ugly. Spreading around devices to other outlets, and upgrade your power strips and extension cords to be safe.

The fact is, however, that over-reliance on power strips has become one of today’s common electrical problems because many homes lack a sufficient quantity of outlets to meet modern needs. The best solution: hire an electrician to add outlets.


Loose or Broken Electrical Outlet

Don’t ignore bad outlets. Common electrical problems with receptacles and outlet wiring include overheating, sparks and fires, and damage to appliances.

You may be comfortable replacing the receptacle on your own. If not, contact us for professional service. To wire the new receptacle you’ll need a pair of needle-nose pliers and a screwdriver (and a voltage tester to be safe and ensure the new outlet works properly). Skittish about cutting and crimping wires? Let your local electrician handle it.


Overheated Outlet Covers

If an outlet’s faceplate feels hot to the touch, that’s not normal. It’s a sign of common electrical problems such as miswiring or broken receptacles. Stop using the outlet and call us to inspect and replace the wiring.


No GFCI Protection Near Wet Area

Kitchens, bathrooms, wet bars, and outdoor areas should all use GFCI outlets that shut off to prevent electroshock. Missing GFCIs lead to such common electrical problems as short circuiting, wire damage, home fires, and physical injury.

Many people can handle a GFCI installation on their own. It’s basically the same as replacing a standard receptacle, but considering that the goal is maximum safety you would do well to leave this to a pro.


Flickering Lights

If stormy or windy weather causes lights to flicker, call us for repairs. This is one of the many common electrical problems that happens simply due to worn-out wiring. 

If the lights flicker when you run a certain appliance, the circuit cannot handle the load. Move the appliance to another location if possible, or call your electrician to upgrade the circuit panel or add extra slots.


Bad Light Switch

Miswired or broken light switches are one of the more common electrical problems that homeowners can fix themselves. If your light switch works backward, controls the wrong appliance, or controls too many things, it’s time for replacement. Call your electrician if you aren’t comfortable with the task or if you want to add a three-way switch to control lighting from multiple locations.


Tripping Breakers

Breakers trip when too much power is flowing through them, so you should not reset a breaker more than once. If you recently added a new large appliance to the room, avoid using it or unplug the other devices in the room when you do. To solve the actual problem, you’ll need an electrician to upgrade the panel or add slots.


For more info on solving common electrical problems, browse our blog for detailed guides. If you just want to get the problem fixed quickly and safely, call us today to make an appointment!

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