Before you buy a home, you should inspect or have a professional inspect the electrical installation and its components. You could have the county or city inspector take a look, or you could find an electrical contractor to help you with the task. Make sure that the home is up to date and safety standards as required by the National Electrical Code.
You should have an electrical service that is large enough to supply the home and have room for future expansion. The wiring should be grounded and in good working order. The switches and outlets should be inspected to ensure they are in good working order and of the right type. Here are some of the electrical components of the electrical system that should be inspected.
The Receptacles Should Be Inspected
The receptacles, often called outlets, should be inspected to make sure that they have a ground, don't have any cracks or physical defects, that they have the proper tension to hold in a cord that is plugged into them, and that they are the proper type for the area. Specific areas to watch are bathrooms, kitchens, basements, garages, and outdoor outlets. Any of these areas could be wet or damp and are required to have ground fault circuit interrupters (GFCI) installed. Kitchens require many special outlets and circuits to supply the vast number of kitchen appliances in them.
Common Electrical Mistakes
There are plenty of common electrical mistakes that people make. Along with that, you may be wondering if the old wiring is safe? Another concern may be whether your home has aluminum wiring. You can check for incorrect electrical wiring and save yourself a big headache later. After all, this is the home you are thinking about purchasing, and you don't want surprises or large expenses later to repair problem areas. Then, you may have had a previous owner that overloaded a circuit. This can be evident when examining the basement or attic areas for signs of overloaded circuits.
Electrical Service Panels Have Changed Since 1900
To examine the electrical system even further, you can perform a service panel checklist examination. Oh yes, it will take some time to do all of this, but it is well worth the effort of finding out what makes your home tick. After all, you wouldn't buy a sinking ship with holes in it, and you shouldn't buy a faulty home either. If you know the defects ahead of time and negotiate the price to offset the faults, you may get the home of your dreams at a price that you can afford and a safe one at that!
The Lifespan of Electrical Wiring
Electrical wiring has a certain safe lifespan, just like everything else. Knob and tube wiring was state of the art in its day, but of course, now, it's outdated and lacks a ground wire. As you can see, what is good today doesn't mean that you can trust the wiring for hundreds of years. Just like the electrical switches and outlets wear out and need to be replaced from time to time, the wiring takes a beating over the years.
Future Expansion Electrical Needs
You should have an electrical service that is large enough to supply the home and have room for future expansion. The wiring should be grounded and in good working order. The switches and outlets should be inspected to ensure they are in good working order and of the right type. Make sure that the home is up to safety standards as required by the National Electrical Code. These specific electrical codes were developed by professionals in the electrical field to help keep you and your family safe. By implementing the electrical codes, your home will be electrically safe for your family.
Be sure to check the lighting for safety as well. Look in areas like basements, hallways, staircases, and garages. These areas should have sufficient lighting to ensure safety while passing through each. Check outdoor lighting also to see if the lighting is sufficient to enter and enter your home.