5 Electrical Repairs You Should Never Attempt to Fix on Your Own
When you own a home, there are a few electrical repairs you will need to learn to do yourself.
If one of your circuit breakers trips, you need to know how to locate your electrical panel and reset it. It's a simple enough fix that just about anyone can handle.
However, there are some electrical repairs you should not attempt to do on your own under any circumstances.
The average electrical repair costs Americans about $300. But paying an electrician to visit your home will be well worth it in the end when it comes to certain kinds of repairs.
Take a look at five electrical repairs you should leave to the professionals below.
1. Service or Replace an Electrical Panel
Are the circuit breakers in your electrical panel tripping almost every day? Or do you have an electrical panel that is too old and outdated to distribute electricity throughout your home effectively?
You'll likely need to either service your electrical panel or replace it altogether. The electrical panel is the single most important piece of electrical equipment in your home and needs to be working properly at all times.
Servicing or replacing an electrical panel is not something the average homeowner should attempt to do, though. These panels have service lugs on them that are always energized, which can make it extremely dangerous for anyone other than a licensed electrician to work on them.
Rather than trying to fix an electrical panel yourself, get in touch with an electrician who can do it safely for you. It'll keep you and your home safe for years to come when you have an electrical panel serviced or replaced by a pro.
2. Fix Your Home's Weatherhead
A weatherhead, which is also sometimes called a weathercap or a periscope, is a metal pole that welcomes service lines from the power poles situated outside your house into your home.
The weatherhead is designed to keep electrical wires, telephone lines, and more shielded from the elements at the point at which they enter your home. They might not look like very sophisticated pieces of equipment, but they play an important role in your home's electrical system.
If you ever notice that your home's weatherhead is leaning over or loose, you should have it repaired immediately. But you shouldn't attempt to make the repair on your own.
There are 200 amps passing through the electrical lines that enter your weatherhead. You could subject yourself to all that electricity if you touch the wrong line or if you damage a line in the process of fixing your weatherhead.
Instead of attempting to make electrical repairs to a weatherhead on your own, have an electrician handle the problem for you. They know how to safely fix weatherhead issues without putting themselves or your home in harm's way.
3. Rewire Your Home's Electrical System
Are you remodeling a kitchen and changing the layout of it? Or are you renovating the entire upper level of your home?
If so, you might be planning on moving electrical wires around or updating your home's electrical system as a whole. It's a good idea to consider doing electrical work when you have your walls open and wires are easily accessible.
What's not a good idea is trying to move electrical wires around on your own or doing any rewiring work without an electrician's help. Even if you have a little bit of electrical experience, you likely don't know enough to rewire your home safely.
An electrician can pull the proper permits and complete the rewiring jobs you need to be completed without compromising your home's safety. They can also add electrical switches and outlets wherever you need them.
4. Work on Your Home's Electrical System When There Could Be Live Wires
Getting shocked is a very real concern for those making electrical repairs. You could be seriously injured or even killed if you attempt to make repairs on live electrical wires.
Most homeowners think that avoiding live wires is as simple as shutting off power in the part of the home in which they're working.
But in some homes, especially older homes, the electrical wiring may not have been done properly. So you could end up dealing with live wires even when you shut a specific circuit breaker off.
Electricians know how to test homes to make sure live electrical wires won't be a problem. They also know how to work on live electrical wires when they come across them.
Avoid getting shocked by having an electrician work on electrical repairs for you as opposed to working on them yourself.
5. Make Repairs to Large Appliances
Has your air conditioner been giving you fits? Is your refrigerator acting up? Or do you have another large appliance that doesn't seem to be working right?
You might be tempted to open it up and poke around inside of it to see if you can repair it on your own. And as long as you shut off the electricity to it, you might be under the impression it won't pose a threat to you.
But you should steer clear of doing this since many large appliances can store electricity. This helps them start up easier when you turn them on. That stored up electricity could shock you if you attempt to work on an appliance, even when it's powered down.
Never attempt to fix a major appliance on your own unless you're 100% sure of what you're doing.
Call an Electrician to Complete Complicated Electrical Repairs Today
Many homeowners try to tackle electrical repairs on their own. They do it to save a few bucks on home maintenance.
If you're ever thinking about doing this, consider the damage you could do to your home if you make a repair the wrong way. Think about the damage you could do to your body as well if you're ever shocked in the middle of a repair job. It could be catastrophic if you're not careful.