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3 Common Electrical Problems To Look For When Buying a Home

When you are buying a new home it is important to make sure that the electrical work in the home is in good condition. You want to be confident that the home you’re buying has no electrical problems and if it does, get them fixed. Jamar Power Systems explains what problems to look for and signs you’ll notice if you have electrical problems. You can find more common electrical safety items and warnings signs here

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Sean: I’m here with Phil Edwards from Jamar Power Systems to talk about checking electrical work when buying a new home. Phil, great to have you on the show.

Phil: Great to be here, Sean.

Sean: First of all, we’re talking about buying a home, maybe new to you, not necessarily a brand new home. But when people are buying a home new to them, what are some of the electrical issues or problems people should be on the lookout for? 

Phil: Well, an electrical system is basically a life safety system so we want to make sure that we’re looking for the life safety items first. Carbon monoxide detectors, smoke detectors, circuit breakers, GFCI protectors, which means ground fault circuit interrupters, which are devices that are around water. 

Sean: The things that I never realize I have tripped, that have the little button and I think I need to replace my iron or my toaster? 

Phil: Yeah, the one that’s hidden in the garage and covers everything in the house.

Sean: Yeah, sometimes they are, or sometimes they’re in the kitchen or, the more modern ones have more of them in the house, correct? 

Phil: Yes they do. 

Sean: Let’s go back to one of the earlier ones you mentioned, which is the smoke detectors and carbon monoxide detectors. What’s the lifespan of one of those on average? 

Phil: Well, a smoke detector is recommended to be replaced every 10 years and carbon monoxide detector every five. 

Sean: So if you bought a house and you don’t know how long that detector’s been in the home, is it a good idea to start fresh and just install new ones? 

Phil: Sure. Would be a great idea. 

Sean: You mentioned circuit breakers. That is kind of the ultimate safety factor for the home, is that correct? 

Phil: Yes, that protects everything and it’s problematic because, there’s not a really great way to test a circuit breaker. So you have got to look at the age of the circuit breaker. If you are younger than your circuit breaker, probably a good idea to get it replaced. 

Sean: And I know there’s some older ones that were installed years ago that have a history of failure, which can be very, very, very, very dangerous. Quickly, are there some signs that people might see if their electrical has issues? 

Phil: Well, heat is probably the number one issue that you’ll come across. You could, if things are, just aren’t working or not working properly, like if your circuit breaker is occasionally tripping, when you’re doing normal loads and you reset it and then it just keeps happening, usually what’ll happen is it’ll eventually fail. 

Sean: Thank you for these tips. Those are great ones. I know you’re offering a $77 service special. All the details on ApprovedHomePros.com. Thanks so much, Phil.