Electrical Home Maintenance

Preventive maintenance of home electrical devices helps ensure both safety as well as economic benefit.  We all know that in the long-term if we keep something well-maintained and cared for, it lasts longer and costs less in repairs.   This applies to everything from your teeth to your car.

Some household owners might forego the routine of having regular maintenance on the fundamental electrical equipment inside of their homes.  That shouldn’t be the case. It is wise to undertake maintenance for all of the electrical material fittings, devices and appliances around the house.  This is not that much different from keeping locks and hinges lubricated or replacing the washers in your sinks.  Regular scheduled inspections and maintenance is a serious requirement that will keep not only the equipment running at peak efficiency but will also create a safe environment that is free from all kinds of risks.  Home safety should be one of the priorities of every family, hence I talk about electrical maintenance regularly.

Through habitual electrical maintenance, damages and accidents associated with electricity can be avoided. This way, there will be no need for extensive or costly repairs and replacements – or worse, a serious incident or fire.  Some maintenance and checks can be personally done by household owners.  There are signs which are easily noticeable.  A blackening around points, flashing or sparks or sounds when you turn off/on an item or the button being broken mean it’s time to call a professional.  Many electrical devices need to be regularly, if not thoroughly, cleaned and covered.   Connections and cords should be kept clean and tidy.   Air vents should be kept clean and dust-free and open without airflow being hindered.

 

Let’s look at some commonly overlooked device due for electrical home maintenance:

 

Ceiling Fans

Ceiling fans are among the common fixtures we see at any homes – making our home environment cooler.   Although they are not as chilling as air conditioners, the wind chill effect they produce can absolutely bring relief during the hottest periods.  Despite the rising popularity of air conditioning systems, ceiling fans will remain to be one of the most sensible solutions to home comfort, that is, if they are regularly cleaned and maintained.  They cost less than air conditioners and generate lower energy bills.  No different from an air conditioning, you can attach a remote control which can be set, so at night, for example, you can set it to go off say in 2 hours, making them even more cost-efficient.  They come with great use of making a room comfortable by forcing warm air downward come winter and stirring up breezes come summer. Practically, they are more economical to run because they help decrease the demands on heating and air conditioning systems.

As with all other electric-powered equipment, ceiling fans also need regular maintenance – although really quite minimal.   Just make it a point to dust them thoroughly every week.  Dust build-up can contribute to throwing a fan out of balance and stressing the motor.  In addition, the ceiling fan’s directions should be reversed seasonally. This will help make the ceiling fan work on their best efficiency. If you still don’t have ceiling fans in your home, this is the best time to install one especially that the weather is easing off.  Some suppliers are running specials, so hurry and score the best one.

Switchboards

Switchboards efficiently distribute electrical power to electrical devices and appliances to be used by consumers.  It is a chief component used in the power distribution process that is made up of several electric panels.  Each panel contains switches that redirect electricity.  The main purpose of the board is to control the flow of power by dividing the main current supplied to it into a number of smaller portions and distribute it to the devices.  The switchboard is considered to be the control panel of the home’s electrical wiring.  This electrical distribution device is not resistant to aging.  It can gradually deteriorate through conditions and certain environmental factors. Therefore, it is necessary that switchboards undergo routine maintenance, ideally once a year.  It is comparable to that of a car needing regular service.  When a switchboard is well maintained, it keeps everyone safe.  Routine inspection and testing are necessary for switchboards especially in older homes as they can experience failures that results to risks of fires, electrocution and explosions. Habitual preventative maintenance will also help in increasing the lifespan of the switchboards which will mean smaller number of replacements in the future.

Safety Switches

Safety Switches are electrical devices that can immediately detect an electricity leak and will cut the flow at source immediately.  Although they are commonly confused with circuit breakers and fuses, they perform different tasks. They provide critical protection against electric shock.  All circuits inside the house must have safety switches installed on them to ensure safety.  Safety switches are not expensive to buy but installation can be quiet costly since one safety switch might not be enough for the whole house.  Safety switches are vital and should not be taken for granted so make sure to have an electrician install the safety switches.  Refrain from doing it personally since they should be installed by law.  In addition, they must also be tested and well-maintained according to standards. Even though they are meant to save lives, they can become easily unreliable if they do not work properly.  Safety switches need to be in excellent working condition and ready to set in motion in a split second.  Just like any other electrical devices, they can be prone to failure and require routine upkeep every six months.  Most safety switches have TEST button on them on which you can easily press to automatically trip the switch to OFF position and then reset it by pushing the switch back on.  Make a point to perform this test every couple of months, and ideally diarise it so you don’t forget.  However, if this test button does not work, then do not waste time, contact a licensed electrician and get your safety switches fixed as soon as possible.

If you need help with your electrical home maintenance in the Redlands and Bayside area and surrounds, please call us on 0403 026 531.   We are qualified, licensed and insured electricians – affording you peace of mind and competitive pricing.   Electricity can be very unforgiving; don’t leave your home electrical maintenance go too long without attention.

Read How to Prepare for Power-Related Emergencies and Disruptions.