Most homeowners are aware that overloading outlets and using frayed or damaged extension cords are just one of the many ways an electrical fire can start. But there are many other fire dangers in your home that may not be immediately obvious yet can still be extremely dangerous if left unchecked. According to recent data it has been estimated that over 25,000 fires in the U.S were caused by electrical failure or malfunction resulting in a number of deaths and injuries and thousands of dollars in property damage. Sadly most of these fires could have been prevented. If you have never had your home’s electrical wiring inspected, now is the time to schedule an appointment. The skilled technicians at Burley Electrical Services have over 30 years’ experience and provide electrical inspections and routine electrical wiring maintenance. Our services include new home wiring, full-house wiring replacement services, to name but a few. Our team of professional electricians in South Florida can also install new or additional panel boxes for your homes growing electrical needs.
Burley Electrical Services has provided the following list of 4 potential fire hazards that you should be aware of, if any of them sound familiar contact Burley Electrical Service and schedule an appointment with one of our highly trained and licensed electricians to conduct a wiring inspection immediately.
1. Old wiring – the lifespan of an electrical system is 30 to 40 years but many homes are more than 50 years old. According to the professionals at Burley Electrical Services, older homes with fuses were set up for roughly 30 amps of power; many newer homes have between 100 and 200 amps. Warning signs of inadequate power include circuit breakers that trip or fuses that blow repeatedly.
2. Aluminum wiring – Many older homes still have aluminum wiring which is more fire prone than copper wiring. Aluminum wiring can oxidize and corrode causing the wire to overheat. Burley Electrical Services recommend replacing the aluminum wire with copper wiring but if that is not an option copper connectors called pigtails may be installed at receptacles and breakers.
3. Arc faults – An arc fault occurs when an electrical current veers off it intended course and is often caused by a breach in wiring. Arc faults are one of the leading causes of electrical fires. An arc fault could be caused by a loose connection in an outlet and are almost impossible to detect. Arc faults are preventable and your Burley Electrical technician can install devices called an arc-fault circuit (AFCI) at each breaker. AFCI’s sense dangerous abnormalities in wiring and appliances and shut down circuits before they overheat. It has been estimated that AFCI’s could prevent 50 to 75% of fires caused by arc faults.
4. Counterfeit electrical products – Don’t be tempted into buying extension cords, power strips, batteries or circuit breakers if you are shopping on line and the prices are ridiculously cheap especially if you are buying from a third party vendor. These products may be counterfeit and can be extremely dangerous. Only purchase electric products from reputable retailers. Burley Electrical Services recommends looking for the underwriter laboratories seal (UL). UL uses a holographic label in their logo that is much more difficult to copy and reproduce.
Electrical Inspection Prevention
Electrical fires are difficult to extinguish and you should never use water to put out an electrical fire. Doing so could put you at risk of electrocution. Some chemical suppressants will extinguish a fire completely but not all. The experts at Burley recommend a household extinguisher rate A-B-C which indicates that it is effective against fires involving ordinary combustible materials, flammable liquids, and electrical equipment. If you have questions or concerns about your electrical wiring and feel that your home may be at risk, contact Burley Electrical today and schedule an appointment to have your home’s wiring professionally assessed.