Buying a new home is an exciting adventure that requires attention to detail and excellent planning. Most new homeowners have done a home inspection prior to purchase or hired someone to inspect the house for them. This is often a long list of areas to check around the home, from lighting fixtures to bathtubs, looking for damages and areas that need to be repaired prior to purchase. Executing this inspection can mean the difference between disaster and safety in your new home.
Electrical inspection is a vital category and homeowners should inspect absolutely everything from light switches to outlets. The more detailed the inspection list is, the more likely it is that the buyers will be able to find any problems that require repair. Although hiring a professional home inspector is the wisest move, it is possible to perform a check yourself, if you know what to look for.
Five Areas to Check
As you walk through the house, check absolutely everything. Even main light switches flickering on may indicate a wiring problem.
- Test the outlets with an outlet tester, available at most hardware stores. Check each outlet exterior for cracks or physical defects and make sure the outlet holds proper tension and won’t let a cord drop out.
- Make sure every outlet has a cover plate to protect against accidental shock or sparking. The plates aren’t just for decoration, so be sure to have the current homeowner purchase any missing plates before you move in. Additionally, make sure that unused outlets or wires have a proper electrical box that is metal.
- Ensure that any permanent appliances are plugged directly into an outlet and not an extension cord. Check the garage door openers, water softeners, and even basement lights.
- Go outside and check the overhead wires for branches that are too close and look at the connection point for the wires. Only the neutral wire should be exposed and the other two should be completely covered.
- Find residential and emergency electrician services before you even begin to move into the new house. This will ensure that you are ready in case something unforeseen happens with the electrical in your home.
Hiring a high quality electrical service is the most important step you will take as a new homeowner, so be sure to find someone with plenty of customer reviews and experience. Having a professional who maintains your home and helps with any expansion will ensure that everything is up-to-date and in accordance with the standards set by the National Electrical Code. Following these steps while checking a potential new home will set you up for electrical success and provide the knowledge that your home is as safe as possible.