Three common electrical faults in the home

Electrical faults are inconvenient at best, and can be very dangerous at worst. Most of us are rightly wary of carrying out any electrical repairs. Here’s a rundown of some of the more common electrical faults you may experience in the home, and an explanation of the causes from Nick Speak, of NJ Electrical Solutions in Manchester:

1. Light bulbs blowing

A row of lightbulbs

Do you find light bulbs blow more often than they should in your home? It’s annoying, but the solution could be incredibly simple. Buying the cheapest light bulbs you can find could be to blame, as cheaper versions are less long-lasting than better known brands and can blow more easily. This is particularly true of LED lamps. Consider spending a little more on your bulbs, as using better-quality lamps will pay off in the long run. The problem could also be a loose connection in the lamp holder or somewhere else in the circuit causing a surge.

2. Flickering lights

Changing a light bulb

Flickering lights can be annoying, but the source of the problem can be very straightforward. The cause could be as simple as someone stomping, jumping or dropping something upstairs. It’s surprising how much a floor in a house can bend when children play!

Other possible causes include:

  • a loose connection somewhere in the circuit
  • a damaged cable which is trapped under a floorboard and loses connection every time you tread on it
  • a faulty light switch
  • a dimmer switch that’s not compatible

3. A fishy smell

Opening a plug socket

It sounds odd, but overheating electrical equipment can sometimes give off a fishy smell. If you notice a fishy odour in part of your home, pay particular attention to any ageing fluorescent light fittings, which can develop a fault over time. The culprit could also be a loose connection in a plug or socket that needs attention, or that a connection or socket has been overloaded by a high-powered appliance like a shower or tumble dryer.

If you have any concerns about the condition of the electrics in your home you should always call in a certified electrician.

Swinton Insurance is not liable for any of the views expressed by tradesmen within this article.

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