First thing’s first: electrical work is serious, technical, and often dangerous business. When we say “DIY electrical work,” we’re talking pretty simple stuff–and even that stuff is dangerous. If you’re even a little intimidated by the electrical work you’re contemplating (no matter how “simple” it may seem), call the pros.
There’s a reason being an electrician requires so much training and certification: it’s dangerous. Any time you’re working with electricity, there’s an inherent risk. In order to stay safe when conducting electrical work, you have to understand and respect these risks. That’s why we’re cataloguing the main things to watch out for when conducting DIY electrical work here. To avoid dangers like these, you have to keep them in mind at all times:
What are the main risks of DIY electrical work?
There are a lot of risks when it comes to doing your own electrical work both structurally and physically. If we had to narrow it down to the three main risks, we’d list:
- Fire. Electrical work is complex. You need to know exactly which gauges belong on exactly which circuit. You have to make sure current is flowing properly and is properly grounded. One wrong move and you could start a fire The Electrical Safety Foundation International reports that electrical fires cause approximately $1.3 billion dollars in property damage every year. It’s never worth the risk.
- Electrocution. Electrical current is no joke. It can hurt you very badly if you don’t handle it properly. Electrocutions usually happen around households when wires aren’t properly connected or protected. If you accidentally leave live wires exposed, then when you contact those wires with conductive material (such as metal or water) they will shock you.
- Inspection failure. When you eventually want to sell your home, you’ll have to have it inspected. Are you 100% sure you did everything right? If anything of your home’s electrical systems aren’t installed or maintained correctly, you may incur fines or lose selling value.
When can you DIY electrical work?
You can conduct do-it-yourself electrical work when you’re a certified technician. Don’t worry, it’s not too difficult! You’ll just need a C-10 Electrical Contractor license issued by the Department of Consumer Affairs. That’s also super easy to get! It only requires four years of journeyman experience. You can only get that after passing multiple exams and logging nearly fifteen thousand hours of work in different specialties.
Okay, now that we’ve laid it all out, maybe doing your own electrical work isn’t a particularly good idea. Unless it’s as simple as changing a light bulb, face plate, or appliance, we recommend leaving it to the pros.
What should you do if you have an electrical problem you can’t DIY?
Call your trusted local professional electrical contractor. They’ll have experts on hand who can handle whatever you throw at them. You’ll want to work with a company that is accessible, affordable, and can answer your questions over the phone.
You want to be able to trust that the technician they’re sending will be able to not only fix your problem, but diagnose it. Pros can find out what caused the problem in the first place, so that you can better prevent future electrical problems from happening.
We understand the appeal of taking on home improvement projects solo. You get to take care of your own living space and feel accomplished. We also understand the dangers – after all, we do this for a living.
When it comes to electrical work, it’s always better to be safe than sorry. If you’re having an electrical problem in your home, give the team at Mike Diamond a call. Whatever the buzz, we can help.