In 2020 alone, the world used a whopping 22,153 terawatt-hours (TWh) of electricity. So that you know, 1 TWh is equivalent to 1,000,000,000 kilowatt-hours (KWh) of energy.
All that should give you an idea of how much electricity the world depends on each year.
That also explains why an electrical service provider classifies as an essential worker. After all, these professionals specialize in installing, repairing, and maintaining electrical systems.
So, it’s all thanks to electricians that consumers can use electricity safely. The keyword here is “safe,” which means it’s not a good idea for a regular person to carry out DIY electrical work.
To that end, we created this guide on the many types of services (Electrical Service Provider) a licensed electrical expert can do for you. Read on to learn why and when you need their expertise.
1. Energy Assessment
Air leakage can account for 25% to 40% of the energy used to heat or cool a typical US home. That’s 25% to 40% of wasted heating or cooling energy.
Air leaks are cracks and openings in a building, such as in drafty windows and old doors. Areas around electrical outlets, wires, and wall switch plates can also develop leaks.
Either way, conditioned air can exit a building through these gaps. Moreover, outdoor air can enter these cracks, affecting the indoor climate. As a result, the heater or air conditioning system has to work harder, leading to spikes in energy use.
A licensed electrical service provider can help by providing an energy assessment. Also known as an energy audit, this service gives you a clear picture of your building’s energy use.
For example, it lets you determine how much your actual energy usage is. It also tells you if you’re wasting energy through air leaks.
Moreover, the electrical expert can educate you about your most inefficient electrical appliances. These can include an old air conditioner, refrigerator, freezer, clothes washer, or dishwasher. Inefficient incandescent lights can also be a culprit behind your high energy bills.
You can also expect to get recommendations on the energy efficiency steps you can take. These often include replacing old appliances or lights with energy-efficient ones. You’re likely to get advice on air sealing and insulating your home, too.
2. Safety Inspection
A global study reported that more than 4.59 million fires occurred in 46 countries in 2018. India came in first, with 1.6 million fires, while the United States ranked second, with more than 1.3 million cases.
Electrical malfunctions, in turn, are some of the leading culprits behind such fires.
For example, of the 354,400 estimated home fires in the US in 2019, 6.8% were due to electrical problems. On top of that were the 110,900 estimated nonresidential fires, of which 7.3% occurred due to electrical woes.
Fortunately, an electrical expert can help prevent such disasters with a safety inspection. This involves a comprehensive examination of your entire electrical system. It covers the electrical panel, wirings, outlets, and anything else that uses electricity.
The goal of safety checks is to uncover existing and potential electrical malfunctions. The professional electrician then lets you know which areas need immediate repair. You can also expect the expert to recommend upgrades or improvements.
Best of all, some providers of electrical services offer these checks for free if you hire them for any paid job.
3. Electrical Panel Upgrade
Electrical panels are devices that distribute electricity in homes and buildings. In most modern homes, electrical panels provide 150 to 200 amps of total power.
However, many older homes still rely on 100- or even 60-amp panels. If yours is one of these, consider having it upgraded by a professional electrician. This way, you can ensure that your higher-rated panel can meet your growing energy demands.
4. Circuit Breaker Panel Replacement
Inside your main electrical panel are circuit breaker switches. These switches are safety devices that trip in cases of short circuits or overloads. By “tripping,” they cut off the flow of electricity to prevent electrical hazards and fires.
However, old age or severe wear and tear can cause circuit breakers to fail. Worse, some breakers were already defective even before their installation.
Federal Pacific Electric (FPE) Stab-Lok panels are perfect examples of such malfunctioning devices. According to some estimates, there are about 28 million FPE panels in the US. At least one million of them may be defective and fail to provide fire protection.
That’s another good reason to get a safety inspection of your home or business. This way, a licensed electrician can determine if your panel is too old or is one of the defective FPE products. From there, you can have the pro replace it as soon as possible.
5. Electrical Repairs
Flickering lights, defective light switches, and non-working outlets indicate faulty wires and connections. Lights that dim or go on and off can also be a symptom of overloaded circuits. Circuit overloads may also cause your panel to produce weird and loud hissing sounds.
Problems with wirings and metal contacts can also lead to electrical shocks. In many cases, these issues may only give you a minor jolt. However, more severe cases can be powerful enough to cause electrical injuries.
In fact, up to 10,000 people in the US end up in emergency departments for such injuries each year. This is a good enough reason to call an electrician if you experience electrical issues. The sooner you call a pro, the sooner the expert can diagnose and repair your problems.
6. Outlet Additions
One solid sign you need more outlets is if you rely on too many extension cords. While convenient, extension cords are only temporary wiring solutions. Their misuse can result in hazards, especially electrical fires.
So, if you use multiple extension cords every day, get in touch with a licensed electrician. The pro can help you determine how many extra outlets you need and then install them for you.
7. Surge Protection Installation
A typical home contains an estimated $15,000 worth of devices that surges can damage. So, it’s no wonder that as of 2020, surge protection has become a requirement for dwelling units in the US.
Surge protectors are devices that safeguard electronics from high-voltage power surges. A power surge, in turn, is an unexpected or sudden increase in voltage. If strong enough, it can fry and cause severe damage to electronic equipment.
Power surges can sometimes come from electric utility companies during power grid switching. However, lightning is a much more powerful cause of such events. Large appliances, such as AC units and fridges, can also cause these spikes when they cycle on and off.
A licensed electrician can install surge protectors in your home or business. Get in touch with one of these experts now so that you can protect all your pricey electronics ASAP.
8. Ground Fault Circuit Interrupter (GFCI) Installation
A ground fault circuit interrupter (GFCI) is a device meant to prevent electrocution. A GCFI can do this by sensing a potential shock event. It then cuts off the power before someone gets shocked and injured.
An electrician can install GFCIs in areas where electricity and water may meet. Bathrooms, kitchens, and laundry rooms are examples of such places.
9. LED Light Upgrades
As of 2019, an estimated 1.5 billion light sockets in the US still used incandescent bulbs. Although cheap, they waste up to 90% of the energy that flows into them, making them highly inefficient. They also have short lifespans, as they usually burn out after a year or two of use.
If you’re still using some of these inefficient lights, it’s time to upgrade to LED technology. The best LED lights can be 90% efficient, only converting 10% of energy into heat. What’s more, Energy Star-rated LED products in the US have a minimum 3-year warranty.
In most cases, you can connect LED bulbs to existing sockets in your home or office. However, you may need the help of an electrician to replace the socket if it doesn’t fit typical LED bulbs. An electrician can also replace incandescent dimmers with LED-compatible ones.
10. Safety and Security System Installation
Some electricians also specialize in smoke, fire, and gas detector installations. They can also install indoor and outdoor safety and security lighting. If you need help setting up a wired security system, you can rely on these experts for help, too.
11. Solar Panel Installation
The world now has more than 700 gigawatts (GW) of total solar energy capacity installed. This is sure to rise further as more consumers make the switch to this green, renewable energy.
If you plan to go solar yourself, you need an electrician’s help installing and connecting your solar panels. Whether you want the panels on your roof or the ground, an electrician can do all the heavy work for you.
Hire an Electrical Service Provider to Help Keep Your Property Safe
As you can see, a licensed electrical service provider can do more than just repairs. These pros can help make your home or business safer with devices such as surge protectors and GFCIs. Plus, they can help you save money and the environment with energy-efficient updates.
So, whenever you need electrical help, call a licensed electrical contractor or electrician.
Ready for more home or office improvement guides? Feel free to have a look around our site for more educational posts like this!
Must Read : Fabric Facts: How Much Does Fabric Cost By the Yard?