Doing Do-It-Yourself or DIY projects can save money and improve the value of your home. You may be tempted to do DIY electrical work with the idea of saving a few bucks but, trying to do DIY electrical work can be incredibly dangerous. One of the biggest dangers of DIY electrical work is that electricity can be deadly when handled improperly.
Here are 12 reasons why DIY electrical work is dangerous and why you should call a professional electrician for your electrical work.
- Electrical Shock
One of the dangers when working around electricity is an electrical shock which can be deadly at any voltage level. The average voltage in most residential homes is around 110 volts which can give you a nice jolt. However, the voltage level for some appliances can reach 240 volts it’s a deadly amount of current if exposed to. You can make a mistake while doing DIY electrical work, a minor shock is not serious but electrocution can cause deep burns or internal injuries or worst death.
- Fire Hazard
Simple mistakes can cause an electrical fire which can be dangerous. You cannot use water to extinguish the flames because water will conduct electricity and can electrocute anyone who gets wet. Here are common electrical mistakes that can lead to fire:
- Wrong gauge of electrical wire: there are different kinds of wires for different applications, you can’t just put any wire on any electrical system. You must know the difference to complete your DIY project safely or else it will cause a short circuit and eventually fire.
- Incorrect bulb wattage: it is simple to replace a light bulb and you can do it yourself, but using the wrong wattage can cause an electrical fire.
- Faulty installation of outlets and switches: Outlets and switches are a bit complex especially if you can’t figure out which wire is ground or neutral. Not knowing the right cables to install to your outlets and switches could lead to errors, short circuits, or even an electrical fire.
- Wrong fuse size or amperage: If the wrong fuse is placed because you think it can handle higher current, it may cause a spark or a house fire.
- Using the Wrong Products
You might not be aware of the proper type of wires, outlets, or switches that need to be used in different situations. Using the wrong products can cause electrocution or fire. There are different types of wires and only a trained electrician can be trusted to pick the correct products. A professional electrician knows what products to use for the job, from replacing a bulb, an outlet to re-wiring your house.
- Electricity Failing to Work Properly
You might end up with more problems if you try to fix electrical issues yourself. You may end up with some parts or your entire home with no power. To ensure electricity is working properly in your home it is best to call in a professional residential electrician.
- Inspection Issues
All electrical components in your home should pass inspection before they can be used. Doing DIY projects means you don’t pass inspection. This may present some problems when you try to sell your house because it may fail to meet the criteria and pass inspection. Hiring an electrician ensures that every electrical repair in your home will pass inspection.
- Code Violations
Building and safety codes regulate the design, installation, and maintenance of electrical equipment and electrical systems to ensure public safety against electrical hazards. Electrical work should comply with these codes to pass safety inspections. Residential homes before they can be sold must be code-compliant.
- Building Permits
Most communities require a building permit for any significant electrical work. This is to ensure that all electrical works meet the local building and safety codes. If you don’t obtain a building permit you may be facing violations. Most of the time building permits must be requested by a licensed electrician.
- Outdoor Outlet Danger
If an outdoor electrical outlet gets wet it can cause electrocution and may injure a person or even cause death. If you have an outdoor outlet it needs a ground-fault interrupter button that will trip the outlet if there’s any water. All outdoor outlets should also be covered whether it’s used or not. Many DIYers don’t know this, which can cause an expensive mistake.
- Hidden Electrical Dangers
With all the electrical components in a home, hidden electrical connections can arise such as those leading to junction boxes that can cause electrical shock hazards. The attic is one place that could have these hidden hazards. Hidden junction boxes may be difficult to locate and increase the chance of electrical shock.
- Expensive Repairs
If you think you successfully accomplished your DIY electrical project, think again, there are little things that may cause expensive mistakes. Even if you’re able to avoid electrical shock when you’re doing your project, improper wire connection can cause it to fail. If you need to fix it, you’ll pay a professional electrician on top of the money you already spent with your project and it will cost more in the end.
- Insurance Company Will Not Cover Electrical Damage Costs
If a fire occurs in your home due to a faulty electrical issue, your insurance company will not cover the damages if the work is not done to code by a certified electrician. If you’re thinking of doing DIY electrical work in your home don’t do it. It is best to call the professionals, it will save you time, money and your home in the long run.
- Serious Injury or Death Can Occur
Doing DIY electrical project in your home without full knowledge of what you are doing can lead to serious injury or death if you’re not careful. You could cut the wrong wire not knowing there is electricity flowing through it can give you an electrical shock, which can cause a spark or fire that can be potentially fatal. If electrical work is not completed properly, you can get an injury or worst killed by electrical shock.
The dangers of DIY electrical work are enormous and not worth it. You may save some money initially but, you’ll never know what will happen until it’s too late. Every year there are hundreds of electrical fires caused by faulty wiring. When it comes to your electrical work, it is best to call a professional electrician the first time to avoid costly and dangerous mistakes. Stay safe and call a professional residential electrician.