Electricity has become an integral part of our daily lives. So much so that we often forget how dangerous it is.
Although many DIY experts will claim you can wire things up yourself, we would always recommend leaving such potentially dangerous tasks to a trained professional.
A good electrician knows how to wire things correctly and can help save you from a disastrous situation. House fires can often start because of faulty electrical wiring – making it important to find a good electrician.
How do you know you are getting a superior professional? Recognizing how to find a good electrician is very artful. A respectable electrician is someone that has the proper training, insured, licensed, and understands the local building and wiring codes.
The professional electrician charges a reasonable rate stays within his quote and keeps you apprised of work progress. An electrician apprentice works under the licensed electrical contractor, who has the insurance.
Most homeowners call electricians in an emergency or if they’re building or remodeling. It’s important to research a contractor and find a skilled electrician before you need one.
By building a rapport with an electrician, you can be sure that they will be there to help when you need their services. So, you’ll want to hire an electrician for regular inspections before an emergency takes place.
A good electrical contractor will become familiar with your home’s systems and possibly discover emerging problems before they become a major situation.
Although there are many home repairs you may be able to do on your own, electrical work is best left to the professionals. Faulty wiring can lead to fires, shock, electrocution, and other hazards.
It is important to hire a good, reliable electrician who is able to guarantee the work, instead of making your decision solely on price, research and confirm the electrician’s credentials before making a dangerous mistake.
- How To Find A Good Electrician
- Qualities to Look for When Hiring Electricians
- Electrical projects
- Electricians are the smartest Tradies
How To Find A Good Electrician
Make a list
The first thing that you need to do is make a list of things that should be done around the home? What is the job you want to be done by the electrician? This is just one of many questions you should ask yourself before searching for an electrician.
Knowing what it is that is needed will help you to put in order what is the most important item to be done first. You can then determine the kind of electrician you need for the job at hand. Having a list to give the professional electrician will help him in giving you the best estimate on what it will cost you for all of these combined.
Ask People’s Opinions
Don’t be afraid to ask friends, family members, and colleagues who they would suggest for your electrical needs. Many homeowners have had to have the help of an electrician at some time.
Make some phone calls
Call around to some of the electricians who were recommended to you by others. Find out how many years they have been the business. Are they licensed and insured? Ask them if they have any references they could give you. You will want to know what type of work they normally do and if they specialize in home repairs or anything else.
Insurance and licenses
All electricians should have insurance, and they should be licensed in the state they work. In order to get a license, they have to be trained and verified by the state and other government agencies that accredit them with being proficient and accomplished at his job. Insurance is a must for both parties involved.
The electrician ought to have at least liability insurance just in case there is an accident and damage is caused to your home. Should the electrician have employees working under him, he will more than likely have Workman’s Compensation insurance covering them in case of any accidents. Seeing proof for both of these is a good idea. Don’t forget to call to see if these policies have lapsed.
What do you ask references
Once you have their reference names and phone numbers, call them. Ask if the job was done in a timely fashion and within the budget. If there were problems was the electrician willing to fix it?
Getting a Quote or Estimate
The quote or estimate is a guaranteed price. Ask about the addition of new technology items such as surge protectors for the whole house. Making it well – known at the beginning of what is expected will help get a better Estimate.
Cheaper is not always better
Remember, sometimes you get what you pay for, and that is not always the best. For your home, you want the best. A professional will give you a schedule for the projects they are doing. The will offer a reasonable quote for the work, permits and materials needed.
Does he have a Permit
Permits are a must and are in the electrician’s name. There is only a problem getting one if the electrician is hiding something. Large projects will require a permit. Having a permit will guarantee the job is done correctly as another professional will come out and inspect the work.
It may be the case that the electrical work to be carried out requires particular permission and/or permits. A great electrician will never attempt to cut corners by carrying out work without the necessary permission and will always seek approval.
While the process of obtaining such permits may sometimes delay work from the beginning or continuing, to undertake work without the necessary permits puts you at untold risk and your insurance may be deemed void.
Licenses and Insurance
You must ensure the electricians working in your home or workplace are licensed and appropriately insured and that the electricians willingly provide you with details of these. Suppose an electrician works for an electrical company. In that case, it may be possible to chase up these details through the organization, but for independent electrical contractors, these checks are still vitally important.
Do not run the risk of a ‘skilled’ friend undertaking electrical work in your home. Should anything happen to them, you or your property, the emotional, financial and legal implications are likely to be incredible.
One of the best ways to know how good an electrician is is to obtain references from others. Without such recommendations or warnings, how can you know whether others have been satisfied and impressed with their work?
Obtain an Initial Quote
Never let electrical work begin in your home without a quote being obtained and agreed upon. You may obtain quotes from several electricians before deciding on the one that will carry out the electrical repairs necessary in your home or workplace.
Keep in mind that some companies extend discounts to new customers and may offer good value to customers who are loyal and engage them for repeat business.
High quality and effective electrician will, in addition to providing you with an estimate of the total cost of the work, also provide you with a projected timeline for milestones and completion of the work. While some adjustments to the proposed timeline may well be necessary as work is carried out, it is infinitely useful to have an indication of how long the project is likely to take.
Listening and Recommending
The best electricians will always listen to your needs and expectations and will provide information and detail in relation to the work required in their professional opinion. Essentially, great electricians will try to explain the work necessary using language and terms that you can understand and from which you can make meaning.
The decision of the electrician that will perform electrical services in your home or workplace is a very important and quite involved one. By following the tips presented in this article, you are best positioned to make a wise and effective choice of an electrician.
Qualities to Look for When Hiring Electricians
Electricians perform a wide variety of tasks, from the installation of wiring in a new building to repairs and replacements of outdated systems. If you’re beginning the hiring process, you may be focused on finding a licensed electrician with the proper training.
Some basic things to look for include good hand-eye coordination (for working with fiddly appliances like light switch timers, USB wall outlets, and GFCI receptacle outlets), knowledge of the national electrical codes, standards, and regulations, and the ability to operate various testing equipment to help locate different types of malfunctions (such as finding circuit breakers).
This is a great start; however, when hiring an electrician, it’s also important to look for certain qualities above and beyond the technical skills and training required. Qualities like dependability, the ability to solve problems, great communication, and attention to detail are integral. Here, we go over the top six qualities you should look for when hiring an electrician.
Dependability is one of the most important characteristics of an electrician must-have. As an employer, it’s important to look for electricians who will show up on time and contribute. Look for candidates who have demonstrated dependability in past roles and are motivated to be part of your team.
Good Communication Skills
For the most part, electricians will need to work with a diverse range of people, including estimators, homeowners, and project managers. They will need to communicate effectively in their role to improve teamwork and ensure customers are up to date as the project develops. In many cases, an electrician will be called during a time of crisis when a customer is overwhelmed. Helping customers feel comfortable and reassured is another skill great electricians possess.
Independent Problem Solving
Electricians are often challenged with both basic and complex problems they’ll be required to solve efficiently and independently. Especially on projects where only one electrician is required, the ability to be resourceful and make the right decision is important. On the job, electricians will need to understand overall electrical problems and investigate ways to fix them. Being able to assess the strengths and weaknesses of possible solutions is a vital problem-solving skill necessary for any tradesperson.
The ability to finish a job on time is a difficult skill to master, but it’s essential for an electrician to work as a larger part of a team. As an employer, you will need accurate labor and cost estimates. An electrician’s ability to predict the time needed and stick to that timeline is a must-have skill.
Attention to Detail
Staying safe on the job requires a cautious and detail-oriented approach to the job. Electricians will need a strong understanding of regulations and safety procedures and be mindful to work in a way that keeps them and others safe.
Business skills are often developed over years of working for a company or as an independent contractor. General knowledge of business practices, including invoicing, inventory tracking, and strategic planning are indicators of an experienced electrician.
Unless you know what you’re doing exceptionally well, carefully consider the prospects if you’re planning on do-it-yourself electrical work. You can easily get in over your head, causing costly damage, creating potentially dangerous hazards, and run afoul of local or state electrical code and regulations. In general, electricians say you can handle installing receptacles, outlets, and lighting fixtures as a DIY job if you have a clear idea what you’re doing, but more complex work requires expert help.
Electrical work covers a wide variety of tasks, ranging from major jobs like home rewiring or breaker box replacement to minor work like installing fans or upgrading electrical outlets with USB ports.
Though the basics of electrical work have not significantly changed in the last few decades, electrical contractors and homeowners alike face new challenges as advancing technology creates heavier demand on electrical loads and presents new opportunities for major upgrades such as home automation.
Electricians can also conduct home electrical system inspections that will identify problem areas, future trouble spots, and areas of immediate concern. Such an inspection can take place before you buy a home or any time afterward to check your status.
Your home may be giving you several clues that you need immediate help from a professional electrician. If you feel mild shocks or tingles from appliances, you may have a ground fault issue that requires attention (although shocks after crossing a carpeted surface aren’t caused for concern.) If your ceiling fixtures are warm or lights are flickering, that may be a sign of loose wiring. Light switches or receptacles that turn on and off at random could be signaling a problem with loose wiring or internal damage. If any outlet emits a burning odor or sparks, shut down the electrical panel right away and call an electrician for help, as you could be at immediate risk for fire.
Many homes built before 1950 contain old-fashioned knob and tube wiring, which is widely believed to pose a hidden risk to homeowners. It was the primary wiring method from the 1880s through the 1930s and still used in the 1970s for some new home construction. This form of older wiring creates a risk of faults and fires, and often can’t handle the electrical load of modern houses. How much does replacing knob and tube wiring cost? You can expect to pay between $8,000 and $15,000 for an average-sized home.
Electricians can also install whole-house surge protectors for between $300 and $1,000. Whole house surge protection blocks incoming surges at the breaker box. It can protect your electronics and appliances from damaging electrical surges if you live in an area prone to lightning strikes.
Older and outdated breaker boxes often present problems such as fire hazards or overloaded circuits. Licensed electricians say a breaker box replacement will range from $500 to $3,000 depending on the sie of the house and the type of box.
Electricians can also install and upgrade outlets for safety purposes. An arc fault circuit interrupter (AFCI) outlet cuts off power in the breaker box as soon as it detects a sharp spike or drops in voltage. This prevents dangerous sparks or excessive heat, which is a common cause of residential electrical fires. AFCI upgrades cost about $40 per breaker plus labor, so electricians estimate this work should cost between a few hundred and a few thousand dollars, depending on the scope of the replacement. A ground fault circuit interrupter (GFCI) outlet detects disturbances in current and shuts off electrical flow quickly. This protects against electrical shock by breaking the circuit immediately, faster than circuit breakers or fuses. They are typically installed in areas that come in contact with water, like kitchens or bathrooms, but can be installed anywhere. Although they primarily protect against electrocution, they also provide further protection against fires and damage to appliances. A GFCI outlet can normally be identified by the “reset” and “test” buttons on their face.
Electricians are the smartest Tradies
We’ve buried this one down the bottom, so we don’t get in trouble with our other Tradie customers!
While learning any new trade based skill to take a considerable amount of brainpower Electricians normally have the edge as far as brainpower goes given the need to have a pretty good grasp of maths and physics to get the hang of things.
On top of that Electricians now, more than any other trade, have the opportunity to specialize across a range of fields including renewable tech, electronics, marine, aeronautical, and automotive just to name a few.
Success in these fields takes plenty of brainpower, lots of additional training, and a thirst for learning.
If you’ve found a great electrician, make sure that you leave them a good recommendation, both online and in person. This means that when someone else is need of a good electrician, they’re more likely to choose the same one you did.
So if you need an electrician, then follow these simple tips for a reputable workman who’s going to be proud of their work.