There are many changes you could make to your home wiring that would save you money on your electric bill and also make your home safer. To determine if there are any changes you can make specifically to your home, you will want to consider when your home was built, and you will also want to hire a licensed electrician. Below are some improvements that are especially important.
Installing Copper Wiring
In a period that started in 1962 and ended in 1972, millions of homes had aluminum wire installed in response to the rising price of copper. Unfortunately, aluminum corrodes quickly and can become a fire hazard. Therefore, the aluminum should be replaced with copper, so you should contact a licensed electrician, like at McDonald Electric, if your home was built during this period to have your wires replaced with safer ones.
Increasing the Size of Your Wires
If you'd like to improve the energy-efficiency of your wires, consider increasing the size of your wires by one size larger than what is required by electrical codes. Bigger wires generate less heat and are also more flexible than other types of wires. When wires generate more heat, they are more likely to be a fire hazard. Also, AC units have to work harder when the wires generate heat. While larger wires are more expensive than smaller wires, the cost of the larger wire will pay for itself in energy-efficiency.
Correcting Defective Wires
Common problems that electrical systems experience include wires that waste energy, wires that overheat, and wires that have excessive voltage drop. These behaviors can increase the chances that your home will experience an electrical fire and will also raise your energy bill. You may have poor wiring if your fuses blow frequently, your circuit breakers commonly trip, your appliances heat slowly, or lights are often dimmed and the TV picture shrinks when you use other electrical equipment. This indicates a voltage drop and is a sign that you have poor wiring.
Grounding Your Receptacles
If your home was constructed prior to the mid-1960s, you might have ungrounded receptacles. Currently, grounded receptacles are required. Grounded systems make sure that electrical currents flow through a grounding system and trip a breaker. Grounded outlets are the ones that have three holes. The rounded hole is the one intended for the grounding connection.
Replacing Ground Fault Interrupters
If the ground fault interrupters in your home were built in 2006, you might want to have them replaced because ground fault interrupters are now required to have a visual or audible way to indicate when they are not functioning properly. They can also be designed to stop electricity from flowing if they are not working. Ground fault interrupters are essential because they can detect electricity leakage and can then prevent an electrical current from causing serious injuries. These various improvements to your home may not be required by law, but you'll be better off with them.