Doing a regular electrical health check on your home is important for the safety of your family. In fact, it is suggested by the US Consumer Product Safety Commission that you check electrical health of every room in your house at least once in six months. Begin with checking your light fixtures. The wattage on the lightbulbs should be at or below a recommended maximum, the electric outlets along with their switches should not be hot to the touch, the faceplates should be in place to prevent shocks, and unused outlets should be secured with child plugs in case there are children in your house.
All electric cords should be checked regularly for signs of wear and damage. Have the damaged cords replaced in a timely manner and keep them away from the paths of foot traffic in order to avoid tripping. Make sure that all electrical appliances in the house are in working condition and are used according to safety guidelines. When not using appliances in the bathroom or kitchen, unplug them, but keep the cords away from sources of water or heat. Test your circuit breakers to make sure they have not become stuck and are in good working order.
How to Check Your Circuit Breakers
Circuit breakers in your house act as safety devices which cut the power in your home in the event too much power flows through the wiring. Even if everything seems to work well, it is still important to check your circuit breakers about every three months. If you have tripped a circuit, follow these steps to have your power system working again.
First, check if any of the switches on the circuit breaker are in the OFF position. If this is the case, turn them to the ON position. The breaker works fine if after completing the steps the problem was solved. If not, check for a short-circuit. In order to do that, switch the breaker to OFF position and then move it back to the ON position. When you switch it on, listen to any unusual sounds, or if the breaker does not stay on, pull the wire out of it and repeat switching it off and on. When doing this does not help, there might be a problem with the wiring.
You can test your panel with several different options: by using a voltmeter, ohm-meter, Wiggin’s tester, or by changing the wiring. By testing your breaker with the above mentioned devices, you will recognize whether the breaker is faulty or the problem is with the panel. However, if you do not have any of these at home, a simpler option will be to move the wiring to another circuit breaker. Turn both breakers off, move the wiring, and then switch the new breaker on. If the breaker does not work, the wiring must be faulty, and if it does, then the problem lies with the old breaker.