Electrical Safety Foundation International (ESFI) recommends that homeowners have their homes electrically inspected, particularly if:

  • The home is 40 or more years old
  • The home is 10 or more years old and has had major renovation, an addition, or major new appliance installed
  • New owner of a previously owned home

The following are some of the signs of home wiring electrical hazards:

  • Power outages—circuit breakers that frequently trip or fuses that often need replacement
  • Dim and/or flickering lights
  • Arcs and sparks—flashes of light or shower of sparks anywhere in your electrical system
  • Sizzles and buzzes—unusual sounds from your electrical system
  • Overheating—overheated wires can give off an odor of hot insulation; switch plates or receptacle covers are hot to the touch or discolored from heat buildup
  • Electrical shocks—any shock, even a mild tingle, may be warning of an electrical danger
  • Overrated panel—electrical panels with fuses or circuit breakers rated at higher currents than the capacity of their branch circuits.
  • Damaged wire insulation—cut, broken or cracked insulation
  • If you observe any of these signs in your home, call in a licensed electrician to inspect its wiring.