Need an Electrical Inspection? What to Expect
You may not think about the wiring in your home every time you flip a light switch or plug in an electronic device. But you rely on a safe, efficient
electrical system to keep your home comfortable, safe, and well-lit.
When making an electrical change or trying to identify the source of an electrical issue, your first step may be to schedule an inspection.
In this blog, we list some of the most common reasons to have a residential electrical inspection and what you can expect from the inspection process.
When to Schedule an Electrical Inspection
While electrical inspections are a vital service, you likely will not need them performed very often. Plan to have an inspection completed in the following situations:
- As soon as you notice persistent electrical problems
- As you prepare for a large-scale renovation
- Before you reconfigure lighting or appliances
- Before you buy a new home
- Before you list your current home for sale
- If you notice a dead outlet or unresponsive switch
- Once your home reaches 40 years of age
- When required by your homeowner’s insurance policy provider
- When you decide to add a home appliance
If you aren’t sure whether or not you need an inspection of your entire electrical system, talk to your contractor. Many contractors also offer inspections of smaller areas, such as a single home story or room.
If you only need a single electrical panel or outlet looked at, your electrical contractor will likely inspect the element and the wiring around it as part of the service visit or repair.
What to Expect During an Electrical Inspection
Once you determine that you need an electrical inspection in your home, you can expect the following process.
When you call a reputable contractor, you will most likely be able to schedule an inspection within the next few weeks.
If you have noticed specific electrical problems that are potentially dangerous, such as singed sockets or broken lightbulbs, let the contractor know in your initial call. In an emergency situation, some contractors will be able to schedule you for an inspection sooner.
You contractor will likely give you an estimated arrival time, which may come in the form of a time range since many contractors tackle many jobs over the course of the day. Your inspection may take anywhere from 30 minutes to 2 hours depending on the size and condition of your home.
During the inspection, the contractor will follow a checklist that ensures the inspection complies with local safety codes. Most inspections include the following:
- Correcting minor safety and fire hazards
- Observing any visible issues, such ungrounded outlets
- Testing switches, panels, and circuits
The contractor may remove outlet covers, expose small amounts of wiring, and so on, but he or she will also replace these components afterward.
Once the inspection is complete, your contractor will provide you with a written report. This report may include the following:
- A list of needed repairs
- Recommendations for improving energy efficiency
- Summary of the inspection
In official settings, such as home sales and insurance claims, this report certifies that the inspection was completed properly. In unofficial cases, the report simply helps you anticipate upcoming electrical repairs and costs.
If your home needs repairs, you may be able to schedule those services at the end of your inspection so you can get the issues handled as soon as possible.
If you think you need an electrical inspection, don’t wait. The inspection can provide you with vital information that you need to make informed decisions about how best to care for your family and property. Schedule your electrical inspection today.