Should I Let My Handyman Do Electrical Work In My Home?
A certified, licensed, and insured electrician should do any electrical work in the home. A general handyman may know about electricity and wiring.
But, without the right training and experience, there’s a huge risk of injury, damage to your home, or paying much more in the long run if the job isn’t done right.
Sure, it seems like a good idea to use someone you trust to install a ceiling fan, switch out an outlet, or even handle some rewiring. That handyman or contractor does excellent work, always knows what they’re doing, and doesn’t charge you an arm and a leg.
But the truth is that electricity is just a different beast.
It’s skilled work, and a person needs good hands and a good head. An electrician has to understand, follow, or create wiring diagrams and schematics, calculate amperage, voltage, loads, and more.
And, they need critical thinking skills to troubleshoot a problem.
Then there’s the physical aspect: Connecting all the components properly to avoid a short or overloaded circuit, damage to your appliances, or parts of the house not getting power. And physically making every connection secure, so nothing comes loose and causes a problem later on. That’s not to mention the risk that comes with something going wrong.
If there’s a problem with the wiring behind the walls, you won’t know until the lights go out. Or — even worse — there’s a fire.
All this and more is why we have to log more than 10,000 hours of on-the-job experience and classroom training before we become master electricians.
At Your Home Solutions, we’ve helped protect people’s lives and property through the proper use of electricity since 2008. We’ve seen some really, let’s say, questionable work over the years when people call us to fix a problem or require a house.
This isn’t a knock on our fellow craftsmen and home service professionals. Instead, it’s essential to understand when you need to call in a specialist.
We’ll go into more detail about what could go wrong with unlicensed professional work and what to expect when you call an electrician. In the meantime, if you’re noticing problems with the power in your Philadelphia, Montgomery, or Bucks County home, call us right away at (215) 768-8102.
A live electrician always answers the phone and will help you as much as they can right then and there. Phone consultations are free, and sometimes that’s all it takes to solve the problem. If you need more help, we’ll send someone out immediately, no matter what time of the day or night.
Now, let’s dive into this a little further.
Four Risks Of Having Your Handyman Do Electrical Work In Your Home
The four big risks you take by having a handyman, and not a licensed electrician, do electrical work in your home are:
- Work Not Done Up To Code Or With Permits
- Increased Risk Of Fire, Damage Or Injury
- Insurance May Not Pay For Damages
- More Problems Later On
Increased Risk Of Fire, Damage Or Injury
This is the big one: Something can go really, really wrong with a bad wiring job. Electrical fires are more common than you may realize — nearly 25,000 a year across the country, in fact. And the vast majority of them, according to the U.S. Fire Administration, are caused by electrical malfunction or failure or short-circuit.
Of course, not every generalist or handyman will do shoddy work. And, not every electrician will do an excellent job. But, the odds are in favor of the person who does this stuff every day.
And, with so many little things that can go wrong, it’s not a risk you want to take with your home and safety.
Work Not Done Up To Code Or With Permits
Look. We get it. Nobody likes taking the time or paying money to pull permits — especially if they know what they’re doing. Why should you have to pay the city or your township money just for permission to work on your own house?
But, working without permits can cause you a host of headaches. First, there’s a chance of getting fined if you’re found out. But, more importantly, no permits may mean the work isn’t up to code. And that can mean problems down the line.
You need to be a master electrician to pull a permit. Not even a journeyman can do it, and certainly not a handyman. And someone who only dabbles in electricity won’t be up to date on all the latest codes, regulations, and best practices.
At best, you’ll get decent work that isn’t totally above board. But, things could go another way.
Insurance May Not Pay For Damages
Let’s say the worst happens: Your non-electrician works without permits, and something goes wrong. The wiring is bad, and a fire breaks out. Now, you’re looking at potentially thousands of dollars in damage — and your insurance company won’t have to pay a dime.
If their investigation reveals that the cause was unlicensed electrical work done without permits, they’ll deny your claim. All that money you thought you saved, plus much more, is now gone.
More Problems Later On
Even if a doomsday scenario doesn’t come to pass, that doesn’t mean you won’t run into issues from amateur electrical work later. It could take a few weeks, maybe even years. But, eventually, a loose connection, bad wiring, or overloaded circuit will cause a problem.
Then, you’re looking at more money to troubleshoot and fix whatever’s wrong.
How Much Do Electricians Charge To Troubleshoot?
The average cost for troubleshooting and repairing an electrical problem is $400 to $800, and up to $2,000 for a new circuit. Of course, the price can go higher depending on the problem. But that’s typical of the calls we get in the Philadelphia region.
Usually, we get a call because the lights are flickering or a circuit breaker keeps tripping. Funny enough, many people think they need a new breaker because theirs keeps shutting off.
But, that’s not the case: A breaker is doing its job by tripping. There’s a problem down the line somewhere that’s causing an overload. The breaker prevents a fire or other issues by shutting off the power.
Electrician In Maple Glen, PA And Surrounding Areas
Don’t risk amateur electrical work costing you more money down the line or causing a fire or injury in your home! Your Home Solutions sends a licensed, certified electrician to every job in Maple Glen, PA and surrounding areas. You’ll even speak to a live electrician right away when you call us.