Your home's electrical outlets are a vital part of your electrical system because without them, you will not have any access to power. And since these outlets are commonplace, they tend to be taken for granted by some homeowners. Thus, not only do signs of damage go overlooked, but also daisy chaining electrical cords become the norm, as people have an increased need for outlets to match their numerous devices. When you take your outlets for granted, they are at a higher risk of damage and could even pose the risk of an electrical fire. Therefore, it is judicious to know when your electrical outlets need attention, even if they do not seem to have acquired apparent damage. This article expounds on a few of the reasons why you may need an electrical contractor to replace your outlets.
The outlets are two-pronged
While two-pronged outlets are the traditional type of outlet in a majority of homes, they have been phased out steadily by the three-pronged variety. The main problem with two-pronged outlets is that they pose the threat of a house fire because they are polarised. Hence, if there is an excessive electrical current running through the wiring, it will not be able to be redirected into the ground since the wiring is short. Three-pronged outlets are a safer option for your home than their two-pronged counterparts are, as they are not as polarised.
The outlets lack tamper resistance
Although tamper-resistant outlets are fairly new, they are quickly becoming the standard in new home builds. Tamper-resistant outlets differ from their traditional counterparts in that they have a shutter that needs to be opened before two-pronged plugs are inserted into the outlet. Without this shutter being opened, an electrical circuit will not form. These types of outlets are especially beneficial for homeowners who have young children that are likely to try to play with the electrical outlets. Therefore, if you do not have these tamper-resistant outlets, it is advisable to have an electrical contractor replace them for you.
The outlets are damaged
The older your outlets, the more beat up they will appear. Thus, whether you have been living in your house for decades or perhaps moved into an old property, you may be under the impression that as long as the outlets work then they do not need replacement. However, there are some types of damage that need the attention of an electrical contractor. For instance, if the outlet is loose or if the cord of an appliance cannot plug into the outlet properly, there is the risk of electrocution due to incorrect channelling of the voltage. Other signs of damage to be wary of include scorch marks, broken plates and so on.