5 Tips to Prevent Circuit Overload at Home
You may not put too much thought into plugging in any new device or appliance, but the pressure on your circuit can take a toll on your electrical systems. The consequences of overloading a circuit can end up costing you a pretty penny, so if you find yourself using dozens of power boards and extension cords, it could be time to get into contact with your local electrical at North Lakes & Surrounds Electrical to safely examine your property’s ability to power your home.
What is an overloaded circuit?
An electrical circuit is a path for transmitting electric current into your home. It is made up of wiring, a breaker, and all the appliances and electrical devices such as lights, computers, and more. Your electrical circuit can become overloaded when you’re using too many appliances, the wiring is faulty or degrading, or when the power wattage is higher than the circuit can handle. Additionally, if your home doesn’t have enough outlets, you may be tempted to use extension cords or power boards as permanent fixtures, however, the number of outlets often correlates to the amount of wattage that your home circuit is designed to handle. This means that using a power board can cause you to lose power by overloading your electricity or even creating a safety hazard.
To avoid overloading your circuit, we’ve gathered a few tips that will help keep your home safe while staying connected.
Signs of an overloaded circuit
There are a few key signs that your electrical circuit may be overloaded, but the easiest way to diagnose is if your circuit breaker keeps tripping and shutting off your power. In addition, you may experience flickering lights, outlets that are hot to the touch, power tools lacking their power, smoking outlets, burning smells, or even humming/buzzing sounds.
If you experience any of these signs, please call our team immediately on (07) 3053 3118 so we can assess the level of danger and help resolve the issues.
#1. Safely inspect wiring and appliances
A common issue within the home is often caused by pets chewing on cords or by old appliance cords starting to fray. Check all the cords within your home to ensure the copper ‘wire’ inside is not exposed. If your cords are not intact, we recommend you cease using the appliance immediately as this is considered a safety hazard as the electrical function may be damaged.
#2. Understand power consumption
Comparing the power that your appliances use against the amps or watts your circuit breaker can handle is a great way to understand how much power you can consume within your home at any one time. Generally, appliances will have a tag on their cord that states the wattage it uses. Think about how long you use this appliance and its standby power then refer to your circuit breaker to see how much it can safely load before it short-circuits.
#3. Unplug major energy consumers
This can go hand-in-hand with tip number two. Once you’ve identified which of your appliances use the most energy, consider unplugging the ones that chew up the most so they’re not unnecessarily using power on standby. A few good examples of appliances that can be unplugged or switched off at the wall include televisions, kettles, toasters, and computers.
#4. Invest in energy-saving appliances
When shopping for appliances, especially large ones such as fridges and washing machines, you’ll likely notice a star energy rating. Speak to the staff at the store to find the best-rated appliances that will still suit your needs while helping to reduce your energy consumption (and therefore lower your electricity bill) and be more eco-friendly.
#5. Consider rewiring through North Lakes & Surrounds Electrical
If you live in an older home, your chances of overloading a circuit are considerably higher than in our modern homes, simply because the demand for electricity has increased as we become more technologically advanced. If your electricity can’t keep up with the demands of your household, it may be time to consider rewiring. Our team at North Lakes & Surrounds Electrical can help rewire your home to accommodate your lifestyle. Simply give us a ring on (07) ) 3053 3118 to have one of your electricians out to your property for an inspection.
If you’re noticing signs and symptoms of an overloaded circuit or you’re simply getting ahead of the curve to ensure you’re set up for the future, our team at North Lakes & Surrounds Electrical is happy to lend a hand. We are a team of highly qualified electricians and Master Electricians that have been servicing the Moreton Bay Region and beyond for more than 20 years. For more information or to book a call-out, you can contact us on (07) 3053 3118.