It is vital that electrical repairs are done properly. Your very life may depend on it. Some repairs are relatively safe for the mechanically inclined – swapping out a worn out electrical plug with a new one, updating old light switches for a more modern design, installing a dimmer switch. Yet, even these apparently simple repairs pose the threat of an electrical fire if they aren't done properly.
Hot Water Heater Repair
This is a very common electrical repair. Most often the reason for water heater trouble is a burned out element. If the top element burns out, the water will be warm but fails to get hot. If the bottom element stops working, the water will start out hot but turn cold quickly. Because the hot water tank has to be drained anyway, it makes sense to replace both elements at the same time. If one has worn out, the other is likely to follow shortly.
If replacing the elements does not solve the problem, the thermostat should be checked. In some cases, this electrical repair is just a matter of checking to see if the reset button has been tripped. During the winter, it may be necessary to turn up the thermostat to have enough hot water to fill a bathtub.
Another problem that has been seen in older hot water heaters is a cold water supply tube (dip tube) that no longer reaches to the bottom of the hot water tank. This will cause a situation similar to the bottom heating element burning out.
Worn Out Light Socket Repair
Light sockets can wear out. Replacing a worn out light socket in your favorite light fixture is relatively easy. But how do you know you need this electrical repair? Typically, a worn out light fixture will display a discolored socket. This is a sign that it has overheated at some point in time. When changing light bulbs, it can be beneficial to check the contacts in the center of the socket for wear or corrosion.
Fluorescent Lighting Fixtures Repair
Fluorescent light fixtures depend on a starter and a ballast to operate. If either part goes bad, the fixture will need electrical repairs.
If the ends of the tubes light but the rest of the tube is dark, the starter is either worn out or the wrong size has been installed. If the bulbs take a long time to come on, this is also a sign that the starter needs to be replaced.
If the light keeps on trying to start, blinks or goes out on its own, it could be the bulb (lamp). If this doesn't resolve the issue, then the starter is probably worn out. Only move on to replacing the ballast if replacing the starter and bulb don't resolve the problem. If the ballast is going bad, it will often turn off abruptly with a click or ping and the bulbs connected to it will go out.
Damaged Outlets and Light Switch Repair
Cracked and damaged outlets need to be replaced promptly. Not only do the face plates provide protection from the terminals where current flows, they also assure that wiring and contacts inside the outlet don't short circuit or arc.
The following signs suggest that your outlets and light switches need electrical repairs:
- If plugs don't stay in the outlet, it is time to replace it. This means the contacts are getting loose which can lead to problems. Spreading the prongs of the plug is not a good solution as this can lead to fraying within the outlet.
- If you hear a popping sound when you turn a light switch on or off, replace the switch. It is arcing.
- If the outlet is cracked, replace promptly.
These are the typical electrical repairs that many DIYers handle themselves, however it’s wise to hire a licensed electrician for any issue to ensure everything is operating as it should. Beyond these common repairs, a trained electrician knows how to replace out of code wiring and perform other more complex electrical repairs safely.
At Baker & Sons we have 23 years of residential and commercial electrical experience. We have helped Sarasota, Manatee & Charlotte County property owners repair their electrical systems with minimal disruption to their lives.
Call us today at (941) 377-3602. Whether you need repairs to a hot water heater, to get all of your lighting fixtures working, or other electrical repairs, we'll give you an honest assessment and tell you whether we can make your home a safer place through electrical repairs. We will explore all the solutions and help you as a Florida property owner find the best short and long-term option for your budget.