Category Archives: Electricians

Will Homeowners Insurance Cover an Electrical Panel Fire?

The electrical panel, also referred to as a “breaker box, ” controls the electricity in your entire home. It comes with a range of controls that allow electricians to manipulate how electricity flows and ensure there’s balance in electricity flow throughout your home. It also allows you to turn off electricity in various parts of your home whenever you need to.

Your electrical panel may seem harmless, but it is one of the leading causes of fires in homes. In most cases, you may never know until it’s too late. In this article, we will discuss how you can care for your breaker box, prevent fires and protect yourself from financial ruin in case it happens.

Does Homeowners Insurance Cover Electrical Panel Fire?

Fortunately, yes. Home insurance covers fires caused by electrical panels. However, different insurance companies have different regulations that determine coverage eligibility. The type of panel, age and residential code in your area can affect your coverage eligibility. For instance, if your panel caused fire due to wear and tear, poor maintenance or age, your insurance company may not compensate you for the damages. You will only be compensated if the fire was purely accidental.

How Often Should You Have Your Electrical Panel Checked?

Your insurance company expects you to conduct regular panel maintenance to reduce the chances of filing a home insurance claim. How often you get your electrical system inspected depends on the age of the house, the number of appliances running and the number of people living in that home. Most electricians recommend having your panel checked at least every 3 to 5 years. If your panel is older than 30 years, you might need to get an electrical contractor to upgrade it to the latest safety standards.

What Are the Signs You Need to Upgrade or Replace Your Electric Panel?

You don’t have to wait until something bad happens to change your electrical panel. During an inspection, your electrician may recommend a breaker panel upgrade or individual circuit breaker replacement. For instance, if one of your circuit breakers trips even when it’s not overloaded, it might be faulty and may need to be replaced.

However, if you have more circuit breakers tripping for no apparent reason, you may need to change the entire box as this could mean either the panel is worn out or it can’t handle the current electricity needs in your home. Another sign is if lights are flickering or dimming, especially when you connect to another appliance. You also want to pay attention to burning smells around the panel. Check if the wires are warm to the touch, if there is fire residue in some parts of the panel or a plastic burning smell.

Keep Your Electric Panel in Great Condition With Walsh Electric

Now that we’ve established that your home insurance can only compensate you for a panel fire if it is purely accidental, why not take the initiative to have it inspected, replaced or upgraded? Walsh Electric can help you with any electrical service you need to keep your panel from causing fires. Call us at (703)-451-6622, and we will be happy to help.

How Much Does It Cost to Change a Light Fixture?

During the events of the past few years, we’ve found that many of our clients have had the time to really take a look around their homes since they’ve been spending so much time there. A lot of folks have used the time to start hobbies (we’ve talked to model train engineers and woodworkers alike), while others have decided to give their homes a good facelift.

Renovating or remodeling can be a big job, but it doesn’t have to be. Some impactful changes can actually be quite small, for example, swapping out a light fixture. Lighting repairs and replacements are a quick, easy and inexpensive way to give your rooms a new look.

Read on to learn more about the potential costs of changing out a light fixture.

Types of potential changes

Lighting fixture changes can take quite a few different forms, which, in turn, can influence their price. Our customers have asked us to do all sorts of things, so the sky really is the limit. We’ve done simple replacements, like swapping out a traditional wall or ceiling-mounted fixture, but we’re also able to install an outlet in a place where a light was (or vice versa).

We can also handle fancier items like chandeliers that can really spruce up a space. These items are usually quite simple for us to do, but more in-depth lighting repairs and changes can sometimes require a permit. For that reason alone, it’s best to leave these to a pro.

Costs of electrical changes

Estimating electrical repairs and installations through a blog post can be a tricky proposition (there are many variables that can enter into the equation, so do not take these numbers as gospel); however, we’re able to give some ballpark figures. For starters, any electrical work that is going to fundamentally alter the wiring is going to require a permit. This cost varies by locale, but you’re likely looking at somewhere around $100 or so at the most.

For the cost of the work, you first need to take the fixture itself into account. We can order items on your behalf, or you can pick out ones that you like at any home improvement store and buy them on the spot—it’s up to you. Labor costs for electrical contractors will vary quite a bit as well, and the size of the fixture can also change this; if extra hands are needed for a heavy lift, then these costs will go up a bit. Typically, these labor costs are going to be somewhere around $70 to $100 for each man-hour committed.

Other variables

With all of this said, customers should remember that estimating electrical repairs and installations through a blog post can be a tricky proposition, as there are many variables to take into account on any job. You might need to change the voltage, which can require heavy rewiring, or you might want to convert two-pronged outlets to three-pronged—a process that can be quite labor-intensive.

If you’re looking to change out some light fixtures or perform lighting repairs or if you need any sort of electrical repair work done, then it’s time to call our pros at Walsh Electric. We can put our 35 years (and counting) years of experience to work for you today.

7 Signs You Need an Electrical Contractor

Anytime the power goes out, it becomes immediately apparent how much we rely on electricity each day. Whether you’re in your own home watching television or at your workplace writing up a report on your computer, electricity is the technology that makes it all possible.

It’s also dangerous, in addition to being complicated. If you’re having electrical issues, you’ll want to find an electrical contractor.

What kind of electrical issues would necessitate a visit from an electrical contractor? That’s what this article will aim to cover.

Lights flickering

While flickering lights can be caused by a loose or spent light bulb, it could also be indicative of a larger electrical issue. Loose wiring or unsound fixture connections may be the culprit, and an electrical contractor should be able to diagnose and remedy the problem.

Repeatedly tripping circuit breakers

If you only trip your circuit breakers occasionally, it’s probably not much cause for concern, but if you find that it keeps occurring within a short time frame, you may have a deeper electrical complication. Whether it’s shorted out wiring or overloading or you simply need a new circuit breaker, an electrical contractor should be able to help.

Odd noises

The sounds you should be listening for are buzzing noises. They could be coming from your breaker box, or they could be due to loose screw terminals in your home. Whatever the source and cause, you should call an electrical contractor to help fix it because trying to do it yourself could be dangerous.

You get shocked when plugging something in

If you get zapped every time you go to plug something in, the issue could be defective wiring, busted circuits or something else entirely. For your safety, you should let an electrical professional deal with it.

Your sockets are hot to the touch

This is another problem to watch out for when you’re plugging things in. Your sockets shouldn’t ever be warm or hot to the touch; if they are, this likely indicates an underlying issue that would be best handled by an electrician.

You smell something burning

If you can’t identify the source of a burning smell, it could be emanating from within your walls. Short circuits or deteriorated wiring could be the root cause of this problem if it’s in the walls. If it’s coming from a fuse box or a specific outlet, you should shut the power off immediately and dial your nearest electrical contractor.

You’re using too many extension cords

Extension cords can be a good way to supply power to things you need that for whatever reason can’t be near the outlets in your home—but they’re meant to be temporary. If you have a wild array of extension cords, power strips and overloaded outlets, you probably just need to have more outlets put into your home. An electrical contractor should be able to help with this.

Call for electrical contracting services today

Hopefully, you never experience any of these phenomena in your home. If you do, call us at Walsh Electric. We’ve been premier electrical contractors for over 30 years, so call us if you’re experiencing any electrical troubles today.

Industrial Electricians vs. Commercial Electricians: What’s the Difference?

If you’re a business owner, you may be wondering whether an industrial or commercial electrician is right for your situation. Electrical contractors have a range of skills and specialties. Knowing the difference between them is key before you hire one. After all, having steady, reliable, safe electrical supply is critical for almost every kind of business.

Let’s look at these two types of electrical contractor and see which one is right for you.

Industrial electricians

These professionals test, repair and maintain electrical equipment. Industrial electricians often work in settings like factories, mines and plants. To complete this work, industrial electricians must have advanced knowledge of and expertise in the complex equipment that’s used. Industrial electricians work for companies specializing in everything from steel production to car manufacturing. They need to be well versed in robotics and other specialized equipment specific to their field.

An industrial electrical contractor is brought in to help keep a factory or other operation running smoothly. They can ensure the safety and efficiency of key machinery. An industrial electrician’s tasks include all the following:

● Repairing electrical equipment
● Maintaining electrical equipment
● Troubleshooting electrical equipment
● Installing electrical equipment

These electricians also often have many years of apprenticeship training which prepares them for the job. Industrial electricians should possess all relevant certifications and qualifications to do this difficult and potentially dangerous job. Factories and manufacturing facilities have entirely different electrical needs than others do, which means these professionals must be highly trained and able to adapt to different voltage systems and handle a range of electrical equipment.

Commercial electricians

These specialists offer electrical maintenance, repair and safety enhancements for retail stores, offices and other similar workplaces. Commercial electrical contractors are often involved in the design and planning of electrical systems to fit each workplace’s needs. They can help your business get up and running according to all relevant local codes.

A commercial electrician works with hand tools including pliers, knives and screwdrivers, as well as power tools and monitoring tools. These professionals may work with a wide variety of clients from builders and office managers to building owners. In some cases, specialty work will be required. A commercial electrician may work for medium or large buildings including restaurants, government buildings, high-rise apartments, shopping malls and restaurants.

If you run one of these businesses, a commercial electrician can be helpful to have on call. They are responsible for all of the following:

● Laying cables
● Rewiring
● Installing electrical equipment, security systems and electrical components like switches and lights
● Ensuring buildings meet local, state and national recommendations for electrical operation
● Designing electrical systems or utilizing existing blueprints

Commercial electricians are more common than their industrial counterparts. Just like an industrial electrician, they require certifications and licensing to practice their trade.

Do you need an electrical contractor? Walsh Electric has more than three decades of experience delivering real results for residential and commercial customers. We’re licensed, bonded and insured to do it all from maintenance to new construction. Contact us today to learn more and get a free quote.