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How to Troubleshoot Electrical Problems in Your Home

Have you ever encountered an electrical issue in your home that you were unsure how to deal with? Maybe you thought about calling an electrician but decided against it because it is just a minor issue.

Many people experience an electrical problem and are still trying to figure out what they should do about it. The worst part is that it may look small initially, but it could have significant consequences for you and your home.


We have gathered some of the most common issues you may face with your electricity system and will advise you on how to troubleshoot them even without electrical tools.

Lighting Switch Not Working

In this case, we will start with the obvious. It may not be the switch but the bulb that is the issue. Start by checking if the light inside the fixture is working correctly.


Now that you confirmed the issue is true with the switch, the next step is to check if it feels loose when operating it. If that is the case, the switch mechanism is damaged or broken, and you would need to replace it.


A dimmer may not work due to a blown fuse or tripped circuit breaker. Inspect your central unit. If you notice any burn marks around the fuse, you must replace it altogether. If you find out the breaker has tripped, try switching it back on.

Frequent Electrical Surges

An electrical surge is when the power fades or turns off for a moment before coming back on. While external forces like lightning or heavy winds may influence that, if the weather seems fine, there is a chance the issue is within your home.


Too many connected devices to an electrical outlet or the same circuit can potentially cause an overload. If you are experiencing frequent surges, you may want to check how your appliances are connected.


For example, large units such as refrigerators and air conditioners shouldn’t share a circuit with other devices, or they may disrupt the electrical services in the system.

Tripped Circuit Breaker

There could be a few instances where your circuit breaker trips.


If you notice this often happening to a particular area of your home, you should try plugging the appliances connected there one by one. If the breaker switches off when adding a device, you would need to inspect the plug. If damaged, it may cause a short circuit, switching the fuse off.


If the issue is not with the plug, then that would suggest you are overloading your system.


In this case, you may need to temporarily move some of your appliances to another circuit. Contact a licensed technician to discuss the potential for upgrading your electrical system or adding a new course to your home.

Warm Outlets and Switches

While some electrical problems are hard to detect, others are very straightforward. If you notice that an outlet or a switch is warm to the touch, it indicates that there is definitely an issue. Another indicator could be if you notice a fishy smell near an outlet.


This usually means there is an issue with the wiring; you should check whether it is warm.


Increased heat in those areas could mean that there is a mechanical issue with your switch and outlet, and it can be easily fixed by simply replacing it. That being said, however, it could indicate a significantly bigger issue with your electrical system.


In such situations, do not take any risks and contact an electrician. While waiting for the professional to arrive, turn off the breaker to that outlet or switch.

Too Bright or Dim Lights

Have you noticed the lights in your home being too bright or too dim? Perhaps they often switch from one to the other?


In such situations, the go-to solution should be to check the lightbulbs and see if there are any faulty ones. If all the bulbs are working correctly, that would suggest an issue with the sockets or the electricity. In that situation, consider calling an electrician.

Flickering Lights

If you notice any flickering lights inside your property, the first thing you should do is try and tighten them. Lights can loosen with time and, if they are not making proper contact, can start to flicker.


Another thing to check is the light switch. Older switches may not be compatible with newer LED lights, which may cause flickering. Check the ratings on dimmers and bulbs to ensure they are the same.


Old outlets and loose electrical wires can produce small electrical shocks. If you notice your cords or switches emitting sparks when you use them, it is definitely time to replace them.

Light Bulbs Burning Out Quick

It can get really frustrating when you have just replaced your light bulb, and it dies again. In such situations, there are two possible scenarios. First, check that the bulb has the correct wattage for the socket it goes into.


If those match, you are most certainly dealing with a loose connection in the circuit or socket and would need to check if the electrical cable has any visible damage.

When do I call an electrician?

While you are now familiar with some of the potential electrical problems you may have in your home, that does not make you an expert.


In a situation where you need to check the wattage, tighten a light bulb or simply check to confirm that no bad smell and smoke is coming from the electrical outlets, you may not need assistance.


However, it is best to contact a certified electrician if you have a potentially dangerous situation that endangers your family or home.


Electrical systems can get worn out with time and start causing issues. A professional will assist you with resolving your problem and inspect your home to prevent other situations, and conduct all necessary electrical repairs.


When it comes to troubleshooting electrical problems in your home, you need to be aware of what you are dealing with.


Having the ability to determine whether it is a problem that you can fix or if it is one that needs an electrician’s help can save you a lot of time and money.


What is crucial to remember is that a faulty electrical system may cause damages in the thousands or even burn your entire home down. If you have any doubts about it, you better play it safe and call a technician.