Have you ever switched on an appliance, for example, an HVAC unit, and suddenly the lights started flickering and the circuit breaker flipped? If yes, those were signs of an electrical circuit overload.
A circuit flows electricity from the electrical panel to wires, outlets, switches, fuses, breakers, through to the device or electronics you want to use. It is easy to overload the circuit by using more electricity to power more electrical equipment that exceeds its capacity.
Each appliance uses specific wattage that adds up when used together, making the installed circuit breaker trip and shut off the power in your home. The tripping of the circuit-breaking device should signal you to call an emergency electrician to identify and fix the problem as soon as possible.
Know the risks of circuit overload and how to prevent them for the safety of your home and loved ones. Below are some of the risks associated with an overloaded electrical circuit.
Home fires are one of the dangers of circuit overloads resulting from a total load of connected appliances. Each circuit has its limit, and connecting heavy appliances like washing machines and air conditioners in the same outlet is a risk that leads to an overloaded circuit.
The accumulated watts of the washing machine and air conditioning unit should not exceed the limit of a circuit because if it does, it can lead to electrical issues that need urgent services of an emergency electrician.
The tripping of the breaker should compel you to hire an emergency electrician for immediate repairs. If your electrical system has no circuit breaker, an electrical fire breaks out.
An electrical fire is one thing that everyone, starting from you and your loved ones, and electricians should try to avoid at all costs. It is an electrical hazard that accounts for nearly 51,000 home fires, 500 deaths, 1,401 burn injuries, and over $ 1 billion in property damage.
When a fire breaks out in your home due to a circuit overload, calling an emergency electrician in Myrtle Beach, SC, will not help. The best the professional can do then is to tell you to run and to avoid pouring water on the fire. Having smoke detectors in every room in your house can warn you of a fire breaking out to give the time to find your way out, even if it is through a nearby window.
Prevention of Electrical Fires
Since electrical circuit overloads tend to happen in most households over time, it is wise to set prevention measures to stop a fire from breaking out. You can start by getting a qualified and licensed electrician to inspect your electrical system for potential dangers and if it meets the safety provisions set by NEC.
The emergency electrician can test circuit breakers and arc fault circuit interrupters to ensure they are at their peak to prevent electrical fires by tripping and switching off the power. Another fire prevention strategy the professional can offer is to educate clients on the dos and don’ts with electric outlets, including not overloading circuits with many appliances and using heavy electronics in separate outlets.
Overloading can result in short circuits in homes, leading to severe effects on you and your loved ones. A short circuit is an electrical accident that results from a high-volume electrical current passing through a low-resistance path. An overloading circuit tends to make loose or faulty electrical wires hot, which is susceptible to touching a conductive object.
The most common effect of a short circuit is electric shocks that you might feel when touching an appliance. It is prudent to employ an emergency electrician in Myrtle Beach, SC, to inspect the system for necessary repairs after experiencing several electric shocks.
If you brush off the electric shock as a minute electrical issue and fail to call for repairs or tune-ups, you increase the risk of an electrical fire, appliance damage, and electrocution.
Preventing Short Circuits
Like electrical fires, short circuits are also preventable. An emergency electrician can check outlets for loose connections and confirm there are no overloaded circuits. The technician can also change old outlets and upgrade electrical systems.
Maintenance of the electrical system is the best way to prevent short circuiting because it is a comprehensive process that includes checking all the electrical components, tightening loose wires, and replacing damaged and cracked or faulty circuit breakers.
Making sure the wiring system is efficient will prevent a short circuit in the case of a circuit overload. An emergency electrician called due to a tripped circuit can also check the appliances to ensure they have no cracks or damages that can lead to a short circuit.
Another danger of an overloading electrical circuit in homes is overheating, which can lead to an arc fault. It occurs in cases where the electrical system has no circuit breaker that can trip after sensing abnormal rising temperatures. The excess heat can melt wire insulations and lead to an arc fault that can immediately cause a fire.
Stopping Arc Faults
Overheating and arcing in the electrical system are preventable by installing circuit breakers and arc fault circuit interrupters in homes.
An emergency electrician can also check and repair or replace loose, corroded, or fraying wires in the electrical panel to prevent the low voltage currents that lead to breaking down wire insulation that can eventually ignite and cause a fire with severe effects.
Dealing with an Overloaded Circuit?
Since an overloading circuit can lead to severe electrical accidents and hazards such as electrical fires, it is appropriate to avoid circuit overloads that result from using heavy electronics in different circuits. Learning to check the limit of each circuit and calculate current loads can also prevent circuit overloads that can cause short circuits and arc faults when it comes in contact with faulty or damaged wiring systems.
Mister Sparky of Myrtle Beach is among the best electrical companies in Myrtle Beach, SC, with skilled and experienced electricians providing top-notch services for guaranteed satisfaction. Our technicians are available 24/7 to help you with critical electrical issues such as overheating outlets, short circuits, and frequent tripping of a circuit breaker.