Highland Park Residential Electric
Residential Electrician in Highland Park, Texas
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Illegal and Unsafe Wiring
Do you have unsafe or illegal wiring in your home?
We can’t tell you how many times we see electric meters and boxes that have unsafe and even illegal wiring attached to them. Many times, these situations come up when a homeowner or landlord decides to do a renovation on the property. It’s crazy when we find boxes that aren’t properly grounded or even share wiring between the boxes going to different units in multi-family properties.
OLDER ELECTRIC WIRING
This is often the case when we are dealing with pre-World War 2 homes, many of which are in disrepair or just haven’t had as much care taken over the years. Highland Park in particular has a number of well-designed and well-build homes from 1920s and 1930s both with styles ranging from Mediterranean, Colonial, Georgian, Tudor and other English style homes. However, you can never be too sure about the state of electrical wiring just by looking at the outside of the home.
In older homes we can find wires still attached to the original porcelain fixtures that hold the wire to the framing and structural elements of the house. We find old tube light sockets, some still in use and surprisingly, we often find that these sockets were wired wrong to begin with by wiring the power directly to the lamp instead of the switch. It’s just sloppy work even for that day and age. Some of the switches and outlet boxes we see are functionally obsolete, yet can still pass code in some places if you don’t touch it. Once you mess with it, then you are required to replace it.
UNSAFE ELECTRIC WIRING
We also find crazy electrical repairs that have happened over the years to keep the wiring operating. We’ve found modern Romex cable spliced into old tube sockets, concealed in a ceiling between a floor and drywall, which is just jaw-dropping.
More than once we’ve seen junction boxes in storage closets stuffed with live wires that are all just cobbled together and even live wires secured with black electrical tape. These wires are very dangerous and can cause all sorts of problems that you do not want to be a part of. People will just bunch all the wires together to run them out from the junction box and over time those wires are going to heat up more and more and damage the wire insulation, leading to a major fire hazard. Another issue we’ve seen a lot is people using staples to secure wire to framing. They often pinch the wire down with the staples, potentially causing damage to the insulation and setting up a fire hazard as well.
Some of this work is done when homes are subdivided into smaller units illegally and the residents just try to make things work without wanting to raise any suspicion about what’s going on. When that happens, things get so mixed up that we come in and pull out every last inch of the old crappy wiring and rewire the whole place brand new. Most of this type of work is unpermitted, so no standards were met and no care was taken to safely wire these places.
We recommend that any time you are moving into a new apartment or house, pay attention to the wiring and see how it looks. You can usually tell right away if something doesn’t look right. This is a great awareness to have to protect yourself against potential life-threatening hazards.
When in doubt, call a licensed electrician to take a look. We are always here to help.
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