Most Common Electrical Problems & Solutions

Written on: October 31, 2022

Frequent home electric issues and how you can fix them

electrical troubleshooting At Seymour Oil & Propane, our skilled and experienced electrical service team has handled every electrical problem you can imagine. While the lion’s share of these issues requires professional service, there are some that you might be able to handle yourself.

Here are four of our most common electrical problems — and their solutions.

1. Missing GFCI outlets

Anyone who’s bought an older home knows how important it is to install ground fault circuit interrupter (GFCI) outlets, especially in kitchens and bathrooms. GFCI outlets are sensitive to things like water infiltration. They quickly shut down to prevent injury or home damage.

Solution: Replacing an old outlet with a GFCI outlet is pretty much the same process as installing a conventional outlet. If you know how to do that, you can make the switch yourself. If you aren’t confident, having a professional do it is quick and inexpensive.

2. Circuit breakers tripping

If you find yourself constantly running to the breaker box to flip switches, it probably means that a breaker is overloaded. Too many electricity-drawing appliances rely on that breaker, causing it to trip.

Solution: You can fix this issue yourself in most cases. Just move some energy-intensive items to another area. You can also see if some appliances have power-conserving settings. But call an electrician if this doesn’t stop the circuit breaker from tripping.

3. Flickering bulbs and quick burnouts

If the bulbs in your light fixture are flickering or burning out too quickly, there are a few possible reasons. The simplest to fix is a light bulb with a wattage that’s too high for the fixture. If that isn’t the issue, there could be poor air circulation around the fixture or bad wiring connecting it to the main.

Solution: Try swapping out the bulb with a lower-wattage option. If the problem continues, contact the pros for an electrical repair visit.

4. Aluminum wiring in the home

In the 1960s and 1970s, homebuilders and electricians sometimes used aluminum wiring as a less expensive alternative to copper. But this wiring corrodes when it comes into contact with copper. This leads to loose connections, which in turn can cause safety hazards like fires.

Solution: If you know where the aluminum/copper connection is, you can retrofit a dielectric wire nut approved for this connection. Dielectric nuts are inexpensive, and they prevent corrosion with special grease. You also must ensure that any new switches or outlets you install are compatible with aluminum wiring.

Seymour is western Connecticut’s go-to electrical services company

From Bridgeport to Bristol, New Milford to New Haven, the electricians at Seymour Oil & Propane keep the lights on for Connecticut homes and businesses.

You can count on us for the following:

  • wiring for new home construction
  • upgrading electric capacity for larger electrical loads
  • lighting projects customized to your needs and design choices
  • installing generators
  • adding pool filtration and lighting
  • virtually any electrical repair or service you need

Have you been putting off an electrical project? Don’t wait any longer. Contact us for a consultation and service.