Is your Electric panel safe and hazard free?
There are safety related issues with several types of electrical breaker panels.
Federal Pacific electric panels have been rated a fire hazard. There have been several house fires related and caused directly by the federal pacific electric panel, in the past few weeks, in the Cincinnati area.
Also there are several electric breakers that are common in many houses. There are breakers made and installed as late as 2011 that have been rated fire hazards due to non working items on the breakers when over heated. So please contact a CERTIFIED Home inspector or a qualified licensed electrical contractor to inspect your panel. Your best bet would be to contact a CERTIFIED home inspector. Not all licensed electrical contractors are QUALIFIED.
Personal experience; I had a new electric panel installed in my home by a LICENSED electrical contractor. after the installation was completed I removed the cover and inspected the electric panel myself. WOW the LICENSED electrical contractor installed not only 1 but 2 illegal double taps on 2 separate breakers. Needless to say I had to call them back and fix there mistake and the entire time the electrician was arguing with me about the double tap. So me being a home inspector I went into my office and grabbed my NEC ( National Electrical Code) book and had to show him the proper code and after that is had NOTHING to say except " I am truly Sorry Sir".
So check your contractors and just because they are licensed does not mean they are QUALIFIED. Hire a CERTIFIED ASHI Inspector for all your home inspection needs and requirements.
GET INSPECTED... TO BE PROTECTED!!!
Electrical Safety Tips
Electricity always takes the shortest way to the ground.
It will go through wire, metal, wet objects... or you. It's invisible, but very real, so treat it with respect.
Wires run around, through and over our houses. And each year hundreds are electrocuted in their homes, and thousands are injured in electricity-related accidents...
Accidents that can be prevented with a little foresight, and some common sense.
Indoor Electrical Safety Tips:
- Keep small appliances like hair dryers away from water-filled tubs and sinks.
- Unplug all appliances before you clean them.
- Use only appliances and equipment approved by Underwriters Laboratories (look for the UL listing on the label), or other recognized testing laboratories.
- Don't overload electrical outlets with cords. If your TV picture shrinks or flickers when major appliances go on, or if fuses or circuit breakers blow frequently, you should have your circuits and wiring checked.
- Never unplug or carry anything by its cord. And don't run cords under carpets or furniture; the cords can overheat and cause a fire.
- Make it a habit to unplug small appliances when they're not in use, and push them to the back of your counters. And make sure you use all three prongs of your electric plugs, and replace worn or frayed cords immediately. Never force a plug into an outlet if it doesn't fit, and never nail or tack cords to walls or floors.
- Teach your kids not to poke things into electrical outlets, toasters, or any other appliances, whether they're on or off. Use plug covers or inserts in all your outlets.
- Keep electrical cords away from kids' reach. Teach them that electricity and water never mix. Keep all radios, hair dryers and other appliances secured or out of bathrooms.
Outdoor electrical safety tips:
- If you have overhead electrical service, watch out for the drop line from the utility pole to your house. Don't hit it with implements or let other wires touch it. Be particularly careful when you are unloading materials from your car or truck.
- Overhead power lines might look insulated. They aren't. The dark color may be weather protection or oxidation... Not insulation. And even an insulated line may have flaws in the insulation, and contact could mean serious injury. Keep away! If you must work near power lines, contact us or the utility involved before you start work. Ask that safety measures be taken, or the lines de-energized. We want to work with you to make sure you work safely.
- Outdoor outlets should be on a circuit protected by a ground fault circuit interrupter (GFCI), which are required in newer homes in bathrooms, garages, outdoors, and near sinks. GFCIs can be added as a temporary plug-in adapter, added as a replacement outlet, or even installed as a circuit breaker. Check with your electrician for options.
- Keep television and radio antennas away from power lines. They should be far enough away to remain clear if they were blown over.
- Teach your kids never to fly kites near any power lines. Toys or other objects caught in electrical equipment should be left alone and the kids should find an adult to help. Balls or other objects tossed or falling into an electrical substation should be left there. Call AEP or the utility involved to retrieve the item.
Teach your kids to recognize "Danger" signs and not to climb in trees if power lines pass through or near them. They should also know that pad-mounted transformers (those metal cabinets on concrete pads) are not safe places to play. If you have any question call Inspector Chris Home Inspections, LLC or a licensed electricians for the answers.
Are Neutral Double Tapped Wires ok?
Does your Electrican know his own NEC Code? Maybe not?!
I recently completed a home inspection and the electric panel had ALL the neutral wires double tapped into the neutral bar. The electrician told the home owners that his crew would not fix the double taps because they are within the code.
So what does the NEC Code say?
Multiple neutral conductors from separate branch or separate feeder circuits CANNOT be installed in the same neutral terminal...
NEC 110.3(B) Clause 12.3.10 of UL 67 states:
...an individual terminal shall be provided for the connection of EACH branch-circuit neutral conductor.
This code was accepted for the 2002 NEC that made it clear that each ground conductor (neutral) MUST have its own terminal. The 2008 NEC 408.01 is the location for the rule.
There is a reason for this people - Your safety. So please know who you hire to do your work and make sure they are both licensed and knowledgeable in their field.
Feel free to contact Inspector Chris to answer your concerns.
Do you feel Safe in your home?
Are you aware that your home may be in jeopardy of a fire hazard and your not aware of this.
There are recalls daily from building codes and building products. You may have a brand new home and feel you are safe and secure. But are you ?
- If your home was built in 2009 - 2011 are you aware that you may have faulty breakers in your electric panel. Yes that is correct, there are recalls on certain breakers from that period of time.
The breakers spring clip are faulty. When the breaker gets too hot (overheats) the spring clip allows the breaker to trip and end the current to that electric line. The spring clips on certain breaker when overheated pop loose and do not properly shut the breaker off in which it allows the current to continue through the electric line and causes a fire hazard due to no control on the circuit and allowing too much current to pass through the electric line.
If you are aware of this recall you should contact the Inspector Chris Home Inspector company to have an electrical panel inspection to ensure your home is safe and reduce the risk of a fire hazard.