Overloading the electrical system in your home can be highly dangerous. Electrical overloads occur when the amount of electricity in the electrical system in your home exceeds safe levels. A primary cause of electrical overload is having too many electrical appliances plugged at once. If you live in an older property, the electrical wiring and circuits may not be able to withstand large demands for electricity.
Knowing the signs of an electrical overload can help you to carry out any electrical repairs and prevent hazardous situations posed by the risk of electrocution or fire. Below is a brief guide to electrical overloading.
Strange sounds from your electrical outlets
If you hear strange sounds such as sizzling, buzzing or crackling coming from the electrical outlets in your home, you should turn off the outlet and have it inspected by an electrical contractor. Strange sounds are a classic sign of electrical overloading.
The Circuit breakers or fuses keep tripping
Fuses and circuit breakers are designed to trip when the electrical current surges to unsafe levels. If you notice that the fuses or circuit breakers in your home are frequently tripping, you may be dealing with an electrical overload. Having to repeatedly reset or replace the circuit breakers or fuses can be annoying and power surges could potentially damage expensive electrical equipment in your home.
Overheating of outlets, plugs and power cords
If you notice that plugs, wall outlets or power cords feel hot when you touch them, you should turn off and unplug the electrical appliance and contact an electrical contractor. Overheating is a classic sign of an overloaded electrical system.
Dimming, blinking or flickering light bulbs
If you notice that lightbulbs in your home blink, dim or flicker when you turn on another appliance such as a washing machine, hair dryer or vacuum cleaner, this could be a sign of system overload. As you increase the load on your electrical system, the overall demand for electrical power increases, which decreases the amount of electrical power that is available to your light bulbs in order to balance out the increased demand. You can avoid this problem by plugging appliances that use a lot of power into a separate circuit. However, if you notice this problem, it is worthwhile getting your electrical system looked at by a professional.
If you have any concerns about the electrical system in your home, you should contact a professional electrician who will be able to assess and fix any electrical problems.