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When you purchased that nice ceiling fan, you might have thought you could plug it in. After opening the box, you realized you need a ladder to install it and that there are a few other things to know before you start that project. Here are a few things to consider before taking on a DIY wiring job.


Know Your Own Limits

Ask yourself how much you really know about electricity. Remember, you are not swapping stories with friends now, it is just you, and you must be brutally honest with yourself. Most people have a basic knowledge of electricity, or, at least the concept of electrical components. A moderate number of folks have a passing knowledge of how to repair the wiring to an appliance or worked construction one summer going through college while some people make a living as electricians. Not electrical engineers, but the actual get-your-hands-dirty electrical jobs. If you fall into any of these categories, there are still things to know or review before heading to the hardware store.


Know Your Own Value

Safety is your primary concern. Just as some people do not know to unplug the toaster before sticking a butter knife in it, others do not know to remove the fuse or turn the circuit breaker off to the area where they plan to work.


There are dozens of important things to know about DIY wiring, none more significant than your safety and the safety of your family. While you may feel capable of interpreting directions to install a ceiling fan, improper wiring puts your family in harm's way. Faulty wiring causes many fires each year. Often, months or years passed before the wiring failed.


How familiar are these concepts?

  • Wire gauge to amp ratios, copper wire minimums, splicing wire using more than a quick twist and electrical tape.

  • Wattage matters, placing light bulbs in a device means not exceeding the recommended watts. Higher watts equal hotter wires.

  • Minimum wire temperature ratings, older homes seldom contain wires and insulation strong enough to handle new devices, new fixtures seldom mix and match with old wires.

  • Grounded wire does not play well with older, two-pronged wired outlets, wire color codes and other fun things.

Your value and your family's safety depend, in part, on proper wiring and techniques. Deadly accidents occur when you risk doing a job better left to a professional.


Know Your Codes

Many neighborhoods, towns, cities or states do not allow homeowners to do many home projects involving wiring. Before you spend the time and money purchasing supplies find out what your local codes allow. At the least, it's likely you'll have to hire an electrician or an expert to check your work. It may be cheaper to hire a qualified team from the start.

Consider better ways spend your time before tackling what appears to be a weekend wiring project. While saving money is always nice, saving your life and protecting your family is much nicer.

For some other friendly tips on saving money, check out these articles from Alliance Insurance Agency.





Posted 10:43 PM

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