Tag: DIY electrical safety

Here’s Why Your Outlet Doesn’t Work

elecrtical outlet

Having an electrical outlet suddenly stop working is never a pleasant experience. But don’t assume the worst just yet. Some causes of a dead outlet are quite simple, while others do require the help of an electrical professional. Roman Electric would like to go over these causes for Wisconsin homeowners.

Below are some possible reasons why your outlet doesn’t work.

Your Circuit Breaker Tripped

Circuit breakers trip when unintended electrical currents are detected. If your outlet has short circuited or been overloaded, then your circuit breaker may have shut off its power. Check other nearby outlets to see if they are working. If they also are dead, then go to your circuit breaker.

When a circuit breaker has tripped, the lever will usually flip to the middle or off position. Before flipping the circuit breaker back on, first unplug and remove any appliances connected to the dead outlets. Too many plugged-in appliances could’ve cause the circuit breaker to trip. Additionally, damaged appliances can short out easily, also tripping your circuit breaker. Unplug and examine your appliances before switching the circuit breaker back on.

Your Outlet Needs New Wiring

Wiring is electricity’s main mode of transportation. If wiring is damaged or old, electricity cannot travel properly. An outlet can stop working due to faulty wiring. Besides the outlet refusing to work, other signs of faulty wiring are as follows:

  • Constant Buzzing Sound from the Outlet
  • Burnt Marks and Smell from the Outlet
  • Flickering Lights
  • Outlet Feels Hot to the Touch
  • Your Electrical System is Old

If you are experiencing any of these issues, contact Roman Electric for further diagnosis.

Your Outlet is a GFCI

GFCI (Ground Fault Circuit Interrupter) outlets are designed to reduce the severity of electrical shock. When electrical current follows an unintended path, the GFCI outlet will quickly shut off power. What this means is that if your outlet is GFCI, then it may have shut off due to a short circuit.

How do you tell if your outlet is a GFCI? The National Electric Code (NEC) requires GFCI outlets bathrooms, kitchens, outdoors, and laundry rooms. A GFCI outlet is easily identified by the test and reset buttons located in between the two plugs. If your dead outlet happens to be a GFCI, then the solution may be to simply press the reset button.

Before you press the reset button, first unplug every appliance from the outlet. Check your appliance for any issues that could’ve caused a short circuit, such as noticeable cracks or damaged cords. Check your GFCI outlet for any moisture or damages as well.

For more info on GFCIs and the NEC, click here.

Your Outlet Has a Bad Connection

Your outlet may be subject to a bad connection, which could’ve caused it to stop working. Outlets are installed using a box, and this box could run into issues such as a loose connection or damaged screws. If an outlet’s box can’t provide enough power, the outlet will cease to work.

Symptoms of a bad connection are almost identical to bad wiring. What also remains similar is the difficulty to diagnose the issue without the help of an electrical professional. If you fear your outlet does not have a good connection, contact Roman Electric for further diagnosis.

After reviewing the possible reasons why your outlet doesn’t work, you may be ready to consult with an electrical professional. Roman Electric will help troubleshoot any issue you have regarding a dead outlet, as well as provide the services to repair or replace your outlet. Give us a call at 414-369-3798 to schedule an appointment with Milwaukee’s trusted electrical experts.

5 Benefits of a Backup Generator

The concept of a backup generator seems simple, but there is more to it than you might realize. With Milwaukee constantly experiencing inclement weather, purchasing a backup generator may have crossed your mind already. When deciding whether a backup generator is worth the purchase, you’ll want to weigh its many benefits.

From the electrical experts at Roman Electric, here are 5 benefits of a backup generator!

  1. Backup Generators Maintain Your Security System

When the power goes out, your security system waivers. Door and window alarms cease to work, while smoke and CO detectors must rely on their batteries. Additionally, if a severe storm has knocked out your electricity, sump pumps may not have the power to draw out water from your basement, increasing your chances of basement flooding during heavy rain.

A backup generator provides the necessary power to keep your security system running through a blackout. Smoke and CO detectors no longer must rely on batteries, while a sump pump can resume its function.

  1. Backup Generators Prevent Freezing

In Milwaukee, freezing temperatures are frequent. If a power outage has gone on for an extended time, your pipes can freeze. Freezing pipes can burst, ruining your plumbing and possibly causing water damage. With a backup generator, your water heater can still run at peak capacity, providing the necessary heat to prevent your plumbing from freezing.

Beyond heating your plumbing, you’ll be able to stay warm as well. Your HVAC system can maintain its functionality with the help of a backup generator, offering both warmth and comfort during a blackout.

  1. Backup Generators Sustain Lighting

Power outages can occur at any moment. If one happens during the day, gloomy storms offer little in terms of sunlight. When a nighttime power outage turns your home into a pitch-black abyss, it’s often difficult to maintain composure.

This is where a backup generator shines – literally! Lighting is sustained in your home, giving you a clear passage to traverse and plan for the blackout. Additionally, your outdoor path lighting can still function, brightening passages outside your home. Furthermore, you can fully charge and utilize flashlights and electric lamps to help see more covert areas.

  1. Backup Generators Preserve Food

Refrigerators and freezers rely strictly on your electrical system to keep food from perishing. This should be taken into account immediately if a blackout is expected to last a long period of time. According to Ready, a government disaster protection program, an unopened fridge will only keep food cold for about 4 hours, while a freezer can last up to 48 hours.

However, with a backup generator, you’ll be able to preserve your food as usual. A backup generator gives you ample time to distribute and conserve food until power has been restored. During a prolonged blackout, we recommend first consuming foods closest to perishing, after which consuming all other perishables. Once all perishables are gone, move towards non-perishables.

  1. Backup Generators Increase Planning Time

A backup generator lasts a lot longer than you think. In fact, if fuel is consistently supplied to a backup generator, it will run consistently. With a full tank, a typical standby backup generator can go a little over a week before running out of fuel.

This provides additional planning time for you and your family. You’ll be able to:

  • Charge flashlights
  • Power electric lamps
  • Save any current work on your computer
  • Sustain your smartphone and radio for outbound communication.

You can use this time to draft a cohesive emergency plan. You can also stock up on more food if the blackout is expected to last a while.

Backup generators are a welcome addition to any Milwaukee home, especially as we enter storm season. If you are ready to install a backup generator in your home, contact Roman Electric today! Safety is our number-one priority for Milwaukee homeowners and their families. We help to ensure this by providing backup generator services at an affordable cost. Call us at 414-369-3798 today to get started!


Electrical System Safety Tips

You can never have too much electrical system safety! Practicing electrical safety in your Milwaukee home not only prevents costly repairs – it may even save your life. Your home’s electrical system distributes the electricity that runs your home, and without proper safety precautions, you are at risk for damaged appliances, shock, or even an electrical fire. Fortunately, you’re not alone when it comes to electrical safety, as you have Roman Electric for guidance!

Follow these electrical system safety tips below – and keep your home and household safe!

Know Your Circuit Breakers

  • Never let the metal box in your home be a mystery, as the circuit breaker box is a crucial tool for controlling your electrical system and boosting electrical safety.
  • Each breaker distributes power to a certain area of your home and should be studied to know their capabilities.
  • By knowing your circuit breaker, you can shut off power when currents are reaching dangerous levels.
  • Circuit breakers also hold the ability to trip, or quickly shut off during an electrical overload, and this should signify calling a professional to diagnose the issue.

Monitor Extension Cord Usage

  • Extension cords should never be more than a temporary solution when you need power, as they do not possess the durability to become a permanent energy source.
  • Always examine your extension cords before use, and discard ones with frayed wiring, damaged casing, or burn marks.
  • Extension cords should also be checked if they’re suited for indoor or outdoor weather, as well as their AWG rating, which determines how much power it can handle.
  • Extension cords can easily be tripped over, meaning you should keep them aligned along walls and corners.
  • If you need additional outlets, Roman Electric provides the services to install new outlets and minimize the reliance on extension cords for your home!

Maintain Your Smoke Detectors

  • The NEC requires smoke detectors in each bedroom and every floor of a home.
  • Test your smoke detectors once a month to ensure their functionality but be aware testing them does sound the alarm.
  • To test a smoke detector, locate and hold down the test button on the smoke detector, and if the alarm can be heard loudly, your smoke detector is properly working.

Maintain your GFCIs

  • Your GFCI (Ground Fault Circuit Interrupter) outlets add essential electrical system safety and should be maintained and tested to ensure their functionality.
  • GFCI outlets have a safety mechanism that shuts off power when electrical currents are on an unintended path, lessening the severity of potential shock.
  • The National Electric Code (NEC) requires GFCIs in every bathroom and kitchen in a home, and you can choose to install additional ones in other rooms.
  • Keep track of where every GFCI is in your home and remember to test them once a month to ensure their functionality.
  • To test a GFCI, press the “reset” button located on the outlet and plug in a small appliance. Then, press the “test” button on the outlet and if the appliance has turned off, your GFCI is working properly. Press the “reset” button to return the GFCI to normal.

Schedule an Annual Electrical Inspection

  • An electrical inspection can help determine the status of your electrical system, identifying any issues along with cost-effective solutions to restore electrical safety.
  • Electrical inspections should be done once a year, as it spots small issues before they become repair problems and keeps the system up-to-date.
  • Contact Roman Electric for your next electrical inspection to help keep your electrical system safe.

Prepare for an Electrical Fire

  • In the case of an electrical fire, you must have ample preparations and items on standby to keep your family safe.
  • Purchase a Type C Fire Extinguisher and a fire-retardant blanket to have ready for an electrical fire.
  • Plan an escape route for your family: Know every door and window location, as well as clearing their space of objects for easier escape.
  • As we mentioned before, get to know your circuit breakers so you can shut off power when an appliance or outlet begins to spark.

Never wait to practice electrical system safety. By following our tips, you will help keep your family, home and belongings safe. If you require Roman Electric’s services, contact us today! Milwaukee homeowners deserve the best electrical services in Wisconsin and expert team is ready to assist! We can install new outlets as well as perform your next electrical inspection. Give us a call at 414-369-3798 to schedule an appointment and meet your local professionals.