5 Common Winter Electrical Issues to Prepare For
Winter is an exciting time for most people since it signifies the beginning of the holiday season. However, it is also a time when people experience various electrical problems that may cause significant inconveniences. Our team of electricians at Brennan Heating & Air Conditioning gets frequent calls to address different issues in Western Washington so people can continue having a good time.
Therefore, it is best to be ready for any electrical issues by knowing what to expect and how to handle them. The winter cold also comes with many demands, mainly keeping warm. Therefore, you should work with our electricians to guide you on what to prepare for. Whether you run into a common problem or something a bit more complex, our team of professional electricians is here to help.
1. Tripping Circuit Breakers
Nothing marks the holidays like the decorations people begin displaying outside and inside their homes. They are marks of the festivities and vary in size and power consumption. While you may want the biggest and brightest decor, you must consider your power supply. In most instances, people trip their circuit breakers by installing too many lights and electrical decorations, exceeding your panel’s limit.
If you want to increase the number and size of the lights, it is important to consult our electricians to help guide you. You can limit your decorations to what your panel can handle or upgrade your capacity. In the cases of old homes, the panel mostly has a lower capacity and, therefore, cannot supply enough power for numerous items. Our pros can help you upgrade your electrical panel so you will not get frequent circuit breaker trips.
Another common cause of this tripping is using too many electronics simultaneously. Families bring out their space heaters, turn up their HVAC units, and usually have more people taking hot showers during the holiday season. Therefore, you create a higher likelihood of overloading the system, thus causing the circuit breaker to trip. A panel upgrade can help you accommodate all these needs to avoid keeping your family in the cold for fear of an electrical issue.
2. Power Outages
Winter sometimes brings snowstorms that may affect many daily operations due to interrupted power supply. Storms and harsh weather cause power outages, which at times catch homeowners off guard. These blackouts may affect a whole city or just a small area, depending on the extent of the issue and where it happened. Power outages come with issues such as:
- Spoilt food
- Poor indoor air quality
- No hot showers
- No entertainment
- Lack of lighting
- No electrical decorations
The first step in preparing for a blackout is investing in a generator for your home. You need to consult our electricians at Brennan Heating & Air Conditioning to help you know the best-fit generator based on your power usage. We also recommend high-quality brands that will not misbehave within a short time. You can count on us for professional installation.
Our team has extensive experience handling all sizes of generators, whether automatic or manual. Automatic generators immediately take over the power supply when the main line shuts down, while the manual relies on you to switch it on. Solar power is also a fantastic alternative but may become challenging if you do not get enough sunlight during the day.
3. Old Equipment
From our experience, this problem affects many households since most people rarely upgrade their electronics. Old space heaters, switches, and other items used during the winter may cause significant electrical damage that most people care to accept. If you have space heaters and switches that are over a decade old, they do not contain current safety measures and can inconvenience you anytime.
The best way to combat this issue is to invest in modern electronics. Since space heaters help improve our comfort level, you need to dispose of the one from the 90s and purchase a current one. New devices have the appropriate protection systems to avoid short-circuiting or power overload. This way, you can enjoy the holidays without the constant failure of one or several electronics.
You should also contact our electricians so they can upgrade your panel to accommodate newer and more powerful HVAC units. As the world advances technologically, more households are investing in equipment that improves their comfort and makes life easier. The old panels could sustain fewer electronics and, therefore, can quickly trip when you keep adding more to the house. Consequently, you should call for an electrical panel upgrade to help power your home efficiently and increase safety.
4. High Energy Bills
With the increased number of people in the home and decreased temperatures, your home will use more electricity. However, you can adjust your usage through energy conservation. Simple actions like not leaving electronics on when no one is using them can make a significant difference. You should also adjust the thermostat to avoid overworking the HVAC unit, which may lead to increased energy consumption. You can maintain a suitable indoor environment without straining the system.
Increased human traffic in and out of the house may also cause the heaters to work harder to maintain the required room temperature. Making sure that your windows and doors are sealed prevents the cold outdoor air and warm indoor air from mixing, thus keeping the home warm and comfortable. Call professionals to fix your HVAC units and ensure they are working efficiently. This way, you will have minimal use for the space heater and avoid increasing energy consumption.
5. Space Heaters
As electricians, we find space heaters among the leading causes of electrical issues during the winter. Most homeowners bring out these units to help warm the room, especially when they have a malfunctioning heating system. Nevertheless, our electricians at Brennan Heating & Air Conditioning do not advocate highly relying on the space heater as your heat source. This device consumes a lot of power and can easily cause the circuit breaker to trip. It may also cause a fire, especially when you get a power surge or place it near flammable items.
Therefore, we advise our clients in Western Washington to use them only when necessary. You should also place it away from any items to give the heated air enough space to circulate. If you must have a space heater, we recommend buying a modern version with a safe switch that automatically disconnects power when it overheats.
Even amidst the festivities, you should monitor your electronics and power supply. Planning helps you avoid some of the above issues. You can contact our electricians for a professional inspection and panel upgrade to help you have peace of mind. This way, your holiday season will not get interrupted by frequent electrical faults and constant tripping. Our pros check for any loose wires, tighten the bulbs, install new equipment, and ensure proper wiring of the entire house. With us on your side, you can have a beautiful home and energy efficiency as you celebrate the holiday season.
Along with electrical services, we also offer repair, installation, and maintenance of your heating and cooling systems. Our team also works on water heaters and air quality systems. We’ve been proudly serving Western Washington since 1987. Call Brennan Heating & Air Conditioning today to learn more about our services.