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Jonathan strips back a wire as he rewires bathroom switches, outlets, and lights.Things to Think About

Planning some electrical work in your home? Here are a few things to think about.

Does the municipality that you live in require
a permit for the project you want to do?

Before you begin any job, check with your town office or city hall. Tell them what you need to have done, and they'll let you know if you need a permit beforehand.

Will there need to be a scheduled power
interruption with the utility company?

You might not know this until your electrician checks out the job site and gives you recommendation. An electrician will let you know if there needs to be a power interruption.

Are there any other contractors at the site (framers, sheetrockers,
plumbers) that need to know there is electrical work being done?

Electricity is very dangerous. A Master Electrician knows everything about working safely with it, but the other workers at the site might not know. It's important for your electrician to know about and meet the other workers on the job site, so he can communicate with them and ensure everyone is safe while the electrical work is being done.

If adding an outlet, switch, or light to an existing
structure, is the site ready for the changes?

Is there access to the wall from above or below? Is the wall insulated? How far are you from existing circuits? Will the existing circuit be able to accommodate the existing load? These are things your electrician can help answer.

Will there need to be an upgrade
to the wiring on the circuit?

This is something an electrician should be table to tell you when he looks at the proposed job. Changing what switches and outlets do, or how many of them there are, may require running new lines, which could increase the time on the job.

Jonathan explains something to Elaine Fitzpatrick out of the National Electrical Code book.Will there be issues that need
to be brought up to code?

Code violations are very common in homes. Very often, homeowners (current or previous) do their own wiring, often without having a Master Electrician look over the work and certify it as safe. An electrician on the job should easily be able to identify code violations, bring them to your attention, and fix them. If the code violation is part of the job he's doing, he must fix it. If it's not part of the job, he should offer to fix it. And if you're worried than an electrician is trying to create work, he should have his National Electrical Code book with him so he can show you the code--and explain why it's unsafe.


Certified installer of Fujistsu mini-split heat pumps

Certified heat-pump installer for Efficiency Maine


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