There are hundreds of reasons to need to hire an electrician. Remodeling your home, making additions, upgrading your lighting, or turning your garage into a workshop are all good reasons to hire an electrician. Even smaller projects like changing or adding electrical outlets or replacing a failing circuit breaker can benefit from the services of a professional electrician. So, what do you need to know before hiring an electrician? Here are a few of our favorite tips.
What Are Their Qualifications
When hiring an electrician, one of the first things you want to consider is their qualifications. Different areas have different requirements for electricians to become licensed. You can generally look up the requirements for an electrician’s license in your area to know what to look for.
However, some things are standards you should look for.
First, take a look at education. Did they go to school and graduate through a vocational program or tech school? In most cases, this is one of the first steps to becoming an electrician. Occasionally they will do similar training through an apprenticeship program instead. That training is supervised by already qualified electricians rather than professors at a school.
Experience Speaks Volumes, You Should Listen
The next thing you want to consider when choosing an electrician for your project, big or small, is their experience in the industry. It’s not to say that someone new to the industry may not do a good job, but you really want to look for someone with some experience with projects like the one you need to have handled. For example, you might find an electrician that has been in business for years but has zero experience with remodels.
Try to match your job to the type of experience you need when hiring an electrician.
What Are Other People Saying?
One of the best resources to use when hiring an electrician is reviews from other customers. Online reviews are one of the most useful resources you can have when it comes to ensuring you get the right electrician for your job.
You want to look for a company or individual electrician with overall positive reviews. Look for people who’ve left feedback and written a review, not just left stars. This will tell you more about their experience. Usually, they’ll give information about the level of customer service, the time the job took, and affordability.
Hiring an Electrician What Level do I Need?
Electricians work on a level-based system. The first we’ve already discussed when we talked about the apprenticeship. This is where most electricians start though some with higher education may begin at the next level of the Journey.
A Journey level electrician is fully certified and can generally work on a much wider range of jobs, including specialized projects and commercial endeavors.
Last on the list is the master electricians who have been in the industry for years and have at least 4,000 hours of experience at the journey level.
In some locations, to call themselves a master electrician, they not only have those two full years of work experience but also pass a master’s test.
For most jobs, you will not need the assistance of a master electrician. Most home repairs or installations only require the help of either a journey-level electrician or a supervised apprentice for the easier things like installing a new outlet or fixture.
Licenses, Insurance, Codes, and Requirements
When hiring an electrician, it’s important to check that they are licensed and bonded. This means that they are certified by all the proper authorities and have business insurance to cover anything that may come up.
One of the other benefits of hiring an electrician is that they will be up on all the local building codes and requirements. This can help save you from costly mistakes and having to re-do work.
This is especially important when you are doing remodeling or additions. The addition must be up to current building codes when you want to add to your home. Electricians always learn and stay on top of recent code and regulation changes. To keep their license current, they must meet the required number of education hours in many places.
How to Know When Hiring an Electrician Is the Right Choice
Suppose the job is more than simply replacing an already existing outlet. In that case, it’s almost always best to consider hiring an electrician for electrical projects. No matter how much experience you have, unless you have gone through the education process, you are still taking a risk by not working with a professional.
Without the proper training and experience, even jobs that seem like they would be easy enough can be dangerous. It’s important to understand that electrical changes and improvements in your home are not a clever idea to do without hiring an electrician.
Suppose you’re going to do any work regarding your electrical panel or changing the circuit breakers. In that case, you’ll want to work with a professional. They’ll know how to fully cut the power going to these devices and safely make any necessary changes.
Rewiring or adding electrical outlets can seem simple. Still, the problem is that even a simple job can go wrong quickly. When it comes to electrical wiring, you run the risk of not only hurting yourself but losing your home. Even an outlet wired improperly can run the risk of starting a fire. Electrical work is not something you should play around with seriously, consider hiring an electrician instead.
If you’ve done some DIY updates to your home lately or in the past, you can protect yourself long-term by hiring an electrician to ensure that your work is up to code. You should even consider hiring an electrician for those small home repairs.