Electrical issues in the home bring up awhole new crop of concerns, from clean energy to fire hazards. That's why I always recommend having a licensed professional. For that reason, I thought this may make a good First Home Friday topic and I sought out advice from trusted local electricians Maple Leaf Electric to answer some questions that first time homeowners may have when they look for and deal with electricians.
Is it necessary to get an electrical inspection for a resale home above and beyond a regular home inspection? If so, what sorts of issues would an electrical inspection catch that a full home inspection may overlook?
we always recommend doing a General Inspection from ESA, they are licensed electricians and know what to look for. A visual inspection by ESA of the electrical wiring and devices accessible at the time of the inspection to identify electrical defects needing to be corrected. Electrical devices and wiring located behind walls, in attics, in crawl spaces or otherwise obscured from view are not included as part of the inspection. If there is a defect, ESA will send a Notice of Deficiency to the property owner outlining what must be corrected to satisfy Code standards. A wiring Application for Inspection must be submitted to ESA for any work done to correct the defects and the applicable fees paid. The remedial work shall be done by either the property owner/tenant or a licensed electrical contractor. A tenant, through Freedom of Information, can request a copy of the Notice of Deficiency
What is Eaton Certified Contractor Network (ECCN) and why should new homeowners know this acronym?
Eaton Certified Contractor Network (ECCN) is a service for contractors, residential service electricians, and commercial contractors to communicate and stay connected.
The ECCN program supplies the electrical contractor with the knowledge and the tools needed to provide homeowners with the safest and technologically advanced electrical system. When you hire a contractor that is Eaton certified you are guaranteed that they are well trained and will provide the highest quality installation with the industry’s best electrical products. In addition to certification, they will also provide contractors with the knowledge and tools to educate you, the homeowner, on electrical safety and how Eaton’s products provide electrical safety throughout your home.
Are there any electrical issues or fixes that can be tackled by the homeowner, without the help of an electrician?
If the homeowner know what they are doing and they feel confident there is no issue to do small things like install lights, install switches, plugs, dimmers etc. The owner needs to hire an licensed electrical contractor when you have to rewire a house, running new circuits, upgrading a panel etc.
What resources are out there to inform homeowners when looking for an electrician?
HomeStars.com is a growing online community of homeowners and home improvement companies throughout Canada and the U.S.HomeStars offers a free service for homeowners to find reputable renovators, repairmen and retailers by searching its database of almost 2 million companies. Homeowners write reviews based on their home improvement experiences – both good and bad. This builds a collective knowledge base that is invaluable in helping homeowners make better decisions on whom to hire. Companies see the value in this feedback, and proactively respond to reviews written about them as well as participate in the issues and discussions homeowners are struggling with.
What should new homeowners look for when shopping for an electrician?
The main concern when you are shopping for an electricians is this: They must have Electrical contractor license, liability insurance, WSIB
Other secondary concerns are:
Get at least 3 references, quotes should be in writing and the electricians must show up for a quote on time, clean and with company uniform with a logo. They should give you a business card and they should be driving a company truck. The latter may sound like a formality but it could prove the difference between
What warning signs can homeowners look for - before, during or after an electrician has started work - to avoid an unprofessional job?
1. Be on time. For me is the most important for customer satisfaction and the best 1st impression.
2. DO NOT pay full amount upfront. We never ask for any down payment until the work is complete and they have a Certificate of Inspection from ESA. Some companies ask for 10-30% down payment. that is ok, because of the expense.
3. Get everything in writing!! it will help you if you have to take further steps.
What are the new trends in lighting that you're noticing lately?
LED I think is the new trend now. Its expensive, but it will save you money in the future We are seeing a lot more natural light. Beginning to see a shift toward more open spaces that let natural light fill an interior.
What lighting trends would you like to see end...right now.
No more fluorescent lighting, trading those standard bulbs for energy efficient LEDs
Thank you for reading!
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