Your Handy Guide to Avoiding Electrical DIY Disasters
Ahh, so we’re thinking about messing around with the electrics, are we? Well, we should probably make sure you’ve considered all the important stuff before diving in. Call us sentimental old fools if you want, but we’d rather not see you wind up extra crispy.
Never mess with wiring
We’ll start with some common sense. Electricians go through a lot of training to understand all those colourful wiry things in your walls, so don’t muck about with them yourself. Faulty wiring causes all sorts of issues, and you need to get help as soon as you suspect anything. For example, the eponymous Alex of Alex Shakeri Electrics says, “When a light is flickering, it could mean that there’s actually a problem with the wiring. In that case, it’s best to call in a professional to look at the issue.”
Stick to simple stuff like changing light bulbs
According to Justin from Omzen Electrics, “The kind of job that people should be doing without a skilled electrician is changing a lightbulb. That’s about it.” He’s a pro so we’d be inclined to believe him, and wouldn’t recommend attempting anything more complex unless you’ve actually had some professional experience. It’s not worth it. You’ve got too much to live for!
Let the professionals handle downlights
Downlights might the popular lighting of choice in modern households, but they’re also best tackled by the experts. “We’re forever coming out to sort of halogen downlights,” Justin also mentions. “Instead of doing it yourself, give us a call, we’ll sort it out for you, and you’ll never have to call us again.” Sounds like a plan!
Stay away from power points
No, we’re not talking about Microsoft’s handy slideshow software. If you’d like some incentive to stay away from your actual, physical power points, check out this horror story from Quick Connect Electrical’s Karl: “We had one guy who connected a power point incorrectly. He plugged an appliance in and blew the appliance and half the wiring out of the house. Anything electrical – 240V – don’t touch it; get someone qualified.” Noted.
Ceiling fans are a no-no
In fact, we might even go so far as to call them a no-no-no-no-no. If Karl’s tale wasn’t enough, then Joey from Energy Culture’s ceiling fan yarn will surely sway you: “We went into one house recently where the guy had tried to hook up a fan and a light with a dimmer,” Joey whispers, his face turning paler by the second. “When we turned the light switch on the fan came on really slowly, and then when we turned the dimmer on the fan sped up but the light turned off. It was out of control really.” There you have it, folks. Ceiling fans = one for the pros.