Buying your first home is very exciting! You’ve probably thought about furniture, paint colors, landscaping, and décor, but you also need to think of the “electrical stuff”. Steve from Murray Electric discusses what we need to know when it comes to the electrical aspects of your home. It’s less stressful when thinking of things beforehand and being prepared.
- Know where your water key is.
You need to know where your water meter key is located in case the water needs to be turned off. A water key is t-shaped, with a long handle, and an end that fits over the water valve. You may be wondering “what does my water key have to do with electricity”? Well, water and electricity don’t mix! If you are having an electrical emergency, you may need to turn off the water quickly.
- Know where your main shut off breaker is.
You may find the main shut off in the circuit breaker, labeled as “main”. In an older home, it may be outside, next to the meter can. If you need to turn off the power due to an emergency, the quickest method is to turn off the main circuit. Don’t waste time trying to find the individual breaker.
- Check circuit breaker labels; Update them if needed.
The easiest way to label your circuit breaker is to start with lights. Turn the lights on, and then turn off breaker switches until the lights turn off. Now you know which one it is. Outlets are a bit trickier. You can purchase an outlet tester, or have a second person plug in a lamp while you turn off the breaker switch. If your circuit breaker is already labeled, double check it because they are often labeled wrong. Also, if you are building a new home, don’t fill up the circuit breaker. There’s supposed to be four extra circuits in your breaker panel. If you need to, add a second panel. It’s better to add it during construction rather than doing so later on; as it can be very costly.
- Double tapping is not permitted.
Double tapping is when two wires are connected to a circuit breaker that’s designed for one. UL has tested the panel, and certified it, with all breakers installed- one wire per breaker. If a circuit breaker is double tapped, it’s a violation of UL’s testing. You can put in a junction box and a single wire in the breaker; this makes it legal so you aren’t violating UL testing. This is important information because it happens on inspections frequently. Double tapping will not meet code and will need to be fixed.
For all your Tulsa electrical needs, contact Steve at Murray Electric at 918-835-9605 or www.murrayelectric.com
For more real estate questions, contact The Baskin Real Estate Specialists of eXp Realty at 918-732-9732 or darrylbaskin.com