Electricians maintain and install all the wiring as well as the equipment that electricity travels through in your home, a business or factory. They are trained to fix anything from lighting and electrical fixtures to power outlets that have gone bad or are faulty. They are also called upon to help with electrical installation of appliances such as washing machines and televisions. They can also repair and install air conditioning systems and smoke alarms. In Australia electricians work for companies known as electrical contractors. Electrical contractors are responsible for generating bids for new jobs, hiring tradespeople to do the job and providing materials to electricians in a timely manner. They will also communicate with architects, electrical and building engineers and the customer to ensure that all plans are followed correctly and that the finished product is exactly what the customer wants.
If you are looking for an electrician, start by looking at reviews of local companies and schedule estimates with three or more. During the estimate visit, make note of how the company representative and the electrician behaved. Was the representative punctual and professional? Did they ask questions about the type of work to be done and explain the options clearly? Did they offer a written estimate at the end of the appointment or within 24 hours via email?
Besides fixing electrical issues, an electrician more details can also provide general maintenance services like rewiring a house and installing ceiling fans. They can also install smart devices, such as thermostats and doorbells, that allow you to control your appliances remotely. These devices can be a great addition to your home and save you time and money on energy bills.
There are two primary categories of electricians: linepersons, who work on electric utility company distribution systems at higher voltages, and wiremen, who are trained in one of five primary specialties, such as commercial, residential, industrial or low-voltage wiring, commonly known as voice-data-video or VDV. Some electricians are trained in both categories and can work on either lower or higher voltage systems.
The most common service is replacing or repairing faulty outlets and switches, usually caused by overheating or rodent chewing. A faulty outlet can cause serious shock or fire, so it’s important to hire an electrician for any repairs. A GFCI (Ground Fault Circuit Interrupter) outlet is designed to prevent electric shock by cutting off current flow when it senses that the current is imbalanced and can be dangerous.
Another common maintenance service is testing and tagging of electrical appliances. This is required by law to avoid faulty and potentially dangerous equipment and can be performed by an electrician or a licensed electrical contractor. Electrical testers can be manual or automatic, hand-held or portable and may include a clamp-on test meter for testing live wires. Crimping tools for applying terminals or splicing are also available. Insulation resistance testers can be used to check the integrity of insulation, while voltmeters can measure the potential difference between two points in an electrical circuit.