Electrician FAQ’s

Mister Sparky of Southern New Jersey

When my power goes out, what's the best thing to do?

Deciding to be patient is the first thing you will have to do. While utility companies are usually aware of an outage as soon as you are, it can take time to dispatch crews and perform repairs. However, if you are the only home in your area without power, you should call our 24-hour emergency repair service. Check with your neighbors to make sure your power is also out, and if theirs isn't, something may be going on with your electrical system.

No matter what the reason for the power outage, exercising safety on all levels is the most productive step you can take. Make sure you have fresh batteries in your flashlight, as well as in a portable radio that you can keep handy during the outage if it is due to dangerous weather. Do not use candles for emergency lighting - an open flame can be dangerous. Instead, use a flashlight. If you turn off any electrical equipment that was on when the power went out, you are minimizing the potential for surges in your line. .

What's the best way to save money on my electric bill?
The vast majority of electricity used in your home is used by the heating and air conditioning systems, as well as the water heating system. The best way to keep these functioning at the most efficient levels are to make sure they are checked twice a year. Having efficient equipment will save you money over the equipment's lifetime.

A way to increase the efficiency of your water heating system is to refrain from taking long, hot showers. Cutting back on shower duration and the amount of hot water you use can save you money, and can help put less strain on your system. Also, make sure a trained professional takes a look at your breaker box, as a bad breaker or loose connections can affect efficiency of your electrical system as a whole.

Does it pose a safety problem if there are round fuses instead of circuit breakers?

No, unless the fuse box is damaged or deteriorating. In actuality, fuses are more sensitive than circuit breakers, and carry two major issues. First, a fuse needs to be thrown away once it protects your home from the overloaded circuit. Also, insurance companies are now requiring that fuse boxes be replaced with a circuit breaker. Our experts will be sure to review your local electrical codes. .

Is there a way to reset a "tripped" circuit breaker?

In your main electrical panel, which should be located in your garage, look for a breaker that is in neither the on or off position - it may appear to be in between on and off. Often times, a red portion of the breaker will be exposed, which will show you the tripped breaker. Push the switch to the off position and then to on the on position to reset the circuit. It should be met with some resistance, but this should solve the problem.

What is a GFI?

Also known as a Ground Fault Interrupter, this is an outlet that is specially-designed for areas where additional moisture can accumulate, including bathrooms, laundry areas, and kitchens. GFI's are used to protect from electrical shock, and can do so by measuring positive and negative loads attached to it. If there is more resistance in either of those two loads, the GFI will trip, and will automatically reset once the problem has been alleviated.

Is there any special care I should take during the holidays?

During the holidays, frayed electrical cords are an electrical fire hazard. Maintaining your holiday lights can allelviate this issue. Inspect your lights each year for any bare spots, gaps in the insulation, or general wear. Make sure you don't overload your electrical outlets, and do not link any more than three light strands at a time unless the directions with the lights indicate otherwise. Also, do not  leave any lights unattended at any time.

Call the master electricians of Mister Sparky at 609-778-4726 today.

Call us at 609-778-4726

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