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Electrical outlets don’t last forever!

Electrical Tip of the Day:  Many homes have receptacles which are damaged, have internal parts that are worn, or have deteriorated over the years (some older outlets were made from a product called Bakelite – a precursor to modern plastics that did not tend to hold up well). Outlets also deteriorate from repeated use, from plugging-in and unplugging.  As a result, when plugs fit loosely into receptacles, especially the two-prong ungrounded type, they may slip partially or completely out of the receptacle with only slight movement of the attached cord.  Receptacles in this condition may overheat and pose a serious fire hazard.  In addition to a device being worn, loose or improperly mounted receptacles and switches can pose just as much danger.  It does not take much movement for a loose device to cause a short circuit situation inside a junction box.

We recommend that homeowners have a qualified electrical contractor replace all deteriorated and damaged receptacles.  In older homes (typically any dwelling over 20 years old) we highly recommend what we call a “full device and switch” – were we come in , replace all the devices in the home, re-wire all the device junction boxes, and check each location for deteriorated wiring / signs of  over-heating.

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