An electrical upgrade can be expensive, but it's worth it when the system you have now is old and unable to handle your power demands without tripping a circuit or causing lights to flicker. A lack of sufficient power isn't just frustrating, it can create a dangerous situation that harms your electronic equipment or puts your home at risk of a fire. Here's a look at upgrading the electrical outlets in your home so they are more useful for modern living.
Types of Outlets You'll Want in Your Home
All of your outlets should be grounded for safety reasons. If nothing else, you want to upgrade your electrical system so it's grounded. The next important step is to install GFCI outlets in your kitchen and bathrooms. These outlets cut off the power when you're at risk of being electrocuted due to stray electricity in a wet room. These are the basics every home needs and that are required by code in new construction now.
You might also want USB outlets for your convenience. These allow you to charge your phone or tablet in the living room or bedroom by plugging it into a jack in a wall outlet. Your home also needs 240 volt outlets for major appliances. One of these outlets is needed for a stove, and you may need one for a clothes dryer, HVAC system, or for charging an electric car.
Outlets That Need Dedicated Circuits
Many of the outlets in your home share the same circuit since they may not draw much power or be in use at the same time. However, some appliances need a dedicated circuit. This may require new wiring and an upgrade to the electrical panel along with installing the new outlet. An electrician can help you decide how many dedicated circuits your home needs. This might be based in part on the availability of space in the electrical panel. However, it might be best to put each major appliance on a dedicated circuit as well as power-hungry small appliances, such as a microwave.
In addition, you may want to put in an outlet that has a dedicated circuit in your living room or kitchen that's available for plugging in a power tool or other equipment if it's ever needed so you can use the equipment without worry of overloading a circuit.
Number of Outlets You Need
In addition to choosing the types of outlets you want in your electrical renovation, you can also choose the number of outlets. Electrical codes require a certain number of outlets spaced a certain distance apart in the rooms of your house. If you have special circumstances, you might need additional outlets so you don't have to rely on extension cords or other dangerous practices to power all the tools or electronics you use. Your electrician can help plan the layout of the outlets so you'll always have one where you need it.
Talk to a company like Electric Smith Inc to learn more.