Any office environment depends on a steady, stable electrical current that is safely regulated and efficiently managed. In that regard, how’s yours holding up, and do you need to get it tweaked before converting that spare room or open-concept commercial space into a dedicated office? After all, you’ll surely be keeping electronics such as your router, modem, computer hardware, and much more connected here – a lot of equipment can cause a lot of strain, especially if multiple users are occupying the space.
Peace of mind can go a long way. Speaking from our experience as dedicated local commercial electricians, here are some of the most common signs that your office needs electrical work done.
Circuit Breakers Getting Tripped
If you’re experiencing temporary power outages and restarts on a regular basis, it’s a dead giveaway that your circuit breaker is having trouble managing the current electrical load. While you shouldn’t necessarily be worried if this happens once or twice a year, a higher frequency is a cause for concern. Resetting the breaker doesn’t fix the problem causing the trip, however. It could be any number of things including but not limited to short-outs, ground overloads, or faulty components.
Burning Smell or Visual Indicators
If you notice an unnerving burning smell coming from an outlet, unplug everything from it and stop using it until a professional electrician has a chance to inspect it. There may even be visual signs such as a darkening or burn mark on the outlet cover or plugs. When this happens, it’s usually when switching on an appliance such as a printer or microwave that puts a sudden, higher load on the outlet.
Sparks and/or Warm Outlets
Nobody likes how it feels – or looks – when plugging a device into an electrical outlet and getting a spark. It’s quite common, but sometimes it can indicate a problem with your wiring. If heat is being generated and your outlets are warm to the touch, it’s a problem that should be taken care of by a certified expert, especially if your office is set up in an older building. Wiring standards have changed over the years and some old-fashioned ways are dangerously unsafe, so you should definitely get yours inspected if you’re unsure of its condition or age.
Does one of your ceiling lights flicker occasionally while on, sometimes dramatically so? There could be several causes including lower voltage wiring common in older buildings, there could be a fault in the wire itself, or there may be other issues hidden in your walls or ceiling. Getting it properly inspected by someone who knows the ins and outs of all relevant components is an important step to take, as otherwise you won’t know what’s causing it with any degree of certainty. When it comes to electrical work, you should never rely on guesswork!
Inconsistency in Grounded Outlets
Here’s a fun one – what if some outlets are grounded according to your surge protector, but others aren’t? This can be a tricky challenge even for experienced electricians, and it’s essential that your outlets – especially in an office – are grounded as they will be used regularly. Otherwise, should a sudden surge occur or if lightning strikes nearby, the current can travel through your wiring in a highly dangerous manner. Sometimes, the ground connection simply isn’t done properly – usually by someone who thinks they know what they’re doing but lacks sufficient training. Regardless, this needs to be investigated to protect building occupants and your property.
Interested in learning more about office wiring standards, or need our help with bringing your building up to code? We’re glad to help. Reach out to the Floodlight Electric team today to get started.