When to Call an Electrician vs. Your Power Company

Your lights are flickering or your outlets are sparking. Whatever the case, you have an electrical issue that needs fixing.

How do you know what’s a job for an electrician— like our friendly team here at at SWFL Electric!— or the responsibility of Florida Power & Light Company (FPL)?

Here’s a breakdown of when to call us versus the power company:

When to Call an Electrician

There’s a few electrical projects that savvy homeowners can do themselves, but there’s certain instances when you should turn to certified electrician:

  • If your circuit breaker keeps tripping.

    Not all trips are caused by overloads and sometimes you’ll have to investigate the issue. Here’s some tips for troubleshooting the trip and resetting your breaker yourself, but if after reading this you still find yourself still experiencing frequent breaker trips, it’s best to call an electrician— as you may need a whole new electrical panel.
  • If you want to upgrade your outlets.

    Older homes may not have three-pronged outlets, or GFCI complaint receptacles— which the the National Electrical Code (NEC) requires in areas of high water splash risk like kitchens and bathrooms. While upgraded outlets can help protect against electrical shock, they can be a pain to install yourself and sometimes more easily performed by a professional.
  • If your electrical switches are hot to the touch or your outlets spark.

    These are fire hazards and can put you and your family in danger. Sometimes, these issues are complemented by a black discoloration around the source due to overheating. Projects like these may require rewiring, which should always be performed by a trained electrician.
  • If lights are flickering or dimming.

    When a bunch of devices are running, do you notice that your lights dim? These appliances might need to be wired to their own dedicated circuits or checked for a faulty connection— and these lighting changes shouldn’t be neglected. If for some reason your neighbors are also experiencing these disturbances as well, this might be the fault of your power company and require their assistance.
  • If you have a mess of wires and not enough plugs.

    If you’re relying on outlet strips and have wires tangling together, it might be time to consider adding more electrical ports around your home. Anytime you’re ripping into walls and messing with wires like this, it’s a job for an electrician.
  • The problem is high!

    Your lofted chandelier is on the fritz, but hanging over your ledge with a ladder is risky. Falls remain the leading cause of unintentional injury and deaths nationwide, according to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control. Contact the professionals, who are trained to perform the fix safely.

When to Call the Power Company

There’s few reasons you’d need to get FPL involved, but here’s when you should give them a call:

  • Your power goes completely out.

    Whether it was due to a bad storm or your whole block simply falls dark, this is likely an issue for the power company. If you’re lucky, you’ll have a backup or standby generator to keep the lights on until FPL resolves the issue.
  • You can’t identify why part of your power is out.

    If you reset your breaker after a partial home outage and can’t pinpoint the problem, the power company can help to determine if there’s a problem with the grid or not.
  • Your Florida Power & Light Company service wires or cables are damaged.

    Electricians are not allowed to work on FPL lines from a pole or transformer to your home, as stated on their site. Call the power company for these fixes.

We’re Your Trusted Florida Electricians

Is your problem listed above? Our team at SWFL Electric is here to help.

There’s a ton of reason to choose us over the competition and we’re proud of it! Check out what sets us apart and call us for help with your electrical problems today at 239-307-0716.

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