Remodeling your home can be an exciting project and, once the more disruptive part is over, a very rewarding, transformative experience.
If you are thinking about or planning a remodel, there are good reasons to consider upgrading your electrical system. This may feel less exciting and more daunting than choosing color schemes, furniture, or appliances. While picking out the right sofa is hard, a sofa can’t harm you! Here’s why you should consider electricity first, not last.
One of the most important things to consider is ensuring your entire electrical system is adequately dimensioned to your home’s electrical needs. This means enough wiggle room to meet future increases in the number of devices and appliances you run – electrical vehicle charging and a fully functioning chore robot!
If your home is older, certain service panels and wiring may not cope with the electrical load of today’s more advanced technology. If your electrical system is not matched with the electrical demand of your home, you can experience frequent trip switching or worse expose your home to risks such as fire or electrical shocks.
Safety & Protection
Electricity has become such an essential part of our lives that we can barely function without it! However, poorly managed electricity can cause damage and harm, particularly when it comes to kids, heating systems, cooking, and appliance management.
On the prevention level, outlets should be protected from the prying fingers of kids, correctly distanced, and not damaged in any way. If they are older, upgrading them will do wonders for safety, in addition to boosting design aesthetics.
For outlets in damp or wet areas like your bathroom or kitchen, you should have a GFCI, which protects you from severe shocks. Any outdoor outlets must be equipped with GFCI covered with a weather-resistant enclosure. This ensures that power is quickly turned off in the event of dangerous contact with water and wiring,
Installing home surge protection as part of your upgrade investment is a wise step. They are not that expensive and give the appliances and devices in the home an added layer of protection against potential electrical surges.
GFCI and surge protection systems both require correct grounding to function correctly. When having your electrical system evaluated, check if and how it is grounded, as correct grounding is essential for safety.
Installing smoke and atmospheric detectors will reduce risk even more.
Look & Feel
Lighting is critical for creating the look and feel you want in the different spaces of your home. It influences us on so many levels – the sense of space, atmosphere, and mood – and helps us to see what we are doing! A designer tends to prioritize design elements when looking at lighting, but an experienced electrician is qualified to evaluate whether the ideas are feasible and safe. It is well worth getting an independent electrician to weigh in on the load, outlet and switch placement plans, and light fixtures before steaming ahead.
Climate change awareness is on the rise, and so are energy prices. Remodeling is a fantastic opportunity to make your home’s energy management more efficient. Better insulation is an obvious first thing, but upgrading your heating system, replacing old bulbs, and installing light sensors can make a big difference.
An electrician in Minnesota can evaluate the level of compliance of your home with the electrical installment codes of the National Electric Code (2020) and Minnesota-specific codes (2022). These codes exist for safety reasons, are risk-reduction measures, and should not be overlooked.
Remodeling – an electrical opportunity
Remodeling is a great opportunity to make your home not only look better but also to make it safer and more efficient. One reason people are reluctant to get a comprehensive electrical system evaluation is because opening up walls to take a look can seem disruptive and time-consuming. Remodeling already involves both, so there is no better time!
Another reason people hesitate is the perceived high cost of upgrading all or parts of your electrical system. Unfortunately, this can fall at the end of the wish list section of remodeling priorities. Before making any remodeling decisions, the first thing to do is to get your electrical system assessed by a qualified electrician. Next, study the analysis and recommendations for correct dimensioning and safety. You have nothing to lose. Asking for quotes for any electrical work needed helps you know where you stand, and the upgrade work needed might not be as expensive as you think!
At the end of the day, we give our home a makeover to enjoy the newly designed aesthetics and to feel more comfortable and safer. Painting and knocking down walls is great, but if behind the walls, wiring and circuits are old, faulty, and fail to meet actual and growing device and appliance needs, then your home is not as safe or efficient as it could be.
What’s our advice? Before finalizing your remodeling plan, if you haven’t already, get an electrician to weigh in and assess your current installation and make recommendations regarding your plan.
Call Randy’s Electric at 612-441-5061 for a trusted, certified electrician.
Getting a professional electrician to evaluate your current system should be one of your first decisions. Safety first!