Ungrounded outlets are a common problem in older homes. Prior to the 1960s, these types of outlets were the standard, but due to improved safety regulations, grounded outlets have been required in new homes built since. Grounded outlets protect your home in the case of a power surge. If left unprotected, as is the case if you have ungrounded outlets, power surges can lead to destroyed appliances and electronic devices, or even worse, a house fire.
How Do I Know if My Home Has Ungrounded Outlets?
The easiest way to tell if you have ungrounded outlets is if you have two-prong outlets rather than the more modern three-prong outlets. However, if you have an older home with three-prong outlets, don’t automatically assume you’re in the clear. Someone may have installed three-prong outlets in your home without also installing a ground wire. This provides you with no protection from power surges or electrical fires. You can test your outlets to see if they have a proper ground wire by purchasing an inexpensive electrical tester, or you can have one of our Flushing electricians come out to your home to test them.
Does Installing Grounded Outlets Mean I Need to Rewire My Whole House?
Many people delay updating their ungrounded outlets because they think it involves rewiring their entire house and a major financial outlay. While this is true in some circumstances, it’s not the case in all. Some older homes are outfitted with armored cable (BX cable) which can act as a grounding agent. If this is the case in your Genesee County home, having an electrician install grounded outlets should not be a major expense. If your home does need to be rewired, however, it is still a project worth doing, as it will greatly improve the safety of your home and protect everything and everyone in it.
Do I Need to Update All of My Home’s Ungrounded Outlets?
In the past, it may have been considered sufficient to just replace the outlets in the kitchen, where major appliances are used. But today, when we see homes with computers and other electronic devices in multiple rooms throughout the house, it just makes sense to replace all of the outlets in the entire home. If you don’t, one lightning strike, for example, could destroy all of your home’s computers, your entertainment systems, and any other device plugged in at the time. Having grounded outlets throughout your home gives you the surge protection you need for all of your appliances and devices.
If you’d like to schedule an appointment with one of our licensed Flushing electricians, give us a call today or contact us through our website. We can give you a quote on what it would cost to get your home up to date with grounded outlets.