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Flickering Lights: Diagnosing The Cause And Repairing The Issue

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One of the most annoying things that you may experience as a homeowner is flickering lights. Many homeowners experience this issue; however, most have no idea what causes the flickering or how to fix it. As a general rule, this is probably not a big deal; it's more of a nuisance than anything.

However, there are instances when the flickering could be a sign that there is something much more dangerous lurking in your home's electrical work. This article will help address the causes and potential solutions of flickering lights in the home:

Defective Light Bulb

Sometimes, the cause of your flickering light is simple. If you just have one light that is flickering, it may just be the bulb. Try replacing it with another one. If you have a dimmer switch, you may want to make sure that you have an LED light, as these tend to work better.

Large Appliance Powering On

In some cases, the flickering lights in the home may be from your air conditioner, washer or other large appliance. Large appliances tend to pull a decent amount of electricity, which can sometimes cause the lights in your home to flicker slightly due to the pull of electric current from the remainder of the home.

A solution typically isn't required for this since it isn't posing a risk, but an electrician can perform an inspection and make sure too much voltage isn't being pulled, creating an underlying electrical issue.

Too Much on a Single Circuit

It isn't uncommon at all for too many lights, outlets or appliances to be on one circuit, especially in older homes that weren't built to withstand today's increase in technology. Unplug a few appliances to see if the flickering stops. If it does, then your circuit is definitely overloaded. You could increase the ampage of the breakage, such as from 15-amp to 30-amp, so that it can handle more of an electrical load.

Loose Connections

If your light flickering issue doesn't appear to be any of the aforementioned issues, then it may be due to a loose electrical connection. Generally, this will be in the primary electrical panel, but it can really be anywhere in the home, including in a plug receptacle. Loose connections can cause major issues and are potentially a fire hazard.

Since electrocution is possible with trying to fix loose connections on your own, it is recommended to hire a professional. However, if you're handy enough and practice electrical safety, you can replace faulty breakers in the electrical panel and plugs in the wall.

Power Grid Issue

In some cases, the problem of flickering lights isn't within your house at all. Instead, it may be the power supply to the local vicinity. If you can't find a source of the flickering, contact your utility company to have them inspect the line that runs into the home and ensure the proper voltage is being transmitted.

The aforementioned are the most common problems causing your home light to flicker, but it isn't an all-inclusive list. There may be a larger problem that may require the help from a professional electrical services company. If you aren't skilled enough to diagnose or repair the issue, contact an experienced electrician in your local area.


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