You likely use your outlets every single day, so you may come to the point when you ask yourself, “Should I replace my outlets?”
Like anything else that we use on a daily basis, eventually, your outlets are going to need to be replaced. You may need to replace your outlets sooner rather than later, but this all depends on how old the outlets are, the quality of the outlets, and what the outlets are being used for.
When Should I Replace My Outlets?
Standard outlets can usually last for around 15 to 20 years before they age out, but this depends on the use of the outlets. Some outlets can fail as soon as five years of age, whereas other outlets can last as long as 30 years before they fail.
GFCI outlets tend to last 15 to 25 years before they age out.
The length of time that an outlet will last before failure really depends on what devices are being used in the outlets, how often the outlets are being used, and the efficacy of the outlets that were installed.
If large appliances that consume high wattage are used frequently, then an outlet could fail sooner.
If you have a new, large appliance such as an air conditioner, clothes dryer, oven, etc., you will want to install an outlet that is dedicated to accommodating this new purchase. This also includes garbage disposals and dishwashers.
You want to ensure that any appliances you’re adding to your home are able to be safely used with the electrical system.
What Should I Look For In Aging Outlets?
Though some outlets can last as long as 30 years, you want to ensure that you replace your outlets before they fail. You do not want to be stuck in a position where you need electricity from a certain outlet and are unable to use it.
Since outlets can age out after only five years of use, you will want to periodically check your outlets for wear and tear, though this should come naturally.
When plugging in a device to an outlet, check to see if the outlet or faceplate on the outlet is cracked or broken, if there is sparking or smoke when the device is being plugged or unplugged, if the outlet has a warm feeling or smell to it, or if the prongs fall out of the outlet.
If any of these occur, then the outlet is aging and not able to carry the necessary electrical current through the circuit to the device.
Additionally, if the device’s connection that is plugged into the outlet is loose, then this could also be a sign of an outlet aging out.
Fun fact: Did you know that flickering lights rarely stem from issues with the lights themselves? This usually indicates that your electrical system is not adequate for today’s superabundance of appliances.
What If I Do Not Change My Old Outlets?
If old outlets are not changed prior to failure, not only could you experience a minor or major inconvenience, but this increases the risk of shock and an electrical fire.
If an electrical outlet is faulty, this is an increased fire hazard.
Replacing outlets is not super expensive, especially compared to the expenses that an electrical fire could cause. Replacing outlets prior to failure is important for the safety of the home and all those in it.
Older two-prong outlets or older homes that do not have proper GFCI protection are at even higher risk of being unsafe. Any unfinished areas in a house, such as a garage or a basement, or a home that is within six feet or close to a water source outside the home, needs to have proper GFCI protection.
It’s important to keep up the safety within the home and to avoid any unexpected or surprising electrical issues.
Could I Have Someone Replace My Outlets For Me?
We would be thrilled to assist you and keep your home safe if you’re in the Overland Park or Kansas City Metro area and need help with repairing, replacing, upgrading, or installing new outlets in your home.
We want to keep as many people safe from electrical fires and any electrical inconveniences as possible, especially those just needing simple outlets replaced.
Our qualified electricians will inspect and make valuable recommendations for your electrical system to ensure its efficiency and safety.
If you’re saying to yourself, “I need to replace my outlets now!” contact Kansas City Fusion Electric today!