How to identify faulty wiring in your house?

If there’s any damaged, poorly installed, or outdated wiring in your house, you must always take it seriously. If gone undetected or neglected, it can lead to electrical failures and might cause a home fire. 

Moreover, statistics show that 400 electrocutions happen annually in households, and 200 people don’t survive. 

Therefore, you must always be prepared to identify these warning signs. 

  1. Notice Circuit Breaker Trips 

The circuit breakers are designed to shut off the circuit’s power if there is an overload in the system. 

Usually, you can simply put on the switch again and continue with the day. However, if multiple trips in your circuit breaker happen several times a month or more, be alert. 

This is a sign that your home’s electrical circuit is getting taxed with several heavy-duty appliances or devices, or there is a deeper issue with your house’s electrical wiring. You should address the concern right away. 

  1. Be on the lookout for chewed or frayed wiring 

Damaged wiring is potentially dangerous to the point that it may cause fire hazards. The poor work of an amateur repairperson, pets, or rodents can cause it. 

If you suspect or notice any such problems, you must immediately contact an emergency electrician Melbourne. Don’t try to handle it alone, and let professionals take care of it. 

They can inspect the faulty wiring, replace it without any delay, and save you from potential fire hazards. 

  1. Stay Alert for Odd or Burning odors

If there is a problem with the electrical wiring in the house, there might be burning or odd odors. Such odors generally help you detect where the problem is. 

Be extremely cautious, as these odors signal that the damage might have started already. You should check for smoky, odd, or burning odors around the electrical panel or the outlet points. Any such damage must be promptly fixed. 

  1. Check for Buzzing, Dimming, or Flickering Lights 

The electrical wiring might often have problems, but that won’t affect the circuit breaker. In short, circuit breakers don’t trip, and people overlook the situation. 

Instead, you will notice your lights buzzing, flickering, or dimming. Generally, this happens when house wirings need to be updated or changed. 

If you see these signs, you should become alert immediately and get your wiring checked. Don’t try to change your lights as that will only be a waste of money.

  1. Be on the lookout for smoke, scorching, or discoloration 

You should always check the electrical outlet points of your home for any scorch marks or discoloration on the outlet points. 

If you see any, beware because the wiring in your house is releasing heat and has been damaged. Do not leave such a situation unchecked. Otherwise, you might face worse troubles than just damaged electrical outlets. 

  1. Stay vigilant for vibrating or warm wall outlets

For this one, use your sense of touch. You can identify if the wiring in your home has undergone a fault by feeling the electrical outlets in your home for vibration or heat. 

But remember that you don’t need to touch any wiring directly for this. In such a case, call for an electrician and check your house’s wiring. 

  1. Watch out for loose outlets 

Often the outlets come off loose from the wall. There can be multiple reasons for it. In such cases, inspect the outlet but always remember to cut off your power supply first. 

Often this happens because the outlet is damaged or worn out. Sometimes the issue is not serious; it is just a matter of loose screws. So, superficially check the status of the damage. Replacing the socket will do the job if it is not a deeper problem. 

  1. There are excess extension cords

No, this is not just about the aesthetics of your house. Electrical wiring can last long enough only when they are concealed and not fiddled.

On the other hand, since the cords are out in the open, they gather dust, moisture, and even the attention of pests. The extension cords can also get pinched or shorted out while lying around in the open. This can also lead to a circuit breaker tripping or a house fire.

You must only use a limited amount of extension cords and only if the space is completely inaccessible from an actual outlet. However, if an outlet can be installed in that space, it’s high time you seek experts!

  1. Wrong outlets in the kitchen or bathroom     

Bathrooms and kitchens need shock-resistant outlets because they are moisture-prone. Otherwise, water being a great electricity conductor, someone might fall victim to a fatal shock.

However, many people don’t know how shock-resistant outlets look, so they can’t judge them properly. Well, usually, ground fault circuit interrupters (GFCI) are used in these humid rooms, which generally have two buttons around the middle.

Another easy way is to check whether the bathroom and kitchen outlets look different from the rest. If they don’t, get them upgraded as soon as possible.

  1. Flying sparks

You might notice flying sparks in any of your switchboards, fuse boxes, outlets, or breaker panels. This one can lead to serious electric shocks and fire instantly, so you obviously need professionals ASAP.

However, if it’s from an appliance, switch it off right away. That’s not a sign of your household wiring issue. You can get it repaired or replaced, and your job is done.

  1. Age-old aluminium wiring

If you live in an old home and you were not in charge of its wiring, then the wiring might include aluminium. This element is not just outdated but a major reason for household fires in old homes.

You can’t tell by checking this on your own. So, it’s better to get all the wire elements checked once just to ensure everyone’s safety.  

  1. Arc fault

In simpler words, this happens when electrical circuits shifts from their specified route. This is caused by a breach in the wiring system, usually due to multiple previous electrical fires. If you can’t identify it, but know about previous electrical fires, you must be cautious about it.

To prevent further trouble from this, you must install arc-fault circuit interrupters or ACFI. However, this is an extremely sensitive task, so get it done by electricians even if it’s much more expensive.

  1. Some of the electricals are fake

Whether you inherited the house, bought an old one, or got things done by other experts, you probably have no idea whether only reputable electricals are used in your house.

So, try to check for the UL-AU Listed/Certified Mark (if you’re in Australia) in all the electricals to learn about their credibility.

It is a standard certification from Underwriters’ Laboratories for all electrical components. The mark is a guarantee for quality, security, and scientific safety standards.


Often, wiring problems happen due to pests and faulty installations by inexperienced electricians. So, cautiously screen your household’s electrical condition once in a while. This can help you prevent potentially life-threatening situations. 

Once you notice any sign of wear and tear, always call for reputable electricians instead of taking things into your hand!