Dangers of an Overloaded Circuit

Overloading an electrical circuit can cause some serious problems. While that may seem obvious, chances are that you’ve caused a circuit overload at least once in your life.

The good news is that most modern homes are equipped to handle circuit overloads. In most cases, it will trip your circuit breaker and all you’ll have to do is flip it back on.

However, not all circuit overloads go as planned. Regardless of whether you have a modern circuit breaker in your home, you should always do your best to avoid a circuit overload.

Still not sure what the big deal is? Read on to learn more about the dangers of an overloaded circuit and find out how you can prevent them.

What is an Overloaded Circuit?

An overloaded circuit is what happens when too much electrical demand is placed on a single circuit. For example, if you’re cooking and decide to use a toaster oven and an air fryer on the same outlet, you’ll probably overload your circuit.

It’s pretty easy to avoid circuit overloads like that, but they can strike even when you think you’re being safe. What’s most important is that you understand which outlets are on the same circuit and then distribute your high-consumption devices across those circuits.

Issues Caused by Circuit Overloads

While most people will experience only a brief power outage as a result of a circuit overload, worse problems can result. Some of the most notable dangers of a circuit overload include:

  • Fires
  • Fried wiring
  • Destroyed devices
  • Shocks
  • Electrocution

Just because these issues are less common than they used to be doesn’t mean that they don’t happen. If you notice any signs of an impending overload, unplug your devices and consider moving some to a different circuit.

How to Check for a Circuit Overload

When you overload a circuit, it will likely be obvious. In most cases, it will shut off the power to a room in your home.

To confirm that it was a circuit overload and not a power outage, check to see if the power is off in other rooms. You can also go to your electrical panel and see if the switch to the affected room is flipped to the off position. If it is, then you’ve overloaded the circuit and tripped the breaker.

There are other signs that can occur before a full overload, so if you notice any of these, don’t add any additional devices to the circuit:

  • Lights flickering or dimming
  • Buzzing noises near outlets or switches
  • Light dimming when activating devices

Should You Upgrade Your Circuit Breaker?

In some cases, circuit overloads aren’t your fault. Sure, if you’re plugging five kitchen appliances into a single power strip, you’re definitely to blame, but that’s likely not the case. If you are using your outlets normally and still running into regular power issues, then your circuits are probably insufficient.

To overcome this, you should have a new circuit breaker installed. More powerful circuit breakers can deliver a better flow of electricity throughout your home. At Mr. Electric™ we have the expertise needed to replace your old circuit breaker. We can also check your wiring to make sure that your wires can keep up with the power demands of modern appliances and new technology.

Prevent Overloaded Circuits with Help from Mr. Electric

No one wants to deal with constant outages, and it’s dangerous to let them keep happening. Protect your home and yourself by upgrading your circuit breaker or wiring before it becomes a serious problem.

If you want to find out more about installing a new circuit breaker, or otherwise want the advice of a professional electrician, Mr. Electric can help! Find your nearest location by typing in your ZIP code on our homepage, then give us a call at (844) 866-1367 or schedule an appointment online today!