If a home’s lights keep flickering, what’s causing it? Is it an emergency or a more common occurrence? The answer likely depends upon whether the system is hard-wired or a plug-and-play setup.
Flickering light issues in a plug-and-play setup likely stem from a faulty power point or a change caused by another electrical device on the same circuit.
If the flickering is caused by something more extreme, it’s likely caused by the wiring or power source. Here are a few of the most common major causes of flickering lights.
Electrical Short Circuits
One of the main causes of flickering lights relates to electrical short circuits. Short circuits occur when the hot and neutral wires in an electrical system become jumbled together, resulting in an excess of electricity and a tremendous waste of energy.
This excessive electric current overloads the electrical system, resulting in the light flickering or blinking. Wiring fraying due to age, improper installation, or misuse can lead to a short circuit. It is important to address flickering lights to ensure proper electric flow within the home.
Loose Light Fixture Connections
Loose light fixture connections are the main cause of flickering lights. This is due to loose wires, bad connections, or a weak electrical current. If the connection is not secure, the circuit may be incomplete, and the light will flicker or turn off.
It is important to call an electrician to ensure these connections are secure and that all wiring is in good condition. Never attempt to fix any loose light fixture connections yourself.
Exposed wires are electrical wires that are visible and can cause shorts or power surges. Lightning strikes or power surges can also cause the flickering of lights due to exposed wires. To prevent this, all exposed wires and any visible wiring must change to avoid any damage or electrical issues.
Faulty Light Switches
The most common cause of lightning problems in a home is faulty light switches. Such switches become loose over time due to regular usage and wear and tear.
If a light switch is unable to make a secure connection, the current will flow intermittently. For loose switches, the wires connected to the light switch may be too long or too short for the switch. The fixture may have a defective component such as a socket or bulb.
When a single circuit carries too much power, it becomes overloaded, leading to the lights dimming and brightening. Multiple appliances powered by the same circuit can cause electrical overloads, such as computers, printers, TVs, and heating and cooling systems.
Whenever more electricity is drawn than the circuit is designed to handle, the power supply fluctuates and the lights start flickering. This is a sign that the wattage of the appliances or the wattage of the circuit is not balanced or that more circuits need to manage the current load.
Learn More About the Cause of Flickering Lights
Flickering lights can be caused by a variety of electrical issues, from outdated wiring to faulty connections. If you’re experiencing flickering lights, it’s important to have an electrician inspect your system to identify and repair any potential hazards.
Don’t wait—contact an electrician today to keep your family and home safe.
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