Summertime Electrical Woes


“Summertime and the livin’ is easy” goes the song by Ella Fitzgerald.  But if you’re faced with electrical issues that leave you scratching your head, then the livin’ might not be so easy.  Following are some of the more common summertime electrical issues and what you can do to solve them.

1. Power outages due to storms and lightening strikes.  While you may not be able to do anything to prevent this type of electrical issue, you can be prepared for it.  Keep plenty of batteries and flashlights on hand and a hand crank or solar powered emergency radio.  A generator isn’t a bad idea either.  If the outage lasts any length of time, a couple of coolers with ice packs for your perishable food items will be helpful as well.

2. Power surges.  Many things can cause power surges including lightening strikes and overloaded electrical grid.  Be prepared for power surges by keeping valuable electronics on quality surge protectors and by unplugging appliances during electrical storms.

3. Overloaded circuit breakers.  Air conditioning units, ceiling fans, tvs, computers, washing machines, clothes dryers, ovens, and more all put a load on the electrical system in the heat of the summer. Be wise about power usage during the day.  Do laundry in the evening hours when it’s cooler rather than in the heat of the day.  Raise your thermostat a couple of degrees to conserve energy.  Turn lights and televisions off when you leave the room.  Keep drapes closed to keep rooms cool during the heat of the day so your air unit won’t have to work so hard.  Run your dishwasher at night after dinner instead of in the morning or during the middle of the day. These are all things you can do to keep your circuit breaker from overloading during the heat of summer.

4. Brownouts. When it’s hot outside and most people are running air conditioners to stay cool, the electrical grid can get overloaded and cause a brownout.  Additionally, a thunderstorm can also cause a brownout by interfering with the electric power distribution.  Electric companies may also sometimes intentionally bring on a brownout when there is a heavy electrical demand in order to prevent a blackout.  When a brownout occurs, it is wise to turn off and unplug valuable electrical equipment in order to prevent damage due to insufficient electrical power.  Trying to run a computer or other sensitive electrical equipment during a brownout can lead to severe damage to the equipment.

As always, whenever you have any electrical or HVAC issues, you can call Peter Needham for advice and service.  Peter and his crew are available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.  They practice safe service calls by wearing personal protective equipment and plenty of hand sanitizer. Give Peter a call today to have your electrical issues handled by the expert and enjoy your summer!


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