When it comes to the safety and well being of your home and family, hiring an electrician isn't a decision that can be taken lightly. To avoid dangerous situations performed by under qualified, under-insured or unlicensed electrical contractors, it's important to take note of some vital points before allowing any electrician inside your home. Here, we cover the five main requirements you should investigate upfront: References, Qualifications, Accreditation, Insurance, Certification.
References - often a word of recommendation from a company's customers outside of what's written on their website can go a long way in helping you to determine the quality of your potential electrician's work. Look for online reviews and don't be afraid to ask your electrician to provide you with a list of other clients you can contact.
Qualifications - becoming an electrician does require some form of formal education. Beginning with a high school diploma (or equivalent) and moving onto classroom-based vocational training and an apprenticeship, a suitably qualified electrician, will be able to provide you with information about his educational qualifications to help you make the best decision.
Accreditation - to become a certified general journey level or specialty electrician, the electrician must possess a required amount of experience and education to pass state must have the necessary amount of experience and training and pass the appropriate exam. Before becoming accredited, an electrician must have a working knowledge of electrical theory, circuitry, mathematics, wiring, motor controls and other expertise relevant to the trade.
Insurance - insurance requirements vary from state to state for electricians, but all electricians must provide you with proof of their insurance upon request. In many states, the insurance limits for an electrician are $300,000 per occurrence, $500,000 property damage, $100,000 per person; or $800,000 combined single limit. Unlimited electrical contractors are required to have a performance or payment bond in the amount of $50,000 while specialty contractors are required to obtain a bond for $10,000.
Licensing and Certification - Most states require at least two years and in most cases up to four years, of apprenticeship with a master or licensed electrician before one can take the examination to become a licensed electrician. Some organizations that sponsor or provide apprentice programs through local chapters include:
- International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers
- National Electrical Contractors Association
- Independent Electrical Contractors Association
- Associated Builders and Contractors
If an electrician covers all of these five areas, he is considered credible. A homeowner should also access character, cleanliness, stocked truck, and professionalism. Of course, everyone is different so these are the things you must decide on your own.
Got Watts Electric has all of the experience and credentials you need in an electrician. Contact us today for a consultation.