Licensed Electricians Near Me: Electrical Work Done By Local Contractors
It is always a good idea to hire licensed professionals over unlicensed ones. This is especially true in terms of electrical work. As you know, working with electrical system is not only difficult, but is also very dangerous as well. And apart from the dangers that go with any home electrical project, faulty work can also lead to disastrous consequences, such as fires. What’s even worse is that your homeowner’s insurance may not be able to cover the damages as a result of unlicensed electrical work.
Why is a License Very Important?
Electrical work will require a lot of training. In most cases, an electrician should be able to complete five years of study and at least 10,000 hours of on the job training before they can become a professional electrician.
Electrical training is said to be the longest program in all of apprenticeship work available. During the training, electricians are taught how to stay safe when working with electrical systems and they are also required to familiarize themselves with the local laws and codes on electrical safety.
The building codes can vary from one state to another. The National Electrical Code is considered as the minimum standard that should be followed for all of the electrical work in various states. The code gets updated after every three years. Licensed and trained technicians are well adept of the code requirements in every area in the US, and they will know if working in your house will require the need to obtain permit.
Tips for Verifying an Electrician’s License
There are three kinds of information that might be helpful in verifying the license of a professional electrician. If you are shown the license, then use the number that will appear on the license as your basis. You can also gather information using the full name of the electrician. Using the electrical company’s name is also one way to do the verification process.
Although each and every state has different licensing organization and requirements, your state’s local licensing department can help to verify if the electrician you plan to hire is licensed to work on your community. Your local Department of Labor can also offer you information on who among the electricians in your area has the proper license.
For instance, in the state of Massachusetts, the state examiners of professional electricians will handle the licensing for this profession. In order to verify the validity of the license of an electrician in Massachusetts, you simply have to enter some information about the electrician on the website, which is run by the office of the consumer affairs. In the state of Alaska, the Labor and Workforce Dept. is responsible for handling the licensing, while in Texas, it is the Texas Dept. of License and Regulations.
As a secondary step in license verification, consider asking for a proof of liability insurance. The insurance company can help to verify if the license of a certain electrician is valid or not. There are licenses available for individuals and contractors for those who are in the field of electrical work. An electrical contractor should first verify that the work done by the electricians has met the code requirements set by the state. It is also important to check if the license is for an individual or for a contractor.
Once you are presented with a license, try to verify if the name listed on it matches with the name that’s written on the license. If the license is for a contractor, then you better check if the person is indeed employed by such licensed contractor or company.
Important Questions to Ask Before you Hire
Aside from verifying the validity of their license, you should also ask certain questions before you decide to hire any of the licensed electricians near me.
So after your lights have flickered for a few times, you have probably discovered that your electrical system is already outdated, most especially the aluminum wiring and the knob and tube. This could lead to a disaster if left unattended.
Electrical work is not like any other do it yourself job. It is very dangerous and will require the need to hire professional electricians. However, do not be fooled into thinking that each and every contractor that has the “electrician” title is actually a licensed professional. So here are some of the questions to ask in order to ensure high quality and safe electrical work.
- Are you bonded, insured and licensed?
It is very important that the electrician you will hire has a bonding and insurance. And as mentioned above, qualified electricians should have a valid electrical license. The license could indicate that the person has gone through the necessary education and training and can be fully trusted when it comes to working with the electrical system in your home. It will usually require at least 4,000 hours of training before someone can be given a license to perform electrical work.
- How many years have you been doing electrical work?
Aside from the license, experience is another indication that you are dealing with a trustworthy professional. Thus, another thing you should ask is how many years they have been in the business.
As you know, experience is always the best teacher in everything we do in life. In fact, experience is as important as the license. You may have a lot of education in the field of electricity, but if you have no experience, then you still cannot be trusted.
You may have memorized all the electrical code, but if you do not know how to implement these codes, then it is useless. An experienced professional knows the importance of providing excellent quality of service and will steer their customers away from unexpected repairs and expenses in the future.
- Who will be doing the work?
You need to also confirm with the contractors who will be doing the electrical work. There are some companies who will hire subcontractors and others will have their own employees. If the owner is not onsite, then the employees will have to do the required tasks.
Do not hire a company that will send an apprentice in training to work in your home. The apprentice cannot work by himself. They have to be supervised by the more senior electricians. If the company will use subcontractors, then you should understand what your legal responsibilities are since subcontractors might not be covered by the contractor’s insurance. Your goal is to ensure that everyone is protected.
- Do you possess a business license?
Aside from having a valid electrician’s license, you should also check if they are licensed to operate their business in your state. Confirm if such license is valid or current. Some states often have a searchable database that you can use to look for licensed professionals.
- Is your work covered with a warranty?
You need to also ask whether some parts or the labor are covered by a warranty and if so, find out for how long. A highly qualified electrician should be willing to cover their work.
Hopefully, this guide can help you in your search of a licensed electrician. There are so many electricians these days, but not all of them are licensed. So do a bit of research and refer to the tips above.