Studies link electrical malfunction and failure to over $1 billion in property damage and hundreds of deaths and injuries in a recent five-year span. A desire to finish quickly, save money or appease a customer can cause an otherwise attentive contractor to overlook bringing an item up to code.
By reviewing the latest National Electrical Code and taking sufficient time and care during jobs and inspections, electrical contractors can avoid these potentially costly violations.
1. A missing barrier around the lugs in a panel
The NEC 2020 230.62(c) requires electricians or homeowners to install a barrier around exposed lugs that maintenance equipment or a person might contact. These small plastic pieces are easy to install but easy to forget at the end of a long job.
2. Exposed outdoor receptacles
Outdoor receptacles must be weatherproof with protection from the elements. Neglecting to cover these outlets is a simple item that can delay the sale of a property and frustrate an owner.
3. Obsolete wiring
Homes from the 1970s and before could violate local and regional codes with aluminum wiring. The metal was the standard decades ago, but a connection to modern copper wiring could create a fatal hazard.
4. Insufficient space around electrical panels
Sufficient working space around electrical panels allows technicians to do future jobs safely and lessens the odds of a fire. Electrical panels must be readily accessible and cannot be inside a small closet or near ignitable materials.
The regular updating of the NEC means a contractor can easily miss a new feature or forget an old requirement while focusing on changes. Awareness of potential hazards helps workers keep sites safe and avoid costly liability issues.