Many business owners open their establishments in buildings that were previously constructed. The facility may have been vacant before being purchased as a site for a company. Or, perhaps, a business may be located in a historic structure that must be maintained according to particular requirements. No matter whether the building was new, old or historic, the electrical wiring in a building should be inspected regularly and the proprietor should be assured that it is up-to-date and worry free.
Unfortunately, many older buildings may have had their facades and interiors updated to present a modern look but the wiring behind the walls goes unchecked. After all, it is unseen and all too often the business owners believe it is problem-free without investigating it further. But, fires in older buildings caused by faulty electrical wiring are more common than many people realize.
Issues related to wiring in a building that can lead to electrical fires include such things as ‘low-amp’ wiring, poorly-modified wiring, worn wiring insulation, faulty breakers and even poor design in the original electrical planning.
• Low amp wiring is fairly common. When a building is originally constructed it is wired to meet the code requirements at that time. However, expectations change over time and new companies moving in often bring more modern equipment and amenities that will tax the older wiring systems that could cause the wires to overheat.
• Even if an older building has had electrical work done to bring it up to code, the job may have been poorly executed. Sometimes business owners will utilize the services of an amateur instead of an electric professional. This can lead to such problems as loose wires, poor connections or other issues. Of course none of this is deliberate but the outcome may be the same – you have exposed your business to a potential fire hazard.
• Worn insulation. The insulation of wiring can become worn out for any number of reasons. This can result in exposed wires which may lead to a fire.
• Breakers should be updated to reflect the amount of electricity being used. Breakers and circuits need to be updated as regularly as the overall electrical system should be examined.