Why DIY Electrics Are A Big No No!

Why DIY Electrics Are A Big No No!

Electronics can be a great hobby when done safely. Using low voltage and power to play around with wiring and circuits can make a lazy Sunday more fun.

But the truth is: These DIY fixes, hacks, and tricks you may see on TikTok or YouTube are best left to the professionals!

The live wires to your residence do not carry the same voltage seen in an RC car’s battery or the circuit of your phone. But rather, have the capacity to kill if not treated respectfully.

Retrolec has a team of experts with years of training and experience that can get the job done.

Today, we'll outline the most common mistakes that we’ve seen throughout the years, as well as the implications of doing certain DIY activities to your electricals.

Why DIY Electrics Are A Big No No!

What Are We Dealing With?

Sometimes ‘she won’t be right, mate’.

The power coming from your electric mains is no joke. 230 Volts is what reaches New Zealand residences, and this is not a shock you want sent through your body! Currents can be unpredictable, and they will follow the path of least resistance through our body - which may mean crossing our heart. That means that if you have gotten a bit of a zap in the past you may be under the misconception that it wasn’t a big deal, where in actuality you were quite lucky.

While shocks are one risk, WorkSafe NZ advises that a lot of the danger of DIY electrics comes from the risk of an electrical fire. A few wrong components or miscalculations, and that’s all you need to brew the recipe for a short circuit and consequential electrical fire.

Take our advice… don’t take the risk, let a qualified electrician help you instead.

Not Your Problem

With the sheer volume of online tutorials available to you, you may feel well equipped to do a good job with your electrical system, and well, there’s a chance you may be right. However, Retrolec has seen many cases (most notably in rental properties) where the damage has not come from you, the current owner, but the people who lived in the house before you moved in.

You may trust your own knowledge, but can you always trust the previous tenants?

Common issues we’ve seen are unintended metal and wiring being live, and dangerous electrical shorts that could have shocked clients before they decided to eventually book a consultation. This may not have been their fault, it was an oversight by a previous technician or home occupier. Retrolec always advises to proactively book a visit from us before committing to DIY fixes. Electricians have the expertise required to not only get the job done, but to get it done safely.

It Won’t Save You Money

One of the most alluring things about attempting to DIY electrics is the cost-cutting factor. On the face of it, you might feel like it will only cost you some time, materials and a bit of YouTube searching.
But in reality, if you make an error with your DIY electrics, an electrical fire can cause hundreds of thousands of dollars. So, it actually works out far cheaper (and far safer for your family) to hire an expert electrician.

DIY: Danger It Yourself

Aside from the obvious electrocution and electrical fire risks, there are other dangers associated with DIY work. Firstly, no matter if you are renting or owning a property, you may be unintentionally committing building/electrical code violations.

Down the line, this could come back to bite you. Electrical work cannot legally be done by you or your landlord in New Zealand, only registered electrical workers that hold current practising licences are permitted to do so. You may find it difficult to sell your home or you may be in breach of your rental agreement if you attempt to DIY.

Common Electrical Mistakes

There are plenty of DIY errors that we encounter on a regular basis! Mechanical accidents involving ceiling fans is one of them. Ceiling fans are designed to be on the move constantly. If you are inexperienced and do not correctly mount your components, your home could be at risk of the fan breaking loose from the sockets and falling.

Outdoor outlets are also commonly overlooked in DIY. All outdoor outlets need a ground fault interrupter which will trip the outlet if any water makes contact. These are not commonly installed by your average Joe!

Small details like these are commonly forgotten when you try to handle electrical jobs yourself. So, make sure nothing gets forgotten by calling an expert instead. The Retrolec team are always on call to make your electrics safe and reliable.

Chat to us today about your electrical fault or next renovation project.