Some of the most hazardous attempts in DIY repairs and installations involve electrical work. This is why hiring a fully qualified, licensed, and experienced electrician is of utmost importance when you have an electrical job.
Many homeowners skimp out on hiring a professional electrician without thinking about the repercussions of a bad electrical job. Attempting to carry out an electrical installation or repair yourself or hiring an unlicensed handyman to do it just to save a couple of dollars is definitely a major blunder. Instead of saving a few bucks, going the DIY or handyman route can lead to big safety issues and even bigger problems.
If you’re looking for some information to get you started on finding a top-notch electrician service, you’ve come to the right place. Read on for some helpful knowledge on hiring a great electrician.
What can electricians do for you?
The field of electrical work is quite broad. So broad, in fact, that some electricians have to carry multiple licences to be able to do different types of electrical work. Whether you’re looking for someone to help you with a simple ceiling fan installation or someone to design the electrical system for your new home, you’ll need the help of an expert sparkie.
Check out some of the more common types of tasks that an electrician can help you with:
Electricians can install appliances, power points, lighting, security systems, home theatre systems, and a whole lot more.
Air Conditioning and Refrigeration Work
Whether you need someone to install a new split system air conditioner or service your cool room, a properly qualified electrician who is also an air conditioning and refrigeration expert can help you out.
Data and Network Cabling
Electricians are also equipped to handle telephone cable, data cable, and network cable installation jobs.
Wiring and Rewiring Complete Electrical Systems
Only highly skilled electricians who are licensed to carry out all types of electrical work can deal with full wiring and rewiring projects for residential and commercial clients.
What should you look for when hiring an electrician?
To find an electrician who can handle your task safely, efficiently, and professionally, you have to follow a rigorous screening process — especially if your electrical job is a major one.
To help you choose the perfect sparkie for your job, here are some helpful tips for you to keep in mind:
Always ask for their licence details.
A fully licensed electrician instantly has a major advantage over an amateur: safety. When electricians show you a valid licence, you can be sure that they are trained and skilled workers who have been deemed competent by the local licensing authority which, for NSW, is the Fair Work Commission.
However, don’t just take their word for it. A licence number means nothing unless you’ve verified it. To check if your electrician holds a current and valid licence, you can use the online licence check website built by the NSW government. A quick search can let you know the conditions of their licence and its validity period.
It’s also important to note that not all electricians can do all types of electrical work. In short, not all licensed electricians are equal. Different licences cover different inclusions and restrictions when it comes to electrical work, so you should know to check what particular type of licence your electrician carries as well.
In NSW, there are various requirements for each type of licence, so don’t be confused if the electrician you’re dealing with carries multiple licences. For instance, if you need someone to install an air conditioner for you, the person you’re dealing with should have both an electrical licence and an air conditioning and refrigeration licence.
Know their experience and qualifications.
Since electricians have different specialisations, it’s best to make sure that the one you’re hiring has a sufficient background on your particular job, whether it involves power point installation or data cabling. Don’t forget to ask them for their years of experience as well.
Read feedback from their previous customers.
Nothing tells you more about the quality of an electrician’s work than the response that they’ve gotten from their past clients. Read feedback wherever you can find them; many electricians will also happily provide you with a list of references to talk to.
Ask for a written contract.
To make sure that your electrical job is completed properly, always request to get all the important details in writing. This includes the final price, the schedule of your job, the details of the business, and the information on warranty.
Cost of hiring a professional electrician
The main factors that affect the cost of your electrical job include the size of the electrical company, the type of materials they use, and the complexity of the job.
A simple lighting installation job definitely won’t cost as much as a full rewiring project. In addition, less established companies tend to charge better prices for smaller jobs. As for the materials they use, higher quality materials might mean that you’ll have to pay extra, but this is definitely a good investment to make.
If it’s not advisable to save money by hiring a cheap electrician or using subpar materials, how can you minimise the cost of your job? One of the easiest ways to reduce your costs is to opt for local electricians. Going local means that your sparkie won’t have to tack on a large travel charge on their fees. This can also mean that you won’t have to pay a callout fee for your job.
In Australia, the most affordable services come from the electricians in NSW and Vic where electrician quotes average at $65 per hour. In contrast, electricians from Tas and WA charge the highest average rates of $80 per hour and $87.50 per hour respectively.
If you want to get the best bang for your buck, always compare quotes from several qualified electricians. The more solid options you have, the better your chances are of finding a company that strikes the balance between quality and affordability.