Category Archives: Electrical Wiring

Why is electrical wire in different colors?

Electrician Connecting WiresWe’ve all seen those shows. The bomb is ticking and the hero has to decide which wire to cut to stop the timer. Did the bad guy change the colors to make it confusing? Luckily in our homes, the wires have been color coded and installed to make things as easy as possible to make changes to our electrical system.

Types of Wire
Hot — The job of a “hot” wire is to deliver power to a destination.
Neutral – A “neutral” wire completes the electrical circuit.
Ground – A “ground” wire is a safety measure. Put simply, an electrical spike sends the extra power through the ground where it can cause a circuit breaker to trip.

Common Wire Colors Used by Certified Electricians
Black Wire is always hot.
White Wire is neutral (but can change to live if marked accordingly).
Green Wire is always a ground wire.
Red Wire is always hot and used more in switch wiring.
Yellow and Blue Wire is less common, but if used are hot wires.

Never guess or assume! Always shut off the power when working with electricity. All electrical home projects should be done carefully to ensure the safety of your home.

Always connect wires of the same color, and as an added precaution use insulated tools when working with or even around electrical wires. Remember to err on the side of caution when dealing with electricity.

Douthit Electric has been providing Charlotte with quality electrical services since 1990. When you need electrical service or installation, check out our money saving coupons and give us a call!

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What is the difference between 110V and 220V?

Electric PlugMost homes in the United States mainly have standard outlets that can handle 110V. For those appliances that need more power, 220V outlets are installed.

110V is typically the amount of current the wire can handle before it becomes unsafe, and the amount of voltage supplied to the outlet.

220V is, very simply put, 2 wires that combined produce twice the amount of voltage to the outlet.

Why Not Make Them All 220V?
Copper wire is expensive, so generally homes are built with mainly 110V outlets.
220V also present safety concerns. Many of us have been shocked by an electrical outlet at some point in our lives, a 220V outlet will feel like twice the shock, and twice the pain.

Why Do We need 220V outlets?
For rooms with appliances such as a washer, dryer, oven, furnace, etc, that require the extra voltage, 220V outlets are installed.

Douthit Electric can install 220V outlets whenever you plan on adding a new large appliance to a part of your home that is not currently equipped to deliver the required power.

Douthit Electric has been providing Charlotte with quality electrical services since 1990. When you need help with your next appliance installation, check out our money saving coupons and give us a call!

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How to Prevent Rodent Damage to your Electrical Wiring in Charlotte

Mouse.Although some may think they’re cute, the problems that mice, rats, raccoons, and squirrels can cause homeowners are very ugly! Not only do they pose a threat to your family’s health, but they can also do a number on your home’s electrical wiring. These uninvited house guests love to chew on everything in sight, especially the insulation surrounding your electrical wiring.

After time, the damage rodents cause to your home’s electrical system can lead to a series of major problems, including breakdowns, malfunctions, and even electrical fire. At Douthit Electrical, customer satisfaction and electrical safety are always our top priorities. Our highly rated Charlotte electrical services can repair the damage done by pests to keep your home’s electrical system running properly.

Not sure if you have pests in your home that could be feasting on your electrical wiring? Here’s what to look for.

  • Listen for scratching or scurrying Rodents usually aren’t shy about taking up residence in your home and often leave droppings and nest material as they scratch and scurry about your home. Whether there’s a little or a lot, this is a clear indication that rodents are present, which means the threat of rodent damage to your electrical wiring is too.
  • Inspect wiring periodically to make sure insulation is intact The insulation surrounding electrical wiring is no match for rodent teeth and appetites! Bite marks and damaged insulation are clear signs. Unfortunately, taking a look at your home’s wiring is easier said than done since much of it is concealed behind walls. A home remodeling project that tears opens walls is a perfect opportunity to check for rodent damage.
  • Take note of unexplained electrical problems Is the power or circuit in a certain room or a particular area of the house unreliable? Is one or several of your breakers tripping for what seems like no reason at all? If any of these electrical problems sound familiar, rodents could be the culprit.
  • Be sure to seal cracks The most effective way to prevent rodent damage is to keep them out of your home altogether! Cracks and holes are like open doors for pests, so be sure to seal these up with caulk or foam spray to keep them out.
  • Know when to call an exterminator If you can’t keep pests out despite all these efforts, then it’s time to call a professional exterminator. Doing so is an investment in the overall safety of your home.

If you have any suspicion about rodents in your home and are concerned about the damage they can cause to your electrical wiring, call Douthit Electrical immediately to schedule a thorough electrical inspection in Charlotte! This simple step can save thousands in costly repairs in the future and is the best way to spot rodent damage.

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The Importance of Getting an Electrical Inspection in Charlotte before Buying a Home

Real Estate Home Inspection ReportPurchasing a home is likely to be the biggest investment that you ever make. It’s important when looking at a home to see beyond its basic aesthetic qualities and look carefully at key systems that you’ll need to function properly, particularly the electrical system. It is well worth paying for an electrical inspection prior to purchasing a home, to ensure that the home will be safe, and to assess the costs of any changes that will be need to be made. You don’t want to discover any surprise, expensive problems after it is too late to back out of the purchase. At Douthit Electrical, our licensed electricians do thorough home electrical inspections in Charlotte so that you can have the knowledge needed to make the right decision regarding a potential home.

Here are just some of the things we do during electrical home inspections in Charlotte:

When buying a home, you’ll want to use all of the information available to you to make your decision. Through an electrical inspection with Douthit Electrical, you’ll receive important information about a potential home’s electrical system that you can then take into consideration. For an electrical inspection in Charlotte or the surrounding areas, give us a call today!

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What is Knob & Tube Electrical Wiring & Is It Safe?

Our Charlotte electricians get a lot of questions about knob and tube (K&T) electrical wiring. Many people want to know whether or not they should buy a home with knob and tube wiring or if this wiring needs immediate replacement. Today our electricians are here with the facts about knob and tube wiring because we believe the more you know, the better decisions you can make for your home and family!

The Facts about Knob & Tube Electrical Wiring

  • Commonly used wiring method from about 1880 until the 1940s
  • Not permitted in new construction
  • Ceramic knobs hold wires in place and ceramic tubes protect wires running through floor joists or wall studs
  • There are only two wires instead of the three used in modern electrical systems
  • Cannot be used with three-pronged electronics and appliances

Is Knob And Tube Electrical Wiring Safe?

When knob and tube wiring was correctly installed, it was fairly safe. However, because so many years have passed since this type of wiring was installed, it is unlikely that the system is still perfectly intact and safe. Many knob and tube systems have been improperly modified or have suffered serious damage from animals or heat. Sometimes homeowners have even added thermal insulation over the knob and tube wires, creating a serious fire hazard. Furthermore, because there is no grounding conductor, there will always be a greater risk of electrical fires and damages to electronics.

Knob and tube wiring has become obsolete as safer, more effective methods have developed over the years. At Douthit Electrical, we’d be happy to inspect your home’s electrical system to see if safety hazards exist. There are many benefits to electrical upgrades, and our Charlotte electrical contractors can help you to determine what the right move for your particular home is—just give us a call!



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