Many people never give any thought to their home's electrical system until something goes wrong. Most of the time, something going wrong is only something minor, such as tripping the power breaker. Occasionally, though, something going wrong can be far more serious, even potentially deadly, like an electrocution or a fire. Every year, your home gets older, and your electrical system does right along with it. Just as you perform maintenance in other areas of your home, your electrical system needs an occasional checkup as well. Here is what you need to know:

Are You Tripping Fuses Frequently?

Older homes usually have fuses while newer construction has a breaker box that cuts the circuit when the system is overloaded. If you find that you are replacing fuses more often than usual, don't just chalk it up to an added expense; it's time to call a professional to come and assess the situation. Many older homes aren't equipped to handle the modern lifestyle load that is placed on them. Electronics, appliances, plus lighting can just be too taxing for some older systems.

Do You Need New Outlets?

Older homes naturally usually have older outlets. These outlets are not as sensitive to subtle changes in the electricity flowing through them. Additionally, areas around water, such as in the kitchen and bathroom, as well as outlets in the basement should all be ground-fault circuit interrupter (GFCI) outlets. A GFCI outlet will help protect you from accidentally being shocked or electrocuted. It monitors the electricity flow and immediately trips the breaker if it detects an imbalance. If you have young children, take this opportunity to install safety outlet plugs to prevent an accident.

Inspects Your Cords

Walk around and look at the entire length of every electrical cord you have in your home. Yes, modern cords are pretty sturdy, but they do break down eventually. The vacuum cleaner may have caught it. It may have been crimped when moving a piece of furniture. Rodent and pet activity can cause a break in the integrity of a cord.

You'll also want to assess your cord situation. Do you have surge protectors where you need multiple things plugged into the sockets? If you have extensions cords with three-prong adaptors running everywhere, you're just asking for trouble down the line.

Working with electricity is naturally a scary thing for most people. While many projects are perfect for the do-it-yourselfer, it's better to call a professional for electricity-related things. Contact a company like AAA Home Services for more information and assistance.