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From 2022 to 2023, home maintenance costs nearly doubled in the United States. So, it’s unsurprising that more homeowners are trying to save with DIY home projects.

Some of those projects are easy and doable for the typical U.S. homeowner. However, others are more complex and may pose more significant safety risks.

That may have made you wonder if completing a DIY electrical project in your Goodlettsville, TN, home is okay. Is it even legal? If so, is it a good idea, or should you hire professionals instead?

We’ve compiled the answers to those questions in this guide, so keep reading. 

Is DIY Electrical Work Legal in Goodlettsville?

Tennessee law allows homeowners to perform electrical work on their residences. That includes jobs that require inspection by the State of Tennessee Deputy Electrical Inspectors.

So, as a property owner in Goodlettsville, TN, you can legally complete electrical jobs in your home. However, you must meet the following requirements:

  • Acquire a residential property owner’s electrical permit
  • Perform the work only at your home
  • Ensure that only you or your immediate family members will conduct the work
  • Pay the appropriate permit and inspection fees

To get a residential property owner’s electrical permit, you must first request the City of Goodlettsville Building and Codes Department to issue a building permit. Once you have this, you can get an electrical permit from your County.

If your home is in Davidson County, your electrical permit should come from the Metro Nashville Codes Department. If it’s in Sumner County, you must get it from the State Electrical Inspector in Hendersonville. 

Why Avoid DIY Electrical Work

While you can legally perform electrical work in your home, consider the risks first. From electrical shocks to fire hazards, these are just some potential consequences DIY electrical jobs can pose.

Here’s why you should leave electrical work in the hands of a professional electrician. 

Minimize Risks of Electrical Injuries

In the U.S., thousands of non-fatal electrical shock injuries occur yearly. Many happen in homes.

Electrical injuries are, at the very least, painful. Others are more severe, causing burns that warrant emergency treatment. They can also damage the nerves and brain and lead to psychiatric disorders.

You don’t want that to happen to you or your loved ones, so leave major electrical work to the experts. Professional electricians know what they’re doing and use protective personal equipment. That minimizes their risks of sustaining job injuries. 

Prevent Fire Hazards

Unless you’re 100% certain of what you must do, you may accidentally splice, cut, or drill into electrical wires. There’s also the risk of electrical repairs with improper wiring, crossing wires, and faulty connections. All of these can cause or contribute to electrical fires.

Remember that a small flame can turn into a major fire in less than 30 seconds. Thick, deadly black smoke can fill a house within minutes, and the fire can soon engulf the entire home.

Don’t let that happen to your property. If you’re even only 1% unsure about completing a proper and safe job, please hire a local electrician instead. 

Pass Inspections

Inspectors usually perform two inspections: during rough-in and on final. Any problem that violates building and safety codes will result in a failed inspection. Here are some examples:

  • Open-sliced or exposed wiring
  • Over-fused or overloaded circuits
  • Inconsistent placement or heights of light switches and outlets
  • Improper grounding of the electrical system

When inspectors issue failed inspections, they let homeowners correct the discovered problems. They’ll then schedule a re-inspection.

If the re-inspection reveals the same problems still exist, the inspectors may already charge a re-inspection fee.

So, failing an electrical inspection, which is more likely to occur with non-professional work, delays your project’s completion. It may also increase costs, negating the savings you thought you’d get with DIY work.

Avoid the trouble and headaches of failed inspections by hiring a professional electrician at the very start. 

Prevent Issues With Insurance Claims

Most homeowner’s insurance policies cover accidental fire damage and fire-related loss of use. However, they typically don’t cover incidents that result from negligence or unlicensed work.

Suppose you completed a DIY electrical project that initially seemed to work great. But after a few days, a small fire started in your home.

If you file a claim, your insurance provider may deny it if they discover that the cause of the fire was a faulty DIY job. In this case, you’ll be responsible for shouldering the cost to repair or replace your fire-damaged property.

Maintain Property Value

Let’s say you decide to sell your home in Goodlettsville, TN. Potential buyers will likely ask you to let them schedule a property inspection.

If the inspection finds faults in your electrical system, like those caused by DIY work, it may cause buyers to back out. Even if they don’t, they’ll likely ask you to address the problems first or lower your asking price.

So, if you plan to sell your home, avoid DIY electrical projects that can compromise your property’s value. 

Are There Electrical Tasks Safe to DIY?

Yes, including jobs that don’t require specialized equipment and tools.

A perfect example is troubleshooting your electrical system. You can follow the steps in that guide whenever you have problems like flickering lights or “mini blackouts” in your home.

Another example is switching out dead or non-working lightbulbs. Provided you have a sturdy ladder and another adult to hold it securely, you can do this job safely. Just remember to turn your circuit breaker off before starting. 

Avoid DIY Electrical Work

While Tennessee law lets you complete DIY electrical work in your Goodlettsville home, it doesn’t mean you should. Especially not if the job is complex, which is what most installations and repairs are.

So, to keep yourself, your family, and your home safe, please hire a professional instead.

The licensed and certified experts at Lanham Mechanical Contractors will happily provide all your electrical and HVAC system needs. We have proudly served the Middle Tennessee region for over 30 years, have numerous 5-star Google reviews, and offer 24/7 services backed by a Workmanship Guarantee.

So, if you need a highly experienced and reliable electrician, call us today and request your free estimate!

(615) 880-8879