Is your mind or eyes playing tricks on you or do your lights actually dim when you turn on your appliances? If this happens once, it is a concern, but if you see this happen every time you turn on an appliance or have more than one appliance running at the same times, it could be a warning sign of a very serious issue and fire hazard.
Can I Fix It Myself?
Before you go putting on your DIY hat, let’s not get too aggressive. We are going to take a look at what some common causes are for this, but in all likelihood, you are going to need to call in a licensed professional to deal with this issue.
Corroded or Loose Neutral Wire
Over time, wiring can become corroded, which would lead to light fixtures flickering from time to time. If you seeing this issue even when you are not using the appliances, this is definitely something you will want an electrician to come in check. Another common symptom of this is a loose neutral wire that can cause the flickering lights.
Faulty or Improper Wiring
We see this a lot in older homes that have wiring that has become outdated. Older wiring cannot meet the demands of modern-day appliances. It was not uncommon for homeowners to fix their own wiring in older homes, so you could have a real hornet’s nest behind that wall. The safest bet in this situation is going to be to call in a pro.
Yes, this could be as simple as a bulb that needs to be replaced. As bulbs reach the latter part of their shelf life, the filaments inside the bulb can become brittle, leading to the flickering of lights. If your bulbs have been in there for a while, try changing them out to see if that fixes the issue.
This is, again, a common problem in older homes. When the home was first designed, several appliances being routed to one breaker may not have been a problem, but as we noted above, new appliances can create more demand and overwhelm the older wiring and routing. If the home has multiple appliances that draw a lot of power, you may need to have dedicated circuits installed by a professional electrician.
An overwhelmed grid can also lead to flickering lights and power outages. As I am sure you have seen in the news, this can often happen during high-demand periods. Odds are, this will either be on your local news or a notice sent to you by your electric supplier.