What Does an Electrician Do?

Electricians at Ampi Electric Inc. install and repair electrical power, lighting and control systems in buildings. Most of them complete an apprenticeship program that lasts 4-5 years after earning their high school diploma.


Successful electricians have a number of qualities including color vision, the ability to read technical and wiring diagrams and physical stamina. They also must be able to work safely and follow all safety procedures.

Electrical systems power the lights, appliances, and equipment that make homes, offices, and factories comfortable and functional. Electricians install, maintain, and repair these electrical systems. They may specialize in specific types of wiring, such as residential, commercial, or industrial. They also perform testing and inspections of existing electrical systems to ensure safety and compliance with local and national electrical codes.

Electricians often work in collaboration with other construction professionals, such as architects, engineers, contractors, and building inspectors. They must communicate effectively to understand project requirements and ensure that installations meet specifications. They also may interact with end-users, offering guidance on power usage and safety precautions.

Depending on the type of electrician, the job can be physically demanding. Some work in confined spaces, while others must be able to climb ladders or scaffolding to access hard-to-reach areas. These professionals must also wear safety gear, such as gloves and goggles, to protect themselves from electrical shock. In addition, they often work outdoors in inclement weather.

A high school diploma is the minimum requirement for becoming an electrician, although many acquire their skills on the job with an apprenticeship program lasting four or five years. During this time, apprentices earn a wage while they learn their trade from a journeyman electrician. Once they have completed their apprenticeship, they may choose to become a master electrician.

Electricians must be able to read blueprints and technical drawings to determine the location of wiring, outlets, and switches. They must also be able to troubleshoot problems and replace or repair components as necessary. For example, if an outlet isn’t working properly or a switch doesn’t turn on a light, an electrician will run new wires and install the correct fixtures.

For those interested in becoming an electrician, the next step is completing a training program, such as the electrical program at Lincoln Tech. This hands-on program teaches students how to read blueprints, safely install and maintain components and prepares them to become a journeyman electrician. In addition to learning the necessary skills, students will be exposed to the latest technologies and products in the industry.


A licensed electrician can provide electrical repairs in residential and commercial properties. They will examine the condition of all components and equipment and perform tests to make sure that they are in good working order. This prevents costly breakdowns and increases the lifespan of appliances and fixtures.

One of the most common electrical repair services is replacing fuses or circuit breakers. Older homes may have fuses that blow easily, which is a sign of overloading. A professional can replace these with circuit breakers that shut off power when there is an overload. They can also install more outlets for devices, which will help to reduce the risk of overheating.

Another common repair service is replacing switches and receptacles. These are usually replaced due to damage, wear and tear, or as a result of upgrading to newer fixtures. This is a task that requires expert knowledge, as incorrect wiring can cause a fire or shock. An electrician will check all wires for proper connections and ensure that they are properly grounded.

Other common electrical repair services include repairing or replacing ceiling fans and rewiring old or damaged homes. These services are typically expensive, and it is important to hire a professional for these tasks. In addition to ensuring safety, professional electricians offer warranties on their work, which can save customers money in the long run.

In addition to repairing and replacing switches, receptacles and light fixtures, electricians can also help homeowners with energy efficiency upgrades. They can install new outlets with higher wattage ratings, which will help to reduce energy bills. They can also add ceiling fans to bedrooms and living rooms, which will improve air circulation while reducing cooling costs.

It is important to have a fully functioning electrical system, but many people don’t realize the signs of an electrical problem until it is too late. An experienced electrician will be able to diagnose and fix the problem quickly. They will be able to spot potential issues before they become dangerous, such as frayed wires or loose connections. They will also check for other problems, such as smoke coming from an outlet or a crackling sound from the fuse box.


The electrical systems that run the appliances, lights, and equipment in our homes, workplaces, schools, and factories require regular maintenance to ensure they function properly. Electricians are trained to identify faulty wiring, defective devices, and other issues that can cause unsafe conditions. They use specialized tools and testing equipment to troubleshoot electrical problems and repair them. They also perform routine inspections of wiring, circuit breakers, panels, and transformers to prevent potential safety hazards from developing.

The most common electrical maintenance service is preventive maintenance. This includes checking and cleaning electrical components, lubricating motors, replacing worn out parts, and more. This helps ensure the safety of equipment and avoids potential fire hazards, short circuits, or other failures that can lead to costly repairs.

Another important service electricians provide is upgrading and replacing outdated equipment. This can include rewiring a home’s outlets, switches, and receptacles, installing surge protectors, and upgrading electrical panels and wiring.

This is especially crucial in commercial settings, where it’s critical that the electrical system operates correctly to keep business or manufacturing operations running smoothly. Electricians can also test backup systems such as generators and battery systems to ensure they are ready for an emergency power outage.

Other important services electricians offer include assessing electrical load requirements, repairing and installing voltage regulators, examining heating and cooling systems, and performing periodic assessments of underground wires that carry power lines to facilities like hospitals or manufacturing plants. This can help ensure compliance with Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) and National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) guidelines.

Electricians often work in teams with other technicians, including electrical engineering technicians, HVAC technicians, and CAD designers. They may also collaborate with engineers, project managers, or facility managers to complete installation and maintenance projects. While the specific duties of an electrician depend on their specialty, all have to adhere to local and federal safety codes and standards for residential and commercial electrical systems. They also must be comfortable working in high-stress situations, as they may have to climb ladders or enter dangerous or restricted areas to conduct necessary repairs.


Almost every device, appliance and electrical fixture in your home has wiring connecting it to your power source. When these devices or the wiring aren’t working properly, it can be difficult to determine the problem. An electrician can help you troubleshoot the issue and find a solution.

If you’re experiencing a problem with an outlet, like it frequently trips the breaker or is warm to the touch, it might be due to a bad connection. The easiest way to check for this is to plug the outlet into another outlet. If it works fine in another outlet, then the first outlet has faulty connections and needs to be replaced.

Another issue an Electrician can help you with is a high electricity bill that may be due to faulty wiring or appliances. By checking your circuit breakers, fuses and other components, they can ensure that your system is running as it should.

An Electrician can also help you with any problems involving lighting. If you have a light bulb that is constantly flickering, it’s likely due to an open circuit. This can be caused by blown fuses, mechanical components such as windings and coils, loose terminal points and more. An electrician can help you locate the fault and replace the faulty component.

While many people think they can fix common electrical issues, they should only work with a certified electrician. Opening panels, measuring current and voltage and using specialized testing equipment requires extensive knowledge of safety rules and procedures. Trying to fix these types of issues on your own can lead to injury or death and may cause permanent damage to your system.