What Is an Electrical Contractor and What Do They Do?

To understand what an electrical contractor does and how their work affects your life, imagine waking up tomorrow to find your house has no power. You can’t brew your morning coffee, make your toast or enjoy a hot shower. Your fans and air con don’t work, so the whole family’s sweltering.


Or perhaps you arrive at your office to discover that due to power outages, the lift’s not working, your internet’s down and your customers can’t contact you. What can you do?


Back in the day, you just called up the neighbourhood sparky who popped round with his toolbox, popped in a fuse and spliced a few wires and had you up and running in no time. Those casual days are long gone. Nowadays, you need a real professional for electrical installations and repairs. In short, you need an electrical contractor. Here’s why.


Today’s domestic and commercial electrical setups are far more complex than before, and their power needs are greater. These days, we also have a far wider range of appliances running in our homes and businesses, ranging from HD TVs and home theatres to high-end communication systems and data networks. What’s more, everything from switching systems to wiring and appliances are increasingly sophisticated, requiring a professional touch with expertise in a complete range of electrical services. Moreover, regulations concerning home electrical systems are complex, comprehensive and strictly enforced.


This means your system has to be rock-solid and optimised for your regular usage. For the safety of you and everyone in the building, and for the smooth running of your household and business, you need to be sure your electrical systems are installed optimally and maintained in impeccable shape. Then, should a problem arise, you need experts on call who can dash round to fix them as soon as possible. In short, you need an electrical contractor.


What Is an Electrical Contractor?


Electrical contractors are individuals and businesses that employ electricians who are qualified to design, install, maintain and repair all kinds of electrical systems in both homes and commercial premises.


Reputable electrical contractors have the resources and experience to handle every type of installation: lighting, power, communications systems (including phones, data networks and cabling), and cooking, both electrical and gas.


Your electrical contractor can do far more than just wire your home and fix your power problems. He can also help you save on electricity bill and advise on getting ideal lighting both inside and outside your home.


Along with maintenance and repairs, the right electrical contractor can help you in a multitude of other ways. One important way is by saving you money, an important factor considering how high energy bills are nowadays. For example, a qualified contractor can advise you on ways to optimise your power consumption, thus cutting down on usage and running more smoothly and dependably. Here are some of the home and business jobs that demand the expertise of a professional electrical contractor.




Electrical systems deteriorate over time, and the elements and pests can also shorten the safe and efficient life of your wiring. The effects of degraded wiring can range from the inconvenience of frequent blackouts and outages to danger from fires and overheating components and cables.


If you suspect your wiring setup is in need of an overhaul, it’s time to call in an electrical contractor for rewiring. Here are some telltale signs you need to do this fast.


If you notice frequent fuse blowing, flickering lights, hot switches or sockets, or any burning odours, get in touch with an electrical contractor immediately.


In any event, even in the absence of symptoms, it’s a good idea to have your system inspected regularly, especially if it’s an older building or you’ve acquired new appliances with high power needs.


Other than replacing the wires and cables, home rewiring can involve upgrading or replacing such infrastructure as power outlets, switchboards, and power poles.


Rewiring can also be necessary if you carry out major remodelling of your home or you’re building a new structure such as a conservatory or garage, or making use of a basement or attic. Such activities will put further demands on your electrical systems which may call for enhanced wiring to cope.




Another important area where your electrical contractor can help is with the lighting for your home or business. Your lighting is key to the comfort and efficiency of your home. You need proper task lighting for working in the kitchen or study, and ambient lighting for providing background illumination and mood lighting in bedrooms and living rooms. The right electrical contractor can offer advice on setting up your home lighting so as to maximise comfort and efficiency both inside and outside.


For commercial buildings, effective lighting is vital for your staff to carry out their jobs effectively and without strain. Plus if you run an enterprise such as a hotel, bar, or restaurant, you need the kind of illumination that creates the right atmosphere for your guests and customers.


Getting the lighting right can involve everything from changing fixtures to replacing regular bulbs with LEDs to installing sensor lights. On the remedial front, your Perth electrical contractor can deal with flickering lights and other problems.


Your contractor can also advise on ways that lighting optimisation can help reduce your energy bills. One way is by fitting dimmer switches. This not only cuts down your bills but offers you the flexibility to adjust your lighting to suit your needs and moods.


Another way to save on power costs is to install energy-efficient LED lights, which also offer far greater lifespans than regular bulbs and strips. Timer switches are another money-saving option, as are sunset switches for lighting installations outside in the garden on or the terrace. Meanwhile, your driveway can be fitted with motion sensor lighting for maximum economy.


Power Tripping/Safety Switches


Like fuses, circuit breakers and safety switches are devices that protect home circuits against power overload damage. They work by disconnecting when excess current or voltage passes through. Fuses tend to be single-use units that need to be replaced, while circuit breakers and safety switches can simply be reset to restore power.


Should you notice your safety switches cutting the power off frequently, it’s a clear indication that you have a problem with your electrical system. In such cases, you should call an electrical contractor immediately. This is especially true if you smell anything unusual or notice any scorching or burn marks around any electrical items such as a power point, wiring or any appliance.


Another explanation for frequent power tripping is that you’re overloading your circuits. If you’ve bought any new major appliances such as refrigerators, central humidifiers or air conditioners, you may need to upgrade your home electrics to handle them safely. Your local Perth electrical contractor can advise you about this.


It’s a good idea to have an electrical contractor make regular inspections to ensure your safety switching gear is functional. This is especially true is your home is old. If you wish to ensure maximum protection for your family, you can also have your contractor install power point safety switches, which protect individual electrical outlets.


Kitchen/Bathroom Electrical Setups


Your kitchen and bathroom are two essential rooms in the house, and each has its own specialised electrical needs. For one thing, both environments tend to get damp, meaning safety considerations are paramount when it comes to installing electrical systems in kitchens and bathroom.


Setting up water heating, switches and electrical heaters in bathrooms requires a level of expertise that only qualified electrical contractors can deliver. You also need effective illumination – both mood lighting for relaxation and task lighting for making up the face and other bathroom activities. If your home is old, it’s a good idea to have a contractor make an inspection to ensure the switches and outlets in the bathroom are safe.


Compared to bathrooms, kitchens contain more heavy-duty items, including fridges and freezers that need to run continuously. Moreover, electric ovens, microwaves and dishwashers have high power needs, and there are also a host of appliances such as kettles, coffee makers, mixers and grinders that use electricity regularly. As you acquire more appliances to enhance your home, check with your electrical contractor that they can work without overloading the system. Meanwhile, proper task lighting lets you prepare and cook with precision and safety.




As you can see, choosing the right Perth electrical contractor is essential for the safety and efficiency of your home or business. Choosing a well-established local firm ensures you’ll get fast and reliable service for your all-important electrical needs. Plus, should things go wrong, you’ll get prompt and reliable service to get you up and running fast.


To discover the electrical contractor Perth homes and commercial properties depend on for all their needs, get in touch with Thornbury Electrical today. We have the experience and expertise to handle all kinds of electrical jobs in Perth and regional Western Australia.