The Right Fit: How to Choose the Right Electrician

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Even in the simplest building, the electrical system that powers your appliances and lights is complex to say the least. You put a lot of trust on the person you hire to install and repair or replace parts of that system. That’s why, when you’re trying to find the right electrician for you in Medicine Hat, you should always be sure to ask a few questions beforehand (rather than simply picking a name out of a hat).

We at Quick Way Electrical & Security want all of our customers to find the electrician that’s right for them in Medicine Hat. That’s why we put together this short list of things you should know before choosing a new electrician:

Always Ask for an Estimate on Price (Budget Quote) and Time of Completion
As with any large project, the unexpected does come up when dealing with the electrical system of a whole house. Much of the wiring is out of direct sight so diagnosing a problem can take a little time. Any estimate will, therefore, really be an estimate. At the same time, any experienced electrical company will be able to give you a ballpark number of what to expect to pay, and will do everything they can to stick as close to that estimate as possible. However, please note that asking for a “hard quote” forces the company to account for the “worst case scenario” and may end up costing you more. Therefore, we suggest asking for a quote based on a time and materials basis. This way, you will only be charged for the actual time and materials spent.

Is the Electrician Licensed?
Electrical systems aren’t simple. They require a lot of expertise and training to handle safely and well. That’s why every electrician in Medicine Hat should be fully certified before going into business. Don’t be afraid to ask for your electrician’s qualifications. A journeyman electrician will have a Journeyman Ticket Number, certified by the Province of Alberta (for electricians certified to work in Alberta, for example). In addition to a Journeyman Certificate, the following other certifications may be important:

  • CoR: “Certificate of Recognition” that verifies the company has a fully implemented health and safety program.
  • WCB Insurance: If someone were to be injured while working for you, you could be liable for providing an unsafe work environment. Companies with WCB Insurance protect you from any safety liabilities.
  • Performance Bonding: On large projects that span many months and deal with large sums of money, it may be good to ask the company for a performance bond. This will guarantee that the job gets complete, even if the company goes bankrupt (the insurance company will pay to have another company complete the project in this case).
  • Structured Cabling: Structured cabling systems such as Leviton and Hubble systems have their own certifications
  • Fire Alarm: The Canadian Fire Alarm Association (CFAA) has their own set of standards to guarantee correct operation of a fire alarm system. Electricians can attempt to become CFAA certified once they obtain their journeyman ticket.
  • Master Electricians: In order to apply for permits in the province of Alberta, a certification one level higher than a journeyman is required. This is called a master electrician. In order to complete substantial electrical projects (for example, a panel upgrade), a permit from your municipality is needed. In order to apply for this permit, the company needs a master electrician to submit the application. The application provides technical details that your municipality can review (and decide if additional resources on their part are required).

**Quick Way Electrical has all of the above listed certifications, either wholly as a company or employs electricians with the listed certification.

Research the Electrician’s Reputation
Perhaps the best way of determining what you’re going to get with an electrician is to do a little research into the work he or she has done in the past. If you know someone whose judgement you trust that can vouch for an electrician’s work, it’s a good sign that you’ll get the same treatment. If you can’t find any information about an electrician, it may be a sign that you should proceed cautiously.

Ask What Guarantees and Warranties the Electrician Offers
A good electrical company won’t just want your business for this trip, but for all the problems you’ll have in the future too. That’s why you should ask if the company offers any guarantees and warranties for their work. If a company stands by their work, it’s a good sign that they take their job seriously. Quick Way offers a standard 1 year warranty on all products and services.*

*Void if tampered with or another electrical company did work on the circuit.

At Quick Way Electrical, we offer a wide range of electrical system services, from large commercial projects (such as fire alarm systems and much more) to simple electrical repair. Regardless if your project is big or small, you can trust Quick Way to get the job done right. Contact us today to find out how we can help.

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