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When to Call an Electrician vs. a Handyman | HedgeHog Electric

There comes a point when doing home improvements where homeowners reach a crossroads. They know that they lack the skills for the electrical work needed, but should the homeowner call a handyman or an electrician for electrical services?

For work that doesn’t involve your home’s electrical system—such as setting up a home theater speaker system or installing a doorbell—you don’t necessarily need an electrician. However, for any work that involves your home’s electrical system, from installing new outlets to changing your circuit breaker panel, it’s time to call in your local electricians to take care of the work.


To clarify, it’s not just a bad idea to have a handyman to take care of your home’s electrical work—it is actually illegal on the part of your handyman. A licensed handyman is not allowed to do any electrical work if it connects to your home’s electrical system directly unless the handyman also holds an electrician’s license, which some of these providers do have issued.

Think of it this way—say that you need three new GCFI outlets installed, have two light fixtures you want to be installed, and you want someone to take a look at your electrical panel. Now, do you have a handyman—who only has experience ranging from general construction to roofer but no electrical background—or do you want a trained and licensed electrician? To be clear, the answer is—“I want an electrician.”

Also, some people wonder if electrical repair services also need to be performed by an electrician or if a handyman can just patch up the existing problem. The problem with this is that handymen lack the experience, knowledge, license, and tools to even perform repairs.

So, if you are calling up a handyman, stick to utilizing their help with home improvement projects like painting, crown molding replacement, and other tasks.

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Outside of the above reasons why a handyman is unsuitable to work on your electrical system, there are dangers to you and your property if you have an unlicensed individual perform work on your electrical system.

Not Up To Building Code Work

Part of the training and licensing of an electrician cover building code for both residential and commercial buildings. A handyman will lack this working knowledge, which can leave your home dangerously non-compliant.

While that may not bother you initially, it will if you try to sell your home, since a home inspector is sure to notice and inform the potential buyer. Even if the buyer doesn’t back out, you will need to repair the work before selling or make other financial concessions.

Corners Cut On Electrical Jobs

You’ve likely heard horror stories of how someone hired a handyman for work, only to have corners cut at every turn. Why take that risk with your electrical work?

Worse, you may have no clue that corners were cut, as the wiring is tucked into your home’s walls. That is, you won’t know until you have a licensed electrician to check the work or disaster has struck.

Electrical Fire Caused By Shoddy Work

Between cutting corners and plain not knowing how to do electrical work safely, there is a high danger of an electrical fire being caused by work done by a handyman.

As much of your electrical system is not visible, you won’t be able to see the scorching that poor electrical work can cause. Without being able to see the initial damage, it is far more likely that an electrical fire will be the first time you see the impact of shoddy electrical work.

Insurance Refusing Claim After Fire

Say that a handyman does your electrical work, and it does lead to an electrical fire. While it is devastating, circumstances like an electrical fire is why you pay for homeowner’s insurance, right? Well, you may have your claim denied.

Insurance companies will often do their best to find ways not to pay out claims. If the adjuster determines that hiring a handyman—who can’t legally perform electrical work in Utah—is your fault, your insurance claim can be denied, and you are left on the hook for all replacements and repairs.

Home Damaged While Work Is Done

On the less dramatic side of things, your home can be damaged by a handyman doing your electrical work. Extra holes, dented walls, scratches, and gouged floors and walls are not uncommon hallmarks of a careless handyman.

Rather than take all these risks, choose your local, licensed professional electricians here at HedgeHog Electric.


If you want quality electrical work for your home in Salt Lake City, Kanab, St George, and surrounding communities, then feel free to contact us. You can count on your experienced, friendly neighborhood electricians to get your electrical work taken care of safely and quickly!