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Navigating the National Electrical Code (NEC)

Last Revision 2017
(updated every 3 years)

To be a Master Electrician, you must be well versed in the NEC (the National Electrical Code) set by the NFPA (The National Fire Protection Association). These standards set the foundation for electrical safety in residential, commercial and industrial occupancies. (https://www.nfpa.org/NEC)

There are many electrical codes that an electrician to know for your benefit, protection, and safety. Many problems, injuries, and unfortunately deaths can happen if you hire an unlicensed or inexperienced electrician for your electrical project.

When becoming a Master Electrician, you get tested on all areas of the codebook. From New Construction Electrical Wiring to Commercial Electrical Wiring to Multi-family Homes and yes even Motor Controls. It is not an easy thing to navigate. So, it is important to remember, if you are going to hire an electrician then hire a Master Electrician.

Being a master electrician is not enough. The master electrician must be licensed and insured to perform work in the local area. I say local because Kansas and Missouri state does not have a statewide electrician licensing or electrical inspection agency. Instead, local jurisdictions (county and/or cities) are responsible for allowing an electrician to be licensed and work in their area. Each jurisdiction has authority over the National Electrical Code (NEC) and thus can have its own spin on the NEC and inspection process.

We recommend you look to see if your Kansas City electrician is license in your county and/or city. Maybe it is listed on their website? Could ask if they are licensed? Or you can search online to find out if their license number is active and in good standing?

Many electrical renovations such as installling new electrical wiring and adding circuits require permits. You want a licensed electrician that can pull these permits. So be wary of an electrician that asks you to pull the permits! That is the electrician’s job. Under permitted work can lead to violations of local ordinances which subjects you to fines, if you are caught or can cause problems when it is time to sell.

For example, Bickimer Electric is a licensed electrician in Missouri and Kansas. We are then licensed with Kansas City Kansas (KCK) and separately with Kansas City Missouri (KCMO). See our list of servicing cities at the bottom of home page. What may be acceptable in KCK may not be acceptable in KCMO. A good electrician will know the requirements of all cities and practice the best electrical wiring methods for that cities.

Ask them if they will send a licensed electrician to do the work? Some companies send unlicensed electrician to do the work, either “borrowing” or “work under the supervision” of another master electrician’s license. If you do not, you may face the reality that you owe a lot of money to someone who does not adhere to local and state codes.

Other important things to look for a when searching for a Licensed Electrician near you include:

• Do they have a website with contact information? Do they have marked vehicles and uniforms?

Those are nice signs of legitimacy. You want to be able to get a hold of them. Avoid electricians who want you to contact them only through P.O.boxes, pagers and answering services. A reputable contractor should be happy to give you his permanent information. Contractors who show up in unmarked vehicles or without uniforms may be suspect.

What do they do most often? Do they have any sub-specialties?

Compare that to what you need to be done! Know what you want before you talk to them. Does it match?

Do they do more than just electrical work?

It is best to hire a company that ONLY does electrical work. There are many companies out there that do heating/cooling, plumbing, and electrical. Stay away from those. More than likely you will be paying for something you don’t need or overpaying for the electrical work you do need. Hire the specialist. Hire the Kansas City electrician that knows about electricity.

• Do they have insurance?

Can ask for a copy. Any insured electrician will gladly be able to provide you with proof of insurance (certificate of insurance COI).

Look at the quality and quantity of online reviews.

Do they have GOOD Google Reviews and Facebook reviews?

Check disciplinary boards?

Do they have NO Better Business Bureau reviews? Customer’s only leave BBB reviews when they have a problem.

Of course, if you can get a reference, then that is even better than an online review.

Maybe from a friend, relative or co-worker? Any past clients or contractors who can tell you if the Licensed Master Electrician does good work.

We also recommend you get three Quotes or Estimates.

At Bickimer Electric, Quotes and Estimates are Free.

When you are dealing with electricity, you can never be too careful. It is so important that your Kansas City Electrician keeps up with the current and local NEC. The National Electrical Code is constantly being updated and so should the electrician you hire.

Through continuing education and active participation with local jurisdictions, Bickimer Electric is fine-tuned. Bickimer Electric only hires Master Electricians and implements a rigorous training program to make sure their electricians stay sharp. If you are considering hiring an electrician for either commercial or residential work, do your homework.

Don’t just hire any electrician. Hire Bickimer Electric!