Electrical safety is an incredibly important part of keeping your home and family safe from potential risks. Electrical hazards can include fires, electrical shock, and malfunctioning appliances that can cause injury or even death to those in the home. Being aware of potential risks, knowing how to properly maintain electrical equipment, and taking steps to prevent electrical accidents are all essential parts of keeping your home safe and secure.
Thankfully, our friends at EES have shared 6 important tips for avoiding costly risks to your home, because nobody wants to have a burnt house.
Use surge protectors
Using surge protectors is an essential component of electrical safety in the home, as they are designed to protect your appliances from damage due to power surges. A power surge is an increase in voltage suddenly and can occur due to lightning strikes, downed power lines, or the tripping of circuit breakers in your home. Surge protectors should be used for all expensive electronics and appliances to ensure that they are not damaged by sudden power surges.
Have GFCI outlets installed in wet areas
Having Ground Fault Circuit Interrupter (GFCI) outlets installed in wet or damp areas of the home is another essential step for electrical safety. GFCI outlets are designed to detect any current that diverts from the intended path and will trip the circuit breaker to prevent any harm from occurring. These outlets should be installed in areas such as bathrooms, kitchens, laundry rooms, and outdoor spaces to provide an additional layer of safety against potential shocks and electrocution. GFCI outlets can also be a great way to quickly disable power to an area if there is ever a risk of fire or short-circuiting, preventing further damage from occurring. It is important to note that just because an area may not appear wet at first glance, water can still accumulate due to spills or condensation and it’s best to err on the side of caution by installing these types of outlets as necessary. Additionally, when installing GFCI outlets, make sure that you follow all safety instructions found with the product so that you are certain everything is properly connected and functioning correctly.
Check cords for fraying or exposed wires
Checking cords for fraying or exposed wires is an essential step in ensuring electrical safety in the home. Frayed or exposed wires can be caused by improper use, such as bending them too frequently or stretching them past their intended length, and it can result in sparks, fires, and even shocks to those who come into contact with them. The first thing to do when checking cords is to look for any visible signs of damage, such as fraying or exposed wiring. Additionally, if a cord feels unusually hot to the touch, this could indicate that there is a problem with the cord itself or with an appliance that is connected to it.
It is also important to check cords periodically for signs of wear and tear since prolonged use can lead to issues over time. If you find any signs of damage on a cord then you should replace it immediately to avoid potential risks associated with using faulty equipment. Finally, if you are ever in doubt about whether a cord needs replacing then it’s best to err on the side of caution and replace it anyway as faulty cords can easily go undetected and cause significant harm if left unchecked.
Unplug appliances when not in use
Unplugging appliances when not in use is an important part of electrical safety in the home and can help to prevent any accidents that may occur due to malfunctioning or overheating equipment. This is especially important for items such as hair dryers and electric irons, which can reach high temperatures quickly, and should be unplugged immediately after use to prevent damage from occurring. Additionally, unplugging large appliances such as refrigerators, ovens, microwaves, dishwashers, and washing machines help preserve their longevity by avoiding unnecessary strain on the motor from being left plugged in all the time.
Additionally, unplugging electronics that are not often used can also help to save energy since many devices continue to draw a small amount of electricity even when they are turned off or in standby mode. To take it one step further, using power extensions is an efficient way of quickly disconnecting multiple electronics at once so that you don’t have to search for individual plugs behind furniture or tucked away behind other appliances.
Don’t overload circuits
One of the most common causes of electrical fires and short circuits is overloaded circuits. When too many appliances are plugged into a single outlet or extension cords, it can exceed the allowed load for that circuit and cause damage to both the wiring and the equipment connected to it. To avoid this, it’s important to know how much electricity each appliance needs and calculate whether or not the circuit will be able to handle all of the items that are connected before plugging them in. It is also important to note that certain appliances such as air conditioners, hair dryers, electric ovens, irons, and computers draw more electricity than others and should always be placed on their own dedicated circuits whenever possible.
When in doubt about how much electricity an appliance requires or if an outlet has already been maxed out on its capacity, you can purchase additional surge protectors which will help distribute power more evenly amongst different appliances. Additionally, make sure to check your breaker panel periodically for tripped breakers or signs of overheating as these could indicate a problem with the circuit itself that needs to be addressed immediately.
Hire a professional electrician for any repairs or installation needs
Although there are some basic electrical safety tips that homeowners can follow, any kind of serious repair or installation work should be left to a professional electrician. Hiring an electrician is the best way to ensure that your electrical system meets all necessary standards and poses as little risk as possible in terms of potential hazards. Having a qualified expert install new wiring, outlets, or switches means that you’re getting the best workmanship and materials available which will help keep your home safe for years to come.
Electrical safety is something every homeowner should take seriously. Taking the proper precautions to protect your home from electrical dangers can help avoid costly repairs and even greater risks, such as fire or electrocution. By following these essential tips for electrical safety in your home, you can keep your family safe and reduce the chance of a hazardous situation occurring due to electricity-related issues. Remember that when it comes to dealing with electricity, prevention is always better than cure!