Every homeowner wants to protect their home and keep loved ones safe. Electrical safety is a huge part of ensuring that the home can safely support children and animals as well as all of the active expensive appliances. With modern-day advances allowing smart technology and other amazing feats to make life much easier, it’s more important than ever to have an understanding of electrical safety and what needs to be done regularly to keep the home running normally. Here are some valuable tips that can protect you and your loved ones from home fires, being shocked, and potential electrocution.
Replace Electrical Cords
Most appliances and machines have electrical cords that can get in the way when underfoot and clutter up the floor. In high-use rooms like the living and bedroom areas, cords can become damaged as a result of moving furniture, accidents, excited pets, and more. All cords in the home need to be checked frequently to make sure that they aren’t damaged, torn, or frayed. Broken power or extension cords can cause fires when you least expect it and shock or electrocute those who attempt to pick them up.
Cords shouldn’t be stapled or attached to the ground in any way. They also shouldn’t be below rugs or furniture as they can overheat and be damaged inadvertently when stepping on or around them. There are many DIY tips online that encourage creative ways to hide or incorporate cords into the home naturally, but many of them encourage unsafe practices. The best way to keep cords safe and extend their ability to be used is to use them appropriately and safely in the home.
Avoid Using Long-term Extension Cords
Extension cords are only meant to be used for short periods of time. They may help a vacuum reach a different room or enable holiday lights to shine for a few hours each night. When used for too long, they’re liable to overheat, pose a tripping hazard, and damage outlets if ripped out forcefully by accident. Having to frequently use an extension cord inside the home indicates a lack of available outlets in a room or floor of the house. The best way to replace having to frequently utilize an extension cord is by having one or more outlets professionally installed in the home.
Check Outlets Frequently
Overloaded outlets are a common problem and cause a host of electrical issues in the home including fires. Every outlet should have a cover and be cool to the touch on the wall and faceplate itself. Attaching a power strip to an outlet doesn’t increase how much power it’s receiving but rather increases how many appliances can be plugged in at one time. The outlet being used can only give out so much energy, which often results in blown fuses and overloading the outlet.
Every homeowner or age-appropriate resident of the home should have an understanding of how many and what type of appliances can be plugged in at one time. If there are any signs of heat, contact a professional electrician as soon as possible to prevent the chance of a fire or even a small explosion.
Unplug Unused Appliances When Possible
One of the best ways to avoid most electrical issues in the home is to unplug appliances when they’re not in use. This helps to address the residual phantom drain that increases the electricity bill and completely removes the appliance from receiving any electricity at all. There is no risk of overheating or being affected by power surges in the home or neighborhood when the appliance, game console, computer, or other electronics aren’t plugged in. Remembering to unplug the coffee pot, hairdryer, or living room fan can minimize risks and make that room safer for children and pets.
Follow Appliance Recommendations
Big appliances like TVs, refrigerators, laundry equipment, and more often come with recommended setups and ways to avoid damaging their powerful cords. They may need to be placed a certain distance from the wall or with elevated cords so that there is minimum foot traffic between the appliance and its outlet. Following these recommendations can prolong the life of the appliance and minimize significant damage to the home. Children should always be watched around bigger appliances so that they don’t touch the cord or outlet.
Many appliances shouldn’t run in cabinets or enclosed spaces that can affect their air circulation. They also shouldn’t be placed near flammable objects that can become compromised over time while in close proximity.
Keep Cords and Appliances Away From Water
Many homeowners often set up their homes with this instruction in mind, keeping toasters away from the sinks and hair dryers away from the tub. It’s easy to forget this warning when in a rush getting ready for work or to leave for a party. Drinks can be spilled, plants overwatered or fun in the pool can bring dripping children into the kitchen. It’s important to be as safe as possible when dealing with water that may be touching an electrical outlet or cord.
Always make sure never to touch an outlet while wet or bring electrical appliances near water in the home. If the home becomes flooded, turn off the power as soon as possible to avoid injury to loved ones and material damage.
Childproof When Necessary
Children are very curious and tend to touch everything in the home that they can see. Safety caps are a great way to plug up outlets safely so that children can’t stick their fingers inside and hurt themselves. All cords should be out of their reach so that they can’t touch or play with them. Appliances that are easily accessible should also be put away or the children monitored to ensure that they don’t cause any damage to themselves or the home. A house can be safely childproofed no matter if the child lives there or is visiting.
Get a Home Inspection
Getting a home inspection can help homeowners to spot any issues in their wiring or in how they’re utilizing the outlets. Professional electricians can test the entire home and ensure that all appliances and rooms are working efficiently and safely. Electricians can also help to install a new appliance, renovate the wiring or electricity, and even check a new home when recently purchased. Regular outlet and cord checks as well as hiring a professional to maintain the home can minimize the risk of fire and electrocution.
Protect Your Home Now
Rather than worrying about the future, rely on our experienced technicians at Arc Angel Electric in Cumming, GA. We provide comprehensive electrical services to both residences and businesses in the greater Atlanta area as well as parts of nearby South Carolina. We can help you with regular maintenance, installation of appliances, home remodels, and more to ensure that your wiring is safe and effective. Rather than risking the safety of your home and loved ones by changing the home’s wiring by yourself, call our certified electricians at Arc Angel Electric for quality electrical work.