Electricity is a vital part of your daily life, but it can also pose serious risks to you and your home. Thankfully, there are some simple electrical safety tips that can help you stay safe around electricity and avoid a fire or shock.
Damaged power cords can cause both fires and electrocution. They should be checked regularly for signs of fraying and cracking, then repaired or replaced.
Install GFCI Outlets
GFCI outlets are required by law for new home construction and are a great idea for updating older homes. They are quick-to-react and can help reduce the risk of electrical shock injuries.
A GFCI outlet protects your home against electric shock by shutting off power when it detects an electrical short or leak in the wiring. These outlets are often found in wet areas of your home such as bathrooms, kitchens, garages and basements and should be installed at least six feet from any sink or water source.
They also monitor the electrical current running through them and shut off power if they sense any abnormalities in the current. This allows the appliance to operate safely and prolongs its lifespan by preventing damage from an overflow or irregular flow of electricity.
Moreover, they can keep your home up to code by protecting you from electrical fires. According to the Electrical Safety Foundation International (ESFI), home electrical fires account for an estimated 51,000 fires each year.
While installing GFCI outlets is a simple job, it is important to know what you are doing. Make sure you follow the instructions on the GFCI you purchase and use only a certified electrician to complete the installation.
You will need an electrical outlet tester for this project. Test the outlet by pushing the test button and then pressing the reset button to verify that it is working properly.
A GFCI outlet is essential to the safety of your family and your home. They are easy to install and can be used for any area in your home that is susceptible to electrical shocks from moisture or other environmental factors.
Don’t Use Extension Cords
While they may seem like an easy and convenient way to power tools and other devices, extension cords can be dangerous if used improperly. In fact, they can cause fires and other accidents that lead to injury or even death.
Using an extension cord can also cause electrical overloads. Every cord has a specific amp rating, or limit to the amount of electricity it can safely conduct.
If you plan to use an extension cord with a high-wattage appliance, such as an air conditioner or space heater, check the amp rating before buying one. Using a cord with a higher amperage than the appliance can overheat it and start a fire, which could be life-threatening.
A cord that is damaged or frayed can also be dangerous, and should be discarded immediately. Be sure to look for a cord that is rated to the appropriate wattage of the appliance it will be connected to and that has been tested by a reputable testing laboratory.
Additionally, make sure to always fully insert the plug into the outlet. This will prevent damage to the wires and sockets and reduce the risk of shock or fire.
Another important factor is to keep your cords from getting wet, as water can damage the insulation and wires. It is also recommended to always store your cords in a dry place.
Regardless of where you live, there are many ways to reduce your risk of electrical injuries and fires in your home. Using these tips will help you avoid accidents and protect your family from serious injuries and damage to their property. To learn more about how to avoid injury, contact the team at Express Electrical Services today!
Don’t Touch Electrical Outlets
Electricity is a powerful force that every homeowner should treat with respect. It powers appliances, lights, and other devices in your home, and if you don’t take proper care of it, you may be subject to an electrical fire that could lead to serious injury or even death.
To avoid this, be sure to keep all outlets and cords tucked away. It’s also wise to install outlet covers that encase the wires and are securely fastened to the wall.
You should also be careful about touching your electronics with wet hands and tools, as water is very conductive. This could cause a shock or worse, start an electrical fire that could spread quickly through your home.
Another important electrical safety tip is to always keep outlets and cords away from any source of water, including the bathroom, kitchen, yard hose, and pool. This is especially true for dryers and other items that have a cord that could come in contact with water.
Additionally, make sure to unplug hair dryers and other appliances that can get wet when they aren’t in use, such as radios or curling irons. This is because even when the appliance is turned off, there’s still electricity present and could spark or cause a fire.
In addition, check your breaker box often and know its proper wattage ratings. Too much load can cause the breaker to trip and cause a house fire. If you’re unsure about this, call an experienced electrician who can help. A professional can also determine whether your breaker is working properly or not. This can save you money and help prevent future issues. It’s also a good idea to test the voltage of your outlets using a volt meter or multimeter.
Don’t Touch Electrical Wiring
Your home’s electrical wiring is the conduit by which electricity travels throughout your house. It’s a critical part of your property’s safety, and it must be well-maintained to avoid the risk of fires, injuries, and even death.
The most basic rule is to never touch any electrical wiring, especially if it is hot or energized. This is because you could be electrocuted if you come into contact with electricity, even if it’s just the occasional shock from an outlet or light bulb.
It is also not a good idea to tinker with wires that have gotten damaged in some way. This can include damage from age, heat, corrosion, bending, or nicking and pinching.
For instance, a loose connection between a switch and its receptacle can cause the receptacle to stop working or become tripped and potentially start a fire. Similarly, a loose connection between a switch or receptacle and its outlet can also be dangerous, especially if the switch isn’t properly grounded to the outlet.
Finally, if you are installing or updating your home’s electrical system, make sure to use high-quality components. Old rubber wire insulation can flake or rip off, leaving exposed wires that are at risk for short circuits and arcs (electrical discharges).
The best way to ensure your home’s electrical wiring is in top condition is to hire a licensed electrician to do the job. Not only is hiring an expert the quickest and most affordable way to keep your family safe, but it can also save you money in the long run. Besides, you’ll get the peace of mind knowing your family is safe from fires and other hazards. So the next time you are tempted to tinker with your electrical wiring, remember that it’s not as easy as you might think.
Don’t Work on Electrical Wiring
Whether you’re looking to make some improvements around the home or you want to sell your property, working on electrical wiring can be a risky endeavor. Even if you think you can do it on your own, it’s best to call an electrician for help. Not only will they have the proper tools and equipment to get the job done, but they also know how to do it safely.
One of the biggest signs that something is wrong with your electrical wiring is if you notice it is a tangled mess or appears to have been slapped together. This may seem like a minor issue, but it could result in more serious problems down the road. Another warning sign is if you hear your lights flicker or notice strange smells that are associated with electrical work.
Finally, if you do decide to attempt some electrical work on your own, you should be aware that you will need permits. These will not be easy to obtain, and it’s best to let a professional do the work for you. This will save you a lot of time and stress in the long run. Plus, if you ever want to sell your house, it’s best to have the electrical work performed by a licensed electrician so it will pass inspection and receive the right permits.