Electricity is a modern convenience that we all rely on, but it also comes with risks. Because most homes rarely encounter severe problems, it can be easy to become complacent around electricity. These tips for electrical safety in the home will help you avoid accidents.
Electrical Safety in the Home Starts With Maintenance
Just as you need to replace floor coverings and appliances after years of use, you may also have to replace some of the electrical components in your home. Be alert for issues with your electrical system. Call a professional if you notice signs of a problem, like overheating receptacles, unusual sounds from appliances, or a burning odor. A quick response will reduce potential damage to expensive appliances and electronics, and it could prevent a fire.
Use Extension Cords Safely
Extension cords are safe when used correctly, but many times they are used carelessly and become a hazard. These cords are intended for occasional, not permanent, use. Don’t cover extension cords with rugs and walk over them. The foot traffic will cause the wires to become frayed, which could start a fire.
Circuit Breakers Promote Electrical Safety in the Home
Every so often, a circuit breaker may trip. It’s usually the result of plugging too many devices into the circuit and the problem is easily solved by moving an appliance to a different outlet. In some cases, a breaker trips with no apparent change in use. If that happens often, you either have too many items drawing power or there is a problem with a breaker. Breakers that are exclusively used by a single appliance, like a water heater, may trip when the appliance is experiencing a malfunction. Call a professional to troubleshoot and make repairs.
Use Care Around Water
If electricity comes into contact with a wet surface, it will quickly spread to anything that water contacts. Keep electrical devices away from water. This is a common concern in bathrooms and kitchens. However, you may have a plumbing problem resulting in water leaks that become an electrical hazard. Garages can accumulate water when wet vehicles are driven inside or when doors are left open during rain. Use extreme caution anytime there could be water near electricity and install GFCI outlets in such locations.
Practicing electrical safety in the home helps prevent a dangerous situation. Keep your family and friends safe by being aware of any indications of problems.