As a homeowner, it is important to understand that there are several safety concerns relating to your home’s system and appliances. This is especially true with your home’s electrical system. It is present in almost every part of your home and has its own safety risks. Here are five electrical safety tips every homeowner should know, along with precautions to take to avoid any major issues.
Protection for Little Ones
Take note of unused wall outlets in your home. They can be a serious threat to children if left ignored. You can prevent a nasty zap by creatively arranging furniture to block such outlets from view. You can also use plastic inserts to cover the outlets, which may even save energy by preventing some cold drafts.
Make sure that electrical cords are hidden and that all electrical devices (such as DVD players, hair dryers, etc.) are out of reach of curious children.
If a fuse in your home blows, which can happen for a number of reasons, it is important to first turn off any appliance that is on that circuit before replacing it. Make sure you bring a flashlight for the task or bring someone to hold it for you. It is not advised to try replacing a fuse in the dark. When you get to the fuse itself, ensure that you replace it with another one that has an identical rating to avoid further complications.
Putting too much strain on an outlet is one of the easiest, and unfortunately, one of the most dangerous, things every homeowner can do. Doing so has caused thousands of fires in American homes, with many such occurrences happening around the holidays.
If you notice flickering lights or discolored wall plates, that may be a sign that you have overloaded an outlet in your home. To prevent this, reduce use of multi-outlet converters, and all major appliances (such as refrigerators and televisions) should be plugged directly into a wall outlet.
Appliances, Plugs, and Extension Cords
You likely have several appliances directly plugged into outlets in your home, as well as several extension cords for those items that just don’t quite reach.
Here are a few tips to consider with such cords.
- If you have appliances that are being unused, it is best to unplug them until they are being used.
- Always pull the plug itself, not the cord, when removing an electrical device
- Keep extension cords away from damp areas or areas with water
In Case of a Fire
If the worst-case scenario happens, and you are faced with an electrical fire, it is essential to remember one thing: never try to put it out with water. You run the risk of electrocution and harming yourself even further. Make sure you have a household fire extinguisher with an A-B-C rating. The substance used in such extinguishers is safe for fires caused by electrical equipment.
Just like any other part of your home, it is important to pay proper attention to your electrical system. Doing so is a big step in helping to reduce risks to your family’s safety. It is important to remember that this is not an exhaustive list, but these five tips can be useful for any homeowner.