Your Dixon, CA home is powered by electrical energy. If not used correctly, electricity can be a source of fires, electrocution, or other dangerous incidents. However, electrical emergencies can usually be avoided if electrical safety is practiced. The following are some electrical safety tips that can be a benefit to you and your family.
What Leads to Electrical Dangers and Fires in Homes?
Electrical fires can be terribly destructive. They happen quickly and spread rapidly. Such an occurrence can result in serious injuries or deaths. There are several factors that can lead to electrical fires, ranging from faulty electrical installations to the misuse of extension cords to outdated wiring.
Faulty wiring is the most common reason for electrical fires. This happens when electrical wires are improperly installed or poorly maintained. They can overheat and catch fire. This is why it is important to only have electrical work done by trained, experienced, licensed professionals.
Too many extension cords are another source of electrical fires. As the weather gets cold, people start to use electrical devices to stay warm. To do this, they sometimes start to plug into many extension cords. Or they overload extension cords and connect them to devices that pull more power than the extension cord was designed to handle. Avoid such practices, and be very careful with portable heaters.
Tips for Electrical Safety at Home
Electrical hazards can often be prevented by following simple safety guidelines. If you are concerned about the condition or the safety of your electrical outlet or appliance, always remember to contact a professional electrician to have them inspect the item to ensure that it is functioning properly.
Tip 1: Follow Appliance Instructions
When a person gets a new appliance, they are eager to plug it in and start to use it. Often, the first thing that goes into the trashcan is the instruction manual that accompanies the device. Reading and applying the instructions should be at the top of the list of electrical safety tips. If any appliance smells as though it is burning or gives you an electrical shock, stop using it immediately.
Tip 2: Do Not Overload Outlets
Overloading electrical outlets can lead to serious electrical problems. Electrical outlets should be cool to the touch. Ensure that they have a protective faceplate and are working properly. Avoid the use of extension cords or multi-outlet converters for larger appliances. Only one heat-producing appliance should be connected to the outlet at a time. If your outlets are hot or have signs of burning or scorching, have them immediately checked by a qualified electrician.
Tip 3: Replace Damaged Electrical Cords Immediately
Damaged power cords produce a very real residential electrical safety risk. They can cause electrocution and fire. All power cords should be regularly inspected for signs of cracking and fraying. They should not be stapled in place, nor should they be run under furniture and rugs. If you run a power cord under furniture or a rug, it can overheat, get crushed, and cause fire damage.
If you find that you’re constantly using extension cords, it means that your home does not have sufficient outlets to suit your needs. A qualified electrician who understands how to safely install additional outlets in harmony with local and state codes can help you correct this problem.
Tip 4: If You Are Not Using an Appliance, Unplug It
One of the easiest tips for electrical safety is that if you’re not using an appliance, unplug it. This saves energy because there is no phantom drain, which is energy loss even when an apparatus is not being used. In addition, unplugging ensures that the device will not overheat and there will not be damage caused by a power surge.
Tip 5: Electricity and Water Do Not Mix
This might seem like a no-brainer, but a surprising number of electrical emergencies in a home happen when water and electricity combine. Electrical equipment should be kept dry and away from water to prevent damage and protect against personal injury and electrocution. Keep electrical equipment away from aquariums, showers, sinks, and bathtubs to minimize the risk of water and electricity coming into contact.
Tip 6: Use the Correct Wattage for Appliances and Fixtures
Check your lamps, fixtures, and other appliances to ensure that you are using the right bulbs. If a light fixture has no wattage listed, go with 60-Watt bulbs or lower. A 25-Watt bulb is recommended for unmarked ceiling fixtures.
Avoiding Electrical Safety Hazards at Home
In addition to maintaining a safe home through recommended practices, it’s equally vital to steer clear of potential dangers. Here are some actions to avoid.
Do Not Neglect Low Smoke Alarm Batteries
A functioning smoke alarm is crucial in the event of a fire caused by faulty wiring, overheating appliances, or old outlets. Ignoring low battery warnings or signs of malfunction in your smoke alarm can jeopardize lives and property. Address any such issues promptly, and ensure necessary repairs are made.
Do Not Ignore Electrical Hazards
If you identify any electrical hazards in your home, promptly contact a professional electrician to rectify the situation. If you encounter a damaged outlet, stop using it. In case of an overheating appliance, unplug it and refrain from turning it on until repairs are carried out. Prevention is key in averting electrical hazards.
Refrain From Using Appliances With Exposed Wires
Even if an appliance seems to function properly despite exposed wires, avoiding using it is essential for your family’s safety. If safe to do so, disconnect the appliance and assess whether it requires professional repair or disposal. Exposed wires pose significant electrocution and fire risks and should be handled promptly and cautiously.
Avoid DIY Electrical Repairs
While online tutorials might suggest ease in handling electrical tasks, it’s essential to remember that these tutorials often feature experienced, professional electricians. DIY attempts can result in injuries and accidents. Electrical projects often require expertise and may involve legal permits and licensing. Opt for professional assistance to ensure safe and compliant electrical work.
Avoid Choosing Inappropriate Christmas Lights
Exercise caution during the installation and removal of Christmas lights. Use outdoor lights for exterior spaces and indoor lights for interior areas. Prior to installation, test the lights to check for potential wire fraying due to storage. Using incorrect types of Christmas lights or improper installation has historically caused electrical hazards and fires, emphasizing the importance of caution during this festive activity.
Your Trusted Local Electrical Resource
At Greiner Heating, Air, and Electric, we are focused on doing things right the first time. Our professionals are experienced, which allows us to provide various services that others in our field cannot. You can rely on our experts to save you money while helping you get the most out of your home’s performance. We are proud to be rated A+ by the Better Business Bureau. The licensed electricians on our team perform a complete range of electrical services, and we also employ NATE-certified technicians who can handle you HVAC installation, maintenance, and repair. We install central air conditioning systems, ductless air conditioning systems, and heat pumps. You can trust us with your indoor air quality needs and your water heater as well. Whenever you have an electrical or HVAC issue in Dixon, contact us at Greiner Heating, Air, and Electric for dependable assistance.