Essential Electrical Safety Tips to Keep Your Home Safe - NEC Coop
Jun 29, 2021 — Electric Tips at Home, Electrical Safety, News, Resources
According to the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission, about 31,000 fires are caused each year by home electrical systems, with approximately 180 cases involving electrocution from consumer products.
What causes electrical fires?
The National Fire Protection Association warns about damaged and faulty wiring, as they cause about 69 percent of electrical fires. This is followed by light fixtures, lamps, transformers, cords, plugs, and power supplies. It’s always best to consult with a professional when checking for potential fire hazards in your home.
The good news is, electrical fires can easily be prevented by following some simple tips.
Check that you are using the proper wattage
Prevent electrical issues by using the right bulbs. Check all fixtures, appliances, and lamps, and make sure that you are using the proper wattage. If ceiling fixtures are unmarked, it’s best to use 25-watt bulbs. Use 60-watt bulbs or less if a light fixture has no wattage listed.
Repair or replace damaged electrical cords
Power cords that are worn or damaged pose a serious safety risk, and they are capable of causing electrocution or fires. Be sure to consistently check them for signs of cracking or fraying, and replace or have them repaired as needed. Do not place cords under rugs or furniture nor staple them into place. Furniture can damage wires or crush cord insulation. Cords that are placed under rugs can pose a tripping hazard or may cause a fire due to overheating.
Keep your electrical outlets and devices away from water to avoid shock
Keep all your electrical equipment dry. This way, you’ll protect your family against personal injury and prevent damaging your appliances at the same time. Make sure that you have dry hands when you need to work with electrical appliances. Lower the risk of electrocution and water coming into contact with your outlets by keeping electrical equipment away from aquariums, plant pots, bathtubs, showers, and sinks.
Ensure that your devices are placed in a proper space that promotes air circulation. Electrical equipment can overheat without proper air circulation and can be a fire hazard. Avoid running your equipment in enclosed cabinets, and as a best practice, store flammable objects away from all electronics. In addition, make sure that your electric or gas dryer is placed at least one foot from the wall.
Follow appliance instructions
Every adult in the home should understand how to safely operate the electrical appliances in your home for everyone’s safety. If an appliance is defective, be sure to have it checked by a qualified electrician.
Unplug unused appliances
Switching off lights before you leave a room will help lessen the risk of overheating and will ease the load on lights. Doing this will also cut down the risk of electrical malfunction. Bonus: it will also help reduce your energy usage!
These essential electrical safety tips will help protect your family. You will have more peace of mind knowing that you did your part in keeping your home safe and secure.