As the New Year is just around the corner, there’s no better time to brush up on basic indoor electrical safety in your home. With so many electrical holiday decorations and more electronics than ever (plus all those new gadgets and cool toys that were under the tree), it’s the perfect time of year to make a few safety resolutions. Practicing a few electrical safety resolutions will help ensure everyone in your home enjoys a safe and comfortable new year.
Resolution #1 – Practice Common Sense with Cords
We’re all guilty of breaking some of the following basic rules. When was the last time you tugged a cord to remove a plug from an outlet? It probably happened sometime this year (if we’re being honest). But cords should always be treated properly to prevent a potentially hazardous situation. Here are some basic rules to follow.
- Before each use, check cords (including holiday lights and extension cords) for kinks, frays, or any damage. Faulty cords are dangerous and a bad idea.
- Plugs should be firmly secured in your outlet. If it is loose, find a different outlet that fits.
- Do not secure a cord with staples or nails, instead use twist ties or tape to secure a cord.
- Never make any of your own modifications to a cord.
- Do not hide cords under rugs. Cords should never be placed in heavily trafficked areas. They can get stepped (damaging the cord) and can trip people walking over them.
Resolution #2 – Keep Outlets Safe & Organized
As the parent of a toddler, I spend more time blocking outlets from my son than I care to admit. But it’s important to keep those outlets safe from the kiddos and make sure they aren’t overloaded. Here are a few tips for keeping your outlets safe and secure to prevent electrical hazards.
- Block any unused outlets with plastic protective caps.
- Don’t overload outlets and avoid unnecessary adaptors or power strips.
- Never put any object into the outlet other than a plug.
Resolution #3 – Always Practice Safety with Home Appliances
After Christmas has come and gone, our homes are likely to be filled with some new appliances, and then there are the ones we already use on a daily basis like the microwave or toaster. Practicing common sense safety with appliances can help prevent electrical emergencies. Here are a few basic tips to remember.
- Make sure your appliances are safe by checking to see if they’ve been approved by Underwriters Laboratory (UL) or another consumer lab.
- Unplug any unused appliances and keep cords out of reach of kiddos or pets.
- Appliances that tend to get hot should be placed where they have access to plenty of cool air circulation.
- Keep ALL electrical appliances away from water sources including sinks, bathtubs, and pools.
- Keep ALL cloth materials such as curtains and bed linen away from space heaters, radiators, heating vents, and any other heat sources.
We hope you start your New Year right and remember to practice electrical safety year-round to help prevent electrical emergencies. At Home Service Heroes, we are here to help with any electrical problem you may encounter during the year. Give us a call at (813) 544-4061 and let us help keep your home safe throughout 2018!