Avoiding common electrical hazards. Electricity should not be taken lightly as thousands of people are electrocuted or killed in electrical accidents in the U.S. each year. Learn how a few precautions can substantially reduce the dangers.
Common Electrical Household Hazards to Avoid
Electricity has been a modern convenience since its power was harnessed for home use in the late 19th Century, but it also comes with serious risks. That’s why it’s important to be on the lookout for possible electrical hazards.
Be Careful When Hanging a Picture
Hanging pictures on your wall may not seem like a big deal, but it can be hazardous if you accidently hammer a nail into a hidden electrical wire. Occasionally a homeowner drives a fastener right through a live conductor and causes a fire or gets a big shock. To avoid accidents, be sure that you know where your wiring is located before you put picture hooks up on your walls.
Protect Your Extension Cords
Most homes have several extension cords to connect electronic equipment to outlets in the walls. Extension cords do not meet the necessary safety standards when they are not properly protected or are exposed to wear and tear. Electricity is dangerous, so it’s important to always be careful when providing power to appliances.
Too often extension cords snake across open areas in the home and make it easy for people to trip. In addition, cords that cross the traffic flow will deteriorate over time, even if they are hidden under a rug or a mat. Make sure that you keep your wires close to the walls and out of harm’s way. You should also avoid using more than one extension cord to connect a device to the outlet.
Unplug Your Devices When Not in Use
When devices are plugged in all the time they are more likely to overheat or become a hazard. While the problem increases with older pieces of electrical equipment, even new appliances should be disconnected with not in use.
Water and Electricity Don’t Mix
Be particularly careful to keep any of your powered appliances away from water. Radios, can openers, coffee pots and electric toothbrushes in kitchens or bathrooms are almost always in the vicinity of water, so vigilance is especially important. Be sure to keep the counter and your hands dry when you use these devices, but you will also want to unplug them whenever you leave the room.
Monitor Potential Electrical Hazards
Watch for any fraying of the wires to your appliances, notice any sparking or shocks you receive when you touch them, and pay attention if you frequently need to reset a circuit breaker. If your light bulbs frequently pop or you notice that your appliances or outlets show wear, you may want an electrician to check out the problem.
Electricity adds a great deal of convenience to our modern lives, but it can be very dangerous if you don’t use it safely. When you need to find a dependable service technician, call American Home Shield. We will keep your costs down and help you maintain the safety of your electrical systems.