Electrical Safety Tips
Do you know how to spot electrical issues in your home and correct them? Freedom Home Warranty has compiled some preventative and safety tips so you can know what to look for and how to address electrical issues in your own home.
Since you have the coverage of a home warranty from America’s TOP Home Warranty Company, some parts of your electrical system are covered. Wiring, plugs, ceiling fans, switches and fuses are covered. Contact us for details on your specific plan. Be sure to follow these tips to keep your house in good order, so that if you do need to request service, a friendly representative from FHW can help you.
Circuit Breaker Tripping
When a circuit is overloaded, the breaker is designed to trip to prevent overheating and fire hazards. How do you help hinder circuit tripping? A good rule is to only gulp in one high-wattage item into each wall outlet to avoid overload. Use a surge protector to avoid a voltage spike. Occasional tripping can mean a simple overload, but if the problem occurs regularly, your entire electrical system will need evaluated.
Plug Space Heaters Into its Own Outlet
The same rules that apply to preventing circuit breakers from tripping are the same for small heaters. Space heaters should always have their own outlet, and should never be plugged into a powerstrip or extension cord. Powerstrips are not designed to handle the high currents that space heaters require to power up and stay hot. It’s recommended to leave a space of three feet diameter around the space heater at all times as they can cause furniture to burst into flames. Place your heater on a level surface that is heat resistant, such as a tile or hardwood floor.
Lookout for Pests
Rats, mice, cats, kids… What do they all have in common? They all like to chew on wires or play with wiring. Frayed or damaged wire is a true fire hazard. If you see any droppings or signs of pest activity in your basement, attic or around electrical fixtures and appliances, check all of your wiring for signs of damage. When it comes to children, don’t hide electrical and power cords under rugs or furniture because they could spark and cause a fire. Take preventative measures such as using plastic caps that cover electrical outlets so children don’t stick their fingers inside.
Sparking, Buzzing and Odd Smells
Outlets and switches shouldn’t make a sound, and operate silently. Any buzzing, sizzling or cracking sounds can mean damaged wiring. If this is due to normal wear and tear, call ACHW to file a claim and we’ll send out an electrician of your choosing. Some new appliances have an odd smell upon being installed, and this is due to paint, finish or plastic issues and isn’t too concerning. But if the smell is coming from an electrical outlet, unplug anything connected and don’t use it again until an electrician has checked it out.
By knowing how to spot potential danger, you can make proactive and less expensive repairs that will keep your home lit, warm and free from electrical fire hazards.