How to Prevent Electrical Fires

How to Prevent Electrical Fires

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Check These 7 Things Right Now to Prevent Electrical Fires at Your Home

Perhaps the most tragic thing about the 25,000+ home electrical fires in homes across the U.S. each year is that the vast majority of them could have been prevented if the right safety precautions had been taken. In most cases, these are very simple tips you can do right now. Just taking care to use your electrical devices, outlets, etc. correctly can drastically reduce your family’s chances of electrical fire tragedy, so please read these tips and go through your house and make sure everyone is following them today. And if you have any questions,contact our Northern Virginia electrician now at (703) 494-3989.

1. Don’t Overload Your Outlets

In other words, you don’t want extension cords to be a permanent solution to any situation in your home. Each outlet’s circuits were designed to convey a certain amount of electricity and overloading with extension cords and too many power strips does exactly that. This is one of the most common reasons for electrical fires, and it’s entirely preventable. Make sure your surge protectors have an internal circuit breaker that will cut power if it senses problems. If your family simply has too many gadgets that need plugging in at once, it’s probably time toinstall new outlets and wiring.  

2. Use Only GFCI Outlets Near Water

Kitchens, bathrooms, workshops with sinks and any outdoor outlet should be a “Ground Fault Circuit Interrupter” outlet. You’ve seen them—the sturdy looking outlets with three-pronged plug stations that have two buttons in between marked “Test” and “Reset”. These outlets are especially designed to cut the power supply if they sense moisture. If your kitchen, bathroom or any other room where water flows has an older style outlet without those buttons, contact Root Electric right away to have them replaced.

3. Keep Flammable Objects Away from Electrical Outlets and Cords

Avoid placing furniture, curtains, decorations, boxes or any other flammable item in front of (or too close to) an outlet. Most outlets generate an unnoticeable of heat, but if they’re overloaded (see step 1) or faulty in some other way, they could generate a lot more heat, cause sparks and then start a fire on whatever is closest to them. Don’t take that chance! In fact, regularly feel your outlets to see if they’re noticeably warm (they shouldn’t be). If they are, electrical repairs are in order.

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