When used properly, your home’s electrical system is safe and reliable. With care and maintenance, you can keep it that way. Here are some tips to help protect your home and family from an electrical fire.
- Check electrical cords to make sure they’re not running across doorways or under rugs. Replace any damaged or frayed cords immediately.
- Use extension cords only on a temporary basis.
- Avoid overloading single outlets with multiple devices. Hire a qualified electrician to install more outlets if needed.
- Ensure that light bulbs match the recommended wattage for the lamp or fixture. Look for a label indicating the maximum wattage to be used.
- Install ground-fault circuit interrupter (GFCI) outlets in kitchens, bathrooms, laundry rooms and any other areas that may become wet or damp. GFCIs automatically shut off a circuit when it becomes a shock hazard.
- Consider installing arc-fault circuit interrupters (AFCI) in your home. AFCIs are designed to protect circuit wiring from arcing faults that could start an electrical fire.
- Keep the area around electric meters, circuit breakers and other electrical equipment clear and clean of debris.
- Have your home inspected regularly by a qualified electrician to identify any electrical problems that need to be addressed and to ensure that building wiring meets local code requirements.
With a little extra time and effort, you can help ensure the safety of your family and protect your home from damage.