Everywhere there is electricity, there are safety hazards. It is therefore important for every home, commercial establishment, and industrial facility to exercise caution with electrical wiring, appliances, and equipment. Home electrical hazards are especially problematic; your family can unknowingly be put at risk unless you are aware of potential issues and know what to look for. The eight most serious electrical hazards include:
1. Faulty/Defective Wiring
Loose connections, pierced/cracked/pinched insulation, damaged appliances, or wire damage by rodents can lead to power surges, arc faults, electrical shocks, and fires. Any damaged, corroded, or worn electrical wire should be immediately replaced and upgraded.
2. Outdated Wiring
Wiring that hasn’t been replaced in over 30 years isn’t only more likely to have poor or degraded insulation, cracking, and heat damage. It is also not designed to current standards. To avoid electrical shocks and fires, have our Los Angeles electrician replace it with new wiring that supports the electrical demand of modern devices and appliances.
3. Extension Cords
Plugging too many devices into an extension cord box can cause an overload. You should not rely on one to power appliances. An extension cord may seem convenient, but it is also a trip hazard; a serious accident and/or injury can occur just by falling over one.
4. Contact with Water
Water and electricity do not mix. Always install outlets away from water sources, and never use electrical devices near a wet floor or with wet hands (electrocution is a strong possibility). If a socket must be installed near water, make sure it is a GFCI. Also, ever pour water on an electrical fire; this is what fire extinguishers are for.
Youngsters, especially babies and toddlers, have a curiosity that seems to draw them to electrical outlets. One finger or object in an outlet hole can have fatal consequences. Always supervise young children and use specialized covers and other outlet protectors.
Even newer heavily coated wires are at risk of overheating. To avoid problems, make sure there’s sufficient air and ventilation near wires and equipment, especially televisions and computers. Covered wires and cords can easily overheat if overloaded
They’re all over your house, but can be dangerous if removed before turning off the switch (a shock hazard) and if sitting near flammable plastics, drapes, upholstery, and bedding materials. Make sure all bulbs are the correct wattage and dry your hands before touching a switch or replacing a lightbulb.
8. Attempting Electrical Repairs Yourself
Professional electricians are trained, certified, and equipped to safely fix common electrical problems. All home electrical hazards can become deadly if your body comes in contact with high voltages. You also run the risk of shorting out wires and appliances, causing more damage than there was before, and requiring more expensive repairs.