Many homeowners think about electrical safety around summer time, when they are running hoses outside, watering plants, using their swimming pools, and more. However, electricity can be a hazard all year round. While you can always reach out to us for an electrical safety inspection, here’s how to keep your home, yourself, and your family safe when it comes to electricity this winter.
Keep Electronics Away From Water
It might seem obvious, but you’d be surprised! If it uses electricity, it can be a hazard if water touches it. This includes cords for Christmas trees, outdoor lights, and more!
Use Grounded Outlets
Make sure that every appliance you own is plugged into a grounded outlet. These are the outlets with three holes, not just two. The ground provides extra safety for things like tree lights, outdoor lighting strings, etc.. If your home doesn’t have these outlets throughout, you may want to upgrade for the sake of safety.
Avoid Extension Cords
Extension cords can cause problems during the winter. When things, like an outdoor inflatable decoration or even indoor lights. are plugged into an extension cord, it’s easy for that cord to fall into water or to experience an electrical overload. In fact, a person may not even know that an extension cord is compromised because it’s out of their sight. Avoid using them whenever possible to avoid these issues.
Don’t Touch Electrical Cords When Wet
If you are wet, or if you’re standing in water, don’t touch or work with anything electrical until you are dry. Electricity travels faster through water, and you can end up with a significant shock before you know what is going on. This is especially dangerous in the winter because there’s so much snow and ice and it can melt underneath your feet without you knowing. Teach children this rule, too, so they don’t inadvertently shock themselves.
Use GFCI Outlets and Test Them Regularly
GFCI outlets are specifically designed to cut power when they sense even the slightest amount of water or other electrical abnormality. They should particularly be installed in any areas where exposure to water might happen, like in bathrooms, laundry rooms, cooking areas, garages, outdoors, etc. Anything you plug in outdoors in the winter should be on a GFCI circuit.
If you need help protecting your home from electricity damage during the winter, reach out to us at Hop2It. You can also check out our blog post “How to Prepare Your Electrical System for Winter“. We’ll help you ensure that your house is as safe as it can possibly be. Call now and we’ll be there soon!