5 Ways to Promote Electrical Safety at Home
As parents, it’s natural to want to keep our children safe from every danger out there. We teach them to look both ways before crossing the street, not to run with sharp objects, and to wear helmets when riding a bike, but we often do not realize the dangers of electricity that exist all around us.
As electrical contractors in Gilroy, CA, and throughout the Santa Clara Valley, we understand a thing or two about electrical safety. We want every parent to understand the dangerous electric risks at home and how to keep their children safe. Read on to learn more and take the proper steps to encourage electrical safety in your home.
Conduct a Risk Assessment
The first step in protecting your children from the dangers of electricity is to conduct a comprehensive risk assessment of your home. In simpler terms, this means looking around your house, identifying any electrical hazards, and then taking steps to correct them.
Some common electrical hazards are:
Frayed or damaged electrical cords
Overloaded electrical outlets and power strips
Electrical appliances (radios, hair dryers, lamps) near showers, bathtubs, and swimming pools
Extension cords instead of permanent wiring
Unprotected electrical outlets
Outdated electrical panels
Along with locating common hazards, you also want to ensure your electrical appliances and devices work properly. This includes making certain their plugs are in good order and the devices are not overheating.
If you are not comfortable performing an electrical audit of your home, contact an electrician with a license. An electrical contractor knows what to look for and how to correct any issues that might put you and your children at risk.
Teach Your Children About Electrical Safety
It cannot be understated how critical it is to teach your children about electrical safety. This education includes the risks of touching electrical outlets, using electrical cords, and operating electrical appliances.
Teach your children not to touch electrical equipment with wet hands and to never stick anything in an electrical outlet (besides safe, functioning, and appropriate electrical plugs). They should also learn how to properly use and play around with electrical appliances. For example, flying kites or drones near powerlines or during an electrical storm is never wise.
Take time to create rules around electrical appliance use in your home. You should also have a plan for what to do in the case of an emergency, including how to deal with an electrical fire, how to handle a power outage, and who to call if something happens.
Childproof Your Home
Outlet covers are plastic covers that fit over electrical outlets to prevent children from inserting objects into the outlet. They operate the same way as most child safety equipment in that the covers can easily be removed by an adult but not by younger children. You can also opt for tamper-resistant outlets that use spring-loaded shutters to keep the outlets closed.
Outlet covers come in all shapes and sizes, so you can find something that matches the aesthetic of your home. You can even find covers complementing your child’s nursery or bedroom.
Childproof Light Switches
A child-proof light switch is designed to be difficult for children to operate, which means kids cannot turn on or off electrical equipment in your home. For example, you would never want your child to have unfettered access to the garbage disposal. Besides potentially damaging silverware caught in the drain, turning on the garbage disposal at the wrong time could lead to severe injury.
Child Safety Locks
Another way to promote electrical safety is to use child locks on electrical panels and other equipment. These locks prevent children from opening panels and doors, which could lead to electrical trouble.
Keep Electrical Devices Out of Reach
Most children are naturally curious and drawn to electrical devices and appliances. In some cases, children merely mimic what they see their parents do. While this imitation is cute, it could lead to a child turning on an electric stove or trying to use a hot hair dryer. Any devices that pose an electric shock hazard should be locked up and only brought out when used.
More importantly, you want to hide away and secure electrical cords. A child who pulls on a loose cord could accidentally pull a TV off its stand.
5. Call a Professional Gilroy Electrician
It is never a bad idea to call your local electrical contractor to help inspect your home for electrical safety concerns. Not only can an electrician help identify potential home safety issues, but they can also make recommendations on how to correct the problems.
An electrical safety inspection can also ensure your equipment is up to code. While many see the electrical code as just another set of rules to follow, the electrical code exists for safety.
Hiring an electrician is especially prudent when you are buying a home. You want to be sure that you are aware of any electrical safety hazards before taking on a new mortgage. A quality inspection will not just show you the areas of concern but can help you understand what is involved in fixing those issues. While you can certainly take steps to identify risks in your home, licensed electricians are trained to know what to look for in your home.
You should only work with licensed professionals on electrical projects in your home. A pro contractor knows how to get the job done right, so you won’t experience additional safety concerns later on due to poor workmanship.
Watson’s Keeps Your Safety in Mind
While parents do everything possible to keep their children out of danger, you can never overdo electrical safety. At Watson’s Charging Stations & Electric, we believe in educating children and informing parents of electrical risks around the home.
If you need electrical services or want to schedule an electrical safety audit of your home, give us a call. We have been serving Santa Clara County for years and know how to complete your electrical repairs and installations quickly, affordably, and, most importantly, safely. We are committed to providing our customers with the highest safety imaginable.
Give us a call to schedule your free consultation or make an appointment to get started on your next electrical project.