Homeowner Electrical Safety: Fire Prevention
According to data from the NFPA, fire departments responded to an average of 45,000 home fires caused by electrical failure or malfunction every year between 2010-2014. In fact, home electrical fires are the most common fire in a home accounting for nearly 60% of all fires.
While you can’t prevent all electrical fires from occurring, there are a lot of things you can do to reduce the risk of an electrical fire from happening at your Binghamton home. Below the NFPA will cover some electrical safety tips you can follow that may help prevent an electrical fire from happening to you.
Protect Children from Exposed Outlets
If you have young children in your home, it’s important that you use child-proof outlet covers on unused receptacles. You can find outlet covers and tamper resistant outlets at your local hardware store. If you replace your standard outlets with tamper resistant outlets, be sure to hire a professional electrician to install them. Another tip to keep young kids away from outlets is to block access to the outlets using furniture like a couch or table or shelving.
Don’t Overload Outlets
Do you have an outlet that is powering a couple power strips and a dozen electronics? This can be dangerous. Don’t overload your outlets with too many powered electronics or appliances. Try to move some to another outlet. If you aren’t using an electrical appliance, like a blender or toaster, unplug it when you don’t need it. Overloading an outlet can trip the circuit or worse, it can lead to a fire.
Turn Off Appliances Before Turning Circuit Back On
If you do experience a tripped circuit from overloading an outlet or a power surge, be sure to turn off any appliances that the circuit is powering. Also, unplug anything that is powered by the circuit. Once you have flipped the circuit back on, you can then turn on the appliances or the electronics that the circuit is powering.
Check Cords and Plugs
Over time cords can kink, tear and fray. A small fray in a cord can cause sparks which can lead to a fire pretty quickly. Make it a habit of always taking a look at any cords or power outlets that you are near. Not only make sure that the cords are in good condition but that the plugs are plugged into the outlets all the way. A loose plug on an outlet can also cause sparks or a short which can cause an electrical fire.
Light Bulb Safety
Light bulbs are the most commonly used electrical item in a home. With light bulbs located in every room of your home, it’s important to follow a few tips to ensure they don’t become a fire hazard. Always use the recommended wattage of bulb for each fixture. Using a higher wattage bulb can cause the fixture to overheat. Be careful with light bulbs near curtains or other fabric. The fabric can be blown on top of the bulb which can quickly lead to a fire.
If You Should Suffer a Fire, Contact the Professionals
Following the above tips should help reduce the risk of a house fire, but it can’t eliminate the risk. If you should suffer from a house fire, call the fire professionals at SERVPRO of Broome County East. They have the knowledge, expertise, and equipment to handle any size disaster.
Just call and we will be ready. We offer emergency fire board up services and free estimates on all services!