Tips for a Healthy Home Electrical System
It’s easy to take your home electrical system for granted since consistent, reliable electric service has always been right at our fingertips. Unfortunately, for as long as we’ve had electricity running through our homes, there have been safety mishaps. Each year, residential electrical fires and accidents result in hundreds of American deaths, thousands of critical injuries, and millions in property damage.
Thorough, routine inspections help to maintain your home’s electrical safety. To make it easy, Silver State Electric has compiled this handy guide designed to keep your home safe from electrical hazards.
Keep trees and bushes trimmed.
1. If your electric service comes into your home through overhead wires, hire a professional to trim trees around electrical lines.
2. Keep trees and bushes clear of cables or wires on outside surfaces of your home.
Examine breaker panels.
1. Carefully open the lid and examine the panel’s interior. Look for burned or scorched areas, as well as loose wiring. Don’t touch anything that looks unsafe or out of place! Instead, call Silver State Electric to inspect your panel.
2. Consider the installation of arc-fault circuit interrupters (AFCIs), which protect against fire by monitoring a circuit’s electrical current. If unintended arcing occurs, the AFCI shuts down the offending circuit.
Inspect switches and outlets.
1. Outlets that are warm to the touch, discolored, or making buzzing/crackling sounds should be inspected. Call Silver State Electric to schedule your home inspection.
1. Use a receptacle tester from the local hardware store, or plug in a lamp or radio. If an outlet isn’t working, it may indicate a loose wire—or a bigger problem.
Test GFCI outlets.
1. Plug in a receptacle tester or lamp and press the “Test” button. The lamp should turn off. If the GFCI is working properly, the lamp will turn on again when you press the “Reset” button.
Test carbon monoxide and smoke alarms.
1. The alarm should sound when you press the “Test” button.
Check electrical cords.
1. Inspect for damaged, cracked or loose cords. They should be replaced immediately.
2. Do not run cords across doorways or under carpets. If this sounds like your home, it’s time to contact Silver State Electric about installing additional electrical outlets.
Check your light bulbs.
1. Make sure bulbs don’t exceed your lamps’ maximum wattage recommendations.
2. Be sure each bulb has a shade or globe, including those inside closet areas. Materials left too close to an exposed bulb can cause a fire.