Electrical Fire Safety Tips

Electrical fires in Colorado Springs are far too common, bringing with them destruction, injury and even death in the very place we consider to be our sanctuary. Many fires can be prevented by acknowledging that electricity’s power is not always a positive force, and it, and the appliances and devices it powers, must be treated with care and respect.

Electrical Fire Threats Lurking in Your Home

Old wiring: How old is your home? If it’s over 20 years old, or heading for that age, there’s a good chance your electrical wiring could be getting a bit dodgy, and even if it isn’t, it’s highly likely it wasn’t expected to handle the load put on it these days. The electrical demand produced by modern homes far outweighs that asked of a late 20th Century household’s circuit because of the number of electrical appliances and electronic devices used in today’s home.

It’s highly possible the outdated circuit could be unable to cope for long with the overload this causes, especially as the connections in the old circuit breaker box could be worn out, and not be able to function as breakers if there is an overload. Have your professional electrician from Colorado Springs CO check the wiring to ensure it’s still in good shape.

Space heaters: Ever wondered why there are more electrical fires in homes during winter? Winter is when most people drag out heaters to warm up the space in their homes. And they often don’t take appropriate care in choosing what heaters they use and where they place them. Those that heat the whole surface and radiate heat through the home space, are usually safer than the coil versions. The coils become extremely hot, and if they are too close to combustible items like curtains and sofas, can cause a fire hazard.

Lighting a Fire: Lamps, light fixtures and bulbs must be checked frequently for faults, cracked cords or faulty switches. And they must be compatible with the bulbs they light up. Check the maximum wattage restriction before inserting a bulb, because if it’s too high, you could be at risk of a fire.  It’s also risky to put cloth or paper over a lampshade as the bulb’s heat might set it alight.

Take Care of the Cords: Electrical cords need to be treated with respect, put through frequent safety checks, and should not be overloaded. Extension cords are very popular (and particularly vulnerable to misuse) in households where the increase in the number of appliances and electronic devices has outgrown the outlets.

However, instead of solving the problem they could create a whole new one, by starting a fire. This could happen if the cords run under carpets or through areas where people often walk. Or it could be the result of two or more extension cords being plugged into each other, and supporting a number of different adapter plugs.  Extension cords are meant to be a temporary solution to supplying power only when it’s needed.

Check the outlets and the appliances: Nothing lasts forever, and certainly appliances and their switches and cords don’t last very long at all. Neither are the outlets into which they are plugged immune to faults and wear. Faulty outlets and appliances are one of the major causes of home and office fires, so be sure to keep an eye on their condition on a regular basis.

Get a Fix on the Fixtures: Old light fittings, switches and even bulb sockets can become faulty and dangerous. Main culprits are corrosion, and wire insulation that has charred with age.

Watch and Listen Closely: Be constantly on the alert for appliances, devices or outlets that emit small sparks, start to hum, or feel hot. These are sure signs that there is a problem.

Keep it Clean: Remember to clean behind fridges and freezers as these are collection points for lint and dust which could catch fire. Try to leave a gap behind these appliances for the air to move freely.

Turn it Off: If you are going out, don’t leave your washing machine or dryer running, and try to remember to switch off appliances which switch off automatically (like kettles) at the wall in case something goes wrong while you aren’t there.

Being on constant alert to the condition of your electrical supply and the devices it powers could keep you safe in your home. You can do routine checks on the smaller issues yourself, but when it comes to your home’s wiring system and breaker box, it is worth calling in the experts, like a qualified electrician in Colorado Springs, Colorado.

Article by cs-electric.net – website.