Electrical hazards can cause fires in the home. A slight spark near any combustible object could instantly create flames. Therefore, it is important that you inspect all electrical aspects of your home. Sometimes, a professional inspector is required for new constructions or rental properties taking on new tenants. However, if you would like to do a home electrical inspection for your own safety, then it is possible.
Examine wall outlets for any loose, damaged or missing parts such as screws or parts of the metal frame. Loose or damaged parts can cause sparks, which can be a fire hazard.You may have to remove the faceplates, or covers, to expose the parts of the electrical socket. Make sure all unused outlets have faceplates. Faceplates can block some sparks and prevent children from accessing the parts and holes of the outlet.
To prevent wear and tear, make sure no electrical wire lays across an area of heavy foot traffic such as under rugs or across doorway floors. Make sure no wire is be frayed or torn. The rubber insulation should be intact on all wires. Ensure wires are not secured in place by something that will puncture them such as staples.
Fuses and Circuit Breakers
Properly fit fuses to the rating for the corresponding circuit. Label fuses and circuits so as to prevent any confusion. A professional electrician can do this if needed. All those who live in the home must know the location of the main circuit breaker box; that way, if you need to cut power to a room or the entire house, everybody will know how to do it.
Fit light bulbs correctly to a lamp or other light fixture. A light bulb with wattage that is too high for the fixture can overheat and start a fire. Loose bulbs can also overheat and become a fire hazard. Replace any bulbs that are too much power for their corresponding fixture and tighten loose bulbs in their sockets.
Ground Fault Circuit Interrupters
Install ground fault circuit interrupters (GFCIs) at each electrical socket or at the circuit breaker box. GFCIs can prevent electric shock by interrupting the flow of electricity, if it detects a leak in the current. This can stop electricity from reaching a person that comes in contact with a malfunctioning electrical switch or outlet.
Make sure each plug on the end of a wire fits snuggly. Don't overload outlets with multiple plugs. The bottom round prong is a ground connection, and it should remain on the plug intact. Removing the ground prong can lead to electric shock and fire-causing shocks when used in a three prong outlet. Don't force any plugs into outlets that are too small or don't contain matching numbers of prongs in connection with prong holes.
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