The dangers of electricity are sometimes easy to forget. We are accustomed to it silently flowing through our homes. It is conveniently located at the flip of a light switch, the plug of your phone charger, or at the turn of your oven knob. But the safety of our homes, or even our lives, rests in the hands of the electricians we put our trust in.
A recent study by the NFPA shows that electrical fires and hazards are the second leading cause of house fires. Electrical lighting, power, and distribution equipment made up for 50% of the causes of these fires. The chances of these issues can be drastically reduced by hiring a licensed electrician that you trust. Why is this more important during this time of year? Residential building electrical fires occur most often in the winter months (12%) due to increased use of heating appliances and lights.
So, what should your electrician be looking for to help keep you safe?
1. Inspect the integrity of your home's electrical wiring. The insulation should be of good condition, and should be addressed if faults are found.
2. Inspect the integrity of the light fixtures. They should check the bulbs of each fixture for the correct wattages. One of the main causes of fires is heat from an appliance or light fixture that can’t handle the load put on it.
3. Check the connection inside your home's electrical panel, outlets, switch boxes, etc. Loose connections cause a gap in contact. These contacts try to make connection and will arc, causing excessive heat build up. We at Gloudeman Electric offer a special load test that checks the integrity of your electric wiring by putting a heavy load that is rated for the gauge of your wire. The voltage drop read at the device will tell us if it passes the 5% rule, or if connections need to be addressed.
These are just some of the many ways to help prevent electrical fires and dangers in your home.