Celebrating the holidays should be a fun and festive time for families and friends. From magical holiday lights to shared feasts, it’s a great time of year. Unfortunately, it’s also a very busy time of year for electrical hazards and house fires too. Nipper Electric is committed to keeping the Virginia Beach area safe during every season. To help you through the holiday season, we’ve got a quick list of electrical safety tips.
The Most Important List You’ll See This Year
Keeping your homes and businesses safe is a top priority for the experienced staff at Nipper Electric. Keep this list close to you to help provide your home or office with extra safety, it could be the most important list you see this year.
- Watch Your Circuits & Panels- During winter, it is so easy for panels and circuits to become overheated. Just think about it. Your heat is running, lights are on longer, more appliances are going, decorations are on. All these electrical demands add to the load your panel is already carrying. This can cause your panels. Avoid dangerous overheating by:
- Annually having your wiring and electrical system checked.
- Look for signs of sparking, arcing, hot receptacles, and/or loose plugs. Call a professional electrician like Nipper Electric for help immediately. These are big issues that easily start fires and can be caused by your overheated panel.
- When possible, use batteries to operate decorations.
- Know your panel. Know the load capacity of your panel and how old it is. It might be time for a panel upgrade.
- Don’t plug in more than three strands of lights at a time. More lights can cause a fire or blow a fuse. If you have a big display you are planning, consult an expert on your electrical load first.
- Check for Fire Hazards!- Make sure you aren’t leaving things around that could become a big fire hazard. Here are things to look for.
- Clothes or materials next to heat sources.
- Faulty wiring.
- Cords that can be tripped over.
- Stripped or damaged cords.
- Buzzing sounds from plugs when in use.
- Overused sockets. Too many appliances in one socket can cause big problems.
- Extension Cords. Throw out old extension cords that are worn or torn. Don’t place cords under carpets.
- Overused Outlets– It’s a pretty common sight over the holidays. One outlet with 4 or 5 things plugged into it. This can cause overheating, sparking, blown fuses, burnt out appliances, and a whole lot more. Keep the outlet use to a reasonable amount. If it’s a big problem, look into adding outlets for this season and the entire year.
- Corrosion, Loose Connections, & Bad Wiring– Older homes built before 1972 often used aluminum wiring. This product was more affordable but also can cause some issues in your home. As the seasons change the wires expand and contract, this causes creeping, where the wires start to creep out of their attachments. This creates loose connections which can cause many other electrical issues. With aluminum wiring, you also have to worry about corrosion. Though both aluminum and copper wiring corrode, the white oxide of aluminum wiring doesn’t conduct electricity. This can make your electrical outlets stop connecting to the source.
- Space Heaters- While space heaters are safe options for adding a little extra heat to rooms, they can cause big issues. Make sure you:
- Don’t leave them running.
- Don’t leave them unattended.
- Don’t place them near curtains, clothes, furniture, or bed clothes.
- Practice Christmas Tree Safety – If you’re going to use a natural Christmas Tree, make sure it stays watered. The heat from light bulbs, even the low energy ones, can cause the needles to catch on fire. When they start burning, they can be up in flames in a flash. Be careful with artificial trees as well, watch that bulbs don’t get too warm and keep an eye on your tree.
Have a Safe and Happy Holiday
The family at Nipper Electric wants to wish you and your family a happy and safe holiday season. If you are having any of the issues we mentioned or just have some concerns or questions, call us today at 757-842-1710. You can even make an appointment online while you relax. Remember, no job is too big or too small. We love keeping Virginia Beach safe.