Electricity has been efficient for the longest time and is one of the most significant symbols of modernization. However, there’s always a looming danger wherever electrical cables are involved. Electrical faults could cause fires or shocks when the live wires are carelessly handled. Here are simple extension rules that will increase safety at home, office, or construction site.
- Choose A Convenient Location
Extension cords are only as dangerous as you handle them. Be mindful of how you install them, especially when you have kids running around the house. Avoid running them under the rugs and carpets.
Call a professional, especially when using a 30 amp extension cord. Another dangerous place you should avoid is the doorway. This is where most of the activities of the home revolve around.
The safest and surest locations are around the walls, safely installed using tuck pins. A qualified electrician must be an insight to ensure that the extension is fitted and installed correctly.
Preferably, pick a location where the kids and pets will hardly notice the extension cord. Once installed, schedule an appointment with your electrician to conduct a safety inspection.
- Pick The Right Extension Cord
With so many fake products, it’s easy to fall prey to such and end up with major regrets. Extension cords are very sensitive since they carry currents of electricity from one source to a device.
Here are features that will be of help to you when buying an extension cord:
The Proposed Environment
The spot you intend to use your extension cord around the house is crucial. When shopping for an extension cord, look at the letters inscribed on the outside covering (jacket). Each of those letters has a meaning that denotes what the extension cord could be used explicitly for.
The Type of Plug
Extension cords come in two types and may have either two prongs or three prongs. Sockets are always suited for three prongs to accommodate both types.
Not all extension cords are suited to generate the same wattage of power. The general power requirements of an extension cord are critical since they determine which devices and appliances they could support. To be on the safe side, get to know the amperage level of the tools you use.
Manufacturers always rate their extension cords products according to indoor or outdoor uses. During your purchase, check the label to ensure you’re buying one for the right kind of setting.
A sure tip to guide you when buying one for the outdoors is that the cables are thicker.
- Avoid Overloading Your Extension Cords
Unfortunately, this is one of the most typical mistakes that may end up costing you dearly. Overloading your extension cords causes them to overheat, which is a dangerous sign you can’t ignore.
Aside from overloading, connecting appliances that consume more wattage than the cords can handle is risky. The consequences could be more hazardous and, worse, still set the entire residence on fire.
A popular sign of overloading is when your extension cord feels warm and sometimes hot when you touch it. Disconnect it at the slightest warning of such and let it cool off before making the next move.
Inspect the cord to be sure that it has no outward sign of damage. Dispose of it as soon as you notice any damages and make arrangements for a new extension cord. Another sign of overloading is when you come across slightly burned prongs.
Prevention is better, especially when electricity is involved. Read the manufacturer’s instructions very carefully first before unwrapping the package. Different brands come with varying sets of instructions that are only safer to use when you follow them.
Most importantly, only use the right extension cords for proper purposes. For instance, avoid using indoor cables for outdoor reasons since they are not suited for the harmful conditions outside.
- Avoid Plugging Different Extension Cords Together
Basic electrical knowledge dictates that different extension cords are supposed to be plugged as far away from each other as possible. Otherwise, you run the risk of facing an episode of electrocution, or worse still, setting the whole building on fire.
Plugging them together tampers with the ideal length, messing up the required voltage. As a result, overheating occurs, causing severe fire accidents. A safer option would be to get an extension cord with the right length depending on what you plan to use it for.
Abiding by this rule will save you the hassle of having to replace a piece of equipment that may have cost you a fortune.
- Stay Safe During Installation
Avoid using metal nails to install the extension cords to the walls. The cables are normally very fragile and wired as so due to the flexibility factor. Taking advantage of this will only damage them completely and render them useless.
Instead, tuck pins are the way to go since they help the cord stay firmly in place without damaging them. Also, they last longer and will not run the risk of tripping. For safety purposes, call an experienced electrician to install your extension cords correctly.
Always ensure that you follow all the safety rules when handling electricity at home or anywhere else. Familiarize yourself with each of them to avoid dangerous situations.