Rick Bredenberg is the Vice President of Utility Services and head of Edlen’s Safety Committee. Rick has over 25 years of experience interpreting and applying the National Electric Code (NEC).
Here are 15 of his electrical safety tips:
- Avoid using cords that are visibly torn, frayed or distressed.
- Do not remove the ground pin from a plug in order to plug a three-wire cord into to two-wire outlet.
- Flickering lights or lights that dim by themselves are an indication of a potential electrical problem. Schedule an electrician to investigate the cause.
- Plug no more than one heat producing appliance (i.e. toaster, coffee maker, etc.) at a time into a countertop receptacle.
- Call an electrician for any appliance repairs.
- Unplug your appliance before cleaning it.
- Always unplug a cord by pulling on the plug and use caution not to come in contact with the metal prongs as they slide out of the receptacle.
- Install child-proof outlet covers in all receptacles to ensure child safety.
- Update older receptacles in your kitchen, bathrooms, garage and exterior spaces by installing a ground fault circuit interrupter (GFCI) device. A GFCI is an outlet that quickly breaks an electrical circuit to prevent serious harm from an ongoing electric shock. Contact an electrician to help upgrade your outlets.
- Always plug holiday decorations into a GFCI protected outlet.
- Warm outlets or outlets that frequently trip circuit breakers are signs that an electrician needs to diagnose an issue.
- Always turn off the power and verify that it is off when working on outlets or switches.
- Keep the space clear in front of your electrical panels, particularly of combustible materials.
- Have an electrician install additional outlets in your home instead of running extension cords.
- Do not approach a downed power line.