Winter Electrical Safety Tips

space heater

 

Winter electrical safety tips that will keep your home and your family safe this winter. Did you know that more electrical equipment is purchased during winter than any other time of year. With the increased purchases of electrical equipment and cold weather the risk of an electrical fire starting increases. The risk of electrocutions increases and the risk of injuries increases.

More home fires occur during the winter months and heating equipment is the second leading cause home fires in the United States. 65,000 home fires are attributed to heating equipment. These fires result in hundreds of deaths, thousands of injuries and millions of dollars in property damage.

In addition, portable generators are usually used during winter because of power outages. The customer product safety fee reports that 50% of all transportable generator-related carbon monoxide deaths occur during the winter months (November – February). Also, winter storms also can result in critical risks along with downed power strains and flooding.

Following manufactures’ instructions is the first step in avoiding electrical hazards and preventing deaths and injuries. In this article, you will locate protection suggestions and reminders that will help you and your family stay secure all through the winter weather season.

Winter Electrical Safety Tips for your Home

Electrical Blanket / Heating Pad Safety

  • Electric blankets and electric heating pads should never be used at the same time.
  • Before plugging in these items check your plugs for any damage and always inspect the cords of the heating blanket or heating pad. Never get into bed with a heating pad that is turned on. Unplug it first because it could overheat and catch fire.
  • Electrical blankets should never be tucked under your mattress and don’t put anything on top of the blanket while it’s in use.
  • Do not fold the electrical blanket while it’s being used because this could cause the blanket to burn out.
  • Always follow manufacturer’s instructions when using an electric blanket.
  • If you have recently washed the blanket make sure it is completely dry before use.

Space Heater Safety

  • ALWAYS keep drapes and clothing away from the space heater.
  • Plug space heaters directly into the outlet and never use extension cords. The reason for this is, extension cords does not have the power needed to power a space heater and using one could cause a fire.
  • ALWAY put the heater in a place where it cannot be bumped into.
  • NEVER use space heaters in the bathroom unless you have one that is built for that purpose.
  • NEVER plug a space heater in to a warn outlet. This could cause the outlet to overheat and if left unnoticed could cause a house fire.
    Note: The plug of the heater will usually get warm to the touch when the heater is in use. This is OK. Make sure that it doesn’t get hot.
  • NEVER run the cord under a rug or carpet. This can cause the cord to overheat which could start a fire.
  • NEVER use a heater where children play alone, as they could easily tip one over.
  • NEVER leave the heater on when you are not around and always unplug it when not in use.

Other Winter Electrical Safety Tips

 

winter electrical safety tips power line

Stay Away from Downed Power Lines

This is one of the most dangerous things one can encounter. Always assume a downed power line is energized and move away from it right away. Now this rarely happens in New Mexico but always keep in mind to stay away as it could be deadly.

 

standby generator

Use Standby Generators Safely

We have an entire article about standby generators in which you can learn about the benefits of having one at your home. If you own one already, don’t use it without a properly installed transfer switch. During an outage, electricity from your generator could back power lines, which will cause a dangerous situation for individuals trying to fix the power lines. A transfer switch prevent this from occurring by opening the main breaker to prevent electricity from traveling into the system. Transfer switches make using the generator more convenient because it allows appliances to be operated much like when the power is on. To be sure you have the switch installed contact Daniel’s Electric for more information.

 

9 comments

  • Assuming that a downed power line is energized is a smart thing to do. That’ll ensure that everyone will be safer. It’s better to be precautious and careful when it comes to dealing with electrical goods and equipment.

    Reply
  • Thanks for your tip on not using space heaters in the bathroom unless it is built for that purpose! I didn’t think about how dangerous it could be to have an electrical device like that so near running water. When we have the electrician by, I’ll ask him what kind of heater he would recommend for my bathroom.

    Reply
  • This is some really good information about being safe electrical wise during the winter time. I hate being cold and I would want to use space heaters. It does seem like a good idea to do what you suggested about not plugging them into a warn outlet. It might be good to get those repaired by an electrician before winter time.

    Reply
  • I like that you talked about space heater safety. We use a space heater all throughout winter. After all, it really makes a difference when it comes to keeping your home warm. However, you really want to be sure that you are also doing what you can to be safe as it really can be an electric hazard. Do you have any other basic electric safety tips?

    Reply
  • Wintertime has a lot of extra safety hazards with space heaters and fireplaces going. Thank you for these helpful tips.

    Reply
  • I appreciate all of the great advice on how to keep your home electrically safe during the winter. One thing that you said that stood out to me was that the space heater needs to stay away from the drapes and blankets. My wife loves the space heater and so I will need to make sure that she uses it safely. Thanks again!

    Reply
  • It is good to know that you should never rug a cord under the carpet or a rug. I just bought my first home, and I moving in soon. So, that is really good information for me to know.

    Reply
  • Very informative post about electrical safety in winters. People must pay attention to electrical maintenance at home or workplaces to avoid any serious damage.

    Reply
  • Some great electrical tips here. If unsure it is always advisable to contact an electrician. Great post

    Reply

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