Electrical Safety Measures

December 01, 2020

Preventive maintenance when it comes to your electrical system is imperative, from hardwired smoke detectors to GFCI/AFCI devices.

The voltage of the electricity and the available electrical current running through homes and businesses contain enough power to kill someone. Even switching out a light bulb without unplugging the power source is hazardous because you’re coming into contact with the live part of the socket.

It’s important to take all proper safety precautions when performing even the most basic task, but beyond that, you should always hire a professional electrician who can handle the more complex tasks for you.

A big part of electrical safety is preventive maintenance. Not only will this ensure a long lifespan for your electrical fixtures, systems and other components, it will keep you and your family safe on a daily basis.

You may not pay much attention to your electrical systems every day, and don’t assume nothing can go wrong with something you don’t tinker with. The fact is, the failure rate of electrical components is 3x higher for systems without preventive maintenance programs, according to the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE).

Common Systems to Maintain

All electrical system components are important when it comes to preventive maintenance, but there are some that are more common than others.

  • Hardwired smoke detectors: Every year people perish in house fires because their smoke detectors failed to go off. The most common reasons? The batteries were dead or had been removed by the homeowner previously to stop false alarms, the detector was old, or the detector was located in an area where occupants could not hear the alarm. You should check your smoke detectors every six months for proper operation and battery life, and change the system every 10 years.
  • GFCI devices: This stands for ground fault circuit interrupter. About two-thirds of all home-related electrical deaths are caused by ground-fault conditions, which could have been prevented by the proper installation and maintenance of a GFCI device.
  • AFCI devices: This stands for arc fault circuit interrupters. They are critical in preventing electrical fires. In fact, arcing faults cause more than 30,000 home fires every year, resulting in hundreds of deaths and injuries, and more than $750 million in property damage. The solution is a properly installed and maintained AFCI. The CPSC says AFCIs could prevent more than 50% of the electrical fires that happen every year.

Main Causes of Electrical Distribution Failures

Loose parts and connections, and exposure to moisture, comprise about half of all electrical losses. Both problems can be remedied with preventive maintenance. Consider these five factors when determining a maintenance plan for your home or business:

  • Qualified Personnel: Hire only licensed electricians to inspect, maintain and test your electrical systems, safety practices and procedures.
  • Scheduled Maintenance: Inspection, servicing and testing of equipment should be done regularly -- at least every three years or more often for critical components.
  • Make Necessary Repairs: There’s no point in testing and inspections if you do not intend to fix the issue that is found. A scheduled outage may be necessary to perform the work.
  • Record-Keeping: Ensure a clear, concise and complete record-keeping system so all work is done on time and properly. This also makes it easier to track test results over time and identify potential failures that can be corrected before they happen.

Electrical preventive maintenance is not only cost-effective, it improves equipment efficiency and cuts utility bills. Don’t neglect your electrical system. Implement a preventive maintenance program for the safety of all involved and the longevity of your systems – before costly or dangerous failures occur.

Contact Anson Electric

To learn more about the electrical safety measures we practice and how we can help you with preventive maintenance for your home or business, contact Anson Electric at 619-920-5129 or book an appointment online.

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