How to Prevent Electrical Fires in Your Home

A man and a woman sit by a fireplace reading a book.

Residential fires in the United States claim thousands of lives and cause billions of dollars in property damage every year. More than 45,000 of these home fires are of electrical origin, which is a good reason for Americans to seek the services of electricians to make sure that their residential wiring is safe and functional. Here are some other things you can do to prevent an electrical fire from occurring in your residence:

Getting to Know Your Home

You do not require extensive training to know some basics about electricity. Learning about the electrical system in your home, including the location of outlets and what items are receiving power, can be beneficial in keeping it safe. You should also be aware of the age of the home and its major components, such as the heating and air conditioning units. As with almost everything else, electrical systems and related wiring decline in efficiency with age. Fortunately, electricians can give you a good idea about the condition of various components and what should be monitored or even replaced.

Watching the Circuit Breaker

The electrical circuit system is designed to receive power from an outside source and then distribute it throughout the property. The system will also detect anomalies in a home and switch off in the event of excessive overloading. The tripping of the breaker may result from a temporary power surge, but it can also be an indication of a faulty circuit. This condition can greatly increase the risk of a home fire. Electricians can help provide assistance in this area and in the process reduce the risk of fires.

Monitoring Individual Appliances

An overloaded circuit or faulty components often reveal themselves through individual wires and outlets. If any of these are unusually warm or appear worn, immediately discontinue their use because they could result in a fire. You may not be able to identify the source of the problem on your own, but electricians are trained to find both the cause and the remedy. Another important item in any home is the smoke detector, which should also be checked and tested periodically.

Asking Electricians for Help

Building codes concerning such issues as circuit breakers and safety outlets are regularly updated. Electricians can provide property owners with the latest information and technology, and asking one of them for assistance can help you avoid a residential fire.