May is National Electrical Safety Month and a good time to sweep your home for electrical safety risks. Here are five that many homeowners overlook:
- Unplug and store all extension cords. They are not designed for prolonged use. If yours are hiding under carpets, they could overheat or get stepped on and damaged, and that can start a fire.
- If you have more than one power strip plugged into an outlet, chances are good that you are overloading your circuits, especially if you live in an older house. If you don’t have enough outlets, ask a licensed electrician to add more.
- Kitchen countertop appliances should be plugged into three-prong, GFCI receptacles. Any electric appliance that you use near water could shock or even electrocute someone.
- Change the batteries in your smoke alarms twice a year and test them monthly to make sure they’re operating properly.
- Did you know table lamps and overhead light fixtures are designed for specific light bulb wattages? Check yours and change any lightbulb whose wattage exceeds the fixture’s capacity.