Appliance Safety Tips

The appliances inside a home make your life much easier, but when you use them unsafely, they could produce significant risks. It is important to protect appliances and make sure they do not turn into dangers by adhering to these helpful household appliance safety recommendations from Chesapeake Appliance Repair.

The tips in this article can help prevent fires and injuries from appliances. Even still, hazards can still happen. If an appliance has issues or begins to malfunction and becomes a danger, call a appliance repair Chesapeake.

GFCI Outlets in Wet Locations

Laundry rooms, kitchens, bathrooms, basements, outdoor areas and garages can be susceptible to possible dampness or water. As you well know, electricity and moisture do not mix, that means power cords should always be plugged into ground-fault circuit interrupters (GFCIs).

This can prevent electrocution by tripping the circuit if any inconsistencies in power arise.

If you don’t have GFCI outlets installed in wet areas around your home, it’s time to install them or call an electrician in Chesapeake. Then, for further safety, follow the warnings of appliance manuals that note that they are not for outdoor areas.

Wires, Outlets & Electronics Far Away From Water

Quite a few appliances are specifically built for outdoor use, such as barbecue grills, for example. If you have any electrical appliances outside – including refrigerators, dishwashers, ice makers and freezers, electric tools and more – be sure that all plugs and outlets are dry. Using weatherproof electronics will help with this, combined with GFCI outlets with gaskets that are water-tight.

Extension Cords are Only a Temporary Answer

An extension cord poses several potential risks, including:

The chance for a loose connection that could result in sparks and a fire.
The likelihood of power fluctuations that might damage the appliance.
Increased vulnerability to moisture penetration that may lead to electrocution.
The potential for cords overheating and becoming a fire hazard when an insufficient extension cord is used for a high-power appliance.

When choosing an extension cord for short-term use, ensure it is the correct gauge for the electrical tool in question. The smaller the gauge, the larger the size for the cord. For example, a basic electrical extension cord for a garden tool might have a 16-gauge cord whereas a longer cord for a AC unit requires a 12-gauge wire.

Length is also important. The longer the cord, the more power is lost enroute, a phenomenon called voltage drop. Short extension cords are recommended for electric tools and similar outdoor equipment.

Be Sure to Read the Operating Manual for Any Appliance You Purchase

It’s simple to assume that you know how to operate your new washing machine or dishwasher without reading the operating manual, but consulting the manufacturer guidelines is important for many reasons:

You will find out if your house’s wiring is sufficient to support the appliance. You may have to install a better circuit to prevent overloading your existing ones.

You learn about features you would not have otherwise have known.
You discover if the new appliance is OK for outdoor areas or not.

You don’t have the extreme frustration that can come from attempting to run a appliance with no instructions!

Unplug Small Appliances in Your Home When Not in Use

You are able to limit unnecessary energy use by unplugging them when not in use. The reason is small appliances include LED lights, timers and other energy-consuming features during standby times.

Unplug TVs, computer monitors, routers, video game consoles, cellphone chargers and more to cut back on wasteful energy usage. Just remember, it is OK to keep DVRs and similar items plugged in to not miss their automatic background functions.

For even more tips on using appliances safely, or to hire a local appliance repair service, please contact Chesapeake Appliance Repair. Our technicians can repair all common household appliances!


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