Electricity is a vital part of modern life, but it can cause fire, injury, and even death. Ensuring that your electrics are in good working condition doesn’t take much effort, and it can save you from serious consequences.
Here’s a quick look at what you need to consider in order to make your home safe. If you find a fault, or aren’t sure about something, get in touch with a qualified Edinburgh electrician.
Getting Your Electrics Installed by the Right People
You can avoid a whole host of problems by ensuring that a professional installs your electrics in the first place. Someone who isn’t professional could cut corners, use cheap components, or make mistakes. Choose electricians in Edinburgh who are registered with an appropriate scheme or body that is approved by the government.
Learn to Spot Old Wiring
No matter how well installed or how high the quality of the components are, they will deteriorate over time. Considering the wiring used several decades ago was made from substandard materials compared to today’s electrical components, the damage done by deterioration can be more extreme.
Look for things such as cables coated in fabric, lead, or black rubber, wall sockets with round pinholes, round light switches, and wall mounted light switches in bathrooms. If you spot any of these things, get in touch with electricians in Edinburgh and get them to inspect your property.
Use Your Plugs Safely
Before plugging an appliance in, you should check for several warning signs. The cable should be securely attached to both the appliance and the plug, and it should not be cut, damaged or worn. Neither the plug nor the socket you intend to put it in should have burn marks, or make crackling or buzzing sounds. The parts used should have the British standard safety mark on.
Don’t Make Easy Mistakes
Remember to always unplug an appliance before you try to undertake any maintenance on it. Never tuck cables under carpets or rugs, or hang clothes over an electric heater to dry. Never drill into a wall without knowing what is inside the wall, as you may end up touching a live cable.
Be Safe in the Kitchen
Always be careful when using electrical equipment in the kitchen, where there are likely to be hot surfaces and wet areas. Dry your hands before using any electrical equipment, and don’t fill appliances such as steam irons with water while they are still plugged in. Wait for an appliance that gets hot to completely cool down before wrapping cables around it.
Be Safe in the Bathroom
Water and electricity obviously don’t mix. You shouldn’t have a wall mounted socket in your bathroom unless it is fitted more than 3m away from your shower or bath. Electric bathroom heaters should be of a suitable type for there environment. If your bathroom has a pendant light fitting, it should be located well out of the way of someone who might be wet having just stepped out of the bath or shower.
Be Safe in the Garden
A residual current device is a life-saving measure that is fitted to many modern sockets. It can prevent a fatal electric shock, offering protection in a way that circuit breakers and fuses can’t. Make sure that if you are using mains powered electrical items such as hedge trimmers, power tools, or lawnmowers, that it is plug in to a socket with an RCD. It could save your life if you accidentally cut through the power cable.