One in seven home fires is an electrical fire. Some of these fires are caused by electrical system failures and appliance defects, but many more are caused by the misuse and poor maintenance of electrical appliances, incorrectly installed wiring, and overloaded circuits and extension cords.
- Always plug major appliances, like refrigerators, stoves, washers and dryers, directly into a wall outlet.
- Never use an extension cord with a major appliance, it can easily overheat and start a fire.
- Always plug small appliances directly into a wall outlet.
- Unplug small appliances when you are not using them.
- Keep lamps, light fixtures and light bulbs away from anything that can burn.
- Use light bulbs that match the recommended wattage on the lamp or fixture.
- Check electrical cords on appliances often. Replace cracked, damaged and loose electrical cords.
- Do not try to repair them.
Extension Cords, Power Strips and Surge Protectors
- Replace worn, old or damaged extension cords right away.
- Use extension cords for temporary purposes only.
- Avoid putting cords where they can be damaged or pinched, like under a carpet or rug.
- Do not overload power strips.
- Use power strips that have internal overload protection.
- Do not overload wall outlets.Insert plugs fully into sockets.
- Never force a three-prong cord into a two-slot outlet.
- Install tamper-resistant electrical outlets if you have young children.
Make sure all electrical work in your home is done by a qualified electrician!