Electrical fires at home are a very common occurrence. In many cases, these occur due to electrical malfunctions or a malfunction of an electrical device. Other times, it happens because of the wrong usage of the electrical system in a home.
Electrical fires cause a lot of damage in every household. Each year, around 45,000 homes have them, leading to over 500 deaths, and about 1,400 injuries, and causing around $1.5 billion in property damage. This was according to the National Fire Protection Agency (NFPA).
An electrical fire can cause immense destruction. It not only creates a massive mess that needs to be cleaned up, but it can also lead to costly repairs for your home and belongings.
To avoid such a situation, learn about the reasons behind electrical fires and take necessary precautions to safeguard your home.
What Causes Electrical Fires At Home
Faulty Electrical Outlets
Most electrical fires at homes happen due to faulty electrical outlets. Over time, outlets, and switches get worn and damaged. In some cases, fires begin in homes due to old or frayed appliance cords and self-joined wires. These damaged cords can send heat to combustible materials like rugs, carpets, floors, and curtains.
Another common reason for electrical fires at home is loading light fixtures with lamps or bulbs that are too large. When a bulb installed is higher than its permissible wattage, it can lead to overheating of the fixtures and cause the socket and the wire insulation to melt. When this happens, you are putting yourself at risk for arc faults or worse, fire damage.
Extension Cords For Appliances
Extension cords are very convenient when it comes to bringing power to your electrical devices. But using them without proper precautions can become a major fire hazard. Using extension cords should only be a temporary use. They are not meant to be used for plugging in devices permanently. Furthermore, plugging in multiple devices (for instance, TV, computer, home theater, and others) to an extension cord can cause them to handle too much load and eventually start a fire.
The common signs of overloaded circuits are a frequent trip of breakers and flickering lights. In general, a breaker trips to prevent overheating which can cause a fire. But often, people will just simply reset the tripped breakers. This will just put constant strain on the breakers and slowly become damaged, which can lead to electrical fires at home.
Outdated or Old Electrical Systems
Over time, you install more and more electrical devices in your home such as refrigerators, home theater, air conditioners, and others. Yet, you haven’t upgraded your electrical systems. Your outdated electrical wiring may not have the capacity to handle the increased power load of your electrical devices. If this is the case, your old wiring will heat up quickly and cause electrical fires at home.
How To Prevent Electrical Fires At Home
While it is important to know the causes of electrical fires at home, it is also important to take steps to prevent them from happening in the first place. To protect your home from electrical fires, follow these steps.
1. Inspect electrical plugs and cords regularly to reduce the risk of electrical fires.
2. Never use frayed or worn wires, cords, or plugs. Instead, discard them.
3. Only use light bulbs that match the recommended wattage capacity of the fixture.
4. Never use extension cords with heating equipment or major appliances. They should only be used for temporary use.
5. Avoid overloading electrical outlets. If you require more circuits, seek advice from an electrician.
6. Stay alert for any signs of electrical issues, like lights flickering, circuit breakers frequently tripping, or fuses blowing often. Another warning sign is a burning smell when you plug in an electrical device. Immediately contact a professional technician.
Recovering From An Electrical Fire? Contact Superior Restoration Company
By now, you may have an idea of how to protect your home from an electrical fire. But in case a fire has taken its toll and caused damage to your home, make sure to contact a certified fire damage restoration company.
Cleaning up after a fire can be incredibly frustrating. If you don’t have the right know-how and tools, you might accidentally make matters worse for your home. The fire itself, along with the smoke, soot, and water used to put it out, can cause even more extensive damage if not handled properly. That’s where Water Damage Riverside from Superior Restoration Company comes in. We offer services to mitigate and restore fire damage, guaranteeing that your home will be returned to its pre-damaged state. Get in touch with us today to find out more about our fire damage restoration services.