Electrical Safety Tips for Your Springtime Home Improvement ProjectsAlong with spring comes the urge to clean, reorganize and improve your home after the cold of winter. If you’re gearing up for spring home improvement projects to spruce up your house and prepare for a busy summer ahead, keep these electrical safety tips in mind while working.
#1 Unplug power tools.You know water and electricity don’t mix, but this might not be on your mind while you’re busy with a multi-step project. Lawn jobs, for example, may require you to use an electric hedge trimmer, lawn mower and leaf blower — all of which require cleaning. After working with a power tool, you’ll want to clean it up before storing, but be sure to unplug everything before you rinse it off to prevent shocks.
#2 Check cords for problems.Electric power tools are convenient because you don’t have to pause your work to refill their gas, but their extension cords are one necessity that can become dangerous if they wear out. It’s easy to nick a cord while you’re working with a cutting tool like your mower. Always check your longer extension cords before you plug them into an outlet. If you see nicks or frays, don’t use them — replace them ASAP.
#3 Ensure outdoor outlets are grounded.Because outdoor outlets come into contact with year-round precipitation, they need ground fault circuit interrupters (GFCIs). A GFCI trips and shuts off power to the outlet by sensing if the current flows in an unintended way, such as through water. GFCIs can be literal lifesavers. Make sure all your outdoor outlets are equipped with these safeguards, and remember that this installation isn’t a DIY job. Hire an electrician who’s experienced in working with electricity in wet environments.
#4 Remember that indoor projects carry electrical dangers.If you’re revving up for a DIY project indoors, electricity should be a primary concern. Cutting into a wall for any reason, or even drilling to hang up a new TV, requires extreme care not to hit an electrical wire or water line. It’s sometimes easier to avoid wires and water lines upstairs, but if you’re working in a finished basement, it can be more of a challenge. Use caution, and don’t hesitate to contact a pro if you’re unsure how to proceed.
#5 Be careful with pressure washers.Pressure washers and wet-dry vacuums combine two dangers: water and electricity. Spring is the time of year when many people break out their washers to clean driveways and siding. If these tools have nicked or frayed cords that get wet, you could be in for a hazardous shock. The same goes for a wet vacuum used for cleanup. Check all power cords before plugging them in.
Do you need electrical services or maintenance as part of your spring home improvement? Call on Clover Electric. We’ve been serving Cleveland residents for more than 30 years and are ready to help you. Get in touch today!