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Electrical / March 30, 2023
While electricity is essential to modern life and conveniences, it is also dangerous when people do not take the proper precautions. A professional electrician in Calgary can help you understand the fundamentals of outdoor electrical safety by offering several essential tips.
Most people know electricity and water do not mix; the combination is hazardous and potentially life-threatening. Many homeowners enjoy the convenience of having electrical outlets in several areas around their yard, but those outlets must be Ground Fault Circuit Interrupters or GFCI outlets. The outlets monitor electrical current and cut the power or trip when the electrical current is erratic or too strong. Having GFCI outlets near a pool can help prevent electrocution.
Beyond installing the proper outlets around the pool and patio, it is vital to keep all electronics as far away from the water as possible. Do not have fans or stereos sitting on the edge of the pool. While you can have music around the pool, keeping any electronics several feet away from the pool edge and clear of splash zones is best.
Electrical repair services often receive calls because of the misuse of extension cords. While extension cords are a convenient way to bring power to the outdoors, homeowners must abide by the rule of “right cord, right place, and right use.”
When using an extension cord outdoors, ensure it is the “right cord” by ensuring it is rated for that specific use. Using indoor extensions outside can cause shock, fire, or electrocution. You also must ensure the cord has an appropriate capacity for your intended use and should never connect extensions in strings. Also, only use grounded extensions, those with three prongs. Finally, check the cord before you use it, ensuring it is in good condition.
The “right place” for an outdoor extension cord is along the ground, unobstructed, and out of the way. Do not drape the cord out of windows or through doorways because it can get damaged from rubbing or being pinched. Also, only plug outdoor extensions into GFCI outlets.
The “right use” refers to the way you handle extension cords. For example, an extension is not meant for long-term power supply. Keeping outdoor extensions outside for too long will result in damage and present potential hazards. Also, never bury an extension cord underground. If you need power underground, hire a contractor to install properly rated lines and systems. Finally, avoid stapling extension cords to structures or draping them over nails; both can cause damage to the cord.
Powerlines drape across yards and stretch underground. When performing yard work or playing with your children, keep an eye out for electrical lines and avoid them at all costs.
Many neighbourhoods have powerlines running through trees. It is vital to watch for lines when trimming trees. You want your ladder and pruner to remain a minimum of three meters away from the line or risk electrocution. You should also stay clear of the service mast attached to your home.
Finally, do not dig in your yard without first calling the city or local electrical service provider. You might have underground lines running through your property.
When dealing with your home electrical system, working with a licensed electrician is best. They can help you understand the proper extension cords for outdoor use and ensure that your outdoor plugs and systems are up to code. If you need help with your electrical, contact Handyman Connection and schedule a home assessment with one of its many experienced and licensed electrical contractors.