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Electrical  /  September 6, 2022

4 Electrical Mistakes Homeowners Make That Can Damage Appliances

Electrical mistakes that can damage appliance

When it comes to electronics, most people simply want them to turn on and work as expected, without giving much thought to the intricacies behind how they work. However, as an electrician in Edmonton would tell you, it is important to maintain electronics so that they continue to function properly. Preventing damage to property is typically easier than repairing the item after the fact. Here are four mistakes homeowners make that can damage appliances.

1. Keeping Small Appliances Plugged In

It is very convenient to keep appliances plugged in, as it allows people to simply turn on a switch each time they want to use an electronic device. However, this poses several safety risks and can cause damage to the appliance as well. In the case of a power surge, it is important that as few devices are already connected to the outlet as possible. In addition, it is a best safety practice to unplug items that might come into contact with water, which is the case with most appliances in the kitchen and bathroom.

Items such as coffee makers, vacuums and hair dryers are usually used only once or twice per day and should be kept unplugged for the remainder of the day. Things like clocks are necessary to keep plugged in; however, consider unplugging those along with large electronic like computers and televisions if you will be away from home for an extended period of time.

2. Not Drying Hands Before Use

Handling electronics with wet hands is dangerous, along with using them if anywhere in your body is touching the water. Refrain from doing activities such as drying your hair while standing in the tub and even turning the light on or off after washing your hands and before thoroughly drying them. If a plugged-in appliance happens to fall into the water, such as a hair straightener falling into the sink or tub, first turn the breaker off and then proceed to unplug the appliance before removing it from the water.

3. Stretching Power Cords

Sometimes power outlets are not in the most convenient location and it requires maneuvering the power cords a bit to plug in an appliance. However, resist the temptation to stretch the cords as this poses several hazards:

  • Tautly stretched power cords can easily be tripped over by kids or adults who are not paying attention or who do not see well 
  • A stretched cord can cause an electrical arc more easily, which can lead to a fire 
  • Cords that are routinely stretched experience wear and tear more quickly, which leads to the wires within the cord being exposed 

Rather than stretching the power cord, move the device you want to plug in closer to the power source or consider using an extension cord for lower-energy appliances like clocks and small televisions.

4. Overloading Power Strips

Power strips are good in cases where you have more appliances in a particular location than you have power outlets. However, while convenient, it is hazardous to plug too many devices into these strips. This is particularly the case when you are dealing with high-energy devices such as air conditioning units and space heaters. Power strips are made to deal with certain amounts of electricity, and going over that amount can lead to appliance damage and even electrical fires. While electrical repair services can fix such issues after they occur, it is a good idea to prevent things like fires from happening in the first place.

Contact Handyman Connection if you need help fixing or installing anything that involves electricity. A professional is much more likely than an amateur homeowner to do a safe and thorough rewiring or another electrical job.

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