Fall and Winter Electrical Safety Tips
- Unplug and safely store battery chargers that won’t be in use again until spring.
- Keep dry leaves swept away from outdoor lighting, outlets, and power cords.
- Check outlets and make sure they are not overloaded or warm to the touch.
- Examine electrical cords for cracks, frays, and damaged plugs. Never run cords under rugs, furniture, or behind baseboards.
- Make sure light bulbs are the proper wattage and are securely screwed in light fixtures so bulbs don’t overheat and ignite curtains or nearby furniture.
- Outlets related to frequent circuit breaker trips or blown fuses should be inspected by a professional.
- Make sure bathroom, laundry rooms, kitchen, and outdoor outlets have ground fault circuit interrupters (GFCIs). Test and reset them monthly.
- Test your smoke detector batteries. Replace them if they are more than six months old.
- Make sure the wiring on indoor space heaters is adequate and check for cord fraying, splitting wires, or overheating.
- Don’t place a portable heater in high-traffic areas and keep it clear of curtains, bedding, clothes, and furniture.
- Don’t tuck your electric blanket into mattresses or under children and don’t put anything on top of the blanket while in use, such as a comforter or bedspreads.
- Treat all downed, hanging, or burning wires as though they are “live” and stay away from them.
- If you’re in a car that makes contact with a power line, stay inside if possible. If you have to get out, jump with your feet together. Then hop away, keeping both feet close together.
- Never connect generators to another power source such as power lines. The reverse flow of electricity or “backfeed” can electrocute an unsuspecting utility worker. Call us at 1-800-992-3269 to find out how to correctly install a generator.