Expert Electrical

Important Winter Electrical Safety Tips

Dec 7, 2021 | Electrical Safety

Freezing temperatures, snow, and excessive precipitation can intensely stress your home’s electrical system. To ensure that your home stays safe and comfortable throughout the cold winter months, many precautions and other actions should be taken. As leading providers of commercial and residential electrical services, the team at Expert Electric knows how vital winter preparation is for homes of all sizes. That is why we have compiled some critical winter electrical safety tips to help you ensure that your home is sufficiently prepared.

Learn about the importance of surge protection for your home.

4 Electrical Tips to Keep Your Home Safe During Winter

To keep your home safe from various electrical hazards during winter, consider the following tips:

1. Be Prepared for Power Outages

Power outages are most common in winter due to excessive snow, the formation of ice, and windy conditions that can damage power lines, transformers, and other vital power components. Should an outage occur, it is always better to be prepared. Ensure that you have several easily accessible LED flashlights or other battery-powered light sources ready for use to maintain visibility. Sometimes, it is possible to be without power for up to 72 hours. Ensure you are fully prepared with an emergency kit containing enough supplies to last up to 72 hours without power. Some of the supplies that your power outage emergency kit should include are batteries, candles, matches, flashlights, bottled water, and non-perishable foods.

2. Utilize Surge Protect

Prepared for power surges is just as crucial as preparing for power outages, especially considering the rapid and potentially devastating impact surges can have on your home’s electrical devices. Power surges, brief as they may be, can inflict significant damage on your electronics and appliances, degrading their performance or rendering them inoperable. Incorporating surge protectors is a wise strategy to mitigate the risks associated with these sudden spikes in electrical voltage. For individual outlets, especially those powering your most valuable or sensitive devices, using small surge protectors or power strips can provide an immediate layer of defense.

For a more comprehensive solution, consider the installation of a whole-home surge protector. This system offers a robust shield against surges, safeguarding all the appliances in your home by regulating the electrical flow and preventing excess voltage from causing harm. Investing in such protective measures extends the lifespan of your appliances and provides peace of mind, knowing your home is fortified against unexpected electrical surges.

Important Winter Electrical Safety Tips

3. Exercise Caution with Zone Heaters

Zone heaters offer an efficient solution for targeted heating, enabling you to warm specific areas of your home without the need to heat unused spaces, thus saving energy. However, their convenience does not negate the need for cautious usage to prevent fire risks. Ensuring a safe distance— a minimum of 3 feet— from any flammable materials like curtains, blankets, or upholstery is essential to avoid potential ignition from the heater’s warmth. Equally important is the placement of the heater on a stable, non-flammable surface to prevent overheating and ensure it doesn’t tip over.

Moreover, the electrical safety of zone heaters is paramount. They should be connected directly to a wall outlet to handle their power requirements adequately. Using an extension cord can lead to overheating and potentially cause a fire hazard due to the inability of the cord to handle the electrical load. By adhering to these safety guidelines, you can enjoy the comfort and efficiency of your zone heater without compromising the safety of your home and loved ones.

4. Consider Purchasing a Backup Generator

Living in a remote area poses unique challenges, particularly when maintaining power during extended outages. In such instances, a backup generator becomes both a convenience and a necessity. It serves as a critical lifeline, supplying power to essential home areas like the refrigerator to prevent food spoilage and heaters to keep your family warm during cold snaps. Investing in a generator suited to your home’s needs ensures you’re prepared for any situation, providing peace of mind that you can maintain a semblance of normalcy even when the power grid fails.

Regular maintenance is critical to reliability for those with a generator, especially as winter approaches. You are checking that the generator is fully fueled and in optimal working condition, which should be a part of your seasonal preparations. This proactive approach ensures that your backup power source is ready to seamlessly take over when the need arises, keeping your home’s critical systems operational until the main power supply is restored.

To learn more about winter electrical safety or to inquire about our electrical services, get in touch with the team at Expert Electric. We can be reached through our online contact form and will happily answer any questions regarding our services.