Most outlet overloads happen simply because the home has not been wired to handle the kind of electrical demands of today. If you live in a new home or a home that has had new wiring installed, then you know what amperage your home can withstand. However, how can you avoid overloading the outlets when you don’t know exactly when the wiring was installed?
Tips to Avoid Accidental Outlet Overload
By following a few basic guidelines, you can avoid accidentally overloading the outlets in your home.
- It takes a tremendous amount of electricity to power big appliances, such as washers, dryers, and air conditioners. Plug major home appliances into their own designated outlet.
- Find out how much power you’re going to need before plugging something into the outlet. A good rule of thumb is not to exceed 1,500 watts per outlet.
- Plug no more than two appliances into an outlet at one time. Don’t heap extra appliances onto your outlets by adding extension cords. If you need more than two items plugged into an outlet, make sure it is designed for multiple plugs.
Consequences of Overloading Outlets
The National Fire Protection Association estimates that about half the homes in the United States are at least 30 years old. Older homes are easily overloaded by modern electrical gadgets, putting them in a position for an electrical fire. Fire devastates and displaces families, at the very least. The NFPA has determined that electrical fires are the among the leading causes of building fires each year, causing 420 fatalities, 1,520 injuries, and over $1.5 billion in property damage.
Keep Your Family and Possessions Safe
Look for signs of overloaded outlets, such as flickering lights, tripping circuit breakers, and cords that feel warm or become discolored. Of course, the best defense against electrical fire is a properly-wired home. Having the wiring in your house professionally replaced will ensure that it can handle today’s electrical demands with ease. If you need a qualified electrician in Baltimore County, Tim Kyle Electric provides the professional services you need. Contact us today for more information about rewiring your home.