It can be tempting to plug in an array of appliances or devices very close to one another, especially when that short distance makes your daily routine more convenient.
However, it is best to avoid overloading electrical outlets in order to prevent power overload, which can result in damage, fire, electrocution, and even serious injuries, including death.
Outlet overload is a topic on which you should be well-informed, not only due to the risks that the issue poses but also in order to be more energy-efficient and to curb electrical costs as much as possible.
Here are some of the most critical points to consider when it comes to preventing an overload of electrical energy.
Overloaded Outlets: An Electrical PowerPoint
With all of the events going on in our daily lives, it can be easy to dismiss or not even think about potential fire or electrocution hazards in your own home—until it is too late.
- Electrical outlets are a source of power for the appliances and digital devices you use every day.
- Taking some simple precautionary measures to protect yourself and your family is more than worth the effort.
- The first step you can take is to do a check for loose or damaged outlets/outlet covers in each room of your home.
- Outlets and outlet covers need to be flush to the wall to function safely and properly.
- Checking for any exposed, damaged (think frayed, corroded, etc.) wires in your home can also prevent using potentially hazardous materials.
- Power strips and extension cords are also important to check. Make sure that if you have these plugged into outlets, they are not placed in high-traffic areas. This could cause slips and falls, as well as damage to the cords or wires that could result in electrocution or fire hazards.
- For power strips, do a “temperature check.” When placing your hand over the power strip, it should feel completely cool to the touch.
- Any warm or (especially) hot power strips are likely overloaded, and at risk for a power surge, short-circuiting and possibly leading to an electrical fire.
- Before attempting to DIY any suspected electrical issue, make sure the breaker that supplies power to that outlet has been switched off.
- If you’re worried that the issue is more than you can handle, you can always enlist the help of a professional electrician to expertly tackle the situation—as well as give you peace of mind.
- The general rule of thumb used to ensure that an outlet is not overloaded is to plug no more than one device or appliance into each outlet.
- Spacing these plugs out alleviates the burden of too much power surging to a particular area/outlet.
- In order to keep potential electrical risks at bay, you may also want to consider switching to a prepaid energy plan from Peso Power, the #1 retail energy provider in Texas.
- Prepaid electricity plans allow customers to pay ahead of time for their electricity consumption—before it is even used.
- Unlike traditional postpaid plans, where consumers use a certain amount of energy each month and then receive a bill after the fact, prepaid plans and electronic devices called Smart Meters allow customers to track, monitor, and scale back as needed with their consumption habits.
- Prepaid plans also afford customers the option to add more funds as needed to tide their account over until the beginning of the next billing cycle.
- Consumers who are concerned with cutting costs by saving energy (as well as being able to spot potential electrical malfunctions or problems before it is too late) often find that a prepaid energy plan puts them more in control than a postpaid plan.
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