Electricity is a convenience that we all enjoy, and it’s hard to believe that it’s only been common in homes for about a century. There are some inherent risks if electricity is used improperly, but most of us generally understand how to use it safely.

Our team at Gary Houston Electric has been serving homes and businesses for 4 decades and counting, and we’re a phone call or mouse click away if you ever have any questions about electrical safety. You might not think that you can afford to call an electrician if you don’t have any problems, but if you do have any hidden issues, making a service call can prevent electrical fires or injury to yourself or your family. Every home is different, and we’re always glad to offer specific recommendations, but here’s some general advice that will help you keep your home safe:

If you live in an older home, have your wiring inspected-When it comes to electrical problems that are common in older homes, older wiring can be a major problem, particularly if it still has cloth insulation. If your home is over 25 years old and hasn’t been inspected, you owe it to yourself and your family to have your wiring checked from top to bottom.

Make sure that all household outlets are grounded-If your home still has any 2-prong outlets remaining, switching them out can be as cheap as a couple of dollars an outlet. You should also install ground fault circuit interrupter (GFCI) outlets outdoors, and in your kitchen and bathrooms.

Use power strips responsibly-We love our electronic devices such as our computers, stereos, and televisions, but they often require more plug-ins than can be provided in a conventional outlet. That’s why power strips are so common in households. Some power strips have built-in circuit breakers and offer surge protection, and some of the cheaper ones simply facilitate plugging more devices into a single outlet. The good news is that most household electronics use relatively low wattage, and using a power strip isn’t a problem. Just be sure to never plug a space heater or hair dryer into a power strip.

When it comes to electricity, safety is no accident! If you ever have any questions about electrical safety, contact us online, or at 501-375-8330.