Around 1:00 a.m. I suddenly sat up in bed, overwhelmed by an urgent need to get up and go into the kitchen. I opened the door and headed down the hall – into a wall of smoke. When I reached the kitchen I discovered the flames shooting from our electric stove. A lunch box had already ignited and ash was beginning to form on the cupboards. My instincts saved our home and possibly our lives that night.
What disturbed me most was that the smoke alarm had not gone off and we had just replaced the batteries a couple of months earlier. I learned after the fact that those inexpensive wall mounted alarms have a relatively short life, and ours had expired. Needless to say, all of our smoke detectors were replaced the next day.
H Electric, a Beverly Hills electrician for over twenty years, encourages residents to review their homes for electrical safety. According to the United State Fire Administration (USFA), electrical fires cause over 28,000 home fires each year in the US, killing over 300 people and injuring another 1,100.
Top Causes of Home Fires
Faulty Electrical Wiring. According to the USFA, over half of the home fires occur as a result of faulty wiring. In some cases, the electrical wiring was old and frayed or the breaker box had become defective. In other cases, the wiring had been improperly installed by homeowners who opted to do their own electrical repairs and panel upgrades in lieu of using a licensed electrician. Beverly Hills CA requires electrical permits and inspections for a reason; lives depend upon proper electric installation.
Faulty Outlets. Do you have an irritating outlet that only works occasionally? Don’t just ignore it – let a licensed Beverly Hills electrician replace the outlet and check the attached electrical wiring. Not only will you benefit from having a working outlet, you could eliminate a possible threat of fire in your home or office.
Another cause for concern is “modified” two-prong electrical outlets that have been swapped out with three-prong outlets without any changes in the wiring. Some homeowners believe that all you need to do to upgrade your outlets is to insert a new one from the hardware store. This is not the case, however, since the electrical wiring for the two types is different. A licensed electrician from Beverly Hills can replace those outlets for you and make certain your home doesn’t have any faulty “modified” versions.
Improper Use of Extension Cords. At the time many Beverly Hills CA homes were built there were significantly fewer electrical devices. Now a variety of electrical appliances fill the kitchen, the old televisions have been replaced by entire home entertainment systems, and every member of the family has a computer of some type. Throw in a few stereos, computer games and the traditional lamps, and most of the older homes simply don’t have the outlet and electrical breaker capacity that’s necessary. Don’t take chances when trying to make up for the lack of your electrical capacity by attaching additional outlet extensions and draping electric cords around the house. Find out how electrical upgrades completed by a Beverly Hills CA electrician can make your home safer by increasing your entire electrical capacity.
Additional Safety Tips
Here are some other safety tips from an electrician in Beverly Hills.
- Install smoke detectors on each floor of the home – and then test them regularly!
- Replace any broken electrical outlets and switches
- If your circuit breakers pop off frequently, have an electrician from Beverly Hills check out your electric system to ascertain the cause.
- Make certain all switches and outlets are properly covered.
If you have questions about the electrical safety of your home and you need a Beverly Hills electrician, give H Electric a call today.