We would like to share the most important HVAC electrical safety tips to keep your home and family safe from electrical fires, injuries, and even death. Modern life depends on electricity. We take it for granted. Simply plug in and get power. Just remember electricity has the power to kill. In the US alone, there are over 51,000 electrical fires every year, accounting for nearly 500 deaths, over 1,400 injuries, and about $1.3 billion in property damage. Keep your family safe with the following HVAC safety checklist…
Have Professional HVAC Maintenance at Least Twice a Year
In the early Fall schedule your heating inspection and in the early Spring schedule your air conditioning maintenance. You do not want surprises when it comes to your HVAC so this schedule will assure you your equipment will work safely and efficiently all year long. When you hire a certified HVAC technician you can rest assured that they will clean your system and make sure you have no carbon monoxide or refrigerant leaks. Check all the Electrical components…
- Inspect for proper rating and safe installation of the electrical disconnect box
- Inspect and tighten connections for all wiring
- Test/inspect contacts for burned, pitted contacts, Inspect electrical for exposed wiring
- Inspect and test capacitors
- Inspect fan and blower motor
- Cleaning of entire system
Test Smoke and Carbon Monoxide Alarms
Carbon Monoxide and Smoke alarms are two of the most important devices attached to an all-encompassing home security system. Both devices are life-saving tools, but to get the most of them, they must be working properly. This is where testing comes in. Smoke and Carbon Monoxide alarms save lives. Sixty-five percent of home fire deaths result from fires in homes with no working smoke detectors. Test your safety alarms every 30 days. Replace your batteries one a year. Replace bot alarms every 10 years. Install detectors on every floor of your home.
Practice Your Emergency Escape Plan
God forbid a fire does occur, you usually only have a few minutes to escape. Everyone in the household needs to know what do and where to go—FAST!
- Draw a map of your home.
- Show all doors and windows.
- Visit each room. Find two ways out.
- All windows and doors should open easily. You should be able to use them to get outside.
- Make sure your home has smoke alarms. Push the test button to make sure each alarm is working.
- Pick a meeting place outside. It should be in front of your home. Everyone will meet at the meeting place.
- Make sure your house or building number can be seen from the street.
- Talk about your plan with everyone in your home.
- Learn the emergency phone number for your fire department.
- Call the Fire Department from outside
- Practice your home fire escape drill!
Keep Your Child Safe From Electrical Dangers
- Include outlet covers or rearrange furniture if you have unused outlets
- You can also purchase safety covers for power strips.
- Place electrical devices such as DVD players on a shelf and out of reach.
- Bathroom and kitchen appliances such as hair dryers or toasters should be kept hight up and out of reach.
- Tie all electrical wires together, making it difficult for a child’s hand to grasp them.
- Conduct regular electrical inspections to keep your system up to code.
- All heating and cooling equipment, including portable space heaters should be a KID-FREE ZONE. Mark off an area 3 feet around any open fires and HVAC equipment and teach children to always avoid these areas.
- Don’t overload your outlets. If you need more power, call an electrician to add more outlets or another circuit if necessary.
Have a discussion with your young ones about how to play and behave around heating, cooling, and electrical equipment.
Heating Equipment Safety
Heating equipment is a leading cause of home fire deaths. Half of home heating equipment fires are reported during the months of December, January, and February. Some simple steps can prevent most heating-related fires from happening.
- Keep anything that can burn at least three feet away from heating equipment, like the furnace, fireplace, wood stove, or portable space heater.
- Have a three-foot “kid-free zone” around open fires and space heaters.
- Never use your oven to heat your home.
- Have a qualified professional put in stationary space heating equipment, central heating and water heating equipment according to the local codes and manufacturer’s instructions.
- Have heating equipment and chimneys cleaned and inspected every year by a qualified professional.
- Remember to turn portable heaters off when leaving the room or going to bed.
- Always use the right kind of fuel, specified by the manufacturer, for fuel burning space heaters.
- Make sure the fireplace has a sturdy screen to stop sparks from flying into the room. Ashes should be cool before putting them in a metal container. Keep the container a safe distance away from your home.
- Test smoke alarms at least once a month.
- Plug portable space heaters directly into the outlet! Don’t use power strips or extension cords.
- Never turn your furnace or air conditioner on for the season without changing your air filter. If your filter is dirty enough, it could pose a fire hazard.
Extension Cord Safety
Replace any damaged extension cords, especially fraying or exposed cords.
- Extension cords should only be used on a temporary basis.
- Make sure extension cords are properly rated for their intended use, indoor or outdoor, and meet or exceed the power needs of the appliance or device being used.
- Inspect cords for damage before use. Check for cracked or frayed sockets, loose or bare wires, and loose connections.
- Never use a cord that feels hot or is damaged in any way.
- Do not run extension cords through walls or ceilings. This may cause the cord to overheat, creating a serious fire hazard.
- Do not nail or staple electrical cords to walls or baseboards.
- Make sure that cords are not pinched in doors, windows, or under anything heavy, which could damage the cord’s insulation.
- Keep extension cords out of high-traffic areas like doorways or walkways where they pose a tripping hazard.
- Insert plugs fully so that no part of the prongs is exposed when the extension cord is in use.
- Ensure that all extension cords are certified by a nationally recognized testing laboratory such as UL, CSA, or ETL, and read the manufacturer’s instructions.
- If you are using an extension cord outdoors, make sure it has been approved for outdoor use
Benefits of Phoenix Comfort Systems Planned Maintenance Program
- Inspection and tune-ups allow us to find and fix minor issues before they can become larger issues.
- Tune-ups on your heating and air conditioning systems will improve your comfort and save you up to 50% on your energy costs.
- If a repair of ours fails during that season, we will repair it again at no charge.
- We keep track of your inspection and tune-up schedule and will contact you to schedule the appointments.
- You receive priority service and are moved to the top of the service list if your system is having problems.
Phoenix Comfort Systems can help you fix all of these problems quickly and efficiently. Call a pro! Call Phoenix Comfort Systems!
Contact us (859-918-5400) for a Free Consultation!
About Phoenix Comfort Systems
Phoenix Comfort provides a full range of air conditioning and heating repair, installation, and maintenance services for residential and commercial customers. We keep your air conditioning and heating systems in their best condition and ready to go when you need them most, following the industry’s “best practice” methods and standards. Phoenix Comfort carries a full line of quiet, energy-efficient air conditioning and heating equipment.
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