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Picking the Right Type of Outlet for Home Safety

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Electrical Outlets with Built-in Safety Features

Modern life simply wouldn't be possible without constant access to power. Unfortunately, having readily available electricity comes at a cost. Every year, electricity is the second leading cause of fires in the home, and numerous electrocutions occur every year.

Over the decades, building codes and technology have made tremendous strides toward the electrical safety of homes. Here are three common types of outlets aimed at home electrical safety. Installing these according to the newest building codes with professional help can nullify dangerous electrical threats.

Arc Fault Circuit Interrupters or AFCI Outlets

Threats from electricity can basically be boiled down to two types: electrocution and fire. The number of electrical fires that require emergency calls every year is staggering. Most home fires can be attributed to electrical arcs that spark off a fire near flammable materials.

Electrical arcs occur when a wire's sheathing is damaged. Electricity always looks for the easiest path to the ground, so when sheathing is damaged, the electricity tries to hop across the gap from a hot wire to the ground. In doing so, the resulting arc can reach thousands of degrees and melt the insulation.

AFCI outlets sense the current spike when an electrical arc occurs. In a fraction of a second, they can cut power to the circuit to prevent overheating and stop the fire before it starts. AFCI outlets help prevent electrical fires and keep homes safe.

Ground Fault Circuit Interrupters or GFCI Outlets

Electrocution is another big danger of electricity in a home. The most common occurrence of electrical shocks happens when electricity finds an easier path to ground through a human body. These conditions generally occur when water is present.

The occurrence of electric shocks has declined rapidly over the years thanks to electrical codes that insist on GFCI outlets near any water source. GFCI outlets sense the spike in current that occurs when electricity finds an easy path to the ground and quickly trips the circuit to stop the flow of electricity. GFCIs are required in kitchens, bathrooms, and outdoor outlets.

Homeowners should consult electricians to ensure the proper outlets are in place for complete protection. In addition, homeowners should test their GFCI outlets twice yearly to ensure proper operation.

Childproof Outlets for Family Safety

The third type of outlet for total home safety is childproof outlets. Toddlers are curious and can find outlets incredibly interesting since many are at eye level for them. Too often, toddlers try to stick toys or other foreign objects into outlets. The results can be painful and tragic.

Childproof outlets have special internal, spring-loaded plastic guards covering the outlet openings when not in use. Electricians should install these devices in homes with young children or children on the way. Childproof outlets are invaluable for protecting the youngest members of the family.

About Snappy Electric, Plumbing, Heating, & Air

Snappy Electric, Plumbing, Heating, & Air is a locally owned and operated company serving Marietta, GA, and the surrounding areas. They offer upfront pricing, 24/7 emergency service, and payment flexibility. Call them today for outlet installation in Marietta, GA.