Accidents are the leading cause of children ages one to 14. About 100 kids a year die from accidental electrocution, usually in the home. Most of these deaths are preventable. Home Furniture, Plumbing, Electrical, & Heating in Kankakee cares about the safety of children. Below, we’ll list some tips to keep your kids safe in your home from electricity, heating, and cooling systems. Contact us today for all your electrical service needs!
TIPS TO KEEP KIDS SAFE AROUND ELECTRICITY
- Cover all unused electrical outlets with safety plugs. If you’ve ever had a crawling baby and/or toddler, you know that electrical outlets are as mesmerizing as a hamster spinning in his wheel. If a child sticks in wet fingers (after having been sucking on them perhaps) or a metal object, an electrical shock or electrocution is a real possibility. Invest in plastic electrical outlet plugs (these are cheap) or child-proof receptacles, which cover unused outlets. Home Furniture, Plumbing, Electrical, & Heating offer installation and testing of these child-proof receptacles, or Tamper Resistant Receptacles (TRRs).
- Make sure all electrical appliances are grounded. A grounded wire is an additional path for an electrical current to return safely to the ground without danger to anyone in the event of a short circuit. The current would flow through this additional ground wire if a short circuit occurred, most likely causing a blown fuse or tripped circuit breaker instead of a fatal shock. Home Furniture, Plumbing, Electrical, & Heating offers installation and testing of Ground Fault Circuit Interrupters (GFCIs), which are outlets that should be used in kitchens, bathrooms, laundry areas, garages, outdoors, or any area where water may come into contact with electrical items.
- Don’t overload electrical sockets. Overload sockets occurs when you have too many items plugged into an electrical outlet. The outlet and/or cords are then at danger of overheating, which can lead to a devastating and potentially lethal fire. Extension cords can be overloaded as well. Home Furniture, Plumbing, Electrical, & Heating offers installation and testing of Arc Fault Circuit Interrupters (AFCIs), which are outlets that reduce the risk of fire from damaged, overheated, or stressed electrical wiring.
- Always check for loose and/or exposed wiring on cords. Exposed wiring on cords is the result of either an old appliance, one whose cord has been twisted too much, or a malfunction in the plastic coating on the wiring. This plastic coating keeps the electrons flowing through the wires and not into your body when you touch it. Studies show that only 0.05 amp of electric current can cause a heart attack, skin damage, and death. The electrical service coming to a typical US home is rated at 200 amps — more than enough to deliver a fatal electrical shock. Home Furniture, Plumbing, Electrical, & Heating repairs faulty wiring.
TIPS TO KEEP KIDS SAFE AROUND HEATING UNITS
- Invest in screens for fireplaces. Fires evoke a warm, fuzzy feeling in the height of a bitter cold winter. However, fires are also extremely dangerous and must be managed appropriately to prevent injury and/or a fire inside the home. A fireplace screen is a screen around a fire to prevent sparks from flying out and also forms a natural barrier to keep humans and kids a safe distance away from the flame. Electrical fireplaces often are screened in already. However, these screens often become extremely hot and can cause severe burns to the skin. Invest in a screen as well for these or use some other method of keeping children a safe distance from fireplaces.
- More safety precautions for fireplace operation. For wood fireplaces, make sure the chimney has been cleaned recently. For electrical fireplaces, make sure they have been secured with a valve cover or key so kids can’t easily turn them on.
- Use space heaters wisely. Space heaters, while amazing at their job in heating up spaces, also cause their fair share of fires in the home, some of which result in death. Space heaters need to be at least three feet away from beds, curtains, towels, or any other flammable materials. Furthermore, like electrical fireplaces, space heaters can get extremely hot, resulting in severe burns. Use these with caution always. Try to create barriers. Watch your kids around them.
- Screen off radiators and baseboard heating. Depending on the age of your home, you may have radiator and/or heating units throughout your home. These can become extremely hot. The best way to deal with baseboard heating is through education since a baseboard usually covers the entire width of a wall. Radiators work by drawing heat from water or steam and using that heat to warm up surrounding air. They are usually made from metal because it’s an excellent conductor of heat. If you have little kids who are not old enough to know any better, a radiator especially needs to be cordoned off. A fireplace screen can suffice. You can also make a custom radiator barrier or buy one that will fit your radiator specs.
- One more baseboard heating tip. Little kids find gravity fascinating. That’s why you see little kids constantly dropping things on purpose — their little minds are trying to figure out Isaac Newton’s laws. This leads to kids dropping things where they shouldn’t — such as floorboards with holes and toilets (when this happens, you’ll need to call Home Furniture, Plumbing, Electrical, & Heating in Kankakee to help). Items dropped into a floorboard can actually harm your entire heating system, requiring costly maintenance. Similarly, items dropped into toilets and flushed can wreak havoc on your septic system.
- Place a barrier around your hot water heater and your furnace. Most likely, this step is already taken care of as most of the time in homes your hot water heater and your furnace are in a separate room. However, if you have an unfinished basement or your heating elements are exposed, you’ll want to make sure your kids keep their distance. Water heaters are typically covered in insulation to prevent burns upon touch and furnaces typically don’t get hot enough to cause burns (they are just hot enough for your cat to snuggle up next to one). However, with kids, if there’s a way, they will find it. It’s always better to be safe rather than sorry when it comes to heat in your home.
TIPS TO KEEP KIDS SAFE AROUND COOLING UNITS
- Place a barrier around your central air conditioning unit. Kids love to explore. Thus, the air conditioning unit with blades that spin can become quite the object of fascination and can cause severe damage to little fingers. Place a child-proof barrier around your air conditioning unit, such as fencing or wire, to prevent injury.
The best way to prevent accidents is through educating your children early on the dangers of electricity and the items in your home that can cause them harm. This is extremely hard to do with babies, but toddlers understand the word “no” and explanations in simple terms do sink in — the reasoning why it’s dangerous may not, but the idea of “danger” is ingrained in all humans from birth.
HOME FURNITURE, PLUMBING, ELECTRICAL, & HEATING IN KANKAKEE
Home Furniture, Plumbing, Electrical, & Heating provides electrical safety and inspection services for your home or office in Kankakee. We’ll check anything and everything electrical and offer up recommendations of items we find that may pose an electrical hazard. We can install, repair, or replace your home’s main electrical panel or circuit breaker box or wire in additional outlets or circuits to handle the load that you’re using. Our local electricians can handle any electrical wiring task for your home or office.
Home Furniture, Plumbing, Electrical, & Heating is theTop Rated Local® heating, plumbing, electrical, and cooling company in Kankakee. We treat our clients like family on every visit, and we care about their well being. Kids are amazing creations who find the world an endless fountain of fascination. Parents must find the delicate balance of allowing kids to explore, but keeping them safe at the same time. We’re here to help you create that environment around your home, so they can explore safely, with our professionally trained, licensed electricians.
Home Furniture, Plumbing, Electrical, & Heating’s plumbing and HVAC repair experts can handle all of your plumbing, heating, electrical, and cooling needs. With heating and air conditioning repair from us, you’ll stay comfortable in the frigid winters and the hot summers here in the Midwest. Contact us today for all of your electrical service needs!