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What Causes Electrical Fires?

Electrical fires can come from a variety of different sources, and all of them are easily preventable with the help of a licensed electrician. It’s easy to think this won’t happen to you, but the recent electrical fire incident in Asbury Park highlights just how important it is to regularly make sure everything is up to date in your house.

  • Faulty outlets and appliances: Old appliances not built to modern safety regulations are one of the biggest culprits of electrical fires. Appliances with worn or frayed cords are incredibly dangerous, and should be replaced immediately.
  • Running cords under rugs: Be careful where you’re running cords from appliances. People step on cords under rugs, trampling them and reducing their ability to effectively transmit current, which in turn causes them to overheat underneath what is usually a flammable material.
  • Light Fixtures: Always double check the maximum allowed wattage for any lighting fixtures before you install any new light bulbs. Additionally, avoid putting cloth over lighting fixtures, as these can catch fire easily.
  • Extension Cords: Remember–extension cords are not a permanent solution. When possible, always have appliances plugged into wall outlets directly and treat extension cords as a temporary measure.
  • Installing GFCI’s: GFCI is a Ground Fault Circuit Interrupter, and is a smart outlet designed to protect your electrical system from electrical shock.
  • Old Wiring: If a home is over 20 years old, it may not be equipped to handle the electrical demands of modern appliances. Aluminum wiring is outdated due to its vulnerability to corrosion, and may need to be upgraded to copper wiring. Old breakers with faulty connectors may not trip when circuits get overloaded, leading to dangerous house fires.

If you feel you need assistance with any of the major causes of electrical fires, don’t hesitate to contact us today and get a licensed electrician’s opinion!