Simple checks can save your life
Millions of people in the UK expose themselves and their families to potentially fatal electrical accidents in the home by making simple blunders, down to a lack of knowledge about the dangers of electricity.
It is important to make sure that the electrical installation in your property is well maintained, and we recommend that you use a registered electrician to check that it is safe.
However, there are a number of simple, visual checks that you can carry out yourself:
- Check that you have RCD protection in your fusebox
- Make sure that your plug sockets are not overloaded. Electrical Safety First has developed an online “socket calculator” to help you to check that yours are safe
- Ensure that plugs and sockets are not damaged
- Check that visible cables and leads are in good condition
- Check that your light fittings are not visibly damaged and that downlighters are in good working condition
- Check that you are not storing combustible materials around your fusebox, electricity meter or electrical instake
- Don’t use the top of the microwave for extra storage
- Never trail cables under carpets or rugs
- Never take mains-powered electrical items into the bathroom
- Always switch off your electrical items when they are not in use
We have developed a free smartphone app that allows anyone to do a quick, visual check, to ensure their home is electrically safe. Designed to be as easy-to-use as possible, the app highlights potential dangers in each room and explains how to resolve simple, non-technical problems. Where more serious issues are flagged, people are advised to use a registered electrician.
The app is available for use on Android phones and on the iPhone, iPad and iPod touch.