Maintenance Monday – the safe way to use electrical cords

Are you tripping over a maze of electrical cords in your apartment? If you answered Yes, then keep reading to find out the safe way to set up those cords to prevent falls and fires.

Cords

Every electrical appliance has a cord, and many homes use extension cords to increase the range of electrical outlets. These safety tips can help keep cords in good condition for safe operation:

Check cords regularly for frays, cracks or kinks, including power tool cords, holiday lights and extension cords. The Canadian Center for Occupational Safety suggests doing this before each use.

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Cords are not jump ropes, clothes lines or leashes, and should never be used for anything other than their intended purpose.Cords should be firmly plugged into outlets – if the cord is loose and can pull out easily, choose a different, more snug outlet.

Do not staple or nail cords in position at any time; if the cord does not remain where desired, use tape or twist ties to secure it.

Cords should not be placed beneath rugs where they can become a trip hazard or where frays will not be noticeable. Furthermore, covering a cord will prevent it from keeping as cool as possible.

Do not make modifications to a cord’s plug at any time – do not clip off the third prong or attempt to file down a wider prong to fit in a different outlet.

Extension cords are a temporary solution only, and their use should be minimized whenever possible.

Use the proper weight and length of extension cord for the appropriate task, and be sure the cord is rated for indoor or outdoor use, whichever is required.

When unplugging a cord, pull on the cord at the outlet rather than tug on the cord itself.

This week’s Maintenance Monday tip is brought to you by Love To Know.

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