Let’s face it, unless you’re us, extension cord safety may not be something that you think about often

Extension cords are a pretty common part of our lives. We use them for SO many home and business tasks, it’s easy to take using them SAFELY for granted.

Ahh, the humble extension cord

Whether you’re using it for yard work, DIY renos, Christmas lights, plugging in your car on cold winter nights, or getting your shop-vac to reach a little further, it’s important to be aware of extension cord safety.

So in this blog, we’ll take a few minutes to brush up on extension cord safety. After all, extension cords are one of the most commonly used pieces of equipment in both homes and businesses. By following these simple tips, you can help prevent accidents and keep yourself and those around you safe.

Orange, blue, white, or green, extension cord safety is #worthit

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1. Inspect your extension cords before each use

Look for frayed or exposed wires, loose plugs, or damaged sockets. If you find any damage, don’t use the cord! Extension cords are not meant to be regularly repaired, so the best course of action is to simply replace them.

2. Do not use damaged outlets

If an outlet is loose, charred, or otherwise damaged, do not use it to plug in your extension cord. Doing so could result in an electrical fire or shock hazard.

3. Do not overload extension cords

Each cord has a specific amperage rating that indicates the maximum amount of electricity it can handle. Check the rating before plugging in multiple devices or using high-wattage appliances. Overloading a cord can cause it to overheat and start a fire.

4. Do not use extension cords in wet or damp areas

Water and electricity don’t mix! If you must use a cord in an area that is subject to moisture, make sure that the cord is rated for outdoor use. 

5. Outdoor Cords For Outdoor Use

If you are looking to use an extension cord outside, check to make sure that it is rated for outdoor use. An outdoor extension cord has tougher insulation/jacket allowing it to withstand moisture, temperature change, UV rays, etc. An extension cord that is safe for outside use will say so clearly on its packaging. 

6. If possible, use outlets with Ground Fault Circuit Interrupters (GFCIs)

GFCIs are special outlets that are designed to trip if there are any electrical current leaks. They’re often used in areas where there is a risk of electrical shock, like kitchens and bathrooms. When using extension cords, try to plug into a GFCI outlet for added safety. 

7. Keep extension cords away from children and pets

Children and pets are often unaware of the dangers posed by electrical equipment, so it’s important to keep cords out of reach whenever possible. If you have young children in your home, consider installing outlet covers to prevent them from playing with outlets and plugs.

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You Don’t Have to be a Master Electrician to Follow Extension Cord Safety

By following these simple tips, you can help prevent accidents and keep yourself and those around you safe.

Extension cords are necessary for many activities, but it’s important to use them safely. Inspect your cords before each use, do not overload them, and keep them away from children and pets.

Taking a few minutes to brush up on safety now can help prevent accidents in the future!

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