As the clock strikes midnight on New Year’s Day, many people will resolve to change their lives for the better. As a homeowner, one such resolution that you should consider is doing electrical code upgrades in your home. These upgrades will ensure that your home is safe for you to live in. These upgrades are also a requirement for anyone looking to sell their homes. The following are five electrical code changes to consider this New Year.
1. Upgrade Your Outlets to Tamper-Resistant Outlets
This will prevent people from inserting objects into the outlets and potentially causing a fire or damaging the outlet. To achieve this upgrade, you can replace all your two-prong receptacles with a three-prong receptacle. You can also use a device called an adapter plug.
2. Upgrade Your Light Switches to Accommodate an Over-Current Protection Device
This consists of a protective circuit that shuts off the power if there is an overload. There are several types of over-current protection devices, including circuit breakers and fuses. You can choose either one, depending on the application. To determine which type will work best for your needs, consult an electrician.
3. Upgrade Your Circuit Panel
With today’s modern appliances and the number of electronic devices in use, many people’s electrical panels aren’t capable of keeping up with the demand. Upgrading your circuit panel will ensure that you can power all of your devices and electronics while also providing additional protection against electrical fires.
4. Use GFCI Outlets in Areas Exposed to Water
A GFCI receptacle will cut off the electrical power if there is a ground fault. This is because the GFCI can sense a small imbalance between the current passing into and out of the receptacle. In some cases, this can save a life since people may not realize that they are touching a source of electricity when they are wet. These outlets should be used in any rooms exposed to water, including kitchens, bathrooms, and laundry rooms.
5. Install Smoke Detectors
This is definitely a no-brainer. The most important thing to consider is how many smoke detectors you need. The U.S. Fire Administration recommends installing one in each bedroom and living area. You should also have one in your basement and garage.
Any electrical upgrades you can make at home can go a long way to protecting your property and family members. However, always work with an electrician to get the right upgrade for your needs. A qualified electrician will be well-versed in national and local code requirements. For help with electrical code compliance in Eugene, OR, call Excel Electric today.