We’ve been doing electrical work for over 30 years in Boca Raton. Here are the top 142 mistakes that nearly every home/business owner makes at least once in their life. Some of these will save a lot of money, and some may even save your life!
142 most common electrical mistakes
#1 A loose wire hanging from a receptacle
This mistake is one of the most common and always seen in almost every home. With this simple fix, you can easily prevent any safety hazard from happening to yourself and your family. Just secure it properly with an electric tape or tie-wrap so it won’t move anywhere anymore!
#2 Overloaded outlet strips
If there’s too much power being drawn by your appliances then you might run into overloading troubles which can possibly result to fire hazards. It is advisable not to overload the outlet strips with too many power-consuming devices. Any device should bear the printed label of how much amperes it can handle!
#3 Extension cords for every electrical installation
The purpose of extension cords is to link two separate points not replace wiring permanently as there are already many uses that are suited for extension cords such as temporary installations or in areas where wiring is a bit difficult to install. Use this method only when necessary and do not forget to secure it well with proper tie wraps.
#4 Loose wires sticking out from a junction box
It is important to seal off your junction boxes with properly fitting covers so you won’t run into trouble if ever exposed wire strands touch any metallic object creating an unwanted short circuit causing a fire hazard.
#5 Plugging multiple extension cords to one another
This is a common mistake where people tend to plug several extension cords into each other thinking that their total ampere load will add up. Always check the label and current requirements of your appliance before connecting it!
#6 Combining old with new wires
It’s important to remember not to combine old and new types of wire or those without the same insulation covering because they may differ in size, coating, and color. This could cause an increased risk of a fire hazard since the older wires can get overheated easily while the newer ones are insulated better for longer-lasting use. Be sure that both have the same voltage levels as well so you won’t end up getting shocked by unwanted electrical instabilities harmfully.
#7 Using the wrong wires for a certain circuit
So many people are well accustomed to using heavier types of wire thinking that it can handle more amperes compared to the lighter types. However, this isn’t always true since there should be a proper compatibility between wire sizes and ampere ratings. Failure to follow this rule may result in electrical overload causing hazards and even fire!
#8 Using the wrong lamp bases for light fixtures
This mistake is very common nowadays as people tend to replace their obsolete lamps with new ones but end up getting shocked by sudden surges of electricity making them fall on the ground because they don’t have any idea how much voltage tolerances each type of lamp base can take. Always check before you start tinkering!
#9 Leaving a sink faucet dripping
A leaking faucet is almost like leaving the tap open. It wastes gallons of water and money while as well wasting an excessive amount of energy to keep it running all the time! Not that much friendly for our environment, is it? But always make sure you shut off your faucets tightly after use or install plumbing with automatic shut-off valves so won’t have any trouble in shutting them off.
#10 Corroded electrical connections
Always check if there are signs of rust on nuts and screws especially those without protective coverings before tightening them up so they won’t easily loosen off over time. This could cause accidents that may result into shock and fire hazards when not firmly tightened.
#11 Using extension cords without 14 gauge wiring!
It is important to note that 14 gauge wires are recommended for outdoor use such as in parking lots and garages since they have high resistance and a certain level of protection against heavy weather conditions plus falling objects compared to the lighter types of wire. If ever exposed, it provides an extra protection from electrical surges thanks to its thick insulation coating.
#12 Unprotected lamp holders
Beware when you’re working with hot lamp fixtures because even a small spark could ignite flammable material around which in turn may cause fire otherwise fasten your covers properly.
#13 Forced too much current through one circuit
For example, using a 10-ampere circuit breaker to connect a 15-ampere load. This will hurt the life expectancy of your appliances and electrical components as well exposing them to more current load resulting in overheating that might cause a fire accident.
#14 Incorrectly wired plug blades
Always remember to double-check every single wire connection when modifying or repairing old appliances and light fittings! Take note of their polarity, voltage tolerance, insulation covering, and wire size before starting up with any work so you don’t get shocked by unwanted instabilities harmfully.
#15 Overloaded circuit breakers
Many people tend to overload their circuit breakers without proper knowledge knowing that it can only handle wattage within its rated capacity. So if it shows signs of instability, always turn off its switches immediately before problems arise plus consult an expert electrician for help!
#16 Damaged conductors
Broken or cut wires can be very harmful to your body and electrical appliances as well that’s why you should take extra precautions when handling them. You may end up getting shocked with unwanted instabilities that are not yet visible until the wire gets exposed to oil and moisture which is the main reason of most electrical fires actually so try using non-conductive gloves at all times while working on any sort of circuit wiring repair!
#17 Collateral damage after a power surge!
Aside from causing fire hazards, power surges can also cause damages to both non-electrical and electrical appliances as well as light fixtures plus home telephones. To prevent this from happening again, always make sure to check the condition of your surge protector after a storm or before shutting off your power system so you can have peace of mind knowing that all devices are already safe and secured for use again!
#18 Overcharging appliance batteries
Many people often overcharge their battery-operated appliances because they forget to unplug them when fully charged which causes it to overheat due to increased internal resistance that in turn deteriorate its overall life expectancy. So if ever using lead-acid batteries, be reminded that it should only be recharged up to 80% of its full capacity for maximum charging lifespan.
#19 Unprotected extension cords
Always remember to keep exposed extension cords from both sudden impact loads and electrical arcs that may cause sparks before causing a serious fire.
#20 Faulty house wiring
Faulty wiring is very common especially in older homes, so if ever you’re planning on getting an upgrade, it is best to consult with an expert electrician about the possible new options or any precautionary steps involved. Improperly wired houses can have huge effects on the safety of your family especially those who are prone to certain health conditions like heart disease and allergies as well as not forgetting its overall structural integrity!
#21 Blown fuse switch
If your fuse switches blow easily after installing new electrical components or appliances in your home without proper knowledge about their compatibility with your existing wiring system. It is best to replace them with higher amps to ensure a long lifespan and greater energy efficiency well that’s why it is also better to consult with an electrician who knows more about the specifics of each kind of electrical fittings available today!
#22 Incorrect use of multi-outlet extension cables
Be careful when using extension cables with a multi-outlet, especially if it has overload protection. Never use them on heavy-duty appliances like hairdryers and washing machines as this can cause damage to the internal wiring instead of providing you extra outlets for plugging in other electrical equipment.
#23 Incorrect fuse usage
Always remember to purchase the right type of fuses that will match your current circuit breakers before doing any repairs or upgrades so you’ll know what amp capacity it should be replaced with next time around.
#24 Extension cord safety issues
Many people often disregard about extension cord safety due to its very affordable price but don’t forget that they are only temporary power solutions for small projects around the house! You should never connect more than 3 power loads in one extension cord and if you have to use multiples, make sure that they are plugged into separate wall outlets.
#25 Poorly installed electrical wiring
Improper electrical wiring installation can cause short circuits and fires which is why all household electricians usually adhere strictly to the National Electrical Code (NEC) rules before doing any project or task related to electrical circuitry even for minor repairs like fixing light fixtures! Always remember that proper insulation is important when installing new wires inside of walls so it will not come into contact with electrical cables underneath it. This will help prevent unwanted fire hazards caused by faulty installations.
#26 Improper electrical switch usage
Always remember to turn off an electrical switch completely before removing its cover otherwise there will definitely be a spark or short circuit caused by the exposed wires underneath. Always look for these signs when replacing switches to prevent any mishaps from happening!
#27 Unprotected electrical wiring outlets
Make sure to use protective covers and properly secure all extension cords connected on the wall so that they won’t pose any kind of sharp object hazards to children who might accidentally come in contact with them. Make it a point to always check these frayed cables as soon as possible and replace them immediately just in case if you still haven’t done so yet!
#28 Arcing fluorescent lights fixtures
This is one form of short circuit that happens when electrical wiring is damaged too much due to continuous vibrations and repeated flexing. The fluorescent light fixtures will be replaced repeatedly which can burn out the internal filaments as well causing an intense fire hazard especially if this occurs on a regular basis!
#29 Improper electric outlet replacement
Always ask help from a professional licensed electrician who knows how to properly replace the existing breaker in your home opposed to just replacing its cover plate with another one you bought at a nearby hardware store. You might end up making things worse by doing this so it is always best to consult with the right person about anything related to electrical repairs or upgrades before actually starting everything.
#30 Plugging too many things at once
If you want to provide power for a lot of electrical appliances without overloading your circuit, it is highly recommended that you install more fuse-protected outlets instead. Install a GFCI outlet with built-in load controller if this is not possible but never rely completely on extension cords instead. They are only temporary solutions after all so always have alternative options ready when doing these kinds of projects!
#31 Overloading a circuit breaker & incorrect load distribution
Fuses and circuit breakers are designed to protect homes from electrical fires caused by overloads but you shouldn’t replace them at random while fixing circuits around the house. You might end up damaging your home’s wiring system or starting a fire which is why it is best to consult with an expert before doing so!
#32 Hard wired smoke detectors
There are many instances where electricians encounter hard-wired smoke detectors that were improperly installed during previous renovations. There isn’t any reason why these smoke detectors should be hard-wired in the first place because if they don’t work, just remove them from the ceiling without replacing anything instead. If it doesn’t work after remounting it properly, just replace it with a new smoke detector entirely as opposed to messing around when updating wiring systems.
#33 Using short extension cords for major appliances
If you’re using a lot of big electrical appliances at homes such as vacuums, space heaters, and fans, don’t ever use regular extension cords instead of buying longer ones or moving them closer towards the electrical fuse box. These could easily overheat especially if they’re too small for the job at hand so if you know that the cords are not enough, invest on better options as soon as possible!
#34 Using incompatible fuse-protected outlet receptacles
Always make it a point to install outdoor lighting fixtures and electrical outlets with GFCI features if you don’t want your home’s wiring system to get damaged by short circuits later on. This is particularly true in places where there isn’t any easy access to an electrical breaker which is why this kind of protection should be enforced instead of doing whatever you please with those electrical projects. You need professional assistance from licensed electricians for things like these! #36 Touching light bulbs when they’re hot
There are times when the light bulbs you buy don’t work and even if they do, it can still be quite tricky to install them. But just remember that you should never touch a hot light bulb with your bare hands because chances are, no matter how careful you think you can be, accidents will eventually happen! Always use a cloth or something soft when doing this kind of project so that everything’s done properly instead of rushing things in a time-sensitive manner.
#35 Incorrect electrical wiring on ceiling fans
It is highly recommended that all homeowners have their ceiling fans installed by licensed electricians instead of doing it themselves because there is an incorrect way to wire these fixtures as well as improper blade direction which could cause problems later on.
Reversed or mis-wired electrical connections have been known to cause fires which is why it is best if you take your time when doing this kind of thing. You should also make sure that the conduits you use are free from leaks because condensation will eventually build up and ruin them in the long run. This could cause electrical problems especially if your wires are exposed to moisture so it would really be better off spending some money on professional assistance instead of risking electrocution!
#36 Worn and damaged extension cords
You should never use a frayed extension cord or one that has exposed wires on its end for anything around the house. Make it a point to replace them immediately once you spot these signs so you can avoid tripping over them accidentally and getting your feet hurt in the process! It is highly recommended that you replace damaged electrical equipment as soon as possible especially when there are children at home since they tend to play with broken or old things without knowing any better.
#37 Using extension cords only for temporary fixes
You may plug small household appliances into extension cords for short-term needs but never ever do this with major appliances such as electric furnaces or dryers. Aside from these, extension cords shouldn’t be used for repairing or revamping electrical systems in your home because this could cause them to overheat or short circuit as well. Remember that extension cords are just temporary fixes and investment on professional help is really the way to go if you’re serious about making a safer environment for your family!
#38 Using damaged electrical equipment without checking first
You should always make it a point to check for loose, frayed, and cracked wires when dealing with appliances around your house. If you spot these damages, get rid of it immediately so you won’t have to deal with any problems in the long run. Properly dispose of damaged equipment instead of using them for anything else such as repair projects which will never work out anyway!
#39 Not using a GFCI when working on wet areas
If you’re prone to dropping things in bathtubs or perhaps in a swimming pool, it is highly recommended that you install GFCIs wherever these wet spots are located. Never assume that electricity stops running just because water’s present! It is still capable of causing harm so please be careful and don’t get electrocuted by turning the wrong switch off.
#40 Using electrical equipment during bad weather conditions
There are instances when people tend to use their appliances even if there are signs of thunder or lightning strikes nearby. This can result in an electric shock which could possibly kill so try avoiding this kind of behavior as much as possible. Unplug all your electrical devices at least an hour before a bad weather condition is expected to arrive!
#41 Leaning against an electric stovetop
If you’re cooking on an electric stove and you get too close, you might end up getting burned. This is why it’s best to be careful about this kind of thing so your kids won’t accidentally touch the heat source when climbing onto it or something like that. Always keep your hands away from what is being cooked as well if possible just to be safe because we never know when unexpected accidents could occur.
#42 Using extension cords for permanent tasks
You should only use extension cords temporarily but not permanently which means they shouldn’t be plugged into outlets where they will remain for long periods of time. If you need extra electrical ports around the house, consider hiring a professional to install them permanently because doing so yourself could end up causing an electrical fire.
#43 Using old appliances
Just like clothing, your electronics will show signs of aging which means they should be replaced once you spot these signs. Never assume that all damages could be repaired because some aren’t and you’ll only make the problem worse if you try fixing broken things on your own! Just throw it away and get a new one. You might save money in the long run if you do this often enough not to mention that your house would remain accident-free as well.
#44 Forgetting about where electricity is running to and fro when designing electrical outlets
If you’re planning on installing electrical outlets around the house for some upgrades, you should also make it a point to locate where electricity is coming from and where it will go on in the future. The last thing you want to do is create a parallel circuit that could overload your home’s electrical system!
#45 Installing GFCIs improperly
If you’re installing GFCI outlets around the house for some added protection, please refer to all the labels that come with these devices. Take note of the red/black wire colors as well as their terminals because mis-wiring or plugging them into incorrect slots won’t turn anything on at all. This defeats the purpose so be careful not to trip over wires if using non-professional help for your project.
#46 Using too many extension cords
If you have too many extension cords placed around your house, this could result in a fire because of the heat that’s being generated. Extension cords should only be used for temporary tasks so if you need extra outlets, contact a professional electrician.
#47 Cleaning electrical appliances with water
Cleaning off the dust is a must especially if you’re using electronic devices such as televisions and computer monitors. However, never clean these items with water because this could result in an electrical shock which isn’t safe at all! Simply use a vacuum cleaner or perhaps even compressed air instead to avoid causing any accidents.
#48 Setting up frayed extension cords
You should throw away damaged wires or cables right away because they’re very dangerous. If your extension cords have damaged spots on them, simply cut them out and discard them right away because it’s better to be safe than sorry. Think about how many people misuse extension cords every day – you don’t want to be one of those statistics.
#49 Ignoring safety labels on appliances
These labels are designed to keep you safe so please don’t ignore them. If you want the inside of your microwave oven or other appliance’s contents to end up in your food, then by all means go ahead and disregard the label’s instructions. People get burned every day from microwaves caused by not following what is written on its instruction manual.
#50 Not cleaning lamps regularly
Lamps can burn out if dust build-up reaches a certain level which isn’t good at all because it wastes energy. Cleaning them off regularly will help extend their lives while also reducing the amount of money that you’ll spend on replacing burnt-out bulbs.
#51 Tripping over power cords
We’ve all seen those power cords that are running underneath the furniture and you should definitely avoid tripping over them. It’s a good idea to place power strips where they can be easily accessed or have them placed behind furniture so nobody would trip on them and hurt themselves in the process.
#52 Mounting lamps too high up the wall
Some people who don’t like floor lamps mount their table lamps up high on walls which isn’t safe at all! You might end up dropping it by mistake thereby causing an electrical shock or even worse, starting a fire. Make sure that proper tables or other supporting structures are used before attempting to mount any type of lamp high up on your living room wall.
#53 Not using GFCIs when working around water
If you’re going to be working around water, then by all means utilize these devices so that you’ll have added protection from electrocution. This is important because if your body comes into contact with electricity while it’s wet, you’ll be shocked a lot worse! If possible, turn off the power before getting in or out of the tub as well as when carrying out any other tasks.
#54 Not securing cords with ties or clips
Cords should always be rolled up and secured after use until they can be stored somewhere else like inside drawers or cabinets for example. Leaving them loose doesn’t look nice and could result in someone tripping over them which isn’t good at all. Roll up extension cords separately from each other before tying them up with a twist tie or even some duct tape.
#55 Not using enough wire when extending power cables
If you’re going to be running new wires, make sure that you’re buying ones that are long enough otherwise your devices won’t work properly. For example, if you bought 18 gauge wire and it isn’t working, try replacing it with 14 gauge. It is always best to be safe than sorry after all.
#56 Not turning appliances off when, not in use
It’s surprising how many people forget to turn their appliances off which isn’t safe at all! You should do this even with your computer because if you don’t, it could overheat and catch on fire. It’s fairly easy to remember though because just thinking about the safety of your home is usually enough to remind you.
#57 Plugging extension cords into other extension cords
Always make sure that the extension cord that you’re using is rated for indoor or outdoor use because mismatching them could result in a fire hazard. Never try to cover up exposed wires either as they might cause shorts which aren’t fun at all. Always make sure that the screws are screwed in as well as out of the outlet before you do anything else!
#58 Not replacing damaged cords and cables
If a cord or cable gets cut, it should always be replaced since the part where it’s been severed could cause an electrical fire. Never attempt to make modifications to existing wires either as you might end up creating a short circuit. Depending on what type of wire it is, aluminum ones should never be cut because they can electrocute you when there is even a drop of moisture present.
#59 Plugging everything into extension strips and nothing into surge protectors
Always plug your devices directly into the outlet if possible otherwise they might not have enough power. Also, avoid using too many extension chords which isn’t safe at all even if they are of good quality.
#60 Not using a master on/off switch for your sensitive electronics and appliances
You should always protect your TV or large appliances with these particular surge protectors when plugging them directly into the wall since you never know when lightning might strike your area. These will cut out the power to that appliance and any others that are plugged in as well in case of short circuit, thereby preventing fires.
#61 Long extension cords in your living room
It’s not a good idea to cover up outlets with rugs because you’ll need them for your devices that should be plugged directly into the wall. For example, if you have an HDTV and your family is trying to watch it, then there won’t be any power outlets available because they’re covered by the rug! Run electrical wires behind or underneath your furniture instead of covering them up with fabric.
#62 Not using surge protectors for all of your expensive electronics
Surge protectors are always essential for people who own anything that is expensive since these provide safety against lightning strikes and short circuits. You should only use high-quality ones as well since there are many low-cost, poorly-made ones that are sometimes just as bad as not using one at all!
It’s important to plug your cable modem into a surge protector as well because these electronic devices are particularly vulnerable to lightning strikes. You should also invest in one that has telephone protection too since using your phone during a storm might attract electricity. The only thing is though not all of them have this feature so make sure you do some research before purchasing one!
To put it simply, your computer, TV, DVR, stereo, video game system, etc. absolutely needs one even if they already come with their own internal protection! Without a surge protector, you run the risk of losing everything in an instant while the device itself only costs $50-$100; but without your files and data on it, this means absolutely nothing!
#63 Not running extra cables for convenience and flexibility
If you’re buying new wires, try to buy about 30-50% more than what the box recommends since this will give you plenty of leeway with where you can place things in your home. Also, don’t forget that it’s nice to have surge protectors even if they aren’t necessary because it makes everything much easier.
#64 Failing to run power outlets near appliances without built-in timers
Don’t forget about your kitchen and laundry room either since many modern appliances now come with built-in timers which means if there’s nothing plugged into them, they’ll just turn off after a certain time. For example, if you’re cooking on your stove and there’s no way to simply turn off the burner, it’ll just continue running forever until you manually turn it back on.
#65 Using undersized or faulty extension chords for TVs and large appliances
Always use heavy-duty cords when extending them too as they can get extremely hot and melt the covering if they are low quality. You should also never use two chords that are smaller in size together or just one chord of that same size since this could create a short circuit.
#66 Relying on UPS backups without also using surge protectors for all powered equipment
It’s not enough to simply plug your computer into a backup unit because you’ll still need surge protection for any other large devices like DVRs or stereos. And always turn off your computer completely when it’s plugged in otherwise you might attract power surges.
#67 Using extension cords opened at both ends instead of ones with safety closures
Always buy extension cords that have an opening along their entire length so you can’t accidentally touch the metal wires inside. If you buy one that has been opened at both ends, then this can cause a short circuit which might get hot enough to melt the covering.
#68 Leaving extension cords plugged in without an appliance attached
To keep them from overheating, make sure none of your extension cords ever have anything on them since they must always remain free. Also never leave one behind after unplugging something because putting strain on it will eventually cause it to break and start a fire!
#69 Using mini-surge protectors for expensive devices like TVs or computer monitors
Use regular size ones instead since they’re more powerful and tend to be sturdier as well. The only reason you’d use small ones is if there’s not enough room for large ones, or if you have more than a dozen gadgets to connect to the same power strip.
#70 Not installing surge protectors behind anything with a glass cover
This is also true for devices that are on top of something like computers. In addition, always try using heavy-duty models too because they’re stronger and tend to last longer (although they can be extremely expensive).
#71 Keeping appliances near windows or in places where they will get direct sunlight
This can cause them to overheat since heat rises. You might even find yourself having to buy new units occasionally since this warms up their components beyond normal operating temperatures. So make sure you place electronics away from any area of extreme heat as well as drafts!
#72 Using extension cords in areas where they will be covered by carpet or furniture
This creates a fire hazard since if an extension cord is lying on the floor, its covering can melt against it. In addition, always make sure that appliances and electronics cannot fall over and touch them either!
#73 Having low-quality surge protectors in areas with heavy dust
Dust will eventually clog them up so choose ones that are well-sealed like those with a “dustproof” label. This is also true for power strips which need to remain clean and free of any dust buildup.
#74 Having two or more devices plugged into one outlet or extension cord where there’s heavy strain placed on it
Always spread things out so that you aren’t forcing too much current through one spot. And make sure that they don’t run into any crevices in the floor or wall where they can cause a short circuit.
#75 Using extension cords without something protecting them from cracks and damage
This is especially important for outdoor ones because putting them directly on the ground could expose their wires to some serious wear and tear. And always readjust your cord when moving appliances since this can break its internal insulation, especially if it is damaged already!
#76 Not knowing the difference between “hot” and “neutral” sides of an outlet or power strip
When connecting more than one wire to one receptacle (outlet), each wire must be attached to a different terminal. This means the red or black ones must be on one side of the receptacle while the white is on its own. If you don’t do this, then it could cause a short circuit!
#77 Having two or more appliances plugged into an outlet but using only one switch
This can damage both units since they have to share the same power cable and wiring. Make sure that every device in your home has its own power switch so you know which ones are off when you leave them behind for an extended amount of time.
#78 Not padding outdoor extension cords with protective rubber covers for winter use
You can buy waterproof shields at your local hardware store so that there’s no problem if a heavy snowfall (or worse, a blizzard) occurs. This will surely prevent damage to your wiring and help you save money at the same time!
#79 Not checking for loose or worn out extension cords before using them
It’s also important that you test the connections by pushing and pulling on them since an unstable wire could break from its plug if it isn’t secured properly. If something seems wrong with your cord, just get a new one instead of taking chances with it!
#80 Using large appliance plugs with small receptacles
The “polarity” of these are different so they don’t fit together as well as they should, which means that adapters must be used instead. Otherwise, improperly connecting them can lead to either overheating or a short circuit.
#81 Using a power strip in areas with lots of sunlight where it could heat up either itself or anything around it
This isn’t good since many components contained within these will stop working if they overheat. So be sure that you are using one that won’t self-destruct in such an environment! Try shielding your power strips from this type of light as well (especially outdoor ones) since this can cause their internal parts to warp or break.
#82 Using extension cords that are too short for the application intended
First, try to find a longer one rather than buying a small, cheap one which could easily be damaged by using it outdoors. And look at the gauge of your cord to determine if it is up for whatever you have planned! For example, 12 AWG ones are designed for appliances while 16-18 AWG ones can handle higher loads like heating systems.
#83 Plugging extension cords into each other where they touch only one side of an outlet or power strip
Doing this will fuse them together so that they must always stay together. Otherwise, you’ll need to cut open both sides and then reconnect them using special connectors rather than trying to use tape or staples. If you don’t do this, then they could cause a short circuit!
#84 Using some extension cords outdoors and exposing their wires to damage from animals or the weather
When used in such an environment, it’s best that they are put somewhere where animals can’t chew through them (like up on fences) so there’s no risk of potential electrical shock. Also, make sure all exposed wiring is protected by a waterproof coating (you can buy these at any good hardware store).
#85 Using, outdated the or entire faulty surge protectors
When buying a new one, always choose models that are UL listed or have a rating of “clamping voltage” which means it can absorb the largest amount of voltage without getting damaged or catching on fire.
#86 Inadequately securing electrical equipment where it could fall off of a table, stand or ladder
This can cause something to tip over and injure you, others (like children) are around while also attracting small animals who could chew through wires when they climb up onto their surface. Make sure that anything with cords is placed in an area where no one will trip over them nor where pets can come into contact with them! See our article on the best surge protectors for more information about how to buy and use them properly!
#87 Using extension cords as permanent wiring by running multiple outlets in your home from only one point
Don’t do this since you’ll always have only one point of failure! Instead, run cables from multiple points in your home to a single location so that if there’s a problem with the cord at any given time, it won’t cause an electrical shortage. When dealing with larger projects, hire an electrician to do this for you, or read our article on the top-rated portable power strips to learn more about which ones are able to handle high wattage loads as well.
#88 Using extension cords where polarized plugs aren’t oriented correctly
If there is too much pressure exerted against them (like leaning objects against their surface), then you will risk short-circuiting. Make sure everything is properly fastened in place and nothing can knock into it! It’s also important that each outlet has a ground wire as well which can help to keep you safe if something breaks the surface of your cord.
#89 Placing too many extension cords near one another or running them parallel to each other where they could become tangled together or damaged by something falling on top of them
Try to keep at least an inch between these and make sure that their outer covering is flame resistant (especially for outdoor use) since this will reduce their chances of being caught in a fire nearby by 30%!
#90 Using white shoe polish, crayons, etc. on electrical connectors so that you can see any loose connections
Don’t do this since the chemicals from these substances could cause corrosion over time which will then cause things to start breaking down faster. Instead, use something like electrical tape.
#91 Using old extension cords which could get hot when you plug several high wattage appliances into them at the same time in an area that doesn’t have enough air circulation around them
If they are carbon-based (made of PVC or Polyvinyl Chloride), then do not run more than 40-50% of their rating so as to prevent overheating. Carbon and silicon-based ones should never be used together since this mix will cause a fire! There’s no risk if it’s made from copper since these kinds are rated for 13 amps each as opposed to only 10 for the others. Never let them rub against anything else while in use either because this can accelerate deterioration over time. Be sure to ask for an extension cord ratings before making a purchase!
#92 Running extension cords outside where it’s prone to be damaged by weather or other hazards like small animals and even kids playing in the yard
Doing this can cause electrical shortages to occur, fire dangers, and general destruction of the wires. Only run these indoors and never where they could become tripped on when walking around your home! Use something weatherproof instead (like those that are made from rubber!) if you need one for outdoor use. Be sure to check out our article on what to look for when buying an extension cord as well since there are several things you should make note of prior to purchasing!
#93 Using aluminum wire outdoors without covering it first with armor-covered cable
Doing this will allow moisture to potentially seep into the wire which could cause electric shocks or even fires. If you need to run wires outdoors, then make sure they are protected from wind and weather beforehand! Special cable is used for this purpose whenever possible like fiber optic and optical cables (though these types aren’t very common yet). The next best thing would be using something like a steel conduit or armor-coated cable. These are more expensive than regular ones but they’ll do a better job at protecting your electrical wiring over time! For outdoor applications that require running long lengths of wire (over 100 feet) through areas where it’s exposed to the elements, consider asking an electrician about underground power lines because these should last a longer time in comparison!
#94 Using too many electrical devices at the same time since this could potentially overload the outlet’s capacity and cause a fire
Whenever possible, try to keep the amounts of things such as vacuum cleaners, computers, and other appliances you’re using at any given time to under 100 watts for each. This may seem like a lot but if you factor in how there are usually several outlets on your wall then it should be easy enough to do so! Most standard computer equipment averages out around 300-400 watts. Some appliances like microwave ovens can come close to 1000 however (make sure they have their own independent circuit breaker or GFCI plug installed beforehand!). Overloading your circuits is a common occurrence though fortunately one that is not difficult to fix. Just make sure you’re not plugging too many things into a single outlet (this can result in fire hazards as well!), keep all electrical appliances in good shape and replace them when they start to show signs of age or deterioration, and see if there are any switchable power strips for sale that can help you conserve electricity. These could save you money especially since most home electronics use up enormous amounts of power!
#95 Leaving the air conditioner on while no one is home
This is especially true during hot summer days where leaving this running 24/7 has been estimated to account for about 10% of a household’s entire energy usage! Don’t leave it running this way unless you need it cold inside because shutting it off when there’s no one at home can save you thousands of dollars per year!
#96 Using extension cords for things like Christmas lights (instead of using something that is made for this purpose like a string or rope light)
This is a big fire hazard and in the event that they do overheat then, it could cause wires to burn from the inside out, making them more fragile. This eventually could result in a power outage. If possible, always use an extension cord meant for Christmas lights since these are designed with heat safety protections built-in from the get-go. They’re also safer to use and won’t put you at risk of electrical shock or fire dangers either! For outdoor holidays though, consider using solar lighting if you have enough room for it in your backyard, or ask an electrician about colored led Christmas lights since they don’t require anything except for a power source and should be ok with low voltage strings!
#97 Using dimmer switches around high-wattage bulbs and appliances like air conditioners, refrigerators, freezers, heat pumps, and dehumidifiers
This is fairly common among homeowners who want to save money on their energy bills. However, because of the way that these are designed do not use them around any appliances that have large motors (anything over 1/3 hp) other than the ones mentioned above as doing so can lead to overheating problems which may result in fire hazards! If you need assistance with figuring out how much wattage you’ll need for your home or business, you can talk with Electricians in Boca Raton
#98 Not installing a circuit breaker in any room that you use as a workshop
This is one of the most common causes of electrical fires aside from not having enough wattage to power up your home or business. Having no protection on a circuit like this can result in power surges that may cause damage, and if left unchecked for too long could eventually lead to issues with both equipment and wiring, which may then have to be replaced entirely at great expense! Make sure you’re using high-quality components so that they last longer, but regardless make sure there is some sort of backstop available where you are able to cut the power off quickly should anything go wrong somewhere down the line (this will help prevent fire hazards or even worse, potentially fatal accidents from happening in the future!)
#99 Not having a home fire detection system installed
According to estimates, almost half of all residential fires happen at night while no one is home. This can have deadly consequences if you’re unable to detect this problem early enough! Make sure that you install some kind of smoke and carbon monoxide detector where it is easy for you to get outside quickly should something go amiss with your circuit breakers. Also, be sure to check your wiring for any signs of damage regularly so that you can still use these products even after accidents occur!
#100 Using your indoor outlets to power outdoor holiday decorations (like Christmas lights or other decorative items) without a surge protector on hand
How many times have we seen people put extension cords outside with their holiday decorations and wonder why they don’t work anymore? When it comes to this, using a surge protector for indoor and outdoor use is highly recommended since it will protect your property. Make sure you’re using units that are rated at least 600V (since extension cords can only be 525V) and if possible go with a model that has at least 12 outlets in case more than just one decoration needs power. The last thing you want to do is risk having a fire hazard on hand!
#101 Not measuring how much amperage your electronics draw when you plug them in
When you have equipment like televisions, computers, or video game consoles plugged into an outlet that is already being used by something else then this can lead to overheating issues, which may then cause electrical fires! When this happens the first thing you will see is that your outlet and/or equipment needs to be reset in order for it to work again. Also, make sure that you’re using a surge protector with a fuse on hand as replacing one of these can run up a pretty steep bill otherwise (the most common cause of this problem is using too many appliances all at once.)
#102 Using extension cords outside or in wet areas like garages without waterproofing them beforehand
If you don’t want your extension cord to get ruined when water gets onto the metal parts, find the best ones here. This sort of damage may not be obvious right away: sometimes there won’t be any visible signs of water damage, but rather the cord will just stop working or start shorting out. In either case, this is a problem that can have deadly consequences if left unchecked! Always be sure to waterproof your extension cords before using them, and for added protection consider putting them in a metal conduit as well so they don’t get damaged by anything else nearby.
#103 Not changing your smoke detector batteries when you go on vacation
This one seems like common sense, right? Wrong! It’s surprising how many people choose to skip it even after they’ve already checked their circuits for any issues. Be sure to keep at least one working battery with you at all times, since otherwise, you won’t always be able to detect potential problems as quickly as possible!
#104 Not switching off power when you’re working on your circuit breaker panel or the wiring near it (or at all)
You’ve heard the saying: “what happens in Vegas, stays in Vegas!” In this case, however, that’s not true! If you’re going to be getting your hands dirty then make sure that you switch off the power before doing any work. This is essential for a few reasons:
1. It will keep you from knocking things over and causing a serious fire hazard on hand
2. You won’t risk being electrocuted while performing DIY electrical repairs
3. By shutting down the power supply first you’ll prevent nearby lights from flickering 4. If something accidentally gets damaged during an experiment there won’t be anything for you to get injured from
#105 Not having a flashlight ready when doing electrical work on the exterior of your home (because of course we can’t see everything while it’s dark out!)
It’s easy to think “it’ll be fine, I’ll do this in the morning” but when a car or bike hits something that is on the ground then things start going downhill fast. It may be obvious that there was nothing there before and it would have been visible had someone turned the lights on, but not so much after you’ve already powered down all your circuits! Making sure that you have some sort of light source at hand is essential whether an outlet nearby fails or because you’re working outside late at night. If a majority of your outdoor lights are on then you’ll have a much better chance at noticing anything like this, but even with a flashlight, it’s easy to miss something if you’re not paying attention.
#106 Not touching electrical equipment after wet weather or when your hands are greasy
You can’t always control the weather, but you CAN prevent grease from spoiling nearby electronics! It doesn’t matter how dry things feel right now: if it rains later then there will be water drops that make their way onto the outside of your circuit breakers and into whatever outlets they’re plugged into. If any of these circuits are activated while that is happening then you’ll just be adding a fire hazard to the mix. Make sure that all your ports and sockets are safe by checking them for wetness first, and if it’s pouring outside then consider unplugging things in advance so they don’t get ruined.
#107 Not using both hands when making a repair near the ground or ceiling
After you’ve turned on the power again always make sure that you are holding onto something sturdy with two hands before performing any sort of repair or experiment. There are few things more dangerous than being held up in one hand! If there is no nearby outlet to use as an anchor then ask someone nearby to grab onto your belt loop/belt buckle for extra support while you work. This will keep you from falling and causing serious damage to yourself or others around you.
#108 Not making sure that an outlet is off before installing new wires into it
There are a few common mistakes people make while performing electrical repairs: some even go so far as to touch the wires in a light socket because they’re not confident in the presence of power. While it’s true that some devices won’t send out any sparks when you do this (large motors for example) there are many other types of components that can be hazardous to your health if you don’t handle them properly. Make sure that all circuits have been turned off before attempting to work on any wiring or connections, and don’t assume just because a device is plugged into an outlet that it is safe – always double-check!
#109 Not removing jewelry during electrical repairs
Even if you’ve made up your mind ahead of time that nothing will cause harm to happen while working near live wires: most tragedies take place after a second opinion – so make sure others are there to help you if anything goes wrong! Always remove things like rings, bracelets, watches, and even hair jewelry before entering an area such as a crawl space or attic, because it’s too easy for them to get caught on something during the repair process. Make sure that everyone else around you does too so nobody gets hurt.
#110 Not using at least one layer of protection against shocks (insulation) when installing wiring inside walls
There are two main reasons why electrical work should never be done near live wires: either someone will come in contact with them by accident (like walking on bare flooring or reaching into an open light socket), or they will be exposed due to damage caused by wear and tear. A fault in the insulation on a wire, or a portion of the bare cable that is stuffed into an outlet, can be very dangerous to repair if you don’t take proper precautions! Always install at least one layer of protection for yourself against any electrical current: whether it’s plastic insulation or thick rubber gloves – and then make sure to remind everyone else nearby (including the person you’re working with) to do the same.
#111 Not using insulated tools when installing lights outdoors
There are two main problems with exposed wires: one is that people can accidentally come in contact with them and get shocked, and the other is that water may seep into them through cracks in the wall or holes in your roof. If these wet cables become activated during rain then they will give off a charge while they’re exposed that can be felt even through the flooring. To prevent either of these disasters from happening you should always buy a few insulated tools and protect your hands from any electrical hazards or avoid working on jobs that may end up costing you more than just time!
#112 Not using protection against shocks when you can’t tell if circuits are off/on
Even after making sure that an outlet is really off before proceeding with work there are still some things that need to be done safely in order to prevent shocks. Wires coming out of junction boxes for example need to be protected by insulation and then tagged so everyone knows which wire goes where because it’s too easy for the job to take longer than expected. If you make a mistake and work on the wrong circuit then someone could get an accidental shock – so don’t ever assume that everything is okay before taking the extra step of protection to make sure you’re not going to regret it.
#113 Not using at least one layer of protection against shocks when working on live wires
If you can motorize a machine with electricity, chances are there’s some sort of wiring inside that needs your attention: and while it may be obvious which device you need to fix, mistakes happen even if precautions are taken. If you know that bare wires exist somewhere in the junction box for example (because they’ve been tagged as such) then use those tools to your advantage by covering them with insulation – this will save time and a lot of arguments from happening later.
#114 Forgetting to turn off the breaker before working on the circuit
After making sure that every device is turned off it’s time to start working on the circuitry: but how do you know that everything was really off? To ensure a safe job proceed with testing the main circuit breaker at first: if none of them work then you know all devices are shut down and can safely perform repairs. If they’re still working, however, then one or more devices may have been left on – so always remember this test before doing any kind of electrical work in your (Boca Raton) house.
#115 Not factoring in enough space for cords/wires when planning an installation
If there isn’t enough room for wires and cables inside a wall or attic, because they’re too heavy or bulky, then you need to find another more accessible spot for them. It doesn’t matter how pretty a job looks, if the wires inside end up causing problems later on it will not be worth all of the time and extra effort involved. Make sure to consider this at first when planning out how everything is going to fit into your home because otherwise, you’ll have to do that work twice!
#116 Not polarity checking electrical devices before installing them
When wires are stripped they don’t always go back together in the right direction: therefore it’s important to check their orientation before connecting anything together. If they’re put in backward (with positive and negative signs reversed) then the device will appear to work normally but could present serious hazards if it uses high voltages, such as some types of generators that don’t have a neutral wire. Always double-check before screwing devices together to avoid problems with reversing polarity later on!
#117 Using the wrong tools for the electrician job
Using the right tool makes work go faster and more easily: but if you use an improper tool then you’re just asking for trouble. If you try cutting screws with pliers or even using a finger instead of channel locks to hold something steady it’s not going to work out well and may end up damaging your hands. Make sure all tools are in good working condition too so they don’t slip off while you’re working – because snapping one in half can make fixing things much harder than it already is.
#118 Not being prepared for emergencies when working on circuits
If an emergency situation happens while you’re working with electricity (like someone touching a live wire) then having a proper set of tools nearby can save your life. It’s not worth taking the risk by risking your health to try and fix something at first because that could be a big mistake if you end up hurting yourself and no one else. Even if it doesn’t seem like a problem right away, don’t take any chances until you’re certain everything is definitely okay – accidents happen so why is risk waste time fixing them?
#119 Forgetting to plan out an installation before getting into the middle of it
Whatever work is done, there always needs to be some planning ahead of time: drawing a diagram, calculating measurements and other things beforehand makes it easier to finish up work faster. You should make sure that you can easily access the panels or boxes, for example, so you don’t need to worry about moving furniture around later on to reach them. If there isn’t enough room at first then find a more accessible spot for them before beginning any work – because planning things out helps prevent mistakes and makes all of the rest of the job go along much more smoothly!
#120 Using cable conduit improperly
Cable conduits as a safety measure against fires are very beneficial and help avoid faults with broken wiring: but if they’re not installed properly then they may actually result in a fire. Make sure it’s well anchored in place both on the outside and inside to avoid it becoming a hazard if there’s an accident. In addition, always use proper wires with protection jackets on them (such as for pluming) so they fit into place properly instead of being exposed or damaged in any way which could cause problems down the road.
#121 Not checking safety while working near power lines
When working with electric currents there are certain rules that you should follow about not bothering or touching powerlines, especially if they’re carrying electricity near you. It may seem like common sense but some people have died despite this advice because they’ve tried to complete work too quickly and get carried away when doing so. The risk for danger is also higher during bad weather such as storms because tree limbs can fall on powerlines or have other types of accidents occur. If you’re not sure about what you’re doing then find someone who can help or advise on the situation instead, and never take any chances if it seems dangerous!
#122 Not using proper ear protection when grinding
If you have to grind metal, cement, or other materials for work then your ears are definitely at risk. The sound levels can reach as high as 120db, which is ten times louder than normal speech levels – without much warning ahead of time too. Don’t assume that wearing your usual hearing protection will be enough because it won’t block out the sound 100%, so make sure you get a good pair of earplugs to wear while performing this type of task!
#123 Not properly grounding wires for safety reasons
If a broken wire contacts the ground point, it can make contact with other similar points and cause an electrical hazard. So when there is a fault in an installation or repair job, do not try to fix it yourself unless you are sure that there is no faulty wiring left in place. It is also important to call out a professional electrician if the fault was caused by someone else.
#124 Forgetting to use fuses during repairs/projects
Sometimes you may hear of people using more wires than they really need to complete a task because they’re trying to find another way around doing something without paying attention to whether those things are safe. This goes along with using power tools as well – so if the fuse that you have doesn’t work anymore then it’s time to get another one and rewire your set-up before working.
#125 Not covering a load that is being transported
If you’re carrying something like some type of appliance or parts with a car then make sure to place it in an area where it’ll be covered up completely by a tarp or cloth. This will help prevent any damage from possible water dripping off of things onto it, as well as keeping all of your property protected during transport so it arrives safely too!
#126 Using damaged cords for repair jobs and projects
If you need to use electrical wires for any reason, make sure that they’re undamaged because using faulty wiring can cause fires: so if you simply don’t have any that can do the job, then find someone who does instead of trying to go it alone and risking your safety and property.
#127 Not grounding exposed wires properly
If there’s an accidental break with a wire, make sure that it is properly grounded in order to stay safe. Never try to fix these kinds of things on your own unless you know what you’re doing: so if you feel like you’re not qualified to perform electrical work then call a professional for help instead!
#128 Using damaged light bulbs without replacements
If one of the light bulbs breaks while in use, it could cause a fire or shock hazard, so always have a fresh light bulb ready before changing one out. Be careful when you’re handling the broken piece too because you could be seriously hurt if it’s still electrically charged or that the glass pieces are coming off. If you don’t know how to change one out, then call up an electrician to help with the task instead.
#129 Faulty extension cord repair
If you ever need to use an extension cord for basic household tasks like running a lawnmower or any other heavy equipment around your property, make sure to follow this simple rule in order to ensure its safety: Don’t use damaged cords! If it looks worn out or if you aren’t really sure how long it’s been used already, just throw it away and purchase a new one instead. This will prevent any possible accidents due to short circuits caused by frayed wires and exposed copper wire ends that could meltdown and start a fire on contact. You don’t want anything
#130 Believing that fluorescent lighting doesn’t produce EMFs
Fluorescent lighting produces an electromagnetic field (EMF) that can cause a lot of damage to the body and its organs, whether it’s installed in a home or office. So if you’re feeling sick or tired on a regular basis then this could be the reason for those feelings – so try not using fluorescent bulbs whenever possible, especially when you have to work with them too!
#131 Not pulling plugs out by the plug ends instead of the cord
If you ever have to pull something like a wire, lamp, or computer out, make sure to do it by gripping around the metal part of it rather than trying to yank it out by the cord. The cords are more likely to break because they are more fragile, so by doing this safely you can make sure that it doesn’t break and cause a potential fire hazard.
#132 Not putting your tools away properly after working with them
When you’re not using your electrical tools anymore for the day, be sure to put them all into a safe place where they won’t get damaged. This will also ensure that everyone will be able to find what they need in the future so no one has to search around for things when they’ll have everything together in one spot.
#133 Letting kids play with wires and outlets
It’s never a good idea to let young children play around with electrical wiring because these little ones don’t know about how harmful electricity is or proper safety precautions: if you have a toddler or preschooler, then never let them near the outlets even if you can’t see any cords plugged into it.
#134 Picking up dropped electrical wires and cords
If an electrical cord is dropped from its outlet, do NOT try picking it up: this is very dangerous because a person could get electrocuted just by touching the cord. Instead, use something like a broom handle to carefully sweep it towards an exit so that someone else won’t trip on it next time.
#135 Reusing old power strips
If your power strip stops working after some time, don’t fix it yourself – even though they are easy to replace: instead of doing so, buy a new one that has surge protection built-in as well. If you try to repair the old one, then it could start a fire when the next surge pops up – so instead of risking your safety and property, just get a new one instead.
#136 Using extension cords in rain or wet conditions
Using an extension cord when there’s any moisture is very hazardous: if water comes into contact with the electrical connection points, then this can cause electrocution or even fires: so if you have to use an extension cord outside, be sure that all of its parts are dry before plugging it in.
#137 Testing outlets by plugging items into them without checking for power first
Never unplug something from an outlet without seeing if there’s electricity flowing through it first: doing so can shock you which can cause cardiac arrest and death! So whenever you’re plugging in lamps, computers, or any other electrical item, be sure that the power is off first – always double-check it before trying to use it.
#138 Not treating extension cords and cables gently
If you see any signs of damage on your extension cord or cable then it’s best not to use them anymore: if they start to fray or crack (even slightly), then just throw them out because they are no longer safe for anyone to use. If the wires are exposed and tangled then also don’t touch them because these could get very hot when there’s electricity traveling through them.
#139 Using non-approved electrical equipment outdoors
Do NOT use any electrical devices outdoors if they were not approved for outdoor use first: this also includes anything that’s not UL-approved. For example, anything like computer monitors and televisions which are not meant to be used in a damp or outside area should never be plugged into an extension cord because that can cause electrical shock.
#140 Using electrical equipment with frayed cords
If any part of the electrical cord is broken (even just a little), then do NOT use it anymore – throw it away immediately! This is very important because even the smallest amount of damage could severely hurt someone when the electricity starts traveling through them: so if you notice that your cables have exposed wires or cuts on them, then switch to another one right away instead of taking chances.
#141 Disconnecting electric equipment from the power source without unplugging cords
If you are done using an electrical item, then always make sure to unplug it: pulling on the cord won’t necessarily disconnect it because electricity can stay in the plug even if that particular outlet is currently not in use.
#142 Mixing up circuit breakers and fuses
It’s never okay to mix up fuses and circuit breakers: this could cause major house fires which can destroy your property as well as hurt people. So be careful when installing new plugs or lights – make sure that they’re matched correctly with their fuse box or breaker box according
All of these mistakes and safety hazards could cause serious damage to your property or harm people if you’re not careful. So remember to be very vigilant whenever working around electrical items: though it might be a tedious task, it’s necessary to avoid danger and keep your loved ones safe. In addition, smaller fixes like replacing fuses when they blow can really save you time and money in the long run – so try doing those as well!