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4 Electrical Safety Tips For New Homeowners

If you are new to home ownership, then it is important for you to understand some basics about electrical safety. With an understanding of electrical safety, you can have confidence and complete many DIY projects around your new home.

Here are four tips to assist you:

Tip #1: Remove These Items from Your Body

When you are working on any electrical appliance or outlet, you should:

  • remove your jewelry
  • don't wear loose clothing
  • tie back long hair

In addition, you should remove any glasses of water or other liquids from your work space because they could potentially spill and cause a shock or electrocution.

Tip #2: Wear Rubber Gloves and Use Insulated Tools

While you are working with electrical components, you should wear rubber gloves because they offer some insulation from electrical shocks. Additionally, you should always ensure that the tools you use are insulated. Tools made with rubber or plastic handles are insulated for your safety.

Tip #3: GFCI Outlets

United States building code requires that any residential electrical outlet that is within six feet of water have a specialized ground fault circuit interrupting (GFCI) outlet installed. To ensure your new home is safe, you should check for GFCI outlets located in the:

  • bathrooms
  • kitchen
  • outdoor areas
  • garage

If you find a receptacle without a GFCI receptacle, then you need to immediately replace it with one that does.

To replace the receptacle, you need to first turn off the power at the panel. Once you have tested the outlets with a current testing tool, then you can swap out the old reciprocal with a new one, carefully following the instructions on the package.

If you do not feel safe replacing the receptacle, then you should contact an electrician.

Tip #4: Regularly Inspect Electrical Plugs and Cords

It is vital that you regularly inspect your appliance's electrical cords and plugs for damage. A crack in a cord or a broken plug can easily cause a fire. They can also shock you when you plug the appliance into an outlet. If you find a crack in a cord, you should wrap it with electrical tape. For a broken plug, you can purchase a replacement at your local hardware store. 

If you are going to dispose of an appliance with a broken cord or plug, then you should cut the cord off of it before disposal. This will prevent anyone from trying to use it if they happen to pick up your item and try to recycle it.


Now that you have a better understanding about home electrical safety, you can complete your DIY projects with confidence. If you need additional assistance with home electrical repair, you should contact a licensed electrical contractor in your local area.