Summer is traditionally that time of the year when all of those home maintenance and repair projects start, both inside and outside of the home. However, we have all heard stories of the DIY disasters that can befall even the most confident home improvement enthusiast. Therefore, it is important to take as many precautions as you can to stay safe when working in or around your home.
One of the biggest causes of injury that befalls DIY enthusiasts is electrocution, due to the fact that the majority of home improvement or maintenance projects involve electricity, or the use of electrical appliances and tools. In order to stay safe when using electricity, here are some things you can do to lower the risk of electrocution.
If you have electrical outlets outside of your home, make sure that they are fitted with a GFCI (Ground Fault Circuit Interrupter). If your outlets do not have these, you can fit a portable one instead.
When working outdoors at height, it is always a good idea to know exactly where the power lines are, especially when you are going to be using ladders or other long metal tools, or just installing satellite dishes or television antennas. As a rule of thumb, it is advisable to make sure that you and your tools are at least 10 feet away from the nearest power lines.
Never cut branches of trees or trim shrubs that are very close to power lines, which is something that is best left to the professionals.
Because water and electricity do not mix, it is not advisable to use power tools or other electrical equipment outside when the ground is wet or it is raining. Also, never use any electrical item when you are standing in water, nor should you touch circuit breakers or fuse boxes during wet weather conditions.
When you are working indoors, it is vital that you make sure that your current electrical wiring is up to handling the increased demand for energy.
During the summer months, there is more of a demand for energy due to increased use of air conditioning systems, and if your home wiring is not up to the job of dealing with the extra demand, it could be putting you and your family at risk from fire or electrocution.