Prevent Electrical Shocks in the Kitchen with These Tips

Electric shock is a common source of kitchen-related injuries. Several factors can cause serious electrical hazards.

Each year in the US, an estimate of 30,000 non-fatal electrical accidents take place. Twenty percent of them affect children, mainly toddlers and teenagers. Additionally, 5% of all electrical accidents result in burn unit admissions.

Electrical issues can lead to hundreds of fire-related accidents each year in the United States. In 2018, for example, electrical problems were responsible for 6.8 percent of all home fires—which is equivalent to about 25,800 fire incidents caused by faulty electrical wirings or components. Even in Charlotte, North Carolina, these types of accidents are common.

That alone should be reason enough to learn how to avoid electrical accidents at home. There are numerous ways of avoiding electrical injuries and preventing fire accidents.

To avoid these circumstances, here is a list of kitchen safety guidelines by Bates Electric. So, without any delay, let us start.

Do not Handle Plugs and Cords with Wet Hands

Water is an excellent conductor of electricity. How? There are tiny metals and dissolved salts in it, which makes water an electrolyte. Now, the human body is about 50% to 60% water, which explains why it is an excellent conductor of electricity. As a result, if you touch a socket with wet hands, a current may flow onto your hands and run through your body. You are likely to get an electrical shock when this happens.

So, to maintain safety, always dry your hands before removing electrical equipment. This applies not only to kitchen appliances but to all electronic devices.

To help keep your kitchen safe, you can use microfiber hand towels. These are superior dryers because one inch of these materials contains about 200,000 microfibers. As a result, they are an excellent method to dry your hands.

Disconnect Appliances Properly

When disconnecting equipment, just pull them out by the plug, do not pull by the cable. If you pull on the cable too hard, you risk damaging the wires inside. Even worse, it has the potential to break or shatter the rubber covering on the cables, exposing the internal wiring.

Turn off the Device Before Disconnecting

It is a very common mistake to disconnect a device that is running. Therefore, it’s highly recommended to turn off the device before unplugging it from the socket. It can cause serious accidents if you directly pull the plug, besides, it can also cause damage to your appliances.

Install Electrical Outlet Covers 

Covers for electrical wall outlets are often referred to as “boxes” or “plates” used to conceal the sockets. Some of them can be slid to open, while others resemble little doors and “clamp” directly into the wall plate. On every occasion, the main objective is to keep fingers, particularly those of inquisitive children, safe.

These shock-preventing devices are a must in families with infants and toddlers. They can also help to prevent moisture and dirt from getting into the holes of wall outlets in kitchens.

Keep Electrical Appliances Away from Water Sources

Keeping electrical equipment far away from the sink is a way to avoid electrical shock-related injuries in the kitchen. This helps avoid accidental spilling on your electronic devices, which may result in a shock. Also, spilling water on these devices can damage the appliances.

Use A Dedicated Outlet

Usually, electric stoves, dishwashers, and refrigerators need a separate outlet. In such cases, no other appliance should be connected to the same outlet as they are.

Otherwise, a power surge can occur, resulting in an electrical shock. Additionally, this may trip the circuit breaker.

Overloading a circuit by connecting too many gadgets in the very same outlet is highly probable. As a result, your whole house may be in danger of an electrical fire.

Regardless of how small an item is, avoid plugging it into the same outlet with a larger appliance. If your kitchen has an insufficient number of outlets, you can hire an electrician to add more.

Use Extension Cords Carefully

When it comes to sharing power outlets, avoid continuous use of extension cables. Also, separate extension cables should be used for each device. It may assist in preventing electrical overloads, which can result in shock injuries and fires.

Relying on extension cords is often an indication of a lack of outlets. Also, it is essential to consider hiring a skilled electrician to mitigate this problem. They may add more outlets throughout your house, not just in the kitchen.

GFCI Protection

Experts say that increased usage of ground fault circuit interrupters (GFCI) has reduced the number of deaths due to electric shock. If there is a mismatch between incoming and outgoing power, between devices, immediately shut off the power. There are several skilled electricians in Charlotte, North Carolina, who can determine if you have GFCI protection or not.

Electrical System Inspection

Electrical shocks & fires are often caused by outdated wiring. This is due to problems in a large number of older houses in the United States.

50% of owner-occupied houses in the United States were built before 1980. Numerous old houses continue to operate on their original electrical systems.

Therefore, if you own an older house in Charlotte, North Carolina, that has never been rewired, do not waste any time and contact an electrician to inspect it. This way, the electrician can determine the safety of your present electrical system. If it is too old, it may need to be renovated.

There are several methods to protect yourself and your family from electrical shock and fires at home. It could be as simple as drying your hands before touching plugs. However, it is good to hire an electrician, mainly if you live in an older home or often use extension cables.

Do Solar Panels Extend the Life of Your Roof?

When it comes to your roofing material, you want one that is durable and long-lasting. Adding solar panels to your roof can help to extend the life of your roof. Here are some ways solar panels can keep your awning in top shape for many years. 

How Can Solar Panels Extend the Life of Your Roof?

Solar panels are more durable than other roofing materials. This is because they have no moving parts and can withstand high winds and heavy snow loads. Solar panels usually last about 25-30 years, depending on maintenance. 

When added to your awning, this material can extend the life of your roof. Solar panels protect your roof from the sun’s rays. These boards absorb the sunlight usually directly absorbed by your shingles. This helps prevent them from bleaching and drying out. 

Another way the solar panels protect your roof is by cooling it down. Air flows between the panels and your awning, reducing the temperature inside by about 38%. The cool air also allows your roof shingles to work more efficiently. 

The durable material protects your awning from inclement weather, such as snow. With fewer repairs needed, your roof will last longer.

The Benefits of Solar Panels

One of the main benefits of solar panels is it saves you money by lowering your electricity bill. The average household could save around $1,390 per year on their energy payments. 

Besides the savings, solar panels are also beneficial to the environment. They use a renewable source of energy instead of fossil fuel. This reduces the emission of greenhouse gases into the air. In 2019, power plants burning coal, natural gas and petroleum fuel accounted for 99% of the U.S. electricity-related carbon dioxide emissions. Using solar panels can also slow down climate change. 

Preparing for Solar Installation

Before installing the panels, consider getting your roof inspected. A professional can verify that your roof is structurally sound. If there are any signs of weakness, dry rot, or leaks, you should get your roof repaired.

There are two types of roofing contractors you could hire-independent roofing contractors or roofing companies. Independent contractors are good for quick repairs, but roofing companies are better for larger jobs. To find the right professional verify they have a current license and ask for references.

The Solar Installation Process

It costs around $12,00 to install solar panels, and the process can take between one and four months.  Here are the general steps for installing solar panels onto your roof. 

1. Purchase Your Solar Equipment 

There are two main pieces of equipment-panels and inverters. Your installer will likely provide you with recommendations for both. Although, you may want to do your research to help you make a more informed decision. Consider monocrystalline solar panels for their space efficacy and durability. 

2.  A Solar Engineer Will Visit Your Property

Once you sign a contract, an engineer will visit your home. They will ensure your roof can handle the panel’s weight and check that your circuit breaker is functioning properly. After verifying your roof is structurally safe, you can move on to the next step of the process. 

3. Fill Out the Paperwork 

Your installer should handle most of the complicated paperwork. However, you should understand what is being filed where. Your installer may also help you fill out paperwork for local building permits and restrictions. Your solar system may need to meet a minimum fire-resistant rating. 

Once you fill out all the paperwork and get approved, the contractor orders the equipment. 

4. Leave It to the Pros

The installation process should only take a few days. First, the installer will prepare your roof and make sure it is still structurally sound. Then they will install the electrical wiring connecting your panels to the power system. Racking is attached to your roof to support your boards. The last step is to connect the inverters to the panels. 

5. One Final Check

A local government official must approve your installer’s work before your new panels can be connected to the grid. The inspector is looking for any faulty wiring or violations of electric codes. Once approved, your local electric company sends a representative to connect your solar panels to the grid. 

Consider Investing in Solar Panels

You want to find a roofing material durable enough to protect the interior of your home. Solar panels are an excellent choice and can extend the life of your roof. They may be more costly but save you money in the long run. So, consider solar panels for your next roof replacement. 

Bio:

Jane is the Editor-in-Chief of Environment.co and an environmental writer covering green technology, sustainability and environmental news.

Growing Sustainably: 6 Significant Benefits of a Robust Climate Action Platform

The world is facing a climate emergency with an irreversible impact on natural systems, as a consequence of sustaining our growing demands. Entering 2021, when the world continues to be confronted with the pandemic that has been wreaking havoc over the lives of people, deepening inequalities, disrupting the supply chain and whatnot – ultimately  playing a part in undoing the progress that the world have had achieved on the sustainable development goals.

Therefore, having suffered from such times, the need for collaborative efforts of all the stakeholders in order to ‘build a coalition for carbon neutrality’ has increased for achieving an equitable and sustainable world. 

After completing five years into the adoption of the Paris Agreement, it has been observed that the private sector has a vital role to play. More and more businesses are raising ambition in alignment with climate science and prioritizing climate action. 

Achieving Net-Zero Emissions

To lead the way for climate change, it has become imperative for businesses to demonstrate that their business practices are on a reliable path to net-zero emissions. And, to reach the goals set by Sustainable Development Goals and the Paris Agreement, along with reducing global emissions by 2030, we require Government and corporate leaders and stakeholders everywhere across the world to work together, thus, accelerating climate action. 

However, despite several pledges from thousands of organizations worldwide and the Paris Agreement, the world is still on track to experience an increased global temperature which might exceeding the 1.5 °C thresholds.

This is why it is important to have a robust climate action platform that will bring together strategy development supported by implementation guidance and assessment tools, supporting large and small companies to ensure their success in addressing climate action targets and sustainability globally. 

Here, a collaborative and robust climate action platform would prove to be of great support for businesses and primary stakeholders achieving climate resilience and mitigation. Moreover, the major focus of climate action platform will be driving climate ambition and building on past under the pathways to low-carbon and robust development and business ambition for the climate. 

Reasons for Developing a Robust Climate Action Platform

 Inclusive of a Number of Activities

Building Alliances

The climate action platform will help build alliances of leading companies that commit to strengthening corporate goals and offering effective support to climate action targets and the Paris Agreement. 

Shaping Leading Guidance and Tools

The leading guidance and tools of climate action platforms will help close the gap between the current status in regard to climate change actions and what is required to achieve in order to limit global temperature to 1.5 °C. 

Mobilizing Climate Action and Demonstrating Leadership

The climate action platform will help grow business ambition for a 1.5 °C target. It will also recognise the companies committed to achieving ambitious climate action targets. 

Despite efforts, there remains a large gap between action and ambition. Climate action platform will synergize the collaborative and coordinate efforts to fill this gap. This will enable stakeholders to set, measure and achieve innovative strategies while impacting the bottom line positively. 

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