It has already been a hot summer for some lucky residents throughout the UK, and according to long and short-range forecasts, the weather might be warm for a while longer. With hot weather on the forecast for the next few weeks, it is important to stay safe in your home or business. These are our electrical safety tips for hot weather; follow the advice below to make sure you are not affected by the increasing heat.
Air conditioning units can help keep you cool, when properly looked after.
Air conditioning used to be unheard of on this side of the Atlantic Ocean, used exclusively in America. However, thanks to a change in attitudes, along with a general rise in the number of hot summers the UK is facing, air conditioning is much more popular for UK residents. Because Air Conditioning (A/C) units are relatively new to this country, not everyone knows how to safely operate them. You must make sure that no matter the unit you have, whatever variety, it is professionally installed and cleaned properly.
A/C Units that are incorrectly looked after, will collect dust and debris that can lead to issues in performance as well as dangerous environments. Badly installed A/C units can be very dangerous and result in a range of very serious accidents, such as house fires. We at East Kent Electrical are qualified to install a range of Air Conditioning units, to avoid such problems.
Effects on cables.
When there is an extended period of hot weather, electrical cabling can be massively affected with varying results. Power lines tend to heat up and expand during heatwaves, and due to this the lines can ‘sag’. If there are any exposed electricity cables that feed into your business or property, it is very important that they do not arch and come into contact with any surfaces. Electricity cables can cause serious electrocution, so if you see this take place, leading into your property, or any other property, you need to contact local authorities.
In addition to this, cables, switches and other equipment can react to the hot weather in a similar way to major electrical cabling. This can cause problems with your internal connections and insulation, so please be aware when using electrical equipment over a long period of time in the hot weather. If you hear anything unusual from a cable or switch, or smell anything unpleasant, make sure you turn the electrical supply off immediately and call an expert to inspect your wiring and your property.
The dangers of lightning.
During periods of hot weather, very large storms are often more frequent. During these intense storms, thunder and lightning are much more common than usual. When lightning strikes, especially when it comes into contact with a building, it tends to follow the available pathways towards the ground. Electrical wiring, including cables, plumbing and telephone lines are all possible options for lightning strikes. You are usually very safe when you are inside a building during a large thunderstorm, however, try to avoid using any wired electrical appliances when there is lightning, just to be overly cautious.
Use appropriate extension cords.
Firstly, ensure you use outdoor approved extension cords for any outdoor appliances. These products are designed to handle heat and water, where normal standard extension cords are not designed to withstand the elements. Using them could therefore pose a large threat if exposed to these conditions.
Secondly, ensure that you do not overload any extension cords you have plugged in around the house. Although extension cords are a major convenience, they can easily be overloaded, especially on a hot day. Most extension cords are not approved for major appliances, like fridges, dryers, or air conditioners, so should not be used with these at all. However, because the high heat will increase the strain on appliances like fridges, warm weather is more likely to cause issues.
We all enjoy a spot of sunshine, but the warm weather we face can cause a variety of issues for our electrics. So, make sure you follow the advice above and stay aware of the dangers of electronics and wiring during the coming weeks and months. If you do have any electrical queries or requirements, especially during the hot weather, please contact East Kent Electrical Ltd.
Here at East Kent Electrical, we provide for all your electrical requirements in the Thanet and South Kent area. If you require an electrician in Thanet, then do get in touch. We provide a wide range of electrical services all focussed on keeping you living in a safe, efficient and comfortable home.