Children change our lives forever. They bring us a love we never knew existed pre-baby, they open our eyes the innocence we once had that now is lost and provide us with countless hours of entertainment and laughter. With this everlasting joy comes a tale of caution each parent comes to know well. When our kids begin to learn the world around them, this comes with the need to touch, taste and smell everything they can get their tiny hands on! Kids will put things in their mouths faster than we can pick it up. It almost seems like the great race to find the contraband before they do. When they learn the technique of putting one object into another, it’s a whole new ballgame for a parent. Babies plus electricity = a dangerous combination. The best way to deter a child from wanting to mess with electrical equipment is to baby proof it before it becomes an interest to them. By safe guarding electrical sockets, cords, computer cables etc. We can protect our children against the risk of being electrocuted to the best of our ability. When the human body makes direct contact with a source of electricity, an electrical current passes through the body. Depending on the voltage of the current and how long the child was exposed to the electrical shock, a child can experience anything from minor discomfort to serious injury, even death. Peterkin Electric wants your family to be safe and sound from electrical catastrophes that can be avoided with the right planning. Following are some helpful tips to baby proof your home’s electrical systems.
How to Babyproof Electrical Outlets
If your home was built in 2008 or after, your home is already equipped with Tamper Resistant Receptacles. Which means your electrical outlets have spring loaded shutters that close off the openings of the electrical outlet, so a child can’t stick anything into the holes. It takes an even amount of pressure in both sockets for the plastic guard to disengage. If your home was built prior to 2008, and has not had an electrical system upgrade, you will need to safe guard your outlets. There are several different options available on the market today. Electrical outlet covers can be installed in place of your existing outlet cover. Also known as safe plate slide covers, these outlet covers contain a spring-loaded plastic cover that has to be moved into place of the outlet in order for something to be plugged in, making it difficult or impossible for children to stick anything inside. This is a great option for those who don’t want to remove and replace outlet caps every time something needs to be plugged in. Or you can opt for individual outlet covers that pop into the outlet and protect them with a plastic shield or press fit outlet plugs.
Christmas Lights & Extension Cord Protection
Small children, especially toddlers love putting things in their mouths! Extension cords and Christmas lights are a part of this problem. With the Holiday season fast approaching, our best recommendation is to put a baby gate around your Christmas tree, so your child does not have access to the string of lights or tree at all. If it’s not possible for you do this, we recommend trying to get lights that fit snug around the tree and don’t leave excess cord hanging off the tree or bundled on the floor. For extension cords, it is highly recommended that you never ever place cords under a rug or carpet due to risk of fire! Instead, you can purchase a duct cord cover that will safely cover the extension cords or Christmas lights. These are rubber and come in many different lengths, sizes and can house both power cords and internet cables. There are also electrical cord shorteners available for purchase to safely tuck away the cords in a container. You can also tuck cords behind T.V. stands for safe keeping, or behind furniture so they are not exposed to your child.
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With the Holidays fast approaching, life will be getting busy for everyone. Keep your children safe this holiday season and baby proof your home now. Nearly 2400 children are injured each year by electric shock. Please don’t hesitate to call us if you have further questions or need assistance upgrading your electrical systems to a safer, more updated version.