Summer is well and truly here. Think BBQs out in the garden, sitting in a pub beer garden with friends and relaxing in the sun!
When the weather is warm, we often left our guard down a little bit more. It’s still important to stay alert, especially when it comes to electrical safety.
Here is our advice for staying safe during the summer season.
1. Water and electrics don’t mix
Water is a very good conductor of electricity. If you are touching water, electricity can travel through the water, through you, to the ground. This can cause a potentially fatal electric shock.
Keep any electrical appliances and cables away from water, and make sure you dry your hands before touching any electrical equipment.
2. Inspect any electrical equipment before you plug it in
If you have brought any electrical equipment down from your loft, garage or shed, be sure to give it a thorough visual inspection before you plug it in.
Summer equipment that has spent all winter packed away may have been damaged by water or ice. Dust can also block vents in the equipment, increasing the risk of overheating.
Check the cable, plug and casing before you switch your equipment on for the first time. If anything is cracked, torn or damaged… it may be time to arrange a replacement!
3. Keep your electric fan safe
Electric fans do a fantastic job of keeping us cool and refreshed during summer heatwaves. However, they can overheat easily, especially if they are old or damaged.
At Hawkesworth, we end up failing a lot of fans during the summer months, as you can see from the photo above!
Want to keep your fans running during warm weather? Here are our top tips:
- Don’t leave your fan on overnight or unattended
- Keep any fans away from children or pets
- Don’t plug your fan into an extension lead
- Don’t use a cracked or damaged fan. If you can hear, see or smell anything unusual while it is running, unplug it
- Don't use your fan if the blade guards are missing or damaged
- If you need to buy a new fan, buy it from a reputable store. If you’re buying from an online marketplace, you could potentially be buying a counterfeit
4. Take care in the garden
Lawnmowers and hedge trimmers make life easier when looking after the garden, but you need to take care when tending your grass and plants.
According to Electrical Safety First, one-third of all gardeners have had an electrical accident in the garden.
Switch off and unplug any electrical equipment before cleaning or checking it and be aware of where the cable is. You don’t want to run over it with your lawnmower!
Make sure that your fuse box has a residual current device (RCD) installed. This will trip if there is a fault, protecting against electric shocks and overheating. If you don’t have a fixed RCD in your fuse box, you can buy socket outlets and portable RCDs that plug into your sockets.