• Electricity safety advice

  • We all want to keep our homes and loved ones safe. We’ve put together some advice when using electrical equipment so you don’t need to worry.

  • Things to remember

    Things to rememberElectricity is part of our everyday life, and most of the time we use it without thinking. However, we should all be aware of the hidden dangers.

    Keep electrical equipment away from water

    Water conducts electricity, and not all electrical equipment is insulated to keep out water. If water gets into the equipment, it becomes dangerous. It is also dangerous to touch equipment, plugs and switches with wet hands, so make sure you dry your hands thoroughly before touching them.

    Check the user manual when cleaning electrical equipment

    It’s fine to clean electrical equipment and the manufacturer usually tells you how to do this safely in a user manual that comes with the equipment. We also advise switching off and unplugging the equipment before you do this.

    Check plugs and wires

    Check plugs and wires regularly to make sure they aren’t split or frayed, as this can cause short-circuits. A short-circuit could electrocute you or result in a fire. If you find any damage or loose connections, then switch the equipment off, unplug it and get it fixed straight away.

    Using electrical equipment in your home

    Electrical equipment in your homeThere are lots of everyday things in our homes and gardens that use electricity. Follow this simple advice to stay safe around your home.

    Don’t hang anything over convector or fan heaters

    A convector heater uses a heat source within the unit to heat the air around it. A fan heater passes air over a heating element and warms the air, which leaves the heater and heats the room. Both heaters can get very hot so it’s important not to hang laundry on or near them to dry.

    Always check your electric blanket

    If you have an electric blanket, make sure you always follow the manufacturer’s guidelines. Don’t use it when it’s damp, folded or creased, and always check for signs of damage to the blanket and power cable.

    Avoid using adaptors and extension leads

    If you need to use one, it’s better to use a bar adaptor (multi board) on a lead rather than a block adaptor. Don’t plug one adaptor into another as this can cause them to overheat.

    Be safe when you work outside

    If you’re working with electrical equipment outside, make sure you use a Residual Current Device (RCD). This is a safety gadget that automatically disconnects the equipment in case of a fault. Check for damage before using them and make sure you know how to stop them. If it’s raining, don’t use any electrical equipment outside. 

    Equipment and electricians

    Equipment and electriciansIt’s important to make sure our homes are safe. Take a look at our tips before you make a decision to buy a new piece of equipment or use an electrician to do work for you.

    Get the BEAB seal of approval

    The British Electrotechnical Approvals Board (BEAB) is an independent organisation for electrical safety. BEAB test electrical equipment and if they find the equipment is safe to use, they’ll grant it a certificate. You’ll find the BEAB seal of approval on the equipment.

    Make sure you wire plugs correctly

    If you fit a plug yourself, make sure you wire it correctly and always use the right size fuse. Always use short, undamaged wires and don’t join two pieces of wire together. You can also get an independent registered electrician to do the work for you.

  • You can find further information and advice about electrical safety from the Electrical Safety Council.

    Information point

    Use an independent registered electrician for any repairs. 

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