According to many residential electrician and electrical engineers, every household should have their outlets covered. While it is easy for trained and skilled professionals to choose the best and most suitable outlet for each home, it may not be the same with the average homeowner. This is why it is important that you work with your electrician in choosing and installing the most suitable outlet for your home. Keep in mind that outlet covers are not only designed to ensure the safety of your children and pets from being accidentally electrocuted.
What are the different types of electrical outlet covers?
There are different types of electrical outlet covers. Each are specifically designed to serve certain purposes including childproofing. There are also outlet covers that are particularly designed to seal your kitchen sink or bathroom outlets and prevent water from getting inside the outlet. Other outlet covers available in the market today are designed to also serve as power strips.
Generally, however, there are two types of outlet covers based on how they are installed and on the level of protection they provide.
• Outlet plugs – These plastic plugs are very easy to install. It is the most affordable and, thus, an effective placeholder. And because you will have to manually remove and replace the plug, these are recommended to be used for outlets that you do not use frequently. This way, you avoid misplacing the outlet cover and risking the health of your kids and pets. Keep in mind that these outlet plugs are choking hazards, which can be easily mistaken for food or toys by toddlers and pets.
• Sliding outlet covers – These outlet covers automatically slides over the outlet and covers it when you are not using the outlet. Thus, these are great for those outlets that you use frequently. Also, they are difficult to remove and open so they are very safe for your children’s rooms and play areas. Installing sliding outlet covers may be complicated for some homeowners, particularly for those who have no previous experiences. Thus, it is recommended that you call in a residential electrician in Myrtle Beach to help you with the installation.
• Outdoor outlet covers – If you feel the need to cover your indoor outlets, it is more important and critical that you keep your outdoor outlets covered at all times. Keep in mind that they are exposed to various weather changes as well as other natural outdoor elements. Thus, you need to keep them covered to avoid electrical related accidents.
Outdoor outlet covers are specifically designed for outdoor outlets. They are highly weatherproof and protects against rust. They provide a tight and secure seal around the outlets, thus, more effectively preventing water from seeping through the outlet and mixing with the electricity. Aside from preventing possible electrical failure and electrocution, using an outdoor outlet cover also helps protect kids in your neighborhood or the children of your visitors from getting injured when they accidentally play with your outdoor outlets. It is difficult to control kids especially the younger ones. So what you can do is ensure their safety by using safety precautions.
Replacing your outlets
In addition to using outlet covers, it also helps if you regularly check your outlets for their performance and efficiency. Keep in mind that some outlets, depending on the brand and size, may wear out especially if used frequently. If you find that some of your outlets are wearing out, you need to have them replaced at once.
You can replace your worn out electrical outlets on your own but you can also hire a residential electrician to replace them for you. If you are opting to replace your outlet on your own, be sure you turn off the power to the outlet. Go to your main electrical panel and find the circuit which the outlet belongs to and turn that circuit off. Modern circuit breakers and electrical panels have labels that tell you which room each circuit is connected to. This makes it easier for you to locate the circuit that you need to turn off. Otherwise, you will have to go through a trial and error process.
After turning off the electricity in the circuit, remove the outlet cover and unscrew the mountings. Pull out the electrical outlet from the wall while the wires are still connected and screwed. Compare the old wire with the new one that you are replacing it with. This will allow you to note which wires go where. Unscrew the wires one by one and place them on the new electrical outlet. Once done with all the wires, put the new receptacle back and screw back the mountings and cover. Turn the main power back on and test the new outlet.
For professional assistance, call MB Electrician Pros now and speak with their residential electrician.
MB Electrician Pros
5335 N. Kings Hwy #211D
Myrtle Beach, SC 29577