Over the years we’ve come to rely heavily on the electrical products found in our homes.
From high-ticket items, like a washer and dryer or refrigerator to the smaller items cluttering our countertops, such as coffee makers, microwaves, and tiny waffle makers, these appliances make our daily lives easier.
To keep those much-needed items in top shape, regular cleaning and maintenance can help your appliances run more efficiently, extend their lifetime, and save you money and headaches in the end.
Let’s explore some helpful tips to maintain electrical products at home safe and in good condition for years to come.
Tips to Maintain Electrical Products at Home
1. General Tips
Protect from Electrical Surges
Electrical surges and voltage fluctuations can overload your electrical product’s internal circuitry and the repairs can be costly. Protect your valuable electrical items by using voltage stabilizers.
Check for Damaged Cables
Cords and cables carry electrical current from the outlet to the equipment, making them a fragile, but important appliance component.
Broken or damaged appliance cables can cause a short circuit, leading to voltage fluctuations.
Check for damaged cables regularly and ensure they are not lying across open doorways or underneath carpets where they can be damaged.
Also, check for damage caused by pets or pests as little critters often chew on cords.
If you detect broken electrical cords, disconnect the item, and seek to repair the item before continuing use.
Some may think this to be a myth, but thunderstorms and lightning strikes can cause electrical overloads or voltage spikes. To keep your appliances and yourself safe, disconnect electrical devices from their power source during these events.
Keep Water and Moisture at Bay
This may seem like common sense, but always keep your electrical products and their power sources far from water and moisture. And try not to switch appliances on and off or disconnect them with wet hands.
Moisture buildup can cause a short circuit or can cause irreparable damage to the item.
Clean Large Appliances Regularly
Large items, such as air conditioners, washers, dryers, and refrigerators should receive regular maintenance and cleaning to keep them running efficiently.
These appliances often accumulate dirt and grime over time, leading them to overload or overheat.
Keep one High-Power Appliance per Power Source
Do not connect multiple high-powered appliances to the same power source as this may lead to electrical overload and can be a potential fire hazard.
Check the Manuals
Always check your appliances’ owner’s manual for special instructions, and maintenance, as well as to avoid injury due to improper use.
Limit Extension Cord Use
Extension cords are not meant for long-term use as they can take a toll on the appliance and its internal electrical system.
Instead, plug your appliances directly into wall outlets. Only use extension cords when necessary and unplug them after use.
If you need more electrical outlets (Check Bay Power), contact your local electrician to install them rather than have multiple extension cords running all over your home, which can cause a hazard to you and your electrical products.
Check for Overheating Outlets
Overheating outlets and switches can be an indication of defective wiring in your electrical system, which could lead to an electrical fire.
Check your outlets and switches often. If you notice they are constantly hot to the touch, consider it an urgent matter and call your local electrician.
Don’t Hesitate to Call a Professional
Fixing things around your home doesn’t only give you a sense of accomplishment but can also save you a ton of money.
However, there is no shame in admitting when you might be over your head with an electrical problem. Don’t hesitate to call a professional when you encounter a complex electrical issue.
Not only are professional electricians trained and skilled at identifying electrical problems, but they have the proper equipment to repair them safely and efficiently.
2. In the Kitchen
Refrigerators are an essential part of our daily lives. Clean your refrigerator’s condenser coil from dirt, dust, and debris regularly to prevent airflow restrictions.
Check and clean your refrigerator and freezer doors’ rubber gaskets with soap and water, then dry them thoroughly to prevent damage and ensure they continue to seal tightly.
Most refrigerators come with water filters. Depending on usage, you should change your water filter every three to six months. Replace your water filter immediately if you notice a change in water pressure or color.
Ensure your oven door closes tightly. An improper seal can overheat your home and make meals longer to cook, costing you more money in the long run.
Whether you’re working with a gas or an electric stove, clean and remove food particles and dried liquid from your cooking elements. Over time, food buildup can keep a stove burner from working properly.
3. In the Laundry
Cleaning your washing machine may seem like an oxymoron, but it is an important task in ensuring it continues to work properly. Regular cleaning can keep mold and mildew at bay while keeping your clothes and linens smelling fresh.
Check your washing machine hoses often to avoid damaging floods in your home. Inspect hoses for cracks, leaks, or weak spots. Replace them as needed, usually every five years.
Avoid fire hazards by cleaning the lint trap after every load of laundry. This will also allow your dryer to be more efficient. Every so often, the lint filter needs to be cleaned with soap and a scrub brush to remove dryer sheet residue.
The dryer’s accordion hose and dryer exhaust should also be checked for lint clumps regularly.
4. Around the Home
Clean or replace your A/C unit’s air filter often to maintain proper airflow. In general, air filters should be cleaned or replaced every two to four weeks.
Check your water heater for mineral buildup. Remove grime and debris from your water heater by draining it at least once a year.
As our lives become more intricately dependent on electrical appliances, cleaning and maintaining them has never been more important.
To avoid expensive repairs, the tips to maintain electrical products at home put forth in this article will help extend the life of your appliances while saving you money and headaches.