Whether it’s your home or your place of business, fires can start at any time and cause an untold amount of damage. The most common cause of these fires remains an issue with the electrical systems. These fires can start from various sources and quickly become a significant issue for your building.
But what causes an electrical fire, what are the most common causes, how quickly can they start, and how can you better protect yourself from an electrical fire? EP Electric, LLC has the answers to your questions!
What Constitutes an Electrical Fire?
A licensed electrician can help you prevent electrical fires, but the best way to avoid them in the first place remains knowing what exactly constitutes an electrical fire. This type of fire typically stems from an electrical failure somewhere in your building’s system. Frayed electrical wires, too many appliances plugged into one outlet, or older appliances overheating are common culprits that lead to electrical fires.
The most common triggers involve either a spark or overheating that starts a fire and requires quick thinking to contain it. These types of fires can quickly cause devastation that sets your home or business back significantly.
How Quickly Can an Electrical Fire Start?
Like other fires, electrical-based fires can start exceptionally quickly and spread just as fast. When a spark is the cause, it’s similar to a lighter igniting flammable materials. Sparks happen when the electricity doesn’t have a direct path to its final destination. The resulting sparks catch nearby combustible materials, and you end up with shoddy electrical work creating a fire.
While sparks represent a significant cause of electrical fires, it’s not the only increasingly common source. Faulty wiring in your electrical devices can often be attributed to the cause of electrical fires. If the wires plugged into a power strip or light fixture show signs of degradation, the greater the chance that an electrical fire can start. Frayed cords, faulty wires, and poor insulation are the most common reasons a wire fails and starts a fire.
Some people may not think of their lightbulbs as a significant fire risk. However, electrical contractors have seen what happens when you don’t put the right lightbulb in your fixtures. Overlamping occurs when the amount of power a lightbulb can take doesn’t match up with the power output of the fixture. This mismatch can result in the bulb overheating and potentially starting an electrical fire in your home or business.
Where Do Electrical Fires Most Commonly Take Place?
Electrical fires can happen anywhere in your home, but some areas are more susceptible than others. Some of the most vulnerable areas include:
- Kitchens, with their array of appliances
- Living areas with multiple outlets and space heaters
- Attics with old and faulty wiring
- Basements with too many things plugged into an extension cord and older appliances
How Can You Combat Electrical Fires?
While electrical fires can happen quickly and without a moment’s notice, you still have options available to help stop these problems before they start. With the help of a master electrician with years of experience, you can identify potential problem areas that need your immediate attention. EP Electric, LLC has trained technicians that can help you identify any areas of your home or business that represent a potential electrical hazard.
While you wait for our Philadelphia, PA-based electrical services to come out for a scheduled visit, you can take steps to help limit the chances of an electrical fire. Simple fixes like not running wires under carpets, using heavy-duty extension cords, updating older appliances, and checking your wires for signs of degradation can all help improve your home’s fire safety.
Contact EP Electric, LLC to schedule your first appointment with our emergency electricians and take the steps you need to prevent electrical fires today!