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Don't Let Power Become a Hazard - by Sarah Ryan

Did you know U.S. homes now have more than half a billion devices connected to the Internet? This is an average of 5.7 devices per household; twice the average number of actual people per household. Add 3 televisions and upwards of 30 or more power-using appliances and you can clearly see an ongoing demand for power in the typical American home. As a result, we sometimes turn to extension cords or power strips as a convenient way to bring power to a room when wall outlets just wont cut it. This can then become a fire and safety hazard when not used correctly. It is crucial to check labels whenever purchasing power strips and extension cords. The only correct purchase is equipment that has been approved by an independent testing laboratory. Cords should be selected according to the appropriate rating and cords gauge. The smaller the number, the larger the wire, and the more electrical current the cord can safely handle. Just remember the shorter the cord, the more capacity they have (longer cords cant handle as much current). Please keep in mind that extension cords are not appropriate for all uses and should be used only as indicated. Never remove a pin to make the cord fit an outlet and never nail or staple it to the floor. A power strip can also be used to provide more power to a specific room. I recommend the models that include a push button that automatically trips if the strip becomes too hot for safe operation. We all love our modern technology, but we need to be safe while using them in our dream homes. This home tip is brought to you by Tiger Home & Building Inspections.

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