Electrical Safety Tips for Pool Owners

electrical safety for pools

For most of us here in central Indiana, Memorial Day marks the unofficial beginning of summer. The kids are on summer break, we’re enjoying Indy 500 festivities, and backyard pools are ready for swimming.

Of course, we all know to use caution around pools, especially when children are present. But with all of the excitement of summer and pool season, electrical safety for pools often gets overlooked. Here are a few electrical safety tips to keep in mind this summer if you’re opening or using a backyard pool.

Keep all outdoor outlets covered and dry.

Having outdoor outlets can really come in handy year-round to operate yard equipment, plug in Christmas lights, or to plug in any devices you’re using outside. Just make sure to use outdoor outlets carefully and always keep them covered, especially around pools, hot tubs, or other summer water activities. If your outdoor outlets don’t have covers already on them, have a licensed electrician install some to be sure they are up to code.

Use a ground fault circuit interrupter (GFCI) for electrical devices used outside to help prevent electrocutions or electric shock.

A GFCI shuts off an electric power circuit when it detects that electricity is flowing along an unintended path, such as through water or even through a person. This is especially important for outdoor circuits or outlets that are often near water.

Keep all electrical devices and cords at least 10 feet away from water.

It’s usually common sense not to use electrical devices too close to the water, but take extra care to make sure any devices used outdoors are in an area where they won’t pose a hazard to anyone swimming, especially when children are present. When possible, use battery-operated devices around the pool and hot tub to avoid electrocution or electric shock.

Never swim during a thunderstorm.

Water is a great electrical conductor, but you certainly don’t want it conducting electricity through you! Lightning regularly strikes water, and nearby lightning could injure or kill someone in the water. If you hear or see thunder or lightning, always get everyone out of the water and to a safe place.

To avoid electric shock drowning, have a licensed electrician inspect and upgrade your pool or hot tub in accordance with local codes.

Whether this is your first summer in a new home with a pool, or you’ve been swimming in the same pool for 20 years, have a local Indianapolis electrician inspect your pool or hot tub to make sure its electrical system is up to code. This can help ensure your peace of mind and the safety of those enjoying it this summer.

Happy Memorial Day from White’s Electrical!

Should I Upgrade the Electrical System in my Older Home?

Many of us find appeal in owning an older home – the charm and character are unbeatable to say the least. The stately exterior and ornate fixtures have been able to withstand the test of time. However, under that beautiful craftsmanship, a dangerous secret may be hiding: aging electrical wires that pose a fire hazard.

Outdated electrical systems can have an impact on the safety and energy consumption of an older home. Indianapolis is known for some of the most beautiful historic housing districts in the Midwest. If your home is older than 50 years old, here are a few things to keep in mind when considering the condition of your home’s electrical system.

Outdated Breaker Boxes and Modern Appliances

Most of us like to live with our modern conveniences, such as microwaves and refrigerators. Modern homes require the use of more electricity than in the past. Today, most homes require 150-200 amps of electrical service. If you are using new, large appliances or other gadgets that require a lot of electricity, it may be time to upgrade your electrical system. Talk to a licensed electrician about how much electricity your home needs and whether your current breaker box can support that, or if you should upgrade.

Outdated Wiring

Most electrical systems post-1960s are safe (although they may not supply enough amps to power the entire home), homes with unsafe, outdated wiring still dot the landscape all over Indiana. Prior to the 1900s, builders installed knob-and-tube wiring where wires are run through ceramic knobs and tubes to keep the wires from electrifying the wood. Also commonly used wire insulators of the past were asbestos and cloth.

If you are at all unsure on the condition of your home’s electrical system, have a licensed electrician perform a full inspection to determine the quality of the wiring in your home, and see whether or not you need to upgrade the electrical system. While rewiring your home will require cutting and drilling into your home, it is certainly a worth-while investment. Not only will this increase the value of your home, but it will greatly reduce the chance of a fire due to faulty wiring.

Ungrounded Electrical Devices

During an inspection by a licensed electrician, remember to ask to have your lights, switches, and outlets checked. Outdated electrical device that are ungrounded can be dangerous. Ask your electrician to check them to see if they meet safety guidelines.

Need to Upgrade the Electrical System in Your Older Home?

Call for an inspection today from White’s Electrical. We can’t stress enough the importance of having your older home inspected by a licensed electrician. Take control of the electrical system in your older home – call White’s Electrical today!