Plug in one too many items into your sockets, and you will certainly overload it. Unfortunately, an overloaded powerpoint is a safety hazard and is a leading cause of electrical fires. A qualified electrical contractor can help by carrying out an audit for overload and, as need be, installing more sockets.
Going forward, here are top recommendations you can expect from the electrical contractor on how to prevent socket overload.
1. Make Use of a Socket Overload Calculator
Know the rating of your extension leads and compare that to the amp current rating of the appliances you use. If your appliance's rating exceeds that of the socket or extension board, that there is overloading, and the socket may start to overheat.
You can find easy-to-use socket overload calculators online. An electrical contractor may be able to give you some insights and clarify your questions on these calculations.
2. One Extension Per Socket
For lack of enough powerpoints, it's relatively common to plug an extension lead into another extension lead. One extension per socket is the rule to follow as doing otherwise will only overload both the extension lead and the outlet into which it is plugged.
If you use more appliances at any one time than you have enough powerpoints for, call an electrical contractor to add more sockets and extend your network.
3. Upgrade Your Overload Protection
An electrical contractor can install correctly rated overload protection devices, namely fuses and circuit breakers. These cut off power to circuits if the circuit is drawing more current. Whether your existing overload protection is not adequately rated or it's worn out, it is certainly for the best to consider this upgrade.
Know The Signs
Black marks around the socket, the smell of burning plastic, frayed leads and your fuses blowing and circuit breakers tripping all the time are some of the telltale signs of socket overloading.
Once you see these signs, it is for your safety that you discontinue using that particular powerpoint. Call an electrician as soon as possible, and should you choose to, you can have an electrical contractor install additional sockets around your home or business.
Overloading sockets come with very serious dangers and, as such, is not something you can afford to take lightly. In addition to implementing best practices when using your existing sockets, you stand to benefit even more from having an electrical contractor add more.
For more information, speak with an electrical contractor.