Hurricanes are a reality that residents in Tampa, Florida, need to contend with. While stocking up on essentials like food and water is crucial, so is ensuring the safety of your home’s electrical system. *Positricity*, a family-owned electrical company based in Tampa, offers the following ten essential electrical safety tips to prepare for a hurricane. Follow these guidelines to ensure the safety of your loved ones and your property.

     1. Turn Off the Electricity:

Before the hurricane strikes, if there’s a high probability of flooding, switch off the main breaker in your electrical panel. This can help prevent short circuits and potential electrical fires once the storm has passed.

     2. Stay Away from Downed Power Lines:

Post-storm, always assume any downed power line is live and lethal. Keep a distance and report them immediately to your local utility company or emergency services.

     3. Use Surge Protectors:

An electrical surge can damage your appliances and electronics. Ensure all valuable electrical items, such as computers and televisions, are plugged into surge protectors. Better yet, unplug them before the storm to ensure maximum safety.

     4. Waterproof Electrical Connections:

Keep all outdoor outlets, cords, and other electrical equipment dry by sealing them in waterproof containers or coverings. Wet electrical connections can be a hazard and lead to malfunctions or fires.

     5. Elevate Electrical Appliances:

If you live in a flood-prone area, elevate electrical appliances above potential flood levels. This will help safeguard them from water damage.

     6. Secure Outdoor Electrical Equipment:

Fixed equipment like air conditioning units or pool equipment should be securely anchored and, where possible, shielded from potential flying debris.

     7. Update Your Emergency Kit:

Always have an emergency kit ready, complete with flashlights, batteries, a battery-powered radio, and chargers. Refrain from using candles as they pose a fire hazard.

     8. Install a Ground Fault Circuit Interrupter (GFCI):

GFCIs are designed to shut off electric power when they detect a divergence in the amount of electricity going into the circuit versus coming out. This can help prevent electrocutions during flood situations.

     9. Regular Inspections:

Have a professional, like Positricity, inspect your electrical systems and appliances regularly, especially before hurricane season. This ensures that everything is in top shape to withstand the strain of the storm.

     10. Consider a Backup Power Solution:

Hurricanes often lead to power outages. A backup power solution can be a lifesaver.

Portable Generators and Generator Transfer Switches: A Closer Look

One of the most efficient ways to ensure backup power during and after a hurricane is by using a portable generator. However, there’s a right way to use them:

     1. Safe Placement:

Always place generators outside, away from windows and vents, to prevent carbon monoxide from entering the house.

     2. Use the Right Cords:

Heavy-duty, outdoor-rated cords with a wire gauge suitable for the appliance load are essential.

     3. Installation of a Generator Transfer Switch:

This allows you to connect the generator directly to your home’s electrical system. Instead of running extension cords to your appliances, the transfer switch safely feeds power directly to your electrical panel. It also ensures that the generator doesn’t back-feed into the power lines, which can be deadly for linemen fixing the power.

     4. Regular Maintenance:

Always check the generator’s oil levels, air filter, and overall condition before the hurricane season.

Positricity emphasizes the importance of preparedness. While nature’s wrath is unpredictable, taking precautionary measures ensures that your home and loved ones remain safe. If you need assistance with your electrical systems before, during, or after a hurricane, always trust a reliable and local expert like Positricity in Tampa, FL.