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Summer spruce up

Renovations and DIY are an integral part of the kiwi culture. With the warmer weather and many people having time off work, summer is a great opportunity to tick off some of the jobs around the house that are on your to do list.

While we often think about the gardens that need a tidy, or a fence that needs fixing we don’t think about the electrical ‘touch ups’.  Modern homes and furnishings are made from products that are more flammable, and give off more poisonous smoke than ever before. This means we should be even more careful to ensure our home is safe from anything that may cause a fire, as well as the practical things that can help keep your power bills down.

Spruce Up Checklist:

Check all smoke alarms are working. Check they are still in a good condition and that you have replaced the batteries in the last 12 months.  Consider upgrading to long life photoelectric smoke alarms.
The New Zealand Fire Service recommends the best option for your home is long life photoelectric smoke alarms in every bedroom, living area and hallway of your home and any rental properties. Smoke alarms that are hard wired (connected to your home’s electrical wiring) are the best option. These smoke alarms do cost a little more and need to be installed  by an electrician, but they do pay for themselves over their lifetime as you won’t need to replace the batteries annually, and are safer as they more quickly detect most types of fires.

Tidy your appliance cables around the house. There are lots of great innovations available to help you keep your cables tidy, safe and out of the way. Areas around your TV, in the kitchen and by the bed are often the worst culprits. Consider getting a permanently installed quad socket (four power outlets on one board) in areas where you use multi boards all the time, for safer connections. 

Check the cords are still intact on extension leads and multi boards around your house and garage. It’s not worth the risk, if it doubt replace it.  

Consider getting motion sensors installed around your home. Think about some of the areas where you often leave lights on. These are areas where motion sensors will add convenience and can save you money on future power bills. Top areas for sensors include garages, living rooms, stairways, hallways and outdoor areas.

Surge protect your home appliances.  Imagine if you lost all the appliances in your home right now connected to power? Lighting strikes, power surges and other disruptions can’t be predicted and can completely wipe out or damage your appliances. Surge protect your most valuable ones.

Lastly when it comes to electrical around the home, be safe. Use a registered electrician and good quality electrical products that have been proven to cope with New Zealand’s unique weather conditions and local electrical standards. Don’t compromise on your home and your family’s electrical safety.

For more information on home safety click here