How to Prevent Electric Shock in the Kitchen

An electric shock is a common cause of injury in the kitchen. This pertains to kitchens in homes and workplaces.

Your kitchen is likely to have wet floors, wet surfaces, wet food, or you may have wet hands.

Thus, electricity and water can cause a deadly combination, and some injuries can even be fatal.

As a result, you should take extra care to reduce the chances of electric shocks. Here are some important tips on how to prevent electric shock in the kitchen.

Tips on How to Prevent Electric Shock in the Kitchen

For workplaces, you must educate your team on safety tips for using electrical equipment in the kitchen. Some carelessness may have catastrophic results.

At the same time, make sure that you teach your family members about these safety tips.

Be extra careful when there are children in the kitchen when you’re working.

Inspect All Electrical Equipment

You should make it a habit to visually inspect all of your electrical equipment about once every 2 weeks.

Take a look at the wiring of all of your appliances. Look for frayed electrical cords.

Check the Cords on Appliances

Plugging in an appliance with damaged cords can result in an electric shock.

Moreover, any exposure to water can also short circuit the appliance. As a result, there can be a fire.

If you are unsure how to repair how to fix frayed cords, hire a professional. Moreover, don’t use the appliance until the cords are in perfect condition.

Check Electrical Outlets

At the same time, make sure to check your electrical outlets.

In some cases, power outlets may look functional, but you may hear a sparking sound. So, check your outlets in silence.

Make sure to call a professional electrician if you can hear a crackling or sparking sound from your power outlets or appliances.

Don’t use that equipment until the electrician diagnoses the problem. 

Do Not Place Electrical Appliances Near the Sink

The chances of electrocution are greater when water and electricity are near each other.

Therefore, you should place your kitchen appliances as far away as possible from your sink.

This may require a bit of a design change in some cases.

Also, it may be inconvenient because you’ll have to travel more distance when filling water. However, it’s a much safer option.

If an appliance does get wet, don’t use it until it’s completely dry. In addition to that, don’t try to unplug the wet appliance with wet hands.

Handling electrical equipment with wet hands can be disastrous.

Do Not Overload a Power Outlet

Every power outlet has a limit of how much power it can provide. If you exceed that limit, the outlet will trip the circuit breaker.

However, in some cases, the outlet may short circuit. This process is known as overloading a power outlet.

Kitchen appliances typically take a lot of power. Therefore, plugging in multiple appliances in one outlet can result in overloading.

It’s best to plug in only one kitchen appliance in one outlet.

If you can get a burning smell from the outlet or hear a crackling, sparking, or buzzing sound, turn it off immediately.

These are signs that the outlet may short circuit. Have an electrician look at it before you use it.

Unplug and Remove Countertop Appliances

When you are done using a countertop appliance, turn the switch off and unplug it.

After that, keep it in its designated area and away from the sink.

Accidentally dropping an appliance in the kitchen can cause an electrical short.

Follow Appropriate Methods of Plugging and Unplugging Appliances

You, your family members, and employees (in workplaces) must follow proper steps when plugging and unplugging appliances.

Always make sure that the outlet switch is turned off when plugging the appliance. Ignore that if it does not have a switch.

In addition to that, make sure to switch off the power button before unplugging an appliance.

You may cause a short circuit or experience electrocution if you don’t.

Hold the Plug and Not the Cord

It’s important that you hold the plug and not the cord when unplugging an appliance.

Holding the cord will damage the plug internally.

As a result, the connections won’t be secure.

This may short circuit and fire, or you may get an electric shock from it.

Turn Off Your Appliances When They’re Not in Use

It’s definitely more convenient to leave the main switches on for your kitchen appliances.

However, the presence of water can pose an eventual risk of electric shock.

So, make sure to turn on appliances such as stove-top burners, ovens, coffee makers, etc. when you’re about to use it.

Switch them off right after you’re done with them.

Do Not Place Liquids Atop Your Microwave

The top of a microwave may provide space when you’re working. However, do not place any liquids atop it.

If the container topples and spills, there’s the risk of a short circuit happening.

In addition to that, the container may leave some liquid underneath if the liquid is colder than the room’s temperature.

Also, be careful when placing liquids inside the microwave.

Do Not Use Power Strips or Extension Cords

You should avoid using power strips or extension cords in your kitchen at all costs.

Power strips or extension cords can overload a power outlet.

Power Strips or Extension Cords May Cause Overloading

Considering the amount of power that kitchen appliances take, you will most like cause the circuit breaker to trip or the outlet or power strip to short circuit.

It’s best not to risk using one for temporary use either.

In addition to overloading, a power strip may not have a grounded electrical current.

As a result, the chances of an electric shock or damage to your equipment are higher.

Instead, plug in your appliances in a grounded outlet.

Install More Outlets If Necessary

There are many kitchen appliances you may need to use, and you’ll need a power source for them.

Therefore, hire a professional electrician to install more outlets in the kitchen. Make sure that they are grounded.

Use Appropriate Bulbs for Your Lighting Fixtures

Adequate lighting is necessary to work effectively in your kitchen.

However, you should use bulbs that are the correct size for your lighting fixtures.

If you use oversized bulbs, you may cause the wiring to heat and burn. As a result, you may get a shock from the light switch.

Consult an electrician if you’re unsure of what light bulbs are best.

Do Not Try to Put Out a Fire with Water

If you’re experimenting in the kitchen, there’s a chance that something may catch fire. If that’s the case, don’t attempt to put it out with water.

You’ll only increase the chances of the fire growing and cause an electric shock by doing so.

If the fire is due to an electrical reason, use a fire extinguisher that’s designed for electrical fires.

If you don’t have an extinguisher, unplug the appliance if that’s possible.

After that, use a blanket or heavy fabric to smother the flames.

Do Not Let Grease Collect on Power Outlets

Clean your outlets by wiping them every now and then. A build-up of grease can eventually cause the power outlet to malfunction.

It’s also best to install power outlets far away from your stove or oven. This way, grease will not build up as quickly as it would if the outlet is right above a stove.

Test Your GFCI Outlets Once Every Month

You should make it a practice to test your GFCI (ground fault circuit interrupters) outlets once every month.

Moreover, you should plug small appliances in such outlets to reduce the chances of an electric shock.

Do Not Let a Cord Touch Water

It’s best to use appliances with short cords. This way, they won’t lie around or come in the way in walkways.

If a cord or a part of it is in contact with water, do not use that appliance.

Instead, unplug the appliance and dry the cord. Use the appliance only after all parts of it are dry.

Last Few Words

While there’s a chance that you’ll get an electric shock in your kitchen, you can work towards eliminating that by following proper procedures.

It’s vital that you consistently inspect the quality of your electrical equipment.

Wires tend to get damaged over time. Therefore, you should make sure to have it repaired as soon as you detect a problem.

In addition to that, make sure to pay attention to any sounds or odors your power outlets or appliances may make.

Hire a professional to check them and fix them before you continue to use them.

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Bathroom fans help remove excess moisture and create a pleasant environment.

Building codes require a vent bath fan if there are no windows in the bathroom. Some homeowners also install ceiling fans instead of HVAC vents in the bathroom to reduce electricity consumption and in turn, save on electricity costs.

If you are thinking about installing bath fans, you may be wondering how much electricity does a bathroom fan use. The answer to this depends on the type and size of the fan.

Electricity Consumption of Bathroom Vent Fans

Bathroom vent fans remove humid air from the bathroom. The fans suck the moist air expelling it outside. The vacuum is filled with cool air that enters through the ventilation.

Broan-NuTone 688 Ceiling and Wall Ventilation Fan, 50 CFM 4.0 Sones, White

The airflow rate of a vent fan is measured in cubic feet per minute (cfm). Standard vent fans require about 1 watt to move air at the rate of up to 5 cfm.

A bathroom measuring 1000 cubic feet (10ftx10ftx10ft) requires a fan that can move air at the rate of 1000 cfm. This fan will consume about 200 watts i.e. 1000/5 to remove moist air from the bathroom.

It is equivalent to about two 100 watts incandescent bulbs or twenty 10 watts LED bulbs.

For smaller bathrooms measuring 125 cubic feet (5ftx5ftx5ft), the appropriate fan should have an airflow rate of 125 cfm. The power requirement of a small bath vent fan will be 23 watts.

Also, you should note that some bath vent fans have additional features. Features like heat lamps, day and night light further increase the wattage of the fan.

  • A bath fan with a heat lamp will draw an additional 100 to 250 watts
  • For a fan with an integrated heater, the power consumption is about 1500 watts
  • The power consumption of vent fans with low wattage light range between 40 and 60 watts while night lights consume between 4 and 10 watts

Electricity Consumption of Bathroom Ceiling Fans

Ceiling fans are installed in bathrooms as a means to reduce the need for air conditioners, thereby resulting in reduced electricity consumption.

Instead of cooling the room by removing moist air like an exhaust fan, ceiling fans cool the room by blowing air across the room.

Most ceiling fans also come with a speed regulator. You get to control the speed of the fan by increasing or decreasing the voltage. The voltage is adjusted by the regulator by varying the current supplied to the motor.

Ceiling fans use more electricity at higher speeds and less electricity at lower speeds. To be more specific, a fan will use more electricity at a higher voltage setting and less electricity at a lower voltage setting.

The electricity usage of all appliances is known as power, which is measured in watts.

A typical bathroom ceiling fan will use between 40 watts and 100 watts depending on the voltage supplied to the fan.

If one kilowatt costs 10 cents per hour, the cost of operating a ceiling fan will be about 0.4 cents at lower settings and 1 cent per hour at higher settings.

Another important point to note is that larger fans use more power. Larger fans use more power to spin the blades that add to the electricity costs.

The power of a large ceiling fan will range between 50 to 130 watts. The electricity cost of using the fan range from 0.5 to 1.3 cents per hour.

Electricity Consumption of DC Ceiling Fans

DC ceiling fans are also used in certain bathrooms. These fans use direct current (DC) instead of alternative current (AC), the latter being used in most bathrooms.

Ovlaim 48 inch DC Motor Ceiling Fan with Light , White Ceiling Fan with LED Light Kit Remote Control Low Profile Indoor 4 Blades Modern Ceiling fan

These fans are more cost-effective, using less than a third of the energy used by the older fans that use AC power.

Similar to AC fans, the DC bath ceiling fans consume more power at a higher speed and less power at a lower speed. Moreover, the size of the motor and fan blades also determines the electricity usage.

Bathroom DC fans use between 15 watts to 100 watts. They use about three times less power as compared to a similar power and size AC bath fan.

The cost of operating a DC fan is also much lower. You will save a lot of money by installing a DC fan in your bathroom.

Electricity Consumption of Box Fans

Box fans are preferable by some people instead of a ceiling fan as they make more white noise. However, a typical box fan tends to use about twice as much power as a ceiling fan.

For instance, if the ceiling fan consumes 40 watts, you can expect a box bath fan to use about twice as much power i.e. 80 watts. The cost of a box fan is also much higher.

PELONIS PFB50A2ABB-V 3-Speed Box Fan for Full-Force Circulation with Air Conditioner, Black, 2020 New Model

You can expect to pay between 1 cent and 2.6 cents per hour for operating the fan.

Despite the higher power consumption, some people prefer box fans as they produce white noise. The box fan will negate some of the outside noise resulting in a pleasant and relaxing environment.

The white noise that the fans produce is effective in blocking out outdoor noise.

Similar to the ceiling and vent bath fans, the exact power consumption of the box bath fans depends on the power of the motor and the speed setting. You should check the label on the appliance to know about the correct wattage.

The cost of operating the box bath depends on how much you use the fan during the day. Moreover, the energy tariff in your area will determine the cost of operating the box fan.

If you use the fan for six hours per day, the electricity cost of using the fan will be between 2.5 cents and 7 cents.

How to Reduce the Electricity Consumption of the Bath Fan?

Bath fans tend to add between $10 and $50 to annual electricity bills. You can take several measures to reduce the electricity consumed by the bath fans.

Here are a few tips that will help you to reduce the power used by the fans.

Don’t Leave the Bath Fan On All Day

Leaving your bath fan on all day is not a good idea. There is no sense in leaving the fan on all the time. This will result in increased electricity consumption and also accelerated wear and tear.

The appliance lifetime will reduce significantly if you keep the fan running all the time.

You should leave the bath exhaust fan on for only 25 minutes after having a shower. If you have a ceiling or box fan in the bathroom, you should turn on the fan when in the loo and turn it off when leaving.

Consider Automatic Fan Regulator

Consider installing an automatic bath fan regulator to save electricity bills. You can set a timer for the bath fan to run for a particular period.

In this way, you don’t have to remember turning the fan on or off.

Keep the Bathroom Door Slightly Open

Bathrooms can get hot and humid during the summers. You should consider letting the door open a few inches so that hot moist air doesn’t accumulate inside the bathroom.

This will reduce the need to run the bath fan for longer periods.

Buy the Right Size Bath Fan

Buying the right size bath fan is important if you want to save on electricity bills. You buy a fan with a cubic feet per minute (CFM) capacity that is appropriate for the bathroom size.

A small bathroom that is 80 square feet will require a bath exhaust fan with a capacity of 80 cfm. You will waste money both in terms of fan price and electricity cost if you buy an exhaust fan with greater capacity.

Install the Fan at the Right Location

You should install the fan at the right location as well to ensure proper operation. The bath fan should be near the shower or tub.

Avoid installing the fan right next to the HVAC vent. This is important as the forced air from the heating and cooling device will prevent proper ventilation.

Lastly, the bath fan should vent the air outside. The fan should not vent in the attic or other area inside the house. Proper location of the fan is important to ensure effective ventilation.

If you don’t place the bath fan in the correct location, it will use more power to remove moist and humid air inside the bathroom.

Frequently Asked Questions

What precautions can be taken against electrical hazards in the kitchen?

To avoid electrical hazards in the kitchen, you should:

  • Regularly inspect cords, plugs, and outlets for signs of wear and tear
  • Keep electrical appliances away from water sources
  • Only handle the insulated part of a plug or cord
  • Use Ground Fault Circuit Interrupter (GFCI) outlets to prevent shocks

What safety measures can help reduce the risk of electrocution in the kitchen?

Take the following measures to reduce the risk of electrocution in the kitchen:

  • Make sure your hands and surfaces are dry before handling electrical devices
  • Choose appliances with safety features and proper certifications
  • Avoid overloading circuits, which can cause short-circuits and shocks
  • Have a licensed electrician inspect your kitchen wiring every five years

What kind of electrical appliances are safer to use in a kitchen?

Opt for appliances that have safety features, such as:

  • Overheating protection
  • Automatic shut-off features
  • Insulated handles and designs to protect against direct contact with heated or electrified parts
  • Appliances that are certified by recognized organizations like Underwriters Laboratories (UL).

What are the best practices when handling electrical devices near water?

Remember the following best practices when handling electrical devices around water in the kitchen:

  • Always unplug appliances before cleaning them
  • Keep cords and appliances away from sinks, stovetops, and other water sources
  • Use GFCI outlets to help protect against shocks from water exposure

How should one store and maintain electric kitchen appliances to avoid shock?

Proper storage and maintenance of electric kitchen appliances can help prevent shock. Make sure to:

  • Keep cords and appliances away from water sources
  • Avoid bundling cords tightly, which can cause damage or overheat
  • Store appliances in a dry, cool place when not in use
  • Regularly inspect cords, plugs, and appliances for signs of damage

What to do in case of electrical emergencies in the kitchen?

In case of an electrical emergency in the kitchen, take the following steps:

  • Turn off the power source, either by unplugging the appliance or switching off the circuit breaker
  • Do not touch any exposed wires or electrical parts
  • Call a licensed electrician or your local emergency services if the situation is dangerous
  • If someone has been shocked, seek immediate medical help

Conclusion

Bathrooms can have an exhaust fan, ceiling fan, table fan, or standing fan. Each of these fans uses a varying amount of electricity.

You should understand the electricity usage of your bath fans as it will help you know better understand what contributes to your electricity bills.

Electricity usage of bathroom fans is measured in watts. Every bathroom fan has a watt rating that refers to the amount of power required to operate the electrical appliance.

Generally, fans with larger blades and higher speeds use more electricity. The type of fan and the accessories like night lights and heat lamps also increase the electricity usage.

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