Childproofing Electrical Outlets and Other Assets

Childproofing electrical outlets and other assets in your home is an incredibly important step if you want to create a safe environment for kids. Small children are naturally curious and absolutely love to explore their surroundings. Unfortunately, it can often put them at risk of injuries, or, even worse, electrical shock. In this article FUSE electricians share their best tips to make your home’s electrical system safer for children.

Childproofing Electrical Outlets and Other Assets

1. Understanding the Risks 

The home is a playground for children — as pretty much any other place. But even familiar and seemingly safe territory can contain danger of electrical hazards that pose significant risks to safety. The main concern revolves around electrical outlets. You too should remember your parents telling you to absolutely NOT put your fingers inside the outlets. However, adults’ guidance does not always bear fruit since to the curious eyes of a child, the outlets might seem like they are asking to be poked with something that fits. This curiosity can lead to electric shocks or burns, incidents that are unfortunately not uncommon among toddlers and young children. Beyond outlets, the risks extend to electrical cords and appliances. Children might chew on cords or pull appliances down on themselves, leading to potential injury or even electrocution.

It’s essential to recognize these dangers before something happens. Therefore, understanding these risks is the first step in crafting a comprehensive childproofing strategy that ensures the safety of young ones while maintaining the functionality of the home’s electrical system.

2. Tamper-Resistant Outlets 

Tamper-resistant outlets are primarily designed to safeguard children from electrical hazards. Unlike traditional outlets, these outlets have a built-in shutter mechanism that prevents the insertion of foreign objects when unequal pressure is applied to both sides. This means that unless a plug is correctly inserted, applying even pressure to both shutters, the outlet remains closed off to curious fingers or objects. The introduction of tamper-resistant outlets has been a significant advancement in electrical safety, making them a standard in new home constructions and renovations. The National Electrical Code (NEC) now requires their installation in many areas of the home, underscoring their importance in childproofing efforts.

However, transitioning to tamper-resistant outlets involves more than just replacing the old with the new. It requires understanding the specific needs of each room and the behaviors of children within those spaces. For instance, outlets located in play areas or bedrooms might need more attention compared to those in locations where children don’t spend a lot of time. The installation process itself might seem too much, but it’s a straightforward task that is a quick job for a professional electrician.

Moreover, it’s essential to recognize that while tamper-resistant outlets significantly reduce the risk of electrical injury, they are not a sole solution. Let’s go further and explore other means.

3. Outlet Covers and Plates 

Outlet covers and plates provide an additional layer of protection against electrical hazards, especially in homes where tamper-resistant outlets have not yet been installed. These accessories come in various forms for different needs and preferences. Simple plastic plugs are the most basic type: you insert them into unused outlets to block access. They are effective and inexpensive, but they require constant attention to make sure they stay in place, as they can be removed by a particularly determined children or forgotten by less dedicated adults after use.

Box covers offer a more secure solution for outlets because they trap the entire outlet and plugs under a protective cover. This design not only prevents children from unplugging electrical devices but also shields them from exposed outlets. Sliding plate covers represent a more permanent solution. These covers automatically snap back into place when the outlet is not in use, providing constant protection.

Choosing the right type of outlet cover depends on the specific needs of each household and the level of convenience desired. Regardless of the choice, it’s crucial to ensure that these covers are correctly installed and regularly checked to maintain their effectiveness over time.

4. Secure Cable Management 

Proper cable management is not aesthetics even if it is indeed satisfying to see properly arranged cables. Apart from pleasuring your OCD, it’s a critical component of childproofing electrical systems. Loose cables not only pose tripping hazards but also invite curious hands to tug, chew, or play with them. Cord shorteners are an excellent tool for managing excess length, reducing the temptation for children to pull on dangling cords. Cable boxes conceal power strips and excess cables and keep them contained in a child-resistant enclosure. For added security, cord concealers can be used to run cables along walls or under carpets thus hiding them from view and reach.

The placement of furniture also plays an important in cable management,. Heavy pieces can be strategically positioned to block access to outlets and conceal cords. This method childproofs the area and contributes to a cleaner, more organized space. By prioritizing safety without compromising on functionality, parents can create a home environment that encourages exploration without the risks of electrical systems.

5. Childproofing Power Strips and Extension Cords 

Power strips and extension cords are indispensable in modern homes, yet they introduce new risks in environments with children. Childproofing these devices can be done with the use of power strip covers. These covers encase the entire power strip, including the plugs and switches. 

Arranging furniture to block access to power strips and extension cords is a practical childproofing strategy. This not only makes it harder for children to reach these devices but also minimizes the chances of tripping over cords. For added security, selecting power strips and extension cords that come with safety certifications and are designed with child safety in mind is crucial. These models often feature tamper-resistant outlets and automatic shut-off mechanisms in case of overload, providing an extra layer of protection.

Incorporating these strategies into your childproofing plan ensures that power strips and extension cords are used safely and responsibly. Regular checks and maintenance of these devices are necessary to identify wear and tear or other potential hazards, ensuring they continue to provide safe electrical access in a child-friendly home.

6. Regular Safety Checks and Education

Ensuring the electrical safety of a home is an ongoing process that involves regular inspections and education. Parents are also advised to conduct routine safety checks and address potential hazards before they become a problem. This includes checking for frayed wires, loose outlets, or damaged appliances that could pose a risk to children. Additionally, educating children about the dangers of electricity and establishing rules around the use of electrical devices can be your allies in childproofing strategy.

Simple lessons tailored to the child’s age can be effective in teaching them the importance of electrical safety. For younger children, this might involve explaining why they should not touch outlets or cords, while older children can learn the basic principles of how electricity works and the reasons behind certain safety measures. Engaging children in these discussions not only reinforces the importance of electrical safety but also empowers them to make safer choices as they grow and become more independent. And if you need any help with replacing those outlets or covering them with professional electrician — call Fuse Service! We are available at (669) 242-5354 or Our technicians have children of their own, so they definitely know how to make your house a completely safe and friendly to the little ones!

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Deena D.
Deena D.
Very nice, knowledgeable, and helpful technician. Provided the options and associated costs. Would use this company again.
Ron B.
Ron B.
We chose Fuse to do the HVAC portion of our home remodel and we're very happy with their work! They installed a full Mitsubishi Mini-split heat pump system all throughout our house in 6 rooms. It was a massive job and they did the work relatively quickly and efficiently. The supervisor, Maxim, was very friendly and knowledgeable. Out of several bids that we got, theirs was the only one that gave us everything we wanted at a competitive cost. We'd be happy to recommend Fuse! We also had Fuse Electric work on the electrical portion of our home remodel, for which I wrote up a separate review.
Pablo L. D.
Pablo L. D.
Great service. They respond really fast and did a great job fixing my thermostat issues.
Manu B.
Manu B.
We got our duct work completely replaced in our 50 yr old home. They recommended the work, other companies didn't do this much due diligence and mentioned about asbestos but FUSE technicians went step ahead and climbed into attic and our crawl space to ensure there were no asbestos to begin with. Honest people and very competitive if not best quote I got. Moreover the installer, David and Jeremy worked 2 long days non stop to get work done at our home with 100% satisfaction. David explained everything to me and provided other recommendations for future. He is the most honest technician I have encountered in so long. Because of David I wouldn't hesitate to work with FUSE again. Thank you for such a great work. Very happy and highly recommend FUSE!!
K R.
K R.
The technical crews were excellent; very knowledgeable and capable. They were able to do our HVAC, water heater and ductwork replacement even when faced with several unexpected and very challenging situations. David in particular worked some very long hours to get everything installed correctly. The administration side had a few glitches, but everything worked out OK. I would recommend them, but if you are eligible for the Penninsula Clean Energy interest free loan, be sure to apply for it before the work is completed.
Matthew J.
Matthew J.
Exceptional service from FUSE HVAC! They installed a Mitsubishi HVAC system in our home, and we couldn't be happier. The team was professional, knowledgeable, and efficient throughout the process. Our home is now perfectly comfortable year-round, thanks to their expertise. From consultation to installation, everything was seamless and hassle-free. Highly recommend FUSE HVAC for anyone looking for top-notch HVAC solutions!
Amitabha C.
Amitabha C.
Fuse HVAC installed Mitsubishi Heat pump in my house and completed the project on 31st March 2024. David and Jeremy started the project and David finished the installation. David worked Saturday and Sunday until 11 PM to complete the work. It took 4 1/2 days. I am very happy with the work that David performed. I was watching the process of installation of the pump and was very satisfied to see that after finishing each step David will spend 10-15 min inspecting the work that he did to make sure that there was no mistake. The result was that during pressure testing to check for gas leakage or when the heat pump was run there was no unanticipated issue. The new ductwork that was installed by FUSE passed the HERS test. FUSE is also installing the attic fan to keep the air circulation going and keep the attic cooler. FUSE was referred to by my friend who used them for installing a similar heat pump and although they were a little more expensive than a few quotes I got from other vendors, I decided to go with them based on my friend's recommendation. I had made a right choice! My only criticism for FUSE is they are not able to estimate the time that it will take to finish the project. They told me it will be done in 3 days but it took 4 1/2 days. My project needed the air handler to be moved to the attic but because the space which had the gas heater was too narrow for the air handler. On the whole it was a good experience working with FUSE. They kept us warm for two days with heater fans and David worked Easter Sunday until 11 PM to install and start up the system without hurrying up at any step to get the installation completed earlier. A big thanks to him and to his assistant Jeremy!

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