Save your home from a tragic Destin electric fire
Here at Gulf Coast Electric we are not only concerned with saving you money on your Destin electric bill but we are also concerned with your safety. Click the link below to view an extensive document on Arc Fault Circuit Interrupters (AFCI), new devices design to protect you and your home from electrical fires.
HELP TO PROTECT YOUR HOME FROM FIRE.
- January 5, 2011 – Fire damages Sandy Creek Home.
- January 4, 2011 – Family of five displaced by fire.
- December 28, 2010 _ Ft. Walton Beach home destroyed.
- November 19, 2010 _ Navarre, Single mom looses home.
- November 9, 2010 _ Fire rips through apartment complex.
- November 8, 2010 _ Valparaiso home ruined, pets lost in fire.
- October 13, 2010 _ Destin family saved by smoke alarms.
- October 8, 2010 _ Santa Rosa Beach, one million dollar home totaled, pets lost.
These are just a few of the most recent fires that have taken place in our area over the past few months. Thankfully, there were no human fatalities in the homes mentioned above, but there were ample losses felt by the owners and occupants of the these homes. It is a devastating feeling to be left outside of your burning home while all of your personnel belonging are being disintegrated by a fire. It is a painful realty that will stay with the homeowners and occupants as long as they live. The majority of the above fires ignition was from an electrical source energized from the homes wiring system or the homes wiring system itself. The list need not go on and on as it has in the past. Read on as we discover some of the problems and some of the solutions that may help prevent many of these type fires in the future.
Over the last few decades the increases of electronics in our homes, such as computers, audio/video equipment, electronic gaming systems, and numerous additional appliances has contributed to overload circuits and arch faults that cause fires in existing homes throughout our area. Okaloosa and Walton counties have experienced an alarming number of house fires that resulted in loss of property and the loss of life over the past year. The electrical systems in some of our homes simply can not withstand the increase in the additional loads without proper maintenance and upkeep. These additional loads in addition to loose and worn connections at receptacles and other electrical connections can produce arcing or arc faults. Arc faults are one of the major causes of the over 40,000 residential fires that we experience in the U.S. each year, says the Consumer Product Safety Commission in a report about arcing faults and Arc Fault Circuit Interrupters (AFCI's).
Arcing can often occur when loose connections, deteriorated cords, damaged wires, poorly installed receptacles or switches, natural aging and heat damaged cords are overlooked and permitted to go unrepaired. This arcing causes additional heat in the system which builds until one or more combustible materials actually catches on fire. These fires result in over 350 deaths and 1400 injuries each year. At Gulf Coast Electric we believe that educating the public about AFCI circuit breakers is important as is the education that we have been undergoing about smoke alarms for the past few decades. Smoke alarms have proven to save lives over and over again as they did in the October 13, 2010 article that appeared in the Northwest Florida Dailey News. Arc Fault Circuit Interrupters also can save lives, but they can also save your property by alerting you that something is loose or arcing in your electrical circuits before a serious fire breaks out.
The 2002 addition of the National Electrical Code required that all new homes be provided with AFCI protection in all bedrooms only. This was required because conventional circuit breakers will not protect your home against arc faults. The typical circuit breaker does not have the intelligence in sensing circuitry to discriminate between normal and unwanted arcing in a circuit. The new combination AFCI breakers use a very unique sensing circuitry to monitor current flow through the AFCI and it can detect an undesirable arc in the circuit and de-energize the circuit before it has a chance to do any damage. An Arc Fault Circuit Interrupter will not trip during normal arcing that occurs while opening a switch or unplugging something from a receptacle. It is designed to trip under the type of sustained arcing that causes eventual combustion of the building materials or furnishings in your home. The current 2008 addition of the National Electrical Code requires that AFCI technology be used throughout the residence in a new home on the majority of the electrical circuits. However it is important to note that older homes with older wiring and worn receptacles and switches are in an even greater need of the protection that Arc Fault Circuit Interrupters have to offer. The new Arc Fault Circuit Interrupters are available for almost every type of circuit breaker panel and they can be economically installed by a licensed electrician. They can be added to any home to make your home safer and less vulnerable to fires caused by arcing. Remember, your electrical system is like you car, it must be maintained and kept in good condition if you want it to be safe and reliable. Visit our website at www.gcedestin.com for more information and tips about safety and maintenance of the electrical system in your home.
This life saving information has been brought to you by your friends at Gulf Coast Electric. Call us for all of your electrical needs.