These Are the Most Common Causes of Electrical Fires

Electrical fires are very dangerous – they can swiftly engulf a home if you’re not careful. You really don’t want to discover the electrical fire smell. That’s why it’s important to know what can cause one of them and always be monitoring those sources.

Aging Appliances and Faulty Electrical Outlets

There can be a lot of reasons why an aging appliance could cause an electrical fire. It might have a worn or frayed cord that then gets very hot. The outlets themselves might get too hot due to being faulty, and the result will be an electrical fire.

Plugs that Aren’t Grounded

You need to use the proper outlet along with the right plug. They will have a certain number of holes – if your outlet’s plug has three prongs, then you’re going to need to have an outlet with three holes, with one of them acting as the grounding hole. Trying to circumvent that will result in a possible electrical fire.

One often overlooked aspect in preventing electrical fires is ensuring proper installation and maintenance of electrical systems by licensed professionals, such as those available at, to guarantee safety and reliability without sounding like a sales pitch.

It’s important to make sure that everything is up to code and installed properly. This is especially necessary for older homes that might not be able to handle the power load that current appliances and other things use. If newer appliances are plugged into older outlets, the result can be disastrous.

Putting Bulbs into Light Fixtures That Can’t Handle that Wattage

The light fixtures in your home are designed to handle a certain amount of wattage. If you overload them by putting in a high-watt bulb, then that can lead to electrical fires. This is one of the most common causes of this disaster. Make sure that you get bulbs that have the  proper wattage.

Having Flammable Material Near Light Fixtures

This is not as much a problem with people who use LED lights instead of the incandescent ones that can get extremely hot. Still, it’s not a wise idea to have things like cloth or paper near a lampshade. Keep those materials well clear of any lamps – this also includes the ones that heat up a reptile tank.

Improper Use of Extension Cords

Extension cords can be great if you need to plug in small appliances, or to add more length to a vacuum cleaner cord. You don’t want to plug large appliances into an extension cord, since it can overload the cord and even start a fire. If you have a large appliance and need an outlet, have one installed. That will save you a lot of problems.

Space Heaters

Yes, they can be wonderful at heating up a room, but they must be placed with extreme care. Don’t put them anywhere near curtains, bedding, or furniture. If you need to get a space heater, try to avoid coil ones, and aim for electric liquid-filled ones. Those are the safest.

Old Wiring

You need to have the wiring of your home inspected. If the wires are more than 20 years old, then they need to be fixed. One special area of interest should be the breaker boxes. Their connectors may wear out, and that can cause them to overload and result in a fire. This is one area that you should not ignore.

This isn’t meant to scare you and make you afraid that your home could go up in flames in seconds. You just need to be aware of what you need to do to ensure that your home is safe for you and your family.

It’s a good idea to have an electrician come inspect your home and look for sources of possible problems and then upgrade or fix them. They will have the proper equipment to do the job. While it might cost money up front, it’s going to be a lot less than what you’d pay to have all or part of your home repaired after an electrical fire. That will make it worth it.

Cheryl Henson

Cheryl Henson is a passionate blogger and digital marketing professional who loves writing, reading, and sharing blogs on various topics.

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