TORRANCE, CA, JUNE 8, 2017 — Home wiring is not a job that should be undertaken by a novice. Getting shocked is more than unpleasant – it can cause serious injuries and even be lethal. As little as 14 milliamps, about that of a plug-in nightlight, is enough to kill a person.
“No matter how often you may have carried out home wiring jobs, never be tempted to skip basic precautions or use the wrong tools or protection,” explained Warren Tarbell, President of Nonconductive Tool Company and a licensed electrician. “Preparation is the key to electrical safety.”
Tarbell offers these safety tips to guide the DIY’r through a home wiring project.
Before doing any electrical work, shut the power off at the breaker. Use a voltage tester to check that wires or electrical connections are dead before working with them. However, work as though the electricity was on, avoiding physical contact with exposed wiring.
Dress for distress: Wear solid shoes or boots that have nice thick insulated soles and avoid standing on wet ground. Use insulated tools – they may cost more but they can save your life. Also safety glasses are a must.
Don’t put your pedals on the metal. Some jobs will require a ladder. Make sure sit is made of fiberglass or another non-conductive material.
Professional electricians will sometimes put one hand in their pocket if they are working on something hot or potentially hot. You should too. That way if you get shocked it won’t be as severe.And never touch a ground, such as plumbing or a gas pipe, while you work with the other hand.
Always work to a plan so that you know exactly where the outlets, switches, and fixtures are going to be placed before you begin. This allows you to check that you’ve got the appropriate amount of materials.
Use the tools of the trade. At the very least, your toolbar should include : long-nose pliers, wire cutter and strippers, an electric drill, fish tape, cable stripper, colored tape, voltage tester and continuity tester. The Voltclaw nonconductive wire management tool from Nonconductive Tool Company is another safety tool for the DIY. Designed to work with 12 to 14 gauge wires, it prevents contact with wires, allowing the user to pull wires from junction boxes, push wires back into junction boxes, and move and bend wires. It even has a twist-on wire connector wrench and a wire loop bender to make the job faster.
Never splice wires together and conceal them within a wall. An accessible junction box should always be used to join wires, and is normally required by code. Finally, if the conductor covering a wire looks frayed or is showing signs of deterioration, replace it. An exposed conductor, however small, can lead to a major house fire.
When in doubt, call a licensed electrician to do the work. An electrician is well schooled in residential wiring and likely will be able to complete the job in less time than it takes you to learn. To purchase the Voltclaw go to www.homedepot.com or visit www.voltclaw.com. MSRP is $14.97 (USD).
About Nonconductive Tool Company, LLC
Headquartered in Torrance, California, the Nonconductive Tool Company, LLC is committed to creating and manufacturing tools that help keep electricians safe and able to perform their functions to the highest level of their abilities. It’s American made tools include the award-winning VoltClaw™, a groundbreaking new way for electricians to work safely around wiring. The Voltclaw was invented by the company’s founder, Warren Tarbell, an electrician and contractor. To learn more, visit www.voltclaw.com.