We’ve all got elderly family members that we worry about when we’re not with them. Whether it’s parents or grandparents, we all know a few older people who could benefit from some updated electrical technology. That’s why we’re suggesting that you complete an electrical safety audit in the New Year, and make it your goal to outfit the home of your elderly family member with all the tools they need to make life safer and easier.
What do we mean, exactly? We’re talking about things like sensors, illuminated switches, AFCIs, GFCIs with guide lights, and driveway sensors. As people get older, they get more set in their ways and sometimes forgetful. Your elderly relatives are likely to be living in a home with outdated electrical wiring and equipment, and if not careful, that electrical equipment could put them in danger. Checking on and installing all new GFCIs ensures that the home in question is up to date and utilizing the latest, and safest, technology around. Our GFCIs come in a variety of models including guide light and self-test which are sure to be a big hit.
Think you can stop there? Think again. Checking the AFCI protection in the home is just as important. Older homes can fall victim to faulty or neglected wiring, and faulty wiring can lead to electrical fires. As no one wants that, it’s best to upgrade your AFCIs and make sure they’re up to snuff. Our new SmartlockPro® Outlet Branch Circuit AFCI Receptacles offer added protection from potentially hazardous arc-faults that can occur when there is damage to the branch circuit wiring in the home. Our AFCI receptacles detect hazardous arc-faults and respond by interrupting power, helping to ensure that your home’s electrical system doesn’t become the ignition source of a fire. Plus, as a receptacle, the TEST and RESET buttons are on the face of the device making it easy to check them and reset them if necessary. This saves a trip to the breaker box, particularly helpful since breaker boxes are often in basements or other out-of-the-way places.
While you’re at it, we’d recommend you check the switches in your elderly family member’s home, and, if need be, replace the ones that have seen better days. Our Residential Grade AC Quiet Switches are easy to install, and are available in standard and illuminated versions. Their toggles and frames are constructed of impact-resistant thermoplastic, and they feature large screws for easy installation. Best of all, they’re compatible with a wide range of plastic and metal wallplates, so even if you’re installing them in an older home, you’ll find one that fits. Another great option is our Decora® Illuminated switches. Featuring a rocker design, these switches are generally easier to switch ON and OFF and are fully illuminated making them easy to find in the dark.
Lastly, let’s turn to the backyard/garage area. If you’re outfitting the interior of your home for safety reasons, or looking into doing so for an elderly family member, consider tackling the exterior as well. One of the easiest ways to ensure safety outside is to install outdoor motion sensors. These sensors pick up on movement, and turn on lights when they do. No more stubbing toes or tripping your way down the back steps into the yard. All the things that go bump in the night will be illuminated, and you and your family will be much safer because of it.