Damaged or defective air conditioners can be a variety of things, including useless and expensive. But if you weren’t already aware of it, defective or improperly maintained AC units can also be a serious fire hazard. Air conditioners causing fires is far more common than one might expect and can be seen in both Northern Utah and Southern Utah. This is particularly true with older models that have not been inspected or replaced.
Damage to the drain line if the AC unit is near electrical equipment that is exposed can be particularly problematic. The coagulation of water can cause an electrical short, which in turn leads to an electrical fire. Water dripping on open electrical circuits causes an immediate and dangerous health risk.
Protect Yourself and Your Property
The first line of defense should be immediate, as there should be smoke detectors that can detect the potential presence of an electrical fire to call the fire department. Making sure smoke detectors are maintained can help contain such fires before they become dangerous; in fact, in many cases, the smoke detector keeps the damage to a minimum by making sure firefighters can stop the fire before it gets out of hand.
One of the key things to make sure of when checking for any potential issues in advance is whether or not your AC units are placed in areas that can become a cause for alarm. Another is to check whether or not your air handler is leaking. These things can be handled by your HVAC specialist.
Finally, it’s important to remember never to overload your electrical outlets, which is increasingly a leading cause of the electrical fire. Make sure that your AC outlet is generally isolated due to its power drain and constant use, particularly during hot summer months.
The best action against electrical problems is preemptive. Keep your AC unit free of vegetation or other objects that cause a fire. And of course, your AC unit should be properly placed and maintained and serviced.
AC Units Work Hard to Keep You Cool
When it’s hot out, you rely on your air conditioner to keep you cool. But running an air conditioner 24-7 can cause units to overheat and cause problems.
Because of its tendency to be thought of as a “cooling” item, the electrical risks posed by overloaded outlets due to air conditioning simply aren’t worth taking. Have your AC systems inspected for placement and proper working order? By doing so, you can help guarantee a cooler, safer summer for all your family and friends.