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Difference Between Tamper Resistant Outlets


Are you a homeowner based in zip code 02903 in Downtown Providence, Rhode Island? Are you looking for an experienced and trustworthy electrician to service your residence? Look no further than B&K Electric! As a family-owned and operated electrical business with over seventeen years of experience, we pride ourselves on our commitment to the community and customer service. We specialize in electrical repair, panel maintenance, and installation, and we are dedicated to keeping your home and family safe. One important way we do this is through the use of tamper resistant outlets. In this article, we will discuss the difference between tamper resistant outlets and traditional outlets, and why they are a must-have for every home.

The average American home has about 75 electrical outlets, often in locations that are easily accessible to children. While traditional outlets may seem harmless, they can actually pose a serious danger to curious little ones. According to the Consumer Product Safety Commission, around 2,400 children are treated each year for electrical burns and injuries caused by inserting objects into outlets. These injuries can be severe and even life-threatening. This is where tamper resistant outlets come in.

What are tamper resistant outlets? These are outlets with a built-in safety feature that prevents foreign objects from being inserted into the slots, while still allowing for standard plugs to be inserted. This feature makes them significantly safer than traditional outlets, as it drastically reduces the risk of electrical shock or burn injuries. In fact, tamper resistant outlets are estimated to be 96% effective in preventing these types of injuries.

So, what makes tamper resistant outlets different from traditional outlets? The main difference is the design. While traditional outlets have two flat openings for the prongs of a plug, tamper resistant outlets have a set of spring-loaded shutters that cover the openings. These shutters will only open when equal pressure is applied by both prongs of a plug. This means that if a child tries to insert a foreign object, such as a paper clip, the shutters will not open, preventing the object from coming into contact with an electrical current.

Some may argue that installing childproof outlet covers is enough to keep children safe. However, studies have shown that these covers are not always effective. Children can easily remove them or even figure out how to open them. Additionally, outlet covers often get lost or left off, leaving the outlet exposed and the child vulnerable to injury.

Another important factor to consider is tampering by older children or adults. Traditional outlets are easy to tamper with by inserting foreign objects, such as a fork or key, to force the shutters open. This can result in electrical shock or even fires. Tamper resistant outlets, on the other hand, require equal pressure from both prongs of a plug, making it nearly impossible to force the shutters open.

In addition to being a safety feature, tamper resistant outlets also have other benefits. They have been shown to reduce energy costs, as they help prevent air leaks around the outlet. They also offer a more secure connection for plugs, reducing the risk of sparks and the potential for electrical fires.

Now that you understand the importance of tamper resistant outlets, you may be wondering if your home is equipped with them. The National Electrical Code (NEC) has required tamper resistant outlets to be installed in new homes since 2008. However, older homes may still have traditional outlets. If you are unsure, it is best to have a qualified electrician, like those at B&K Electric, inspect your outlets and make any necessary updates.

Tamper resistant outlets are a crucial safety feature for every home. They offer protection against electrical shock and burns, reduce the risk of tampering, and have additional benefits such as energy efficiency. As a responsible homeowner, it is your duty to ensure the safety of your family. Consider upgrading to tamper resistant outlets for your peace of mind. Contact B&K Electric today to schedule an inspection and installation of these life-saving outlets.


Tamper Resistant Outlets,

Electrical Safety,

Home Protection