26 September 2023

Call to check household power appliances

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WA Building and Energy is encouraging householders to check their electrical and gas equipment to ensure it is safe, in good working order and compliant with Australian standards.

Director of Energy Safety at the Regulator, Saj Abdoolakhan said people were using electrical appliances in home offices and for projects around the house, as well as setting up for winter with gas heaters that might not have been used in a while.

“Damaged or incorrectly-used electrical equipment can cause shocks or fires, while issues with gas appliances can lead to a hazardous build-up of carbon monoxide,” Mr Abdoolakhan said.

“As well as being illegal, do-it-yourself electrical work is extremely dangerous, so always use a licensed electrical contractor.”

He said consumers should ensure electrical equipment had been approved for sale within Australia by looking for the Regulatory Compliance Mark (usually a tick in a triangle) or an equipment approval number.

“With the power off, visually inspect the electrical equipment in your home office, checking for damage, exposed wires, discolouration from overheating or broken covers,” Mr Abdoolakhan said.

“To avoid overheating or fires, do not place objects against equipment air vents and do not cover items such as power boards, power supplies and chargers. When charging devices, do not leave them unattended, including while you are asleep.”

He said consumers should avoid stacking items such as phones and chargers on top of laptops and should use the correct charger for the battery, taking the appliance off charge once it was full.

“Check your gas heater before you first turn it on because air filters, airways, fans and burners can become blocked by lint and dust,” Mr Abdoolakhan said.

“This can lead to overheating and burner problems, which can produce carbon monoxide, a colourless, odourless and poisonous gas,” he said.

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