Halloween is just around the corner, and before you know it, Christmas will be upon us and that means it will be time to get those holiday decorations out! Now is the time to make sure you have the correct exterior outlets to provide power for your lights. Homeowners should be aware that electrical code requires homes to have certain types of outlets.
Did you know that exterior outlets are required to be ground fault circuit interrupters (GFCI)? The National Electrical Code (NEC) requires that homes have at least one outdoor receptacle at the front and back of the house. They must be accessible from the ground and positioned no more than 6 ½ feet above ground level.
GFCI outlets can be identified by their “RESET” and “TEST” buttons. They are generally installed where electrical circuits may accidently come into contact with water and are therefore often found outside or in bathrooms and kitchens. The devices “sense” the difference in the amount of electricity flowing into the circuit to that flowing out and react quickly to trip or shut off the circuit.
A homeowner should also consider installing a weatherproof cover over the device. Just because they are GFCI’s doesn’t mean that severe weather can’t cause any damage to the device. A weatherproof cover will protect the outlet from rain, salty air, and dirt. Some brands to consider include Leviton, TayMac, Hubbell and more..
Not sure if you have weather rated outlets? Or perhaps you just lack enough outlets in the right spaces? Give the professionals at Ryan Electrical Solutions a call at 217.698.4877. Dealing with electricity is not a DIY project! Our professionals will ensure that your outlets are not only up to code, but functional for all of your outdoor decorations, lights and activities.