Extension cords should be used sparingly and for temporary use only. If necessary, have wiring done to permanently solve the need for an extension cord. When using an extension cord follow these tips to ensure safety.

Inspect the extension cord before each use. Check that the wattage rating of the appliance that you are powering is equal to the rating of the extension cord. The plug must be fully inserted into the socket. If the plug is loose, you should replace the plug immediately.

Ensure that the extension cord is kept away from water at all times. If there is potential for wetness, use ground fault circuit interrupters (GFCI) around wet and damp conditions. Extension cords should be kept away from pets and children.

When taking an extension cord out of the socket, pull on the plug, not the cord. Extension cords should always be stored inside in a dry area. Place safety covers on unused receptacles. As much as possible, maintain slack on the extension cord. This will avoid putting tension on the terminals. If powering up heavy duty appliances such as a refrigerator, electrical space heater or a freezer, use a heavy duty cord. All extension cords should be three pronged.