How to Childproof Your Electrical Outlets


Infants and young children can be hard to keep track of, especially when you’re busy multitasking around the house or in another room. It’s virtually impossible to childproof your home completely, and children will always find a way to get into trouble. One of the most potentially hazardous parts of your home are electrical outlets. Electrical outlets that aren’t childproofed can lead to electrical shock, first or second degree burns, and can even be fatal to a young child. However, there are a few safety precautions you can take to childproof your electrical outlets and protect your children from injury.

Clean Up Your House

Children are curious; it’s in their nature. They often learn by imitating activities they see from older siblings and parents. If you are constantly plugging things into outlets—vacuums, lamps, etc.—chances are your child might try the same. The problem is, kids may try to shove something into an electrical outlet that does not belong. We recommend trying to see your home from your child’s point of view. Lower yourself to their eye level and crawl around the house, looking for any items your children could potentially stick in an electrical outlet and store them in a more appropriate place. Common items include:

  • Keys
  • Knives
  • Plugs
  • Paper clips and/or staples
  • Silverware
  • Plugs
  • And more

Outlet Protectors

Plastic outlet protectors are an inexpensive solution that fit directly into outlet openings. However, children may figure out how to remove the caps. If your child removes the plastic outlet protectors in your home, they now pose a choking hazard to your child in addition to the electrical dangers. Plastic outlet covers are better than nothing, but there are better solutions to childproof electrical outlets.

Complete Outlet Covers

Complete outlet covers, also known as safe plates, effectively cover the entire outlet and its switchplate. They also cover the ends of plugged in cords to prevent children from easily unplugging your electrical device. When installing a complete outlet cover, make sure the cover is securely fastened to the switchplate so a child cannot easily remove it, but easy enough for an adult to remove or change what devices are plugged in.

Tamper-Resistant Outlets

For only a few dollars you can update the electrical outlets in your home with tamper-resistant, childproof outlets. These outlets feature a shutter to open and close the outlet, blocking your child from sticking anything in the outlet that could endanger their well-being.

Childproof Your Virginia Beach Electrical Outlets

If you live in the Virginia Beach area and have young children, we recommend childproofing your electrical outlets as soon as possible. American Mechanical is one of Virginia Beach’s trusted full-service electricians. We can help you replace your current outlets with modern, tamper-resistant, childproof outlets. Contact us today for more information!


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