Are Two Prong Outlets Safe?

Learn the difference between two prong and three prong outlets and what is safest for your home in this week’s blog.

While three-pronged power cords and outlets are standard today, if you live in a home constructed prior to the 1960’s, your outlets may be two-pronged unless they have been updated. This can be frustrating when trying to power modern devices and appliances, and most homeowners resort to using cheap adaptors as a solution. However, this is not best practice when it comes to the safety of your property, home, and family. Before we discuss the best solutions for updating two-pronged outlets, let's first establish what the difference is between those and three-pronged outlets typical today.

Two-Pronged Vs. Three-Pronged Outlets

Two-pronged outlets contain two circuits: a hot circuit and a neutral circuit. Three-pronged outlets, on the other hand, contain a third ground circuit which offers a safe route for electrical surges that would otherwise damage your devices, or injure you. The likelihood of electrocution increases with non-grounded, two prong outlets.

Upgrade Solutions

If you live in an older home and have two prong outlets, there are two options for upgrading your outlets for improved safety. The first option is to hire a licensed electrician to install ground wires in your home. This solution is more expensive and labor intensive, requiring the electrician to open walls to do the work, but ultimately the better investment in the long run.

The alternative is to have a Walkup electrician install ground circuit interrupter outlets, or GFCI, which will turn off if a power surge is detected. This is much less expensive as it does not require installing new ground wiring.

If your home’s outlets are in need of an upgrade, call the experts at Walkup Electrical today. Our Florence electricians can assist you in determining the best solution for your home to ensure you and your family’s safety.