Extension cords are crucial in many homes and businesses, providing electricity where it’s needed most. However, as handy as they may be, they can also be a tripping hazard or an eyesore if not properly stored.
Hiding extension cords outside is a simple yet effective solution that can help prevent accidents and keep your space looking tidy, so let’s get to it.
Why Hide Extension Cords Outside?
There are a couple of reasons why you’d want to hide your extension cords outside, and here are just some of them:
Safety of Your Outdoor Spaces
If cords are left lying on the ground, they can become tripping hazards, especially during inclement weather when they may be covered in snow, ice, or water. Additionally, if a cord is left in a high-traffic area, it can become damaged from foot traffic, leading to fraying and electrical hazards.
By hiding cords out of sight, you reduce the risk of tripping and injury and ensure that the cords remain in good condition.
Hiding Extension Cords Provides Better Aesthetics
Another reason is to improve the appearance of your space. Cords left lying on the ground can be untidy and detract from the overall look of your property.
So hiding extension cords outside is essential if you’re using them in an outdoor area visible to others, such as a deck or patio.
How Can I Hide Extension Cords Outside?
There are different ways to hide extension cords outside, and we’ll give you ten of the most convenient options:
Cord covers are available in various materials, including plastic, metal, and fabric, and can be used to conceal extension cords outside. These can also be purchased in different sizes to accommodate cord thicknesses and lengths.
Garden hoses are a flexible and versatile solution for hiding extension cords outside. You can wind the cords around the hose and place it in a garden bed or along the side of a building.
PVC pipes can cover extension cords outside, especially when buried underground. The pipes can be cut to size and connected to accommodate the length of the cords.
Large landscape rocks can conceal extension cords that run through garden beds. Simply place the rocks around the cords to hide them from view.
You can use deck skirting to hide extension cords if you have a deck or patio. Deck skirting is a panel that sits between the deck and the ground and can be made of wood, vinyl, or other materials.
Tree bark can be used to conceal extension cords along the side of a building or tree. Simply wrap the cords in the bark and secure it in place with twine or wire.
Large planters can hide extension cords that run through garden beds. Simply place the cords in the planter and cover them with soil and plants.
Decorative stones can conceal extension cords in garden beds or along walkways. Simply place the stones around the cords to hide them from view.
Latticework can conceal extension cords that run along the side of a building or fence. Simply attach the lattice to the building or fence and place the cords behind it.
Artificial turf can conceal extension cords that run along the side of a building or in garden beds. Simply lay the turf over the cords and secure it in place.
How to Spot Signs That Your Extension Cords Need Immediate Attention
It doesn’t take a scientist to figure out that something is off, and there are signs that your outdoor extension cords may need immediate attention:
One of the obvious signs that your outdoor extension cord needs attention is visible damage to the cord itself. If you notice cuts, frays, cracks, or any other type of physical damage to the cord, it’s time to replace it.
Damages can expose the electrical wires inside, increasing the risk of electrical shock or fire. So it’s important to inspect the cord regularly for any signs of physical damage and to replace it immediately if you notice any.
Heat and Smell
Another sign that your outdoor extension cord may need attention is if you notice that the cord feels hot to the touch or gives off a burning smell.
A burning smell could be a warning sign of an electrical problem, such as an overloaded circuit or a short in the cord. In these cases, it’s best to unplug the cord immediately and replace it with a new one.
Tripped Circuit Breakers or Blown Fuses
If you find that the circuit breaker for the extension cord is tripping or the fuse is repeatedly blowing, it could be a sign that the cord can’t handle the electrical load.
Tripped circuit breakers could be due to an overloaded circuit or an issue with the cord.
If you notice any of these, it’s best to unplug the cord and assess the situation to determine the cause of the problem.
Flickering Lights on Devices Connected to Your Extension Cord
If the lights connected to your outdoor extension cord flicker or dim when you use other appliances, it may indicate that the cord can’t handle the electrical load.
Similar to tripped circuit breakers or blown fuses, flickering lights could be due to an overloaded circuit or an issue with the cord. So it’s best to unplug the cord and assess the situation to determine the cause of the problem.
Monitor The Age of Your Outdoor Extension Cord
Finally, it’s important to remember that extension cords have a limited lifespan, like all electrical devices. Over time, the insulation on the cords can deteriorate, increasing the risk of electrical shock or fire.
If you’ve had your outdoor extension cord for a while, it’s a good idea to replace it, even if you don’t see any obvious signs of damage.
Hiding extension cords outside is an important step in promoting safety and improving the appearance of your property. Whether you use cord covers or garden hoses or bury the cords underground, the benefits of hiding your extension cords are clear. So take a few moments to properly store your cords and enjoy a safer, more attractive outdoor space.