Has anyone visiting your home ever asked, “Do you have a USB so I can charge my phone?” Or is your family constantly bickering about who gets to charge their device next? In today’s world, both situations are common. It certainly would be convenient to have an easily accessible USB outlet or two, not only for family members, but for guests, too.
There are several advantages to installing electrical receptacles that accept USB charging cables.
1. You can throw away or store your collection of adapters.
2. You can plug in more devices directly into a single outlet.
3. These outlets can charge up to 40 percent faster than standard adapters.
4. It frees up three-pronged receptacles so they may be used for other small electronics or appliances. This can help eliminate the use of extension cords or power strips for busy receptacles thus reducing fire risk.
Before rushing off to the store to purchase your outlet, here are some things to consider.1. Take measurements. Figure out what the dimensions are for your existing outlet. USB outlets are slightly bigger. Also look at the depth of your junction box. If the box is shallow, it may be best to purchase an outlet with wires on the side instead of the back. Knowing this will make installation easier.
2. Verify the USB outlets amperage. The higher the amps, the faster your device will charge. If multiple devices are plugged in, your charging speed may decrease. Many USB outlets include a smart chip that detects optimum charging amperage and adjusts the current output.
3. Don’t buy the cheapest one. If you’re installing several USB outlets in your home, you may be tempted to buy them based on price. It’s important to consider consumer reviews, functionality, and safety.
If you’ve replaced an outlet before and you’re confident in your skills, it can be very simple. However, if you’re unsure, it’s best to have it done professionally by an electrician. The cost can vary based on the size of the job, where you live, and the electrician’s skill level.
Do you have any tips you’d like to share? I’d love to hear them; please share them in the box below.
This blog was written by senior Personal Lines underwriter Nina Jakubczak.