SafePlug is a company that manufactures remote-controllable and toddler-safe wall outlets. I first saw them at the 2013 International Consumer Electronics Showcase in Las Vegas in 2013, and have been smitten by what they represent: A wall without worry.
What SafePlug it does
On an outlet replaced with one of SafePlug’s, you can french kiss a socket and not have to worry about getting shocked unless you’ve placed one of their Appliance Identifier Tags in your mouth. The only way a socket can turn on is if that little RFID tag is within 0.3 inches of the socket.
Outlets are also reversed with the ground plugs pointing up on the top, and down on the bottom. This is so if a piece of metal or anything falls across a plug that’s been pulled slightly out, it can’t cross the power poles easily. While this is a concern I’ve never had personally, you’ll notice in the past few years that outlets are all being installed ground side up.
Most of SafePlug’s offerings can be screwed over the top of an existing wall outlet. They’re also home owner installable in California as you do not have to remove the wall outlet cover, assuming your outlet cover is standard.
Besides taking most of the worry out of the wall as it would be very hard for a toddler to have an RFID in the right spot to activate and complete the circuit, some of SafePlug’s offerings also allow you to measure usage, and remote control an outlet from a smartphone or computer.
SafePlug’s shocking features
The remote control aspect allows you to turn on lights at home from work, or perhaps fire up a fan on a wall air conditioner. Unfortunately they don’t seem to have a heavy-duty stove-style outlet in their arsenal that would allow you to once and for all know you’ve turned off the stove when you’re 300 miles from home and thinking about it.
A slew of options to overwhelm your mind
[No image here because it’s messed up on their website. Imagine something kind of cool]
The SafePlug Baby’s Room Electrical Safety Kit has an MSRP of $295 and doesn’t appear to be sold anywhere other than the manufacturer’s website. It comes with 3 outlets, a bag of power tags, and evidently a physical key to turn power on and off to the outlets. It does not appear these can be remote controlled.
The SafePlug Energy Management Kit can be remote controlled, can email you when an electronic device has been unplugged, can remote control everything, protects children from shocks, and claims to track appliance movement within the building, which I guess comes from the RFID tag you glue to the end of the power cord. It retails for $377, includes one energy saver outlet, 2 energy management outlets, a network base, and some misc stuff.
If you’re just wanting to make an outlet or two safe, it looks like you can get a SafePlug Fire and Shock Safety Plug for $66, although you’ll also need to purchase one of their NFC tags to activate it.
You’re not a bad parent if you choose the following
If you’re just worried about an unused outlet though, don’t quite trust simple plug-solutions, and don’t suspect your toddler capable of disassembling it, you might just want to grab a Kidco Outlet Plug Cover for $7.08 from Amazon. It’s not as neat and nifty as the SafePlug offerings, but it will get the job done.
While having a remote-controllable kid-friendly tech haven is of course the obvious goal, saving some money on a wall outlet can lead quite quickly to having money for something fun.