Knowing a thing or two about how your home's electrical system works is imperative to taking the proper actions in case of a fault in the system. Electrical short circuits are common electrical problems you may experience in your home. Usually, a short circuit will occur when there is an interruption in an electrical circuit that allows current to flow through an unintended path. This can be catastrophic because besides possibly damaging your electronic devices and electric appliances, it can cause an electrical fire. This is why you need to prevent your home's electrical system from short circuiting. Here is how you do it.
Don't Overload Your Electrical Circuits
Overloaded electrical circuits are among the major causes of electrical short circuits. This is because the overloaded circuits will draw abnormally high amounts of current that may have to take different paths of low resistance to channel out the excess current. To prevent overloads, start by reducing your reliance on extension cords and multi-outlet converters for your electrical appliances. Having too much of the cords and converters means the electrical outlets in your home are too few to meet your electricity demands. Therefore, have your electrician inspect your house and add more outlets.
If you have any major appliances, such as washing machines or microwave ovens, make sure you plug them directly into wall receptacle outlets. In addition, heat producing appliances such as electric cookers, microwave ovens, hair dryers, and electric irons should be plugged into an outlet one at a time. Watch out for signs you could be overloading your circuits. Flickering or dimming lights, discoloured or warm wall plates, burning odour from wall switches and receptacles, and frequently blowing fuses or tripping circuit breakers are a few of those signs.
Inspect Your Electrical Installations Regularly
Schedule periodic inspections of your electrical installations. Inspections help determine issues such as leakage of current, which can be caused by faulty electrical wiring. It is essential that your electrical wiring remains in a good condition. Worn out insulation around your electrical wires exposes the live wires, which when in contact with any surrounding conducting materials will cause a short circuit. Aged wires and worn out insulations have to be replaced early enough.
Current leakage can also be caused by dampness of your conduits or walls because impurities in the water, such as salts, can enable the water to conduct electricity. Inspections will help you identify areas of dampness in your home that could potentially cause an electric short circuit. The sources of the dampness can then be fixed.