Potential Causes Of Electrical Shock At Home

An electrical shock can lead to a serious injury or even a fatality. Knowing the potential causes of electrical shock can help you avoid the shocks. Below are some of the reasons you may experience electrical shock at home.

Faulty Installations

An electrical fault can expose you to live electrical wires or contacts. For example, if an electrical outlet has a damaged cover, you might unwittingly touch the live contacts inside and experience a nasty electrical shock. Other faults that might trigger electrical shocks include loose wiring that creates short circuits, damaged extension cables that expose the hot wires, and exposed electrical wiring.

Aging Installations

Electrical installations and wiring age just like other systems, and if that happens, they increase the risk of electrical shock. For example, most electrical wires come with insulation (usually rubber) to isolate the wires from the environment. The insulation material deteriorates over the years and may fall apart after many years. The damaged insulation thus exposes you to the electrical current that the wire inside carries.

Water Exposure

Water conducts electricity so it can complete a circuit and expose your body to electrical current. For example, if you touch an electrical outlet with wet hands, some of the water might drip into the outlet, trigger a short circuit, and give you an electrical shock. Alternatively, if your house is flooded, the floodwater can get into contact with the electrical wiring and give you a shock if you touch the water.

DIY Repairs

The risk of electrical shock is also high for those who love to dabble in DIY electrical installations and repairs. The risk is particularly high if you love DIY work but your electrical skills and experience are less than adequate. For example, you may forget to turn off the right breaker at the electrical panel before attempting to replace an outlet, thereby risking an electrical shock.

Inadequate or Lack of Grounding

Electrical grounding provides a way for excess or leaking electrical current to flow safely into the ground. For example, if you touch an electrical appliance whose casing is live due to an electrical fault, the grounding will channel the leaking electricity into the ground so that you don't experience a serious electrical shock. However, you will experience the full electrical shock if the grounding is nonexistent or improperly connected.

Limit DIY electrical work, maintain your electrical system, and get faults repaired as soon as they occur. Consult a company like McDonald Electric if you suspect that an electrical fault may give you an electrical shock.