Short Circuits : Meaning, Causes & Preventon

We won’t be wrong if we include electricity in the list of basic human necessities which consists of food, shelter, clothing and now ELECTRICITY. It commenced with being a luxury in the initial phase and paved its way into the box of necessities. Every individual’s life now revolves around the power of electricity, one can’t start or end their day without its existence. The conception of electricity has done much to ameliorate the living standards of mankind in every possible field. But along with the ease in life and a better standard living , electricity brings with it the risk of electrical shocks, electrical fires and short circuits.

What Is A Short Circuit?

Short circuits are common problems faced by many households, but this common nature of the same carries with it great possibilities of causing serious damage to the household and can be lethal for humans and pets. Electrical power works on the circuit and when the current through this circuit is directed towards an unintended path which is considerably shorter than the willful path, it leads to the occurrence of a short circuit. In technical terms, a short circuit occurs when a low resistance path not suited to carry electricity is exposed to an abnormally high volume of electrical-current. The hot wire touches a conductive object it’s not supposed to. It usually takes place when the resistance of the circuit drops to zero. Let’s go in depth and study the causes of the same.

What Causes A Short Circuit?

Statistics confirm that short circuit is one of the most dangerous accidents one may be at the risk of experiencing at a household and a crucial reason for domestic deaths.

  • Faulty Circuit Wire Insulation – Old damaged insulation wires may let the neutral wires come in contact with the hot wire, this results in the occurrence of a short circuit. Age of the wire, screw, nail, animal pests like rats may be held responsible for deteriorating the wire casings and triggering a short circuit.
  • Faulty wiring – When an appliance is plugged into the circuit, it’s wire becomes a part of the circuit and any complication in the wire becomes a complication for the circuit as well. This kind of a setting has high tendencies of causing a short circuit. A short circuit may take place in the plug, inside the appliance or in the power cords. AVOCAB Wire and Cables provides a great range of quality wires.
  • Loose wiring – Loose wiring is also a major cause for short circuits because the neutral wire comes in direct contact with the other live wires causing sparks or electrical sparks.

How to Prevent Short Circuits?

  1. On connecting the appliance to the circuit, it becomes a part of it and any problem in the appliance becomes a problem of the circuit. Hence it is necessary to check the sound condition of the appliance before plugging it in. Avoid using appliances which have the following symptoms :
    • Damages cords
    • Damages wiring and cases
    • Cracks on the appliance
  2. Install fuses – Electrical fuse restricts the flow of electricity if it exceeds the amount for which the circuit is designed for, thereby reducing the risk of short circuits or fire.

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