Every year, short circuits cause fires in homes across the nation. And no, I’m not talking about the general usage of the term short circuit, which is incorrectly used to describe any electrical problem at all. I’m talking about a true short circuit, when a current travels along an unintended path that offers no (or very little) electrical impedance. The resulting spark can cause circuit damage, overheating, a fire, or even an explosion. Today, we’re going to discuss what short circuits are, how they’re caused, how they can be avoided, and how you can bring your home back to life with a quality home restoration company.
First a little science lesson: Electrons are pushed around a circuit by a force called voltage. The product of the force (volts) and current (amperes) is electrical power. As electrons flow through wires, they bump into atoms, which impede the flow and offer resistance. Get it? Good.
In a short circuit, two nodes of a circuit that are intended to have different voltages are joined in a low-resistance connection. This usually means that the hot wire is touching either of the two other wires. The resulting overcurrent can be very dangerous, which is why it’s so important that we have circuit breakers and fuses to protect our homes.
Circuit breakers and fuses disconnect your home’s power when they sense excessive current. When this happens, you need to identify where the problem is and fix it. If you aren’t experienced in electrical repairs, simply call in an electrician and allow him or her to take over. When the problem has been resolved, you can reset the breaker, readying your home for future electrical problems.
Shorts circuits can occur due to faulty wiring, broken insulation, a circuit overload, defective products (plugs, switches, cords, receptacles), or they can simply be accidents! Whatever the cause, it’s important that you take this problem seriously and call an electrician if you’re in over your head.
If a short circuit causes a fire, it’s critical to call restoration experts in. They will help you asses the damage and get back on the right track.