As the leading experts in home wiring installation in Northern Virginia, we often find ourselves addressing misconceptions about electricity. There are numerous myths and misinformation about home wiring, which can be problematic and even dangerous for homeowners. In this article, we aim to debunk some of the most pervasive myths and explain why they’re incorrect or risky.
1. Low-voltage shocks are harmless
One dangerous myth we encounter is the belief that low-voltage shocks aren’t harmful, so occasional shocks from outlets or wires are inconsequential. While minor shocks may not always cause harm, the risk remains.
When your body comes in contact with live electricity, the shock travels through your entire body, potentially causing muscle seizures or brain disruptions. If an individual has pre-existing neurological vulnerabilities, even a minor shock can be detrimental. Moreover, secondary injuries may result from a person’s reaction to the shock.
Always treat live wires and outlets with caution.
2. New wiring is immune to problems
A common falsehood is the notion that new wiring cannot fail; only old wiring can. However, wiring of any age can have issues. Poor wiring installations, rodents chewing on cables, or damage from water leaks are just a few examples. While thicker, well-insulated cables offer better protection, electrical problems in your home could still arise from wiring infrastructure, regardless of its age.
3. Flickering lights are always due to power shortages
Although power shortages can cause flickering lights or brownouts, they’re not the sole culprit. Other causes include wiring issues, faulty light sockets, or problematic light bulbs. Recently, we’ve even seen poorly configured “smart lights” causing problems.
If a lightbulb flickers, try replacing it and ensuring it’s screwed in securely. If the issue persists, consult Northern Virginia electrical specialists to investigate the problem.
4. Thicker wires carry more electricity
Another misconception is that thicker power cords contain more electricity than thinner cords.
In reality, the amount of power in your wiring depends on your power supply and how electricity is distributed throughout your home. The difference between thin and thick wires lies is resistance; thinner wires have greater resistance, making electricity flow less efficiently and potentially causing heat buildup or reduced power to connected devices. However, the current remains the same regardless of wire size.
5. Ordinary safety gear is adequate for handling electricity
It’s crucial to emphasize that working with electricity at home is extremely hazardous, and professional assistance is strongly recommended. However, in case of emergencies, only use rated safety gear.
For instance, not all rubber gloves can prevent electrical conduction; many contain conductive materials, especially low-quality ones. Similarly, wood is not guaranteed to be safe, as even small amounts of moisture can make it conductive. Rely on professionals like RD Matthews Electrical Contracting for handling live power.
With over 25 years of experience, RD Matthews Electrical Contracting offers expert home wiring installation, electrical repair, and other electrical services across Northern Virginia.
Don’t let myths and misinformation put your safety at risk—trust the professionals to ensure your electrical needs are met safely and effectively. Call RD Matthews Electrical Contracting to solve your electrical issues.