Electric shocks can be deadly, and you are usually subjected to a shock; we are not even aware of it. However, light shocks are not severe most of the time, but they can startle you for a second, and your heart will start to pound for the first few seconds. Regardless of the severity of the shock, it is crucial to find out why does my light switch shock me to avoid the shocks repeating.
A light switch is one of the essential and prominently used electrical devices in your home. It is the system used to turn on and off the lights in your home. Hence because it is part of your daily activities, you automatically reach your hand out, most of the time, without even looking at the light switch. That is why it is your biggest concern when facing an electric shock from your light switch because everyone commonly uses it. Thus, in this article, we will discuss why does my light switch shock me, including an insightful answer.
What Causes Electric Shocks from Light Switches?
If you want to find out why does my light switch shock me, it is critical to find out the root causes of the electric shock. Discovering the causes of the electric shock will also help you to prevent future accidents. Thus, below are some of the reasons that cause electric shocks in your light switches.
A common reason for the light switch shocks is when the wiring is damaged. If the brass or copper in the wires connecting the light switch is frayed, it can leak electricity through the openings when you turn on or off the switch.
Light switches manufactured in the early years are less resistant to electricity, as they are built with poor conductors and insulant materials, unlike modern light switches. Because modern switches, in comparison, are securely designed with the latest technology using different materials minimizing the effect caused by an electric shock.
The Switch is Not Installed Correctly
Some light switches need to be better installed on the wall, and you will also see wires popping from between. If the screws are loose in the switch, it can pass electricity to the metal screws, resulting in light switch shocks.
The Switch is Damaged
If the light switch is damaged, it is less secure because the electricity passes around. And, if the switch housing is broken or cracked, it is exposed to electric leakages.
Placing wet hands on switches that can cause electric shocks are the basics to protect yourself from danger. The lesson has been taught since n nursery, yet people repeat it. Because the ions in the water are conductive, the possibility of getting electrically charged is very high.
Electricity Not Grounded
Grounding or earth electricity is recommended to minimize the effect of electric shock in your home during a thunder or storm. If you have power on or off the switch during a thunderstorm, and the electricity is not grounded, your light switch can shock you.
Why Does my Light Switch Shock Me?
The reason your light switch shocks you can depend on the type of shock you are subjected to. If you have faced a static shock that only harms your skin’s surface, it will not affect you as much, but you might still feel unease. But electric shocks, in contrast, are the worst because they can sometimes be deadly.
A static shock from your light switch usually happens when you touch the metal screws in the switch, and you might feel the static electricity passing through your skin. An electric shock can cause severe pain in contrast and even cause nerve damage.
Electric shocks can also be fatal if the electricity passed to you has a high voltage. Electric shocks in light switches are usually caused by power leakages that transfer through the switch when turning on or off.
Is it Normal to Get Shocked by a Light Switch?
Accidents are expected in your routine, and with time they can be part of your daily routine, as are light switch shocks.
Light switch shocks are not rare in a household, though they can startle you when you are subjected to them, and it is not fatal, unlike other electric shocks most of the time. But, most of the time, it is the biggest concern for most because the light switch is being used in your home all the time.
If you don’t fix the problem and find the reason for the shock, the next person unaware in your home can face the same sequence.
How Dangerous Can Light Switch Shocks Be?
Apart from static shocks, electric shocks can be fatal. If you are subjected to an electric shock because of leakages, you will feel extreme pain in the affected area for some time, possibly resulting in nerve damage. In severe cases, electric shock could even kill you if the voltages are high.
Can Light Switch Shocks Indicate Underlying Electrical Problems?
Yes, most of the time, light switch shocks result from underlying electrical problems in the switch. Damaged wires and poor materials used to manufacture conductors and insulators in the light switch is the most common reason and best example.
What Should I Do If I Get Shocked by a Light Switch?
Once you feel the shock from the light switch, take your hands off immediately. If you continuously feel pain in your hand, it is best to visit a doctor and check for nerve damage.
How Can I Prevent Light Switch Shocks?
It is always better to take prevention steps to avoid light switch shocks. Follow the tips below to keep yourself safe in the future.
- Avoid touching your light switch with wet hands.
- Install the housing or the cover in the switch properly.
- Replace damaged wires in the light switch.
- Change your old and broken switches to new ones with better insulators and conductors with higher electric resistance.
- Install a static shock illuminator.
- Use an earthing or grounding system for electricity.
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Video Credits – Peterson Electric
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