What is Grounding in Electricity? | Mr Switch
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What is Grounding in Electricity?

What is Grounding in Electricity?

May 17, 2021

You’ve probably heard the term “grounding” before when it comes to electricity and your home. 

As a homeowner, you likely understand the importance of electricity and how grounding helps ensure a stable flow of power to your house, especially during thunderstorms and other potentially dangerous natural disasters. But do you know why “grounding” is so important for your home’s electricity?

What is Grounding?

In simple terms, grounding is the most effective way to safely return electricity to the ground through your electrical panel. When an appliance or electrical device in your home receives excess electricity, a grounding wire helps to discharge that electricity safely outside your home and into the ground. This keeps your home safe from any hazardous electrical malfunctions or static electric shocks. 

How Does Grounding Work?

For most homes, the electrical grounding system is installed by connecting a ground wire to a metal rod that is driven into the ground below your home. The purpose of extending the electrical wiring system of your home into the ground is to safely get rid of excess electrical charges. Without proper electrical grounding techniques in place, surges of excess electricity can inflict harm on you or your home by potentially causing an electrical fire or even electrocuting you.  

Electrical grounding comes into play most often whenever there’s a buildup of energy that results from something going wrong in the electrical circuitry in your home. While extreme surges of electricity tend to happen when lightning strikes your house or a transformer malfunctions, minor surges of excess electricity do happen several times throughout the day due to interactions between large appliances in your home. 

Proper grounding ensures that even the slightest bit of excess electricity gets sent directly into the ground and keeps you and your home safe from any number of electrical hazards.

Why Grounding Electricity Is Important for Your Home

1) Protects from death, injury, and damage

If your home’s outlets and electrical circuits aren’t properly grounded, excess currents of electricity can end up passing through your appliances and end up shocking you. 

This works similarly to whenever you experience static shock from grabbing a gamepad controller or some other electrically charged object. 

Without a proper grounding system in place, surges of electricity can cause a buildup of energy that gets stored in conductive surfaces throughout your home. If you accidentally end up touching one of these conductive surfaces, that excess energy will end up running through your body, causing an electric shock. While static shock may lead to a momentary bit of pain, in some cases you could suffer severe burns or other fatal injuries as a result of electrocution. 

In a worst-case scenario, the lack of electrical grounding would allow a power overload to cause an electrical fire, which is harmful not only to you but your property and belongings. 

2) Helps Prevent Electrical Overload

Having your home electrical system properly grounded also helps to prevent electrical overloads from damaging your appliances. In the event that your home experiences a power surge, your electronic belongings run the risk of getting “fried” if your electrical system isn’t grounded effectively. This could result in the loss of data on your computer or smartphone as well as the hefty expense of having to replace broken appliances.

Grounding acts as a massive surge protector for the entirety of your home and eliminates any electrical threats from power overloads by sending them right into the ground and out of harm’s way. 

3) Keeps Voltage Levels Stable

Having your electrical system properly grounded helps to keep the power voltage levels in your house stable. Providing a safe place for excess electricity to go allows the distribution of power throughout your home to remain balanced. This ensures that the circuits in your electrical system don’t get overloaded to the point of posing a hazard to you or your home. 

4) Controls and Directs Electrical Currents

Grounding also helps to direct electrical currents to where they need to go in a safe and effective manner. By allowing for excess electricity to be sent to the ground, your home’s electric currents are able to avoid dangerous buildups of energy in random parts of your home. This then makes it easier for electrical currents to travel throughout your house without jeopardizing the electrical system or your safety.

5) A Cost Effective Way to Safeguard Your Home

Above all, grounding offers a financially sound way to maintain and protect your home. Instead of needing to opt for an expensive or complicated method of redistributing excess electricity, directing excess power into the ground makes it easy and convenient to keep you and your home safe from any fatal electrical accidents.

While it may not seem like a significant aspect of your overall electrical system, grounding is what prevents you from having to spend thousands of dollars on repairing your home due to electrical damage. On top of that,proper electrical grounding also helps in the consistent delivery of electricity throughout your house on a daily basis, which is extremely convenient in today’s age of digital technology. 

How Do You Know if Your Home Is Properly Grounded?

If you’re experiencing electrical problems in your home and aren’t sure if your wiring system is properly grounded, you should contact your local grounding expert immediately to check your system for you.

Our team of electricians are ready and capable to assess any and all of your grounding problems to make sure your house isn’t at risk of falling victim to electrical damage. Don’t take a chance on your appliances and belongings – or worse, your family. Call us now and safeguard your home the right way.

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