Electrical Safety

Electrical safety when your power trips.

What to do if your safety switch has tripped?

If a safety switch has disconnected the power (tripped), it may be due to a temporary fault, lightning or nuisance tripping.

  • Resetting the switch should restore the power supply.
  • If you cannot reset a safety switch after it has tripped, you may have a faulty appliance connected to the circuit, or there may be a wiring fault.
  • In this case, switch off and unplug the appliance that you think is faulty.
  • You should now be able to reset the safety switch and restore the power.
  • If you are not sure which appliance is faulty, switch off and unplug one, then try to reset the safety switch.
  • Do this for each appliance on the circuit until you find the one that causes the safety switch to trip.
  • If you are unable to reset the safety switch or can’t work out which appliance is causing a problem, call a licensed electrician at RLP to find and correct the fault.

There are a number of reasons your power can trip, including

  • Water ingress, rain and storm damage.
  • Faulty appliances
  • Overloaded circuits
  • Old/faulty/corroded electrical equipment and wiring
  • Pests chewing through wiring

Overloading of circuits or faulty appliances can cause nuisance tripping. The first step is isolating the problem circuit that is tripping out your power.

  1. If it’s an RCD that has tripped you will need to find the circuit that has caused the problem. You can do this by turning off all the circuit breakers in your switchboard, re-setting the RCD and turning on the circuit breakers one at a time. When the RCD trips you have found the circuit that you have a problem with.
  2. Your power may have tripped due to a faulty appliance or a new appliance that has overloaded the circuit. Unplug all the appliances in your property. Remember things outside like electric gates or pumps, dishwashers, old heaters and fridges. Reset the power. If it turns back on, slowly plug back in all the appliances. When the power trips again you have more than likely found the cause. Before plugging appliances back in make sure there is no water damage, the power point is dry and there are no other signs of damage, i.e.; burning smell.

General Safety

  • Most electrical appliances are designed for indoor use. Ensure any appliances you use outdoors are labelled as safe for outdoor use.
  • Before using an appliance, check the cords, plug and overall condition of the appliance to make sure there is no sign of damage. If there is damage, don’t use the appliance.
  • Electricity and water don’t mix. Wet electrical equipment can cause an electric shock, which may result in a serious injury or death. Never leave appliances, extension cords, powerboards, sockets and plugs where they may get wet and avoid using them in wet areas, such as near swimming pools.
  • Check all power and extension cords have no signs of damage before using them.
  • If using an electric blanket, check it for hot spots as it heats up. Don’t lie on it or put sheets on it until you are sure it’s operating safely, as it could burn you or start a fire. To store it, roll it up rather than folding it so you don’t damage the element wires.
  • Don’t use electrical appliances outdoors in bare feet or just thongs – it increases your risk of electric shock.
  • Never cut, drill or nail into walls, ceilings or floors unless you know the exact location of the electrical wiring. If necessary, get a licensed electrician to help to locate the wiring.
  • Be extra cautious of wiring in homes built during the 1960s and earlier. Cables used at this time we mainly lead and rubber sheathed, or rubber insulated, and some had cotton coverings. As these insulation materials degrade, the risk of electric shocks or fires greatly increases. Old homes may also use timber ducts in the roof space or metal conduits to run cables, which can cause fires or electric shocks if damaged.

Electrical installations in any home can deteriorate with age. If you’ve not had the wiring checked since you bought the property or you are not sure when it was last checked, get a licensed electrician to inspect it.

Make sure your electrical appliances and home are protected by a switchboard or portable safety switch. If an appliance trips your safety switch, disconnect it and avoid using it until it can be checked by a licensed electrician, or replace it.

In the event that power has tripped at your property, here are some steps that you can safely follow yourself before calling RLP. However, electricity can be extremely dangerous so if you are ever unsure it is best to call a professional.

There are a number of reasons your power can trip, including:

  • Water ingress, rain and storm damage.
  • Faulty appliances
  • Overloaded circuits
  • Old/faulty/corroded electrical equipment and wiring
  • Pests chewing through wiring

Overloading of circuits or faulty appliances can cause nuisance tripping. The first step is isolating the problem circuit that is tripping out your power.

  1. If it’s an RCD that has tripped you will need to find the circuit that has caused the problem. You can do this by turning off all the circuit breakers in your switchboard, re-setting the RCD and turning on the circuit breakers one at a time. When the RCD trips you have found the circuit that you have a problem with.
  2. Your power may have tripped due to a faulty appliance or a new appliance that has overloaded the circuit. Unplug all the appliances in your property. Remember things outside like electric gates or pumps, dishwashers, old heaters and fridges. Reset the power. If it turns back on, slowly plug back in all the appliances. When the power trips again you have more than likely found the cause. Before plugging appliances back in make sure there is no water damage, the power point is dry and there are no other signs of damage, i.e.; burning smell.

Rise Light and Power – Professional and Licensed Electricians

On average 15 people are killed in preventable electrical accidents in Australia each year, and many more are treated or hospitalized for electricity-related injuries
Electricity does not discriminate, so the risk and potential danger of electric shock or even electrocution is always present no matter how much training someone has received.
This is why it is always important to use a licensed electrician for any electrical work done in your home or workplace.

A licensed electrician will ensure the work is carried out safely and meets the relevant Australian safety standards.

Using a licensed electrician reduces the risk of fire, electric shock or any other electric incidents occurring in your home. This means you and your family can rest easy knowing you are protected. Any unlicensed electrical work could also have implications with your home insurance claims and may void warranty on the electrical equipment or appliances being installed.

Electricians and Electrical Contractors

An electrician is known as an electrical worker or an individual qualified tradesperson. An electrical contractor is a suitably trained individual or business that holds the required insurances and can employ an electrical worker. Electricians are typically not allowed to perform work for the public unless under the employment of an electrical contractor.

Electrical contracting businesses are licensed and insured to perform electrical services such as:

  • Install a ceiling fan or power point
  • Install or alter a switchboard or safety switch
  • Install a split cycle air conditioner
  • Repair a washing machine
  • Maintain a processing plant
  • Install or alter wiring or fixed appliances in a building.

While electrical contractors and electricians both hold licences, only electrical contractors hold the required insurances to properly and safely operate a business. These insurances protect the employees and home-owners/business owners from insurance liabilities. These requirements vary from state to state.

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