Everyone depends on electricity for their daily lives. People use the resource to do almost everything that happens during the day. So once the power goes out or if an electrical device has some issues, it pays off to know about how an electrical system works. Today’s guide will discuss all the basics regarding electrical systems and how they work. Let’s get started.
Your electric power comes from a power company that manages the resource until it gets to your home. But once it arrives, how you use it and everything else is totally up to you. You cannot blame the power company if one or more of your appliances or electronic devices start malfunctioning. The problem might be with the items themselves.
Your home’s power supply begins with an electric meter and the power service coming along with it. The company providing the energy will install cables from the site to your home. After that, workers will connect the components to your electric meter. This device is responsible for monitoring your power usage and how much you will owe the company. It will only operate if any electrical items inside or outside the house are in use.
In addition, the entire setup comes with a primary power switch that controls the entire electric supply that goes around and inside the house. In the event of a flood or fire, you can turn off the switch to prevent any other electricity-related accidents from happening.
The breaker panel is responsible for distributing electricity around your home. It is comprised of a variety of panels:
- Main circuit breaker
The main circuit breaker is where the power goes through before it reaches your switches and appliances. It controls the flow of power to other circuit breakers. If you decide to shut it off, you take all the electricity out of the house entirely.
- Branch circuit breakers
These are the switches that transport power to somewhere else inside or outside of your home. Once one of the many circuit breakers would detect too much power in the current, they would shut off. On top of that, these components work on an amperage level. That means the higher the amperage would be, the greater the load the circuit breaker can handle.
Sub-panels are optional home breaker components. They work well for setting up a backup generator or if you have plans to make an outbuilding to the property.
Wirings are the unsung heroes of electrical systems in your home. Most of them are composed of metallic cables, non-metallic cables, copper, and plastic conduits. Each of these wirings is ideal for specific functions. So it is paramount that you are aware of what wirings you are using for any electrical endeavor.
Just like wirings, outlets have variants that work for different purposes. Here are some of them:
- 15A 125-volt outlets
These outlets are the most common ones you can find in almost every house in the country. In addition, there are two primary types of 125-volt outlets: grounded and ungrounded. If you are confused, there is a way to find out which is which. You will observe the difference with the small ground pin in between or below the vertical slots.
- 20A 125-volt outlets
These kinds of outlets are best for heavier loads. They stand out from the rest if you still have issues identifying what kind of outlet is overall. They have a small horizontal slot that connects to one of the vertical ones.
- 250-volt outlets
These kinds of outlets are neat for electric ranges, power tools, heavy appliances, and so on.
- AFCI outlets
Arc fault circuit interrupter or AFCI outlets have a primary role. That is to make sure arcing – jumping sparks in loose wires – does not happen at all.
- GFCI outlets
Ground fault circuit interrupter or GFCI outlets provide extra safety for your home. They do so by turning themselves off in the event of a power surge. Such an occurrence usually happens when water comes in contact with one of the outlets. You have to set them up in places where water hazards are least to exist.
No electrical system is complete without switches. You will find out that there are also numerous kinds of devices available.
Dimmers are high-tech switches that allow you to adjust how intense light can be in a room.
- Single-pole switch
A single-pole switch handles only one outlet or device. They are the most common ones you can find in any home setting.
- Three-way switch
These kinds of switches work in pairs a lot. This feature allows you to turn something on or off from two separate locations.
- Motion sensors
Motion sensors are another modern improvement on how switches operate. They direct power to lighting systems and other devices upon motion detection. That is a really neat perk if you ask us.
Where To Buy Such Supplies?
You can find almost every electrical system component in one of your town’s home outlets. You can also check out electrical shops that might be just around the corner. If that does not satisfy you, you can also head online to do your purchasing. Several sites offer catalogs, as well as navigation to direct you to a local electrical supply shop that might be near you.
You must take it easy and proceed with caution with electrical systems. Starting with such technology and components might be complicated for several people. So we will not judge if you want to take things easy. But if things get too challenging, it might be high time you let the professionals do the job.