Is having a single safety switch is enough?
Most people are not able to differentiate between safety switches, circuit breakers and fuses thus ending up in total confusion. These three are different hence each one has its functions. Safety switches function only to adjust the passage of power via a circuit and shut down the power within a second if there is any leakage of electricity. We may say that safety switches are for electric shock prevention.
Circuit breakers function by shutting down the power if there is dangerous overload or high current fault in the circuit.
It is not a guarantee to have a safety switch put at your home, a single is not enough for the prevention of electric shock. It can offer protection if only it is on that circuit. If possible put safety switches on all circuits such as lights, oven, freezer even pool equipment circuit.
How to test safety switches?
You should check your switches if they are functioning properly for every three months.
Go with the following procedures;
- Make sure that everyone is aware of what you are going to do since the process will shut down the power on all circuits protected by a safety switch. For instance, people using desktops.
- When you check your safety switch, you will see the button written ‘T’ or ‘Test’ press it. The button will move quickly and immediately shut down the power indicating that it working. Find out what devices are off showing that those devices are protected by the safety switches. If it has failed to shut down the power, then it is not working and you are unprotected. Contact your certified technician as early as possible.
- Once you are done, turn on the safety switch. This depends on the design; you may push the button upon or press the on button. If your circuit has appliance such an air conditioner, please wait for a while, a minimum of two minutes before restarting the system to prevent device damages.
Always it is very annoying when there is excessive tripping of the safety switch. This may indicate that there is a damaged device or there is overloading in the circuit.
At the switchboard refresh the button which has flicked away. If the incident happens again, the last device plugged in the circuit would be a source of tripping. If the situation persists then you should disconnect all devices. Then connect one after another until it trips the damaged device trips the safety switch.
A faulty device leading to the tripping of the safety switches should be changed or repaired by a certified electrician or the manufacturer’s technician. Avoid being in contact with the faulty device is the power is on.