As spring approaches here in Atlanta, now is a good time to assess your surge protection system to help guard against lightning damage to the electronic devices in your home. Of course, nothing can guard against a direct lightning strike, but there are steps you can take to minimize lightning and surge damage. Read more
One of the most common problems we find with electrical installations, whether it be a do it yourself renovation, or even new construction, is finding that the ground connection is not properly terminated to light fixtures, switches and outlets. They will work without making that connection, but for devices that include a ground connection, it is very dangerous to leave it disconnected.What does the ground connection look like? It’s the green screw on light switches and receptacles, and it is usually a green or bare wire on light fixtures and ceiling fans.
Why is it important? The ground wire is used to make sure that the metal surfaces a person could come in contact with in an electrical system do not become energized, creating a shock hazard. When properly connected, the ground wire creates a “short circuit” pathway for electrical current to flow in a large enough volume to trip the circuit breaker off in the event that the “hot” wire comes in contact with any metal it is not suppose to. Without this ground pathway, current can’t flow, and the breaker can’t trip. The metal would then become energized, waiting for someone to touch it. When a person touches the energized metal they become the pathway for current to flow, leading to injury and sometimes death.
Spring is one of the most active seasons for lightning strikes and the damage that comes with them. Here in the Southeast United States, we live in the most active region for lightning strikes in North America and one of the top places in the world for frequency of lightning strikes. Lightning is one of the most powerful forces in nature, delivering over 30 million volts of electricity in a single bolt.