If you have lived in any one of the more populated areas in the United States, you’ve probably had a chance to work with a home electrical panel. Whether it was for your home or business, electricity is the backbone of modern civilization. While this may seem obvious, there are still many people who don’t understand the basics of how electricity works and why it is so important to maintain your home’s electrical system. It is very important to understand the way that circuit breakers work so that you can properly care for them, as well as understand the importance of having a qualified electrician installed in your home.
The first step to understanding how electricity is made is to understand the basics of electrical wiring. Electrical wiring is composed of three major components: the power conductor, or wire; the load conductor, or ground wire; and the safety conductor, or wire shield. You must understand how each of these parts relates to electricity and how they affect the electricity you use in your home.
Power conductors are what give electricity its ability to flow through electrical systems. These wires carry the positive or negative charges necessary in order for electrical systems to function correctly. For example, when you turn a light switch on, a constant flow of electricity flows from the power cord through the load conductor, which is in the ground wire. This current is then sent to the light bulb, which causes it to glow. The negative charges on the ground wire prevent the current from flowing in the reverse.
Safety wires are added to a home electrical wire to prevent shock if there is a malfunction in the electrical system or if there is a disaster. For example, the local ordinances don’t allow you to hook up lights or televisions to your home electrical wiring unless there is a significant risk to your home or property. The fire department requires at least two circuit breakers in your home in order to service all of the appliances. In addition to having a complete electrical system, you also have a separate home electrical wire system.
Electrical service can be divided into three main categories. Panels are enclosures with electricity flowing through them from their location on the wall or floor to where they are connected to the electric panel at the exterior of the house. Panels provide the connection between the wiring coming in from outside and the electricity flowing out of the house. A subpanel is a movable board that holds three wires. Each panel connects to a subpanel, which holds one or more panels. These subpanels are then connected to the main panel by the wiring that is running through the panels.
Some older homes have multiple panels and subpanels. When an appliance is plugged in and there are not enough panels on the panel to handle the power draw of the appliance, a jumpers or flip-charts are used to indicate to the generator or circuit breaker that additional panels or subpanels are needed. This also allows the circuit breaker to be turned on before the power to the appliance is supplied by the alternate power supply. Homes that are designed to include solar panels will often use jumpers to indicate when the solar panels require maintenance. This can prevent damage to the solar panel and allow it to be repaired and reused over time.