Beware the dangers of not identifying and replacing faulty switches

As switches age the plastic that they are made from becomes very brittle.

The brittle plastic is prone to cracking with normal use. As the plastic cracks the electrical components behind the switch can become exposed leading to direct contact with live electrical parts.

It is not worth the risk of your child, a family member or an employee accidentally coming into contact with these live parts as the result could be devastating. And, for such a low cost and quick way to rectify it is simply not worth putting off.

switches installation heading

If you have faulty or damaged switches contact Prokop Electrical so we can provide you with a solution.

Our certified electrical experts will:

  • Inspect and assess the existing switches to identify the issue and determine if a replacement is necessary
  • Ensure safety by turning off the power to the circuit where the powerpoint is located
  • Remove any faulty switches
  • Examine the wiring to identify any potential issues or hazards
  • Install new compatible switches ensuring the proper wiring and attachment
  • Test the new switch to ensure it functions correctly and meets safety standards

The dangers of not replacing

Occasionally the surrounding plate will crack and then possibly begin to fall away from the wall. Other times the crack can form on the plastic clips on the edges of the switch mechanism.

When these clips break the plastic cover can very easily fall out and live 240V contacts will become exposed.

Whether the plate has fallen away from the wall or the rocker switch plastic is broken, both situations can lead to direct contact with live electricity.

It is advisable to install safety switches to protect against electrocution if by chance a person comes into contact with these live parts. A functional safety switch will trip before a dangerous situation can occur if it detects earth leakage such as a person grounding a live terminal. Safety switches are an important part of an electrical installation, should not be overlooked and are now mandatory on all electrical sub circuits in new installations or when modifications occur to existing electrical systems.

How to identify switch faults

  1. Inconsistent power
    The switch is not consistently turning on the connected device or light fixture
  2. Flickering lights
    If the lights connected to the switch flicker or dim unexpectedly it could indicate a problem with the switch
  3. Warmth or Burning smell
    A faulty switch might feel warm to touch or you may notice a burning smell around the switch
  4. Visible damage
    Physical damage to the switch such as cracks or discolouration can indicate a fault
  5. Noisy operation
    Unusual sounds like buzzing or crackling when operating can indicate a fault
  6. Tripped circuit breaker
    If the switch frequently causes the circuit breaker to trip there may be a fault with the switch or the wiring

It is better to be safe than sorry
When it comes to replacing switches, it’s always best to keep the basic principles of electrical home safety in mind, and have an experienced, qualified electrical contractor take care of the job for you.

Prokop Electrical experts ensure new switches are installed safely and correctly and will issue you with a certificate of compliance on completion of the job showing that it was carried out by a licensed professional.

If you would like to discuss Prokop services contact us today and a member of our team will be happy to help.

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