Electrical Emergency - Safety switch tripping

What to do if the safety switch keeps tripping?

In the event that your home has lost power but the neighbours still have the lights on and the vacuum cleaner humming, check your safety switch. The safety switch or RCD is located in your electrical switchboard or fuse box. Has the switch flicked to the OFF position?

If this is the case a malfunctioning electrical appliance or faulty electrical wiring has been detected and the device has done exactly what it is designed to do and cut electricity to the power point electrical circuit of your home.

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The safety switch is an important protection against electrical accidents. The switch activates in as little as 0.3 seconds to prevent serious harm from an electric shock. Even though it may seem like an annoying inconvenience at the time, in reality, the switch could have saved the life of someone in your home.

Electrical Safety Switch

In some cases the fault is temporary and power can be restored simply by resetting the switch to the ON position. Sometimes this is not the case and the issue continues to occur.

If there is an appliance you suspect is faulty unplug it and try to reset the RCD (residual current device). Do not reuse the faulty item until it can be repaired by a qualified appliance repair technician.

To find the faulty appliance unplug all the appliances which are plugged into a power point in your home, yes every single one, and reset the safety switch.

As you replug each item the faulty appliance will often trip the RCD as soon as it’s turned on, but not always.

Most common electrical appliances which cause safety switch tripping are the - electric kettle, toaster, rangehood, iron, washing machine, fridge, and freezer.

Other causes of RCD tripping

Heavy rain can leak water into your homes electrical systems. If you suspect your safety switch is tripping regularly due to moisture, contact your licensed electrician to ensure the system is safe after rain damage.

Electrical storms, thunder and lightning, can occasionally trigger the RCDs sensor. In this situation, the switch should reset once the storm has passed.

Tips on identifying faulty appliances

If you suspect any electrical appliance is faulty in any way stop using the item until you can have it check and repaired by a qualified appliance repair technician.

  • Worn, melted, or discoloured electrical cables
  • Melted or cracked plug
  • Exposed wiring
  • Burn marks anywhere on the appliance can indicate overheating.
  • External wear and tear such as cracks in housing, broken switches or knobs

Nuisance tripping

Emergency electrician Sydney

Our emergency electrician is on call for after-hours safety switch tripping problems across Sydney’s North Shore, Northern Beaches, Hills District, Ryde, and the Eastern Suburbs. Call 0481 134 679 now.

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