Performance considerations for home electrics


What will voltage variations do to your appliances and wiring - and what happens when there are high voltage surges - for instance those caused by lightning? What is the maximum current that can be drawn? Do you need a three-phase power supply?

It's important to understand the sorts of things that are likely to affect the performance of your electrical systems. Not only will this knowledge help to keep you safe, but understanding how your home's electrics work can also help you save money.

How are electrics installed?

An overview of a typical electrical installation in a home from the local pole transformer, to the service fuse and to your switchbox.

Where to position electrical outlets

Find out how to decide where electrical outlets should be positioned, and what sort of factors will influence both how many you need and what type.

Voltage supply fluctuations

Interestingly, the position of your house relative to the main supply for your street can have an impact on your voltage supply - which may affect things like the lifespan of your lightbulbs.

Supply current limitations

In older houses, switchboxes, fuses and cabling were often designed to handle less current than many of us use today. Find out how to tell if this affects your home.

Fuses, circuit breakers and safety switches

Fuses, circuit breakers and safety switches all offer very different levels of protection and safety. See how they differ, and find out how to improve the safety of your electrical systems.

Age of wiring

Like all things, over time wiring and the shielding that surrounds it tends to deteriorate. See how this affects the safety and performance of your electrical systems.

Wall framing and materials

Learn about how different types of walls and floor materials (like SIPS, or suspended concrete slabs, for example) may lead to different demands in terms of how wiring is installed.

Demand response and load shedding

Depending on where you live and what electrical hardware you have, your local power authority may be able to control your lighting or appliances to prevent blackouts.

Twisted pair cabling

EMI, crosstalk and network interference

EMI (or electromagnetic interference) can cause a variety of problems with electronic equipment or communications systems. Find out how to prevent this in your home.

Single phase vs three phase

Different appliances may need a greater supply of current, and some may require three phase power to work. Find out more about the difference between single phase and three phase power.

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