Is it a good or a bad thing if your safety switch trips?

This is a common question our customers ask us when it comes to personal safety. But before worrying about possible electrical issues, you should check what has triggered the safety switch in the first place. Read about some of the main causes of RCD tripping in this week’s blog article.


Safety comes first! And so does your safety switch. Also known as an RCD (Residual Current Device), a safety switch serves as protection against electrical shock and electrocution.

Unlike fuses and circuit breakers, RCDs are designed to safeguard not only electrical devices but also the people in the house.


If you need help with installing, repairing or upgrading a safety switch, talk to one of our experienced electricians at Jaric Electrical today!


But why does a safety switch keep tripping? There are a number of reasons that can cause an RCD to trip. Here are some of them:

It’s actually doing its job!

safety switch is doing its jobUsually, an RCD trips when it detects a fault in an electrical circuit. But if it keeps tripping, you may be wondering if there’s anything wrong with it and might need replacing. In reality, this means the switch is actually working properly. If your RCD was broken, it wouldn’t be tripping at all in case of an electrical fault. Then, you and everyone else living or working in the building may be in danger.

Either way, we strongly recommend that every month you check the functionality of the RCD by pressing the ‘test’ button.

Broken electrical appliances

Another reason why your safety switch trips is to let you know that something is wrong with one of your electrical devices. For example, old washing machines, kettles, toasters, fridges or freezers can become dangerous with age. And when some of them are plugged in together, they can overload the circuit and break.

Therefore, the RCD will detect the leakage and disconnect the current before an injury occurs. Then, all you have to do is detect the broken appliance and repair or replace it as soon as possible.

Faulty or old electrical wiring

Faulty or old electrical wiringFaulty wiring can also be one of RCD tripping main causes. In fact, old electrical wiring deteriorates over time and the insulation around it becomes fragile and unsafe. This is more likely to happen in older houses with black rubber insulated cables, split metal conduit or the old type cotton cables as their electrical system. In some situations, faulty electrical wiring can potentially cause a short circuit, which can result in fire or electrical shock. Hence, the trouble could be hiding inside the walls of your building.

Fortunately, a licensed electrician is able to detect the problem and fix it before it escalates any further. However, if the wiring is old and uneasy, then you may want to consider having the whole household rewired.

Rain and lightning

Finally, stormy weather can be another major reason why your safety switch trips. In some Australian climates, long periods of rain could cause excessive water leaking around electrical items such as external power points and outside lights. For instance, the water coming from the roof can be infiltrated into the wall or into an electrical outlet. As a result, the RCD switch is triggered.

Similarly, thunder and lightning can also generate a safety switch tripping. The explanation is pretty straightforward. Since an RCD doesn’t accept major voltage fluctuations, the imbalance in electrical supply automatically triggers a trip.


Make the switch with Jaric Electrical

When dealing with electricity, it’s always better to be safe than sorry. So, let our qualified electricians install high-quality safety switches to protect you from any imbalance of electricity before it’s too late.


Contact Jaric Electrical at 1300 452 742 and schedule your free consultation today!


Until next time, remember safety doesn’t happen by accident!

Your friend and electrical expert,

John Ricca


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