Electricity

Careers as an Electrician

An electrician is a tradesman specializing in electrical wiring of buildings, stationary machines, and related equipment. Electricians may be employed in the installation of new electrical components or the maintenance and repair of existing electrical infrastructure. Electricians may also specialize in wiring ships, airplanes, and other mobile platforms, as well as data and cable.

Electronic Engineer

An electronic engineer is someone who is responsible for designing electronics, quality assurance, and project management. They are fully certified engineers who have completed an undergraduate degree in electronic engineering.

  1. Complete a home electricity safety check using this checklist:

Electricity Requirements

1). Demonstrate that you know how to respond to electrical emergencies by doing the following:

  • Explain how to rescue a person touching a live wire in the home.
  • Explain how to render first aid to a person who is unconscious from electrical shock.
  • Explain how to treat an electrical burn.
  • Explain what to do in an electrical storm.
  • Explain what to do in the event of an electrical fire.

2). Complete an electrical home safety inspection of your home, using this checklist:

Outlets

  •   Check for outlets that have loose-fitting plugs, which can overheat and lead to fire.
  •   Replace any missing or broken wall plates.
  •   Make sure there are safety covers on all unused outlets that are accessible to children.

    Line Cords

  •   Make sure cords are in good condition-not frayed or cracked.
  •   Make sure they are placed out of traffic areas.
  •   Make sure that cords are not nailed or stapled to the wall, baseboard or to another object.
  •   Make sure that cords are not under carpets or rugs or any furniture rests on them.

    Extension Cords

  •   Check to see that extension cords are not overloaded & only be used on a temporary basis, not as permanent wiring.
  •   Make sure extension cords have safety closures to help protect children from shock hazards and mouth burns.

    Plugs

  •   Make sure your plugs fit securely into your outlets.
  •   Make sure no plugs have had the ground pin (the third prong) removed in order to make a three-prong fit a two-conductor outlet; this could lead to an electrical shock.
  •   Never force a plug into an outlet if it doesn’t fit.
  •   Avoid overloading outlets with too many appliances. Ground Fault Circuit Interrupters (GFCIs)

    GFCIs can help prevent electrocution. When a GFCI senses current leakage in an electrical circuit, it assumes a ground fault has occurred. It then interrupts power fast enough to help prevent serious injury from electrical shock. GFCIs can be installed at the outlet, or as a replacement for the circuit breaker for an entire circuit at the fuse box.

  •   Kitchen  Bathrooms  Garage  Laundry room  Outdoors
  •   Test GFCIs according to the manufacturer’s instructions monthly and after major electrical storms to make sure they are

    working properly.

    Light Bulbs

  •   Check the wattage of all bulbs in light fixtures to make sure they are the correct wattage for the size of the fixture.
  •   Replace bulbs that have higher wattage than recommended; if you don’t know the correct wattage, check with the

    manufacturer of the fixture.

  •   Make sure bulbs are screwed in securely; loose bulbs may overheat.

    Circuit Breakers/Fuses

  •   Make sure circuit breakers and fuses are the correct size current rating for their circuit. If you do not know the correct size, have an electrician identify and label the size to be used. Always replace a fuse with the correctly specified size fuse.
  •   Make sure everyone in your home knows where the main breaker is located and how to shut of power to the entire house.

    Plug In Appliances

 Make sure there are no plugged-in appliances where they might fall in contact with water. If a plugged-in appliance falls into water, NEVER reach in to pull it out—even if it’s turned off. First turn off the power source at the panel board and then unplug the appliance. If you have an appliance that has gotten wet, don’t use it until it has been checked by a qualified repair person.

Appliances

 If an appliance repeatedly blows a fuse, trips a circuit breaker or if it has given you a shock, unplug it and have it repaired or replaced.

Entertainment/Computer Equipment

  •   Check to see that the equipment is in good condition and working properly. Look for cracks or damage in wiring, plugs and connectors.
  •   Use a surge protector bearing the seal of a nationally recognized certification agency.

     

    Lightning

  •   During an electrical storm, do not use appliances (i.e., hairdryers, toasters and radios) or telephones (except in an emergency); do not take a bath or shower;
  •   Keep batteries on hand for flashlights and radios in case of a power outage.
  •   Use surge protectors on electronic devices, appliances, phones, fax machines and modems.

     

    Halogen Floor Lamps

  •   Halogen floor lamps operate at much higher temperatures than a standard incandescent light bulb. Never place a halogen floor lamp where it could come in contact with draperies, clothing or other combustible materials.
  •   Be sure to turn the lamp off whenever you leave the room for an extended period of time.
  •   Never use torchiere lamps in children’s bedrooms or playrooms. Consider using cooler fluorescent floor lamps.

2. Knowledge:

  • Explain the difference between direct current and alternating current.
  • Explain why a fuse blows or a circuit breaker trips. Tell how to find a blown fuse or tripped circuit breaker in your home. Explain how to safely reset the circuit breaker.
  • Explain what overloading an electric circuit means. Tell what you have done to make sure your home circuits are not overloaded.
  • Discuss with your counselor five ways in which your family can conserve energy.
  • Explain the following electrical terms: volt, ampere, watt, ohm, resistance, potential difference, rectifier, rheostat, conductor, ground, circuit, and short circuit.

3). Do one of the following:

  • Interview an electrician or electronic engineer and share your findings with the class. What educational training is needed, what are the challenges, joys and interesting aspects of this work.
  • How do electricians and electronic engineers differ in their work and what are any similarities. What companies hire electronic engineers and electricians and what might they do in their job?  Share your findings with the class.