Beware: water
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Beware: water

Jun 09, 2023

With all the rain we have had this summer many people have probably had to deal with water damaged electrical equipment. Before attempting to repair this equipment, review the following safety information from Sequachee Valley Electric Cooperative (SVEC) and the Electrical Safety Foundation International (ESFI).

Water and electricity do not mix. Follow this guide to determine which equipment must be replaced and which electronics may be reconditioned. Any water-damaged equipment even if thoroughly dried will pose serious long-term safety and fire risk if not properly reconditioned.

SVEC and ESFI recommend that the evaluation of water damaged electrical equipment be conducted by qualified electricians. Floodwaters contaminated with chemicals, sewage, oil, and other debris can affect the integrity and performance of electrical equipment. Ocean water and salt spray can be particularly damaging due to the corrosive and conductive nature of the saltwater residue. Returning power to water damaged electrical devices or equipment without a proper evaluation could result in an electrical fire, shock, electrocution, or further damage to your device.

Water damaged equipment that must be replaced: Arc-Fault and Ground-Fault Circuit Interrupters; Batteries; Lightning, ballasts, and LED Drivers; Low and Medium Voltage Fuses; Molded-Case; Circuit Breakers; Outlet and Junction Boxes; Receptacles; Signaling, Protection, and Communications Systems; Surge Protective Devices; Switches and Dimmers; Transformers; Uninterruptible Power Supply (UPS); Wire or Cable (for dry area).

Water damaged equipment that may be reconditioned: High Voltage AC Circuit Breakers; Low and Medium Voltage Switchgear; Low-Voltage Power Circuit Breakers; Motors; Panelboards; Switchboards; Wire or Cable (for wet areas that have not been damaged/ends not exposed).

For more electrical safety information, you may also visit

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