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How Water Can Damage Your Electronics

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Most everyone understands that water and electricity are a lethal combination. But not everyone knows electronic equipment that's experienced water damage can also pose a hazard when it's turned on or used without completely drying out. Here's how water can damage your home's electrical system, appliances, and devices and what you should do in case of a water leak or flood.

How Water Affects Metal 

One of the most serious issues following a hurricane, severe storm, or flood is water intrusion and damage, especially to your appliances and electronics. That's because most of them were never designed to withstand exposure to water. Water damages metals by speeding up their oxidation process, which normally occurs much more slowly in air. If the water contains impurities such as salts, that oxidation can happen even more quickly.

There are three types of water damage.

As electrical conductors inside wet appliances and electronics start to corrode, they lose their ability to carry electrical currents. As conductors build up more corrosion they can eventually become hot enough to ignite surrounding material and cause a fire.

How to Spot Water Damage 

Some electronic equipment such as newer model computers and mobile phones are capable of keeping water out and away from electrical components. Depending on the device, here's how to recognize water damage in other equipment:

If you're unsure how high the water level rose during a storm or flood, look for a water line on the appliance. It can help determine if internal components were affected.

How to Safely Handle Water Damaged Electronics and Appliances

Here's the bottom line: if an appliance or piece of electrical equipment has been wet or underwater, it presents a significant risk. While you can try and have it professionally cleaned and dried, most experts suggest replacing it with new equipment. You'll want to check to see if your insurance policy covers any of the replacement costs. And please consider recycling those devices instead of sending them to a landfill!

If your Jacksonville area home has recently suffered severe water damage it's also a good idea to schedule a safety inspection with a qualified electrician to make sure there's no hidden damage to your home's electrical system. Contact David Gray Electrical Services online or call us at 904-724-7211 to learn more.

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