Skip to Content

Facts Everyone Should Know About Electrical Fires

Faulty electrics are one of the biggest causes of house fires. The simple fact is that most people think it will never happen t them. But, it can happen to anyone. Sometimes, there is nothing you can do to predict or even prevent the electrical fire from happening.  However, the good news is that increased awareness of the causes of electrical fires and appropriate safety measures can reduce the likelihood of it happening to you.

Get Them Checked

That is why the first thing you should do is get the contact details of a reputable Sydney electrician. They will be vital in your efforts to reduce the risk of an electrical fire.

Faulty electrics come under several umbrellas. The biggest of these is fires starting due to faulty or damaged wiring. The outer protective cover of your wires can deteriorate over time, removing the protection. It can also be degraded by pests in your home.

The result is exposed cables that can spark against each other. This can create a  short circuit that ignites nearby combustible material. Alternatively, the wires can simply get hot, causing combustible material to burst into flames.

Your electrician will run tests and identify any faults in your circuits. They can then shut the power off to specific circuits to enable repairs to be made, keeping you safe.


Another huge issue and cause of electrical fires is overloading. In general, a circuit is only capable of supporting eight sockets. This regulation is different depending on what the circuit is running. Unfortunately, extensions and splitters allow you to plug in more items than the circuit should be able to handle. This increases the level of heat in the wires and can cause them to melt or start a fire.

Check your sockets and stop overloading them!

Portable Fires

Portable fires tend to have a high wattage draw, potentially overloading circuits. This is of particular concern if you have an extension cable that has not been fully unwound. Coiled cable traps heat, increasing the risk of spontaneous combustion.

Portable fires are also a hazard if they fall or are knocked over. Even leaving them unattended near to combustible items can be an issue, potentially causing a fire.

In short, they should never be left unattended.

Light Fittings

You should spare a few moments to check your light fittings. Bad connections can cause electrical fires to start. More importantly, an incorrectly sized bulb can quickly cause serious issues. If the unit is only rated for 60W and you have a 100W bulb, the fitting will overheat and potentially erupt into flame. Or, it may overheat the associated wiring and start a fire somewhere else in the lighting circuit.

Precautions You Should be Taking

The key to preventing electrical fires is to be aware of what can go wrong and then take steps to avoid this being a possibility. This means a regular electrical inspection and making sure items you are not using are unplugged. Eliminating the potential for an electrical fire will make it much less likely to happen.


Jeff Campbell