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Fire & Water - Cleanup & Restoration

How Does An Electrical Fire Happen?

12/5/2022 (Permalink)

Short circuit of electricity/electrical failure resulting in combustion of electric wire Electrical fires can be caused by short circuits.

What Causes an Electrical Fire and How To Prevent Them?

The fact that electrical fires happen more often than most people think makes it even more important to be aware of what causes them and how to stop them. By understanding what an electrical fire is, you'll be able to spot potential problems before they start.

Electrical fires are the third most common cause of house fires in the United States.

Every year, there are over 100,000 electrical fires in homes and buildings that result in more than 400 deaths. In addition to these dire statistics, electrical fires also cause thousands of injuries every year.

The majority of electrical fires start due to wiring issues. This includes shorts or loose connections as well as faulty extension cords and power strips. Other causes include overloaded circuits, damaged cables/connectors, overloaded outlets and frayed wires on appliances or lamps.

What is an electrical fire?

An electrical fire is a fire that starts because of electricity. Electrical fires can be caused by short circuits, overloaded circuits, or overheating. Electrical fires can start in your home or office in Saratoga, CA and spread quickly. The flames from electrical fires are often very hot and may cause damage to the building's structure and contents. If you have an electrical fire, you should leave the building immediately! Then call 911 to report it.

What causes an electrical fire?

Electrical fires can occur when an electrical circuit is damaged or worn out. This can happen when wires are frayed or bent, or if the insulation is damaged on a wire. Electrical fires may also start as a result of poorly installed wiring that has not been put together correctly. In these cases, there may be exposed metal parts where they shouldn’t be, and this can cause a short circuit and fire.

Short circuits are usually caused by an electrical device that has been plugged in incorrectly or plugged into an outlet with too low of voltage for it to work properly. Another common cause of short circuits is water damage to the wiring, which causes corrosion and results in loose connections between wires inside your home's walls. 

What should you do if you have an electrical fire?

If you notice an electrical fire, it's important to act immediately:

  • Call 911. Electrical fires are extremely dangerous, and they can spread quickly. It's best not to attempt to put out the fire yourself in these cases.
  • Stay out of the room—and keep children and pets away as well. Electrical fires release toxic fumes and may cause injury if you try to fight them yourself or if they ignite nearby objects such as carpeting or furniture that could burn through walls into other parts of your home.
  • Have a fire extinguisher handy.

A final reason why an appliance might catch fire is because its internal parts have become exposed due to damage caused by normal wear-and-tear over time; this type of malfunction should always be addressed quickly so as not interfere with daily life too much since it could cause major problems down the road."


Electrical fires can be scary and dangerous, but they’re also preventable. If you know what to look for and how to prevent them, you can keep your home safe from electrical fire damage. The best way to avoid electrical fires is by being aware of what causes them in the first place: using extension cords or power strips that aren’t meant for high-powered appliances; overloading outlets with too many things plugged in at once; placing items on top of electrical outlets where they could potentially encounter moisture or other moisture-producing elements like basements and bathrooms.

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