Are Frayed Wires Dangerous?

Are Frayed Wires Dangerous?

Electricity is a safe and useful source of energy only as long as it is under control. An uncontrolled electricity leak can bring a lot of troubles, the main one of which is a fire in the house. In this article, we will tell you about the main causes of wiring malfunction and what is the danger of frayed wires, and well as provide recommendations for their elimination.

It often happens that the wires of external devices become unusable. This can happen for a variety of reasons. The most popular cases:

  • Frayed wires of the computer mouse (keyboard, printer, webcam, charger);
  • Accidental damage: dropped something heavy on the wire, accidentally pulled the wire of the device, pinched it (for example, there was a case of getting a mouse wire from a laptop under the seat of a kitchen sofa-corner);
  • Activities of small children or pets (for example, a puppy chews on an internet cable)

What is the danger of frayed wires?

Are Frayed Wires Dangerous
USB device cable with damaged insulation. The best solution is to buy a whole new device.

If the strong frayed of the wires are damaged, conductors through which the electric current flows are exposed. If exposed live conductors touch each other, then a short circuit (SC) occurs.

A short circuit can lead to the following problems:

  • Combustion. A short circuit will cause the conductors to become very hot, which could cause a fire. Both the wire itself (insulation) and the wiring in the room can catch fire. In addition to spontaneous combustion, the danger of fire lies in sparks that can occur during short circuit. If there are flammable or combustible substances and materials in the immediate vicinity, even a small spark can start a fire.
  • Failure of electronics. Modern electronics are very sensitive to power surges and surges. If the supply wire is damaged, these surges are inevitable. An Internet cable gnawed by a puppy or kitten can easily damage your router or computer to which this cable is connected. A damaged power supply cable of a laptop or smartphone can easily “kill” the device’s battery and lead to damage to the device itself.
  • Electric shock. If the wire supplying the device directly from the 220V network is damaged, then an accidental short circuit “on itself” can cause electric shock. For example, if you accidentally touch the bare ends of the wire. This situation can cause burns, health problems, or even death. But do not think that small currents are safe. For pets and small children, mild exertion is sufficient to cause fright, burns, mental disturbances, and other health problems. In some cases, shocking a pet with as little as 5V can kill the pet. By the way, such a current passes in the veins of absolutely all USB devices, and the voltage from the device’s power supply (for example, a laptop or monoblock, printer) can reach 24V.

What to do if the frayed wires?

Are Frayed Wires Dangerous
Self-repair of the charger without special skills can lead to dangerous consequences.
  • To know and understand that the current flows not only through the wires from the 220V network and from the chargers. Let’s repeat again: voltage is also present in any USB cable, Internet cable, wires from audio speakers and microphone.
  • If damage is found, de-energize the device, disconnect it from
    all other devices and stop using it.
  • In no case do not repair frayed wires yourself without the appropriate skills
  • If possible, purchase a new replacement device. In the case of a webcam, microphone, mouse, keyboard, this is not difficult to do. Such devices today can be purchased at any electronics store for a price of $ 5, and even cheaper in online stores. Thus, the cost of a new device will be equal or even cheaper than repairing a damaged one. And it is certainly cheaper than a failed computer or smartphone.
  • As for more expensive devices, such as power supplies for laptops, all-in-ones or printers, smartphone chargers, there are two options: either spend money on a new power supply (charger), the price of which usually starts from $ 10-15 and can reach $ 100-120; or contact an experienced electronics repair technician. The option with the purchase of a new device (power supply, charger) is more preferable. However, you should proceed from your financial capabilities and the feasibility of the cost of repair / purchase.

Electricity is a safe and useful source of energy only as long as it is under control. An uncontrolled electricity leak can bring a lot of troubles, the main one of which is a fire in the house. In this article, we will tell you about the main causes of wiring malfunction, as well as provide recommendations for their elimination.

How to protect wire from interference

How to protect the wire from interference. It can be difficult to connect a telephone, electrical, or audio line without worrying about interference. However, there are so many different electrical appliances in modern homes that shielding is almost always necessary. Here are some simple ways to protect your wire from interference.

Step 1

When installing electrical wiring at home, use a shielded conduit to reduce interference. These channels are more expensive than the unshielded variety and you should only use them when you have to place different views next to each other. Be sure to buy flexible tubing if you must use it in corners.

Step 2

Wrap magnetic shielding foil around the wiring to protect it from interference. This material is less expensive than purchasing a shielded conduit but takes time to wrap around the wiring.

Step 3

Estimate the cost of wiring your home with shielded wire. Shielded telephone and electrical wires are available at most hardware stores and can significantly reduce interference. However, these wires are more expensive than wires that do not provide protection against interference.

Step 4

Purchase shielded power cords for household appliances. Some clocks, lights, and televisions generate electric fields even when turned off. Using these power cords can reduce interference. However, they are expensive, so you can only use them on devices that create noticeable interference.

Step 5

Keep the distance between different types of wires. Electricians recommend placing telephone, audio, and electrical wires at least 1 foot apart. If the wires need to be close by, do not put them in the same channel.

Step 6

Check your equipment connections periodically to make sure frayed wires are not interfering. Some speaker wires wear out at the ends, which can cause interference-like sounds. This problem can be corrected by replacing the wires.

Isolating wires from interference: types of shielding

There are three types of cable shielding:

  • braid;
  • spiral winding;
  • foil.

Braided wire shielding. This type of wire insulation from interference is copper threads woven into a network. These threads can cover both individual conductors and twisted pairs, and simultaneously all the cores in the cable. The percentage of coverage is determined by the density of the arrangement of copper strands in the braid: the larger it is, the better the protection against EMI and the lower the radio emission. The flexibility of such a braid, as well as its service life, is directly affected by the diameter of the threads.

Shielding of wires with spiral winding. This type of shielding provides greater flexibility and bending life than braiding. A spiral winding is a bare or tinned wire that is spirally twisted around a conductor. This type of braid is most effective for low frequencies, with over 95% coverage. Spiral winding is used as a screening in the most flexible cables that are resistant to deformation (twisting, etc.). In such cables, other types of shielding (braid and foil) can be damaged when the cable is twisted.

Shielding of wires with foil. This is usually aluminum foil on a polyester backing. This backing provides mechanical strength. Thanks to aluminum, it provides effective protection against RFI of the capacitive type.

Methods for applying a foil shield to the conductor:

  • foil to the conductor;
  • foil out;
  • with the edges of the wrapped foil strip, which are folded into a Z-shape.


If the cable is damaged, you must experienced by private craftsmen. Typically, can quickly and inexpensively detect and repair a problem.


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