Every occupation has its own vocabulary, and that holds true for electricians. So here is a primer on electrical terminology from A to Z.    

Amps – a measurement of electric current flowing through a conductor.

Blackout – a total loss of electric power. As opposed to a brownout, which is a temporary reduction of voltage.

Current – the movement of electricity through something that allows electricity to flow through it, which is called a conductor.

Direct current – electrical current flowing in one direction. That is in contrast to alternating current, which is current that reverses directions.  

Electricity – The flow of electrons, which are negatively charged particles that produce electricity.

Fuse – A wire or strip of metal that melts and interrupts the electrical circuit (flow of electricity) when the current exceeds the preset amps.

Ground Fault Circuit Interrupter (GFCI) – a fast-acting circuit breaker designed to shut off electric power in the event of a ground fault. It works by comparing the amount of current going to and returning from equipment along the circuit conductors.

Hydroelectricity – Electricity created by flowing water.

Insulator – A material that electricity cannot easily flow through.

Joule  – A unit of work.

Kilowatt – A unit for measuring the demand for electricity.

Load – A device that uses electrical power.

Megawatt – One million watts.

Neutron – A part of an atom that has a neutral electrical charge. Protons and the parts of an atom that have positive charges.  As mentioned above, electrons are negatively charged products and are what produces electricity.

Ohm – The unit of measurement of the electrical resistance of a material.

Power – The energy used to do work – measured in watts.

Resistance – The resistance to the flow of electricity through a material.

Surge – a duration of increased voltage that could cause power outages.

Transformer – A device that can raise or lower electricity’s voltage and current.

Voltage – The amount of force used to produce an electric current.

Watt – The measurement of the rate of energy transfer as measured by the number of joules that can convert into power every second.  

Contact Ravinia Plumbing, Sewer, Heating & Electric for Your Electrical Needs

Ravinia Plumbing can help you with all your electrical systems from A to Z, including installing and repairing electrical equipment to standby generators to smart devices. We’ve been in business since 1928, and we’ve made a name for ourselves as one of the most trusted and reliable plumbing, sewer, heating and air conditioning, and electrical companies in Chicagoland. Contact Ravinia Plumbing today to schedule an appointment.