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Proper earthing (or grounding) stands out as one of the most pivotal safety aspects of any electrical system. Essentially, electrical earthing involves the direct transfer of electrical charge to the Earth, accomplished through the use of a low-resistance earth cable or wire. This process connects the neutral supply system or the non-current carrying component of equipment to the ground.

Typically, galvanised iron finds common use for earthing. It serves as a reliable conduit for leakage current, offering a clear path for short-circuit currents to flow safely to the Earth, maintaining a zero potential. This intricate interplay safeguards both equipment and the entire system from potential severe damage. To understand more, continue reading as we address some of the most frequently asked questions about electrical earthing. 

Question #1: What are the different types of electrical earthing?

Electrical equipment typically comprises two key non-current carrying elements, commonly either the framework of the equipment or the system’s neutral. Earthing in an electrical system can be classified into two main types: neutral earthing and equipment earthing.

In the context of neutral earthing, the system’s neutral is directly connected to the Earth using a GI wire. This form of earthing, also known as ‘system earthing,’ is primarily employed in systems featuring star windings. For instance, you’ll often find neutral winding in devices like transformers, motors, and generators. 

Conversely, equipment earthing is typically applied to safeguard individual electrical equipment. In this scenario, a conducting wire secures the non-current carrying component of the equipment, such as its metallic frame, to the Earth. Should a fault occur within the apparatus, this wire facilitates the safe passage of short-circuit currents to the Earth, effectively shielding the electrical system from potential damage. 

Question #2: What electrical parts require earthing?

Numerous factors come into play when determining which electrical components necessitate earthing. In general, any conductive elements within your electrical system that have the potential to become energised due to a fault should be connected to the Earth. Failure to earth conductive components, like metal switches or casings, poses a significant risk of electric shock.

For instance, consider the case of decorative metal light switches that aren’t adequately earthed. If a live wire were to unexpectedly come loose and make contact with the metal plate, the metal switch would become live. The next person who attempts to turn on the light faces the peril of a potentially hazardous electric shock. Conversely, when the switch is correctly earthed, the electric circuit would trip the protective breaker and promptly disconnect the power supply as soon as the wire contacts the metal, ensuring safety. 

Question #3: What is the importance of electrical earthing?

The principal purpose of electrical earthing is to mitigate or eliminate the risk of electric shock. Any malfunction or leakage in a circuit can result in the accumulation of electric charge on exposed conductive surfaces. Earthing, with its low-resistance conductive path directly connected to the Earth, effectively carries away such leakage or faulty current. Here are some of the key reasons highlighting the critical importance of earthing in electrical installations:

  • Electrical earthing protects individuals from the effects of short-circuit currents.
  • Electrical earthing provides the most direct route for the flow of short-circuit currents, even in the event of an insulation failure.
  • Electrical earthing serves as a protective measure against lightning discharges and high voltage surges, safeguarding both equipment and personnel.


There is no doubt that proper earthing within an electrical installation is one of the most vital safety aspects of every electrical system. However, despite its importance, it seems as if not many people are aware of why earthing is necessary and what potential dangers could arise without a proper earth system in place. To avoid the risk of electrocution and damage, be sure to learn more about electrical earthing by consulting with an industry expert, such as Cable Source.

Cable Source takes pride in providing quality and reliable industrial cables designed for efficiency and safety across various applications, such as instrumentation cables, marine cables, solar cables, drum reeling cables, offshore cables, electrical earth cables, and more. Aside from cables and wires, we provide the best cable drums in Singapore that are ideal for different work environments. Feel free to check our website for more information.