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Let’s start with Why Don’t Phone Chargers Shock You? According to terrifying news stories, an iPhone electrocuted a Chinese woman though it’s unclear whether this happened or if the rest of the iPhone-owning public should be concerned.
The details from multiple media sources are hazy, making it difficult to draw any strong conclusions concerning iPhone hazards. It’s unknown which model of Apple’s popular smartphone Ma Ailun used or if it came from an authorized Apple store or China’s grey market.
Her family claims she used genuine Apple parts and that the phone was still covered under warranty. Apple is looking into the matter. Given how little we know about the incident, here are potential scenarios where she could have come into touch with a lethal electronic charge.
The family claimed she had gotten out of the water to take a phone call. In most cases, your body has enough resistance to prevent an iPhone charger with a current of 1 amp and a voltage of 5 volts from electrocuting you. However, as Mythbusters demonstrated, a bath diminishes a person’s resistance and can zap them.
The deadly amount of electricity is seven milliamps for three seconds, which can kill a person depending on the electrical and the consistency of the bath (salts greatly increase the water’s conductivity).
Ma Ailun, on the other hand, had exited the bath. To get electrocuted, she would have had to be completely soaked. In addition, newer ground-fault circuit interrupter outputs should guard against this.
Guide on Why Don’t Phone Chargers Shock You?
Every human body has electrical resistance. On the other hand, a mobile charger produces an output of roughly 5 volts and two amps, which is insufficient to penetrate our body’s electrical resistance. Due to the lack of skin protection, touching the tongue or any other injured part of our body to the charger output connection gives a tiny electric shock.
A 220V power supply, on the other hand, can inflict major injury to your body when in touch but, in most cases, will not result in death. An 11KV supply, on the other hand, may burn your entire body if you come into contact with it for even 1 second. That is the difference in the amount of energy that passes through your body.
Why Don’t We Get An Electric Shock When We Contact A Charger Wire?
Because it lacks sufficient voltage, the normal human body experiences shock at 1 to 2 mA and can tolerate 15 to 20 mA. (If passed for a long time, say more than a second or two, 5ma can be harmful.)
Our bodies have a resistance of around 100000 ohms, and we require 100 volts to get one mA current from them. A charger voltage of 5 volts, 12 volts, or even 24 volts cannot cause a shock to a normal human because they cannot deliver this much electricity through our bodies.
Is A Plugged-In Cellphone A Potential Source Of Electric Shock?
Although the risk is usually quite low, you may minimize it by taking reasonable precautions. There should be no danger in theory: a well-built charger unit maintains a gap of several millimeters between the ‘live’ half of the circuit, linked to mains power, and the low voltage half of the circuit attached to the mobile.
A shock cannot be caused by the extra-low voltage required to charge a phone. So, the question is how to bridge that gap so that live voltage can be applied to the phone cable. One point to consider is how the designer selected to avoid radio interference issues.
The charger’s basic circuit behaves like a radio transmitter, with the wiring’s safety gap acting as an antenna. A capacitor over the gap is a common technique for’shorting out’ undesired radio broadcasts. Current can travel through such a capacitor at high frequencies (radio), but it generally stops current at low frequencies (50Hz or 60Hz mains).
The capacitor will be selected to allow only a very small current at 60Hz, considerably below the amount that could injure you, but it will not block voltage. This is why you may experience a tingling sensation when you contact the metal body of a smartphone or the end of the charging line; you are receiving a low-intensity electric shock.
When it comes to defective, poorly designed or built equipment, the real troubles appear. Unfortunately, these charges are generally mass-produced at a low cost and in large quantities, with no consideration for quality or design.
The capacitors mentioned in the previous paragraph are an obvious risk because they cross the safety barrier: a legitimate layout will use a special high grade (known as ‘class Y’) capacitor for this job, which is specially constructed and tested so that it will fail safely if it should ever fail.
Ordinary capacitors are less expensive than Class-Y capacitors. Similarly, the entire safety notion is to have a good broad space between the two ends of the circuit, but consumers want their chargers to be as tiny as possible, leaving little space for a safety gap.
Legitimate designers will ensure that the gap is maintained at all times, ensuring that the gap is enforced by the form of the components, not relying on an assembly worker to place a wire in the correct location, and carefully ensuring that the manufacturing process will catch mistakes such as leaving out an important part.
Back-street ‘copy shop’ factories will not take these safeguards. Unfortunately, there is so much low-quality equipment on the market from so many unidentified sources that consumer watchdogs have little prospect of capturing the culprits.
Unscrupulous producers proudly print the ‘UL’ or ‘CE’ logo on their items without performing any testing that those designations entail, making it difficult to distinguish quality. Buying from known manufacturers is preferable to buying from low-cost ‘here today, gone tomorrow’ merchants on eBay or similar sites.
Then there’s the issue of how you will use the charger. Even if the design is sound, if the case is bent or cracked, the safety gap is likely compromised. If the worst happens and you get a shock, it won’t necessarily kill you: if your skin is dry, you’re wearing shoes, and your other hand isn’t contacting earthed metals (like pipes), your chances are high. It’s much worse to be soaked and barefoot in the bathroom.
Why Aren’t People Electrocuted When They Contact A Charger?
If you’re talking about a mobile telephone charger, it’s because it only has a 5V output. That is insufficient to create any harm. The wires can be stuck to your tongue and cause a slight sting.
So, Why Don’t Phone Chargers Shock You? To begin with, the mobile phone charger’s output stage has a low voltage section of around 5V and a maximum current of approximately 2A, which is insufficient to cause electric shock.
Second, the primary high voltage component of the charger, which operates between 110 and 250 volts, is well insulated from the secondary low voltage stage. The primary switching transformer and some optocouplers are the only components that could connect two of these stages. There are no electrical connections inside them; instead, the transformer employs a magnetic link, and the optocouplers use light.
Frequently Asked Questions
Why aren’t mobile chargers shocking you?
Because the mobile charger’s voltage rating is around 4.5volts to 5volts or 5.7volts, there isn’t a huge potential difference in passing a current through the human body. That is why charging your phone does not cause an electric shock.
Can you get shocked by a charger cable?
Bringing your smartphone to bed, however, may keep you awake but may also shock you, according to new research. According to the article, people have been accidentally electrocuted and burnt by phone charging cords.
Why does my phone charger give me the creeps?
Is it painful to get electrocuted?
It may feel as if you were hit by a train, or you may have no recollection of what happened. It may cause you to feel shocked and anxious, making operating electrical items difficult. As the electricity stimulates the muscles, you may suffer a strong spasm.