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How Explosion Proof And Regular Electric Boxes Are Different From Each Other
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How Explosion Proof And Regular Electric Boxes Are Different From Each Other

An electrical box is like a junction where all the electrical wires that connect different electrical devices in a room culminate into switches. These switches serve as an interface for the user to operate the electrical equipments, are fixed into the electrical box. Various types of electric boxes are available today for specific needs. While a regular electric box may suffice for a home, an explosion proof electric box is what you require for a hazardous location. This article helps you identify the need for different types of electrical materials, particularly electric boxes.

Types of electrical boxes

Electrical boxes may be installed indoors or outdoors. These come in different shapes, size and material depending on the application. Generally for indoor application like in your home, these electrical boxes are concealed in the wall, while in case of outdoor applications, electrical boxes have to be weather proof and also rugged enough to protect the switches installed within from any mechanical stress. The shape of the electrical box is generally rectangle, square, octagonal, or round and are made of either metallic (cast iron, aluminum, steel) or non-metallic material (plastic, PVC). Plastic or PVC boxes are inexpensive and easy-to-install but should not be used where metallic cables are used.

Difference between regular electric box and explosion proof electric box

Electrical boxes are important not only from the aesthetic point of view but also from the safety perspective. As these help in concealing the electrical wires and also insulate the users from any potential sparks that may occur because of overload, loose connections or ingress of foreign particles like dirt.

Sometimes these electrical boxes also need to be installed in conditions which are hazardous and hence they may have to be designed differently from regular electrical boxes to make them explosion proof. A hazardous location generally involves an environment in which flammable or explosive gases, liquids, or dusts are present either at all times or when there is a failure in normal operations.

A regular electrical box which is to be installed in a non-hazardous location has to be just strong enough to bear the weight of the enclosures and provide protection to personnel against minor sparks, which may happen because of loose connections or overload and also offer protection against the ingress of dirt / water / oil and corrosion.

However, in case of an explosion proof electrical box, they need to ensure safety of the people, even in the case of a heavy explosion and hence should be bulkier and heavier compared to regular enclosures. The joints and flanges of explosion proof enclosures should ensure that hot gases that are formed because of an internal explosion are cooled to a temperature point that when they are released does not have enough heat to trigger another explosion. Depending upon the level of hazard the design of the explosion proof enclosure is further calibrated. Explosion proof enclosures are made using material having high strength like polyester, aluminum, and stainless steel to ensure that in case of an explosion, there is no external damage.

Now, that you have understood the importance of different types of electric boxes, keep the information in mind when souring electrical materials.


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