Why Is Dust Harmful To Electrical Equipment?


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Do you live near the beach or a sandy place? Is your place under the attack of strong winds or dust all the time? Are you tired of cleaning your house multiple times and you still see a layer of dust on your furniture?

Dust comes from many sources and spreads out everywhere. You may notice it on your dressing table, furniture or even on the glass surface. As soon as the light shows up, a complete layer is seen all around the house like a fresh coat of paint.

Dust is composed of many components. It may include skin, soil, sand, grease, dead cells, and soot, oil and food particles. It depends on what processes happen in the neighborhood areas or what environment your house is exposed to.   

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Dust has very limited to no side effects. It is not directly harmful to humans. However, if it contains chemical residues and microns of bacteria, then it may cause allergic reactions or breathing issues as a possible effect.


But on the other hand, dust does affect electronic devices. It can block filters and overheat your system due to insulation, and can even block computer chips, hardware and circuits causing a short circuit in the system.

Furthermore, it can absorb moisture and cause leakage issues in the equipment. Leakage problems may even arise if the dust particle becomes directly conductive.

Dust, if conductive, can cause “tracking” and “arcing” between components on printed circuit cards. Dust with vapors in humid conditions can worsen the tracking and arcing.

Depending on the voltages involved and the circuitry, this can lead to all manners of intermittent and “unexplained” phenomena. Certain types of dust when combined with humidity can even be slightly corrosive to electrical components.


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It can cause poor contact in relays, switches and connectors. And can even make it difficult for service of equipment.

Not only small products but large plants and factories also experience similar issues with dust. Power houses can suffer when their control rooms are exposed to dust.  Oil and lubricants in vapors tend to settle over circuits and cards. This results in unexpected shutdowns and technical faults and even fire due to voltage fluctuations.

Therefore, dust, being very common in households and offices, can cause electronic appliances to fail or hardware to get corrupt, harming the systems effectiveness. It is essential to maintain the electronics in order with on time service and cleaning to improve the life of the appliance.

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