4 Tricks on How to Stop Static Electricity While Vacuuming
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Vacuuming your home or office should be a mundane task. However, now and then, your vacuum will give you a static electric shock. While the shock is harmless, it can get annoying if it happens too often.
Therefore, you need a way to reduce or eliminate the static electricity around your vacuum. Here's how:
You stop static electricity build-up while vacuuming the same way you do it for any other activity. You find a safe way for the charge to dissipate. Sometimes, this means wearing static-free clothing. Other times it means using a dehumidifier or upgrading your vacuum cleaner.
Either way should work, though you may want to use a combination just to make sure.
By reading further, you will learn how to implement these methods to reduce the static electricity in your life. After that, you can vacuum your space in complete comfort.
Why Do You Receive Static Shocks While Vacuuming?
Static electricity is a buildup of electrical charges on surfaces. It creates an unequal distribution of positive and negative charges between various objects. A shock happens when these objects discharge.
The process happens all the time, but dry air tends to accelerate it. While the electricity is unavoidable and relentless, you can easily discharge it with a few simple steps.
But, you must understand how and why static electricity builds up in the first place before you can take steps to reduce it. Taking the wrong steps will do nothing to fix the issue, leading to future shocking experiences.
Why Does Your Vacuum Build Up Static?
The humble vacuum is a perfect static electricity generator.
As you use the vacuum, the hose moves around rubbing everything in its environment. It then sucks up dust and debris that rubs against the inside of the hose as it travels to the vacuum’s storage container.
Wool and concrete surfaces will enhance the process.
The friction from all this rubbing builds up negative charges. Because your skin maintains a slight positive charge, the negative charges neutralize and dissipate through your body into the floor.
However, your body is not a good conductor. So, you feel a shock as the charges “explode” into you.
Dry, cold air can even enhance the effect by removing water from the air. This is why you often experience more static shocks during the winter than you do during summer.
Stop Static Electricity by Upgrading Your Vacuum
Most static electricity around a vacuum cleaner revolves around dust moving through the vacuum’s hose and various components. Therefore, you can remove much of it by upgrading your vacuum.
Sure, you can accomplish this by purchasing a brand-new unit that boasts static-free features, but most people rarely need a new vacuum to remove the static.
In most cases, you can just wrap copper wire around the hose cuff to get the same effects. The copper wire would act as an electron sponge, preventing any static electricity buildup from occurring.
It is a simple process to install as well. You just need about two feet of bare copper wire, which you can get from any electronics or electrical supply store.
- Once you cut the wire to length, you just need to unscrew the vacuum cuff to install it.
- After that, you wrap about a foot of the cut wire around the hose where the cuff used to be
- Screw back the vacuum cuff over the wire, running the remaining wire up the inside of the hose.
If you still receive shocks from touching your vacuum, you can increase the length of the wire.
1. Switch Out for a Quality Hose
While the copper wire fix works, it only works on a few vacuum models. Most modern vacuums come with a standard, single-piece, plastic hose. You can try to wrap these hoses with the wire, but you will find it difficult if not impossible to do. Therefore, your only option might be to just buy a new hose.
Anti-static hoses have copper wires built into them, letting you skip the DIY step.
You can get them in multiple sizes. So, you should not have any problem finding one that matches your vacuum. Some of these hoses even use crush and kink-proof materials that make them more durable than your vacuum. Some models even have groves for additional copper wiring if needed as well.
2. Use a Humidifier to Add Moisture to the Room
Adding moisture to the room is another fine way to remove the static electricity while you vacuum.
Dry air allows for large charge buildup regardless of the type of heater or air conditioner you have. Your heater is probably making your situation worse.
Plants will help retain the humidity, but you need a humidifier to take to return some moisture to the air. You can buy one if you like, but most people can just build a humidifier by simply boiling water on the stove.
You can also leave pots of water around your home and let it evaporate on its own. Try adding some spices to the water to give your place a nice scent as well.
3. Wear Static-Free Clothing While Vacuuming
While most experts recommend treating your carpeting and upholstery with anti-static chemicals, this is not always possible. Instead, you should only wear anti-static clothing while you vacuum, and that generally means avoiding anything made from wool.
Wool may make you feel dry and cozy, but it soaks up moisture like a sponge. This makes wool a great conductor and source for static electricity.
The same holds for many synthetic wool fabrics such as nylon and polyester. Therefore, you can reduce your risk for static shocks while vacuuming simply by wearing cotton and other low static natural fibers.
4. Wear Leather Soled Shoes
The same can be said for rubber shoes which can prevent the static electricity on your skin from dissipating. Because of this, most experts agree that you should wear leather or electronics shoes instead.
Leather lets your body discharge as you walk while electronics shoes have conductive strands that help displace the electricity.
Static electricity is a natural phenomenon that occurs when things rub against each other.
As a result, vacuuming is a great static electricity generator. Fortunately, there are steps you can take that will reduce or eliminate the buildup of electric charges.