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Salt water’s Effect on Electrical Components

We know that water and electronics don’t mix, but what about your boat or marina? Here’s how salt water can affect your electrical components in those particular areas – and what to look out for. 


If salt water comes into contact with an electronic device, it can severely corrode the protection surfaces of the circuits. Overtime, the electrical connections will also corrode, creating faulty or completely ruined equipment. Your electronics could even begin to read information incorrectly – or the salt water corrosion could create a short in the circuit. With a short, you could have an electrical fire and completely damage your equipment. If you start to see that your electrical equipment is eroding, call an electrician to inspect your materials for your own electrical safety. 


Salt water is also conducive to rusting. Unlike tap or unsalted water, salt water contains the chemical NaCl, or sodium chloride. It acts like a charged ion when it is separated by water – so it can pull your electricity from different surface materials that typically do not conduct electricity. This is all due to chemical bonding. When rust accumulates, the iron is willing to give up its electron to bond with something else. Rust can corrode and weaken your materials and can even hinder your electrical conduction. 

Shorts Due to Submersion

An obvious and scary result of salt water and electronics is a short caused by submersion. As water connects with multiple circuits, the sparks fly and create shorts that lead to burning and frying any electronic you switch on. Frying electrical circuits can lead to major fires and can electrocute anyone that comes in contact with the device. To prevent this while at sea, make sure to store electronics in places that you know will not come in contact with the water. Next, be sure to seal your equipment with materials that can handle and resist the harm of salt water. 

If you are in need of electrical services regarding salt water and your electronics, contact Gulf Coast Electric today.