How to Get Rid of Static Electricity
Have you ever given someone a handshake and got a surprising “shock” in return? This little zap you sometimes feel when touching someone or something is caused by static electricity. We can carry static electricity around with us and shock people or objects we touch without meaning to. Or it can cause our hair to stick up, or make objects cling to our clothes, which can be frustrating and annoying. So, what causes static electricity? Read on to find out.
What Causes Static Electricity?
Let’s talk science for a minute. All materials, whether they are human or inanimate objects, are made up of molecules. These molecules are made up of tiny atoms which have positively charged protons, neutral neutrons and negatively charged electrons. When an object or person has an uneven number of electrons and protons, electrons will begin to look for somewhere else to go. Static electricity builds when electrons jump back and forth between two objects that have opposing electrical charges. If you were to walk across a carpeted floor, you’d be collecting many electrons along the way. So, if you have a negative charge and shake the hand of a positively charged person, a shock occurs.
How Do You Get Rid of Static Electricity?
Do you tend to carry a lot of static electricity wherever you go? Try using dryer sheets when you dry your clothes. Dryer sheets coat your clothes and linens with a conductive surface that stops electrons from building up. You could also carry a few dryer sheets in an airtight baggie in your briefcase or purse to rub on your clothes or hair on particularly dry days. Or carry a small spray bottle of water with you. A thin coating of water molecules allows electrons to move more freely, cutting down on static electricity.
Here are a few more easy tips for how to get rid of static electricity:
Add Some Moisture to Your Air
Water molecules reduce static electricity build-up, not just in your hair but also in your home. Dry air encourages more static electricity, so adding moisture to the air will solve that problem. Try using a small humidifier in the area of your home that tends to feel dry. Adding houseplants will also increase the humidity in the air.
Treat Your Carpets with Anti-Static Spray
If the majority of your home is carpeted, you probably have a lot of static buildup. Look into carpet sprays that cut down on static electricity. You can also make your own spray by diluting a capful of liquid fabric softener in a spray bottle full of water.
Do you tend to shock people often with your handshakes? The culprit could be dry skin. Try using a moisturizing lotion on your skin after every shower and intermittently throughout the day. Dry skin can accumulate more electrons than supple, moist skin and may be contributing to your electrifying greetings.
When All Else Fails, Use Metal
If all the above tips have failed you, go with the easy fix: carry a metal key or safety pin in your pocket. All electron charges will be transferred to the metal object if you touch it before touching anything else. You could also use this concept by taking a metal hanger and gently rubbing it against the length of your clothing before you put them on in the morning.
Mr. Electric Has All the Answers
Remember, when it comes to electricity, static or otherwise, Mr. Electric has all the answers. For any of your electrical needs, from electrical safety inspections to specialty lighting, give Mr. Electric a call at (844)-866-1367 or schedule an appointment online today.
Are you tired of lint and debris sticking to your windows? Glass Doctor has helpful pro tips for achieving clean, streak-free, static-free windows. And as a member of the Neighborly family of home service providers, you can trust Glass Doctor to deliver expert advice and service.