‘Dirty Electricity’: Is Your Home Affected?
What is ‘dirty electricity’?
As its name suggests, dirty electricity is a form of electrical pollution. Also known as electromagnetic interference, line noise or electrical noise, it refers to powerful, high-frequency electrical energy travelling on the wiring in buildings where only standard 50/60-Hertz AC electricity should be.
What causes it?
This type of electrical pollution is created by changes in the quality of electricity. Few modern electrical appliances and devices use standard AC electricity as is. Instead, they must manipulate standard electrical current to work, turning the flow of power on and off repeatedly, often thousands of times per second, causing very brief erratic changes in the voltage (known as ‘transients’). These changes can disturb the flow of standard AC electricity, creating irregular surges of electrical energy and unwanted higher frequencies – AKA dirty electricity. Voltage transients can also be caused by external sources, like phone masts or power lines.
Why is it a problem?
The erratic distortion of standard AC electricity creates unusable reactive energy which can reduce the efficiency of your power supply.
By travelling along wiring and power lines, this dirty electricity can spread throughout a building and even to adjoined buildings, too – radiating potentially hazardous electromagnetic fields (EMFs) into homes and workplaces.
What effect can dirty electricity have on health?
Whilst there is no official direct causal link, environmental exposure to dirty electricity has been associated with increased cancer risks by some scientific studies. One study of a school in California found that increasing cumulative exposure to high-frequency voltage transients on classrooms’ electrical wiring was "strongly associated" with a higher cancer incidence amongst teachers. The attributable risk of cancer associated with this exposure was 64%, with a single year of employment at this school increasing a teacher's cancer risk by 21%.
The removal of dirty electricity, meanwhile, has been linked by scientists to “a variety of improvements in health (plasma glucose levels in diabetic patients, symptoms of multiple sclerosis, asthma and other respiratory illnesses, and insomnia), well-being (tiredness, frustration, general health, irritation, sense of satisfaction, mood), and behaviour”.
According to a growing number of independent, non-industry funded scientists and doctors, exposure to EMFs more generally is harmful to health. With papers numbering in the thousands, a cohesive body of evidence exists surrounding the damage caused to DNA, cells, organ systems, fertility, brain function, liver, and memory. For a selection of research papers on this subject, see here.
Common household causes of dirty electricity
Electrical devices that can be responsible for dirty electricity include:
- Light dimmer switches
- Fluorescent light bulbs and tubes
- Cordless phones
- Microwave ovens
- Smart meters and smart appliances
- Hair Dryers
- Wi-Fi routers and modems
- Battery chargers for mobile phones, tablets etc
- Video game consoles
- Blenders and mixers
- Multi-speed fans
How to test the levels of dirty electricity in your home
To measure the levels of dirty electricity in your space, you’ll need to take readings using a device known as a microsurge meter. Alternatively, you can use a dirty electricity line EMI monitor - contact us for rental or purchase.
To work out if dirty electricity is entering your home from an internal or external source, try the following:
- Using an appropriate meter, take readings inside your home with everything plugged in and switched on as normal.
- Turn off all electrical devices and switches inside your home, then take another set of meter readings.
- If dirty electricity levels are high when everything is switched off, then the source of the problem may be external. Consider installing a wire-in power filter at the point where the electricity supply enters your home, such as the Satic Pure Power Wire-in.
- If dirty electricity levels are high when all appliances are switched on, then the issue may be internal. Using your meter, go through your home, identifying any hotspots in a process of elimination.
- Wherever the meter readings indicate that dirty electricity levels are high, plug power filters into your electrical wall outlets. Discover the Satic Pure Power Plug-in here. A wire-in filter should still condition internal dirty electricity, but the plug-in version provides a cheaper, portable solution. However, wire-in models are more powerful as they condition all circuits, whereas you may need to buy several plug-ins for large buildings.
NOTE: Meters designed to measure the levels of AC electric fields, AC magnetic fields, radiofrequency, microwave radiation, and wireless radiation present in the air are not intended to measure dirty electricity, and won’t be able to do so.
How to reduce dirty electricity in your home
"The first thing we would recommend is to get an EMF survey done by one of our qualified surveyors," says Tara, the founder of Conscious Spaces. "They will be able to check your home for dirty electricity to see whether it is coming from any particular circuit or appliances or entering from outside the house. At the same time as identifying the source, the surveyor will also be able to check for RF, EF, and MF radiation, as well as geopathic stress. Once the survey is complete, you can move forward, confident in the knowledge of what products or further action is needed to make your environment safe and healthy."
Mitigation tactics to consider include:
Replace any dimmer light switches (which create electromagnetic interference) with standard on/off switches.
Install a wire-in dirty electricity filter
Wired directly into your home’s electrical panel, this is a line conditioning device that reduces the amps needed to run electrical appliances. It actively filters and cleans your electricity. As well as providing cleaner power, a filter can also improve audio-visual performance in TVs, stereos and other equipment, as well as extending the life of electronics and appliances like dishwashers and refrigerators – reducing maintenance and replacement costs.
Wondering which model to go for? We recommend the Satic Pure Power Wire-in. Proven by third-party testing to significantly reduce EMFs, the Pure Power Wire-in helps protect household appliances from damage caused by electrical surges.
Using technology developed by NASA, this modern energy management system filters out potential negative harmonics and provides phase correction, making your electricity more efficient. Greater efficiency and less energy consumption are not only better for the environment, they usually result in cost savings on your utility bills too.
We are also able to provide made-to-order, wire-in solutions for businesses. If this is of interest, please do get in touch with our customer services team so we can assess your needs.
Install plug-in dirty electricity filters
In addition to the wire-in power conditioning devices installed at the electrical panel by a licensed electrician, easy-to-use, portable plug-in models are available for any home electrical outlet.
Sold in the Conscious Spaces shop, the Satic Pure Power Plug-In is a simple solution that plugs into a standard outlet and filters interference from your electrical circuit to provide clean power and reduce electromagnetic field radiation. It conditions every device plugged into that circuit so that they run cooler and smoother, and last longer – saving energy and saving you money on bills.
Because the Satic Pure Power Plug-In is portable, it provides an excellent solution for particularly sensitive people to take with them when travelling, and can be plugged into an adapter to fit different sockets.
If possible, refuse or opt-out of smart meter programmes. If this isn’t possible, look to reduce any issues caused by your property’s smart meter (or a neighbour’s) by installing wire-in and plug-in power filters.
Get rid of compact fluorescent light bulbs, older LEDs and track lighting; all of which emit dirty electricity. Replace them with Incandescent lights (ideally full spectrum), which are the healthiest light bulbs for the home. Try adding red-toned, infrared incandescent light bulbs to your lamps, like this one by SaunaSpace, which filters out sleep-disrupting blue light. We also love the SaunaSpace Photon Lamp, which provides the perfect full-spectrum of healing and detoxing light to calm your body and mind.