Possible Causes of Voltage Fluctuation

by / Thursday, 04 January 2018 / Published in Electrical Testing, Power Systems Study

For the most part, almost all of us enjoy a steady flow of electricity, whether we’re at home or at the workplace. However, sometimes, there’s bound to be a few issues. A voltage fluctuation is one such issue.

What is a voltage fluctuation you ask?

Well, a voltage fluctuation is nothing but random and repeated changes in the flow of electricity to a building. The problem with voltage fluctuations, especially extreme ones, is that they can end up damaging your electrical system and devices.

So, it’s wise to have the issue investigated and sorted. But, if you’re curious as to why you’re suddenly facing the issue of fluctuation, here are a few possible causes.

A Poor Supply of Electricity

A poor and inconsistent flow of electricity can happen for a number of reasons. For instance, it could be due to corroded or loose connections in your building or even at the power lines. One common sign indicating this is the flickering of lights.

Do focus on loose connections as they can lead to electrocution.

Other than that, you can have voltage fluctuations due to network overloading or a low capacity conductor being used to transfer the supply to your building.

Even nature can be the cause here. For instance, a lightning strike can cause a surge which will cause your voltage to spike abnormally.

Faulty electrical devices might be to blame as well.  When devices are faulty, they usually draw more power than they should, which can lead to fluctuations.

Bad Wiring

Bad wiring can also lead to voltage fluctuations. This happens when the wiring has been designed to handle less electricity than what the entire unit might need. Or, there could be ungrounded outlets that leak electricity.

Other possible wiring-related causes are damage caused by insects and pests or a disconnection.

To detect if the voltage fluctuation is caused by wiring, an electrician or electrical systems expert will use specific equipment. He/she will also fix the problem using special equipment that will prevent the need to access the wiring directly.


Interference occurs when a number of sensitive and wrong combinations of electrical devices or machinery are operated on the same circuit. It is common for a lot of electrical devices to cause surges. This can be confirmed by observing the lights when any of the suspected devices or machinery are being used. If the lights (in the same circuit) flicker when said devices or machinery are on, it means you have interference-related voltage fluctuations.