You’re using your hair dryer in the bathroom while admiring how great you’re looking in the mirror. Then, in a moment of carelessness, you drop your hair dryer in the sink or the bathtub. We all know that electrical appliances and water do not mix. What should you do?
If your hair dryer falls in the water, do not retrieve it with your bare hands. First, unplug the hair dryer. Next, drain the water and wait for your hair dryer to dry. When your hair dryer is dry, either discard it or take it to be repaired by a professional.
Dropping a hair dryer or any electrical appliance into the water can be horrifying. This is because electrocution can happen if you’re not careful and can result in severe injury or death. Let’s break down what you need to do when your hair dryer falls in the water.
Do Not Retrieve Your Hair Dryer
When you drop an item, oftentimes, the first instinct would be to pick it up immediately. For example, you might have experience dropping a personal item, such as a coin or wallet, in water. What are your immediate thoughts when that happens?
Most probably, your thought process goes something like this: pick the item up as quickly as possible to prevent it from getting damaged by water. Our first thoughts often go towards saving the item that we have spent time and money to purchase.
For a non-electrical appliance, this approach usually works. If you’ve dropped a wallet in water, you retrieve it quickly and let it dry off. If your wallet is made of leather, it would probably be better if you removed it from water immediately instead of letting it soak.
However, this same instinct can be dangerous when it comes to electrical appliances. This is because water conducts electricity, and when electrical appliances fall in the water, both the electrical device itself and the water it has fallen into can become dangerous.
So when your hair dryer falls in the water unexpectedly, it is essential to stay calm. Do not allow your first instincts to save the hair dryer and to take over. Retrieving your hair dryer from the water with your bare hands can be very dangerous.
Instead, ensure your hands are dry and proceed to the next step.
Unplug Your Hair Dryer
When an electrical appliance falls in the water, it can interact with water to conduct electricity. This electricity can then be transmitted to your body if you come into contact with the water.
Hence, it is vital to cut off the electricity supply to prevent the electricity in your hair dryer from further interacting with the water. To do this, unplug your hair dryer from its electricity source.
Drain the Water
Once you have unplugged your hair dryer, you are left with an inactivated hair dryer and the water it has fallen into – what do you do next?
At this point, you cannot be entirely sure that the water is safe to touch. Remember, in situations like these, safety is paramount.
Regardless of whether your hair dryer has fallen into the sink or the bathtub, make sure that the water is allowed to drain. If your sink or bathtub is unplugged, this should happen naturally and immediately.
However, if your sink or bathtub is plugged, examine if it is possible to unplug them without touching the water. This depends on the model of the sink or bathtub that you have – for some of them, you can press a lever that will release the water. In others, you’ll need to remove the plug to allow the water to drain physically.
If it is possible to unplug your sink or bathtub remotely, you would want to allow it to drain. However, do not attempt this if it requires you to touch the water with your bare hands physically.
Discard Your Hair Dryer
Once all the water has drained, and your hair dryer has had time to dry, you’re ready for the next step. Because an electrical appliance that has had water entered into it cannot be guaranteed to be safe, the best course of action would be to discard the hair dryer.
You should not attempt to use the hair dryer, regardless of how well it appears externally.
Alternatively, you can bring the hair dryer to be fixed by a professional. It is crucial that you do not attempt to do this by yourself unless you’re a trained technician. This is because a hair dryer consists of many small individual parts that can go quickly out of place and thus render the hair dryer unsafe or unworkable.
If you choose to send your hair dryer to be examined and repaired by a professional and he has certified that your hair dryer is usable again, you can begin to use your hair dryer as usual. However, if your hair dryer is cheap, it might make more sense to replace it with a new one.
A Word On Safety
The production of electrical appliances is tightly regulated to ensure that they are safe to use and that harm is minimized when an accident occurs. This is true for hair dryers as well.
All hair dryers should be GFCI (ground-fault circuit interrupter) protected. Devices that are GFCI protected are built to notice when leakage of electrical current occurs. When this happens, GFCI-protected devices should automatically switch off to break the electrical circuit. This prevents harm caused by electrical shock from happening.
This means that if the hair dryer that you purchased was produced according to government regulation, it should immediately switch off when coming into contact with water. However, to be safe, you should still follow all the steps above if your hair dryer falls in the water.
Preventing Your Hair Dryer From Falling in Water
As the saying goes, prevention is better than cure. Because your hair dryer falling in water can be dangerous, it is best to take active steps to ensure that this never happens.
The first thing that you can do is to ensure that your hair dryer is safe to use. This means doing a little research prior to purchasing a hair dryer. Is your hair dryer GFCI protected? What kind of safety mechanisms does it have built-in? Avoid buying hair dryers that do not meet basic safety requirements.
The next thing you can do is never to use your hair dryer near water, where there is a risk that it might fall into. You should never use the hair dryer while you’re in a bathtub, in a pool, or in the shower. Always drain the water in your sink or your bathtub prior to using your hair dryer.
Also, never leave your hair dryer unattended. Switch on your hair dryer only when in use, and switch it off immediately after you’re done. Make sure you store your hair dryer in a safe, dry place when not in use.
Even though we often let our thoughts wander when using the hair dryer, it is essential to remember that it is an electrical appliance that can be dangerous when damaged. Always ensure that you carefully handle your hair dryer.
If your hair dryer ever, unfortunately, falls in the water, always remember to stay calm. Do not allow your first instincts to save the hair dryer to take over – never retrieve it with your bare hands.
Unplug the hair dryer and allow the water to be drained if possible. After your hair dryer is dry, either discard it or take it to be repaired by a professional.
To eliminate the risk of your hair dryer from falling in water, avoid using your hair dryer near bodies of water. Always remember to handle all your electrical appliances with safety in mind.