Why Earth pin is made thicker and bigger than live and neutral?

If this question ever bothered you, then you crashed at the right webpage! Today we are going to find out that why top pinhole of a socket is bigger and thicker than rest of the two pinholes. In this post you will find the simplest explanation of Why Earth pin is made thicker and bigger than live and neutral?

Now at some point in your life, this question must have bothered you. But don’t worry, today we are going to go deep to find out the reason behind it with step by step explanation of Why Earth pin is made thicker and bigger.

Why Earth pin is made thicker and bigger than live and neutral?

If you go to any place around the globe, you will find the same concept behind every three pin-plug or socket which is: Top pinhole of a socket and top pin of three pin plug is bigger as well as thicker than the rest of the two pins.

Three pin plug and sockets around the world
Three pin plug and sockets around the world

 

Top pinhole of a socket is different from the other two pinholes in two ways:

1. It’s Bigger

2. It’s thicker.

 

Earth Pin is made Bigger and Thicker than Live and Neutral
Earth Pin is made Bigger and Thicker than Live and Neutral

 

Now there are two reasons for this:

(1)   To prevent wrong plug-in of three pin plug in the socket

 

To prevent wrong plugin
To prevent wrong plugin

 

Let’s take the example of an electric iron. Three pins of its three pin plug are named as:

1. LIVE

2. NEUTRAL

3. GROUND

 

Live, Neutral and Earth pins in a three pin plug
Live, Neutral and Earth pins in a three pin plug

 

Now let’s assume that all three pins of the three pin plug are of same size and diameter.Since all three are of the same thickness, in case of the wrong plugin if you touched the metallic part of electric iron’s body; you will definitely get a shock.

Due to the fact that earth pin is directly attached anywhere on the metallic body, if earth pin is inserted in the live hole, current will flow from the live wire of socket to the earth pin of Iron to the metallic part of the iron’s body.

 

NOTE: So Earth pin is made thicker so that even by mistake it cannot be inserted into the live or neutral hole of the socket

 

 

(2) To ensure first in last out movement of Earth pin

First in and Last out movement of Earth Pin
First in and Last out movement of Earth Pin

 

Let’s take the example of an Electric iron again.

A. When the plug is inserted in socket, earth pin makes connection to the earth hole of the socket prior to live and neutral. Thus the earth connection is made before the current carrying contacts of the plug become live to prevent us from any kind of electric shock.

 

B. Opposite is the case when the plug is withdrawn from the socket; Earth pin comes out last. And thus when withdrawing the plug, the current carrying contacts shall separate before the earth connection is broken.

 

NOTE: Thus as you can see plug of electric appliances and sockets in our homes are designed so, to ensure our safety in every possible way.

So with that being said, now you know exactly why Earth pin is made thicker and bigger than live and neutral?

If you found this post helpful, you can also read similar articles given below:

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How an Electric Iron works and what’s inside it? (with live preview)

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