Why there is more static electricity or static shock in winters?

Why there is more static electricity and shock in winters?

Before answering the question: why there is more static electricity in winters? we first must understand, why does this happen and why do we get a static shock in the first place?

 

Why do we get static shock?

 

Actually, when you move across an insulator, such as a nylon or wood carpet etc., you collect the extra electrons from the surface.

 

Why do we get a static shock?

 

These extra electrons get accumulated on the surface of your body and start building up an electric charge when the amount of electrons accumulated gets considerably high and then you come in contact with a conductor such as a metal doorknob, this charge will jump from your body to the conductor in order to neutralize itself. And in the process, your body will feel a jerk called static shock.

 

Why do we get a static shock?

 

Now back to the main question why is static electricity and static shock worse in winters? 

 

Why there is more static electricity in winters?
Why there is more static electricity in winters?

 

The reason is that air is an insulator. It is a collection of gases and is not a good conductor or radiator. Therefore it does not allow electrons to pass through it.

 

Why there is more static electricity in winters?
Why there is more static electricity in winters?

 

Water molecules present in the air allow the electrons to flow through it.

 

Why there is more static electricity in winters?
Why there is more static electricity in winters?

 

In warm weather, we don’t suffer many shocks because moisture in the air forms a very thin layer on the surface of objects around us, which conducts the static charge away when we touch anything.

Whereas during winters, humidity is less and thus air is dry. There are very less water molecules and thus electrons do not flow and start building upon your body, which ultimately results into shock.

 

Why there is more static electricity in winters?
Why there is more static electricity in winters?

 

And here is a fun fact: If you use a heater in winters, the situation may become even worse for you. Why, you ask? Because heaters suck the little amount of moisture present in the air, making the charge build-up process more intense and the chances of getting a shock is increased.

 

Why there is more static electricity in winters?
Heater causes more static electricity

 

Watch the video given below for visual guide:

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