How to Test Pool Water for Electricity?

In this article, we will discuss how to test pool water for electricity. Aside from making sure that your pool is properly installed and equipped with the mandatory fence and warning signs, you also need to make sure that it is safe from the danger of electric shocks. How do you avoid electrocution and how can you be able to test or detect electricity in your pool? Let us find out more about this topic below.

How to test pool water for electricity? One way to test pool water for electricity is to use a device called shock alert. It will notify you if there is electricity present in the water. If it beeps and flashes red, it means there is a presence of electricity in the water and you should not swim in it. On the other hand, if it flashes green, no voltage is detected.

Swimming pool electrocution may be rare, but it still poses a threat to anyone who owns a pool. While not very common, pool electrocution is still a possibility. Hence, it is important that you understand the warning signs of electric current in the pool and how to prevent it. Read the rest of the article for more information about electricity in pool water and how to detect it.

How to Test for Stray Voltage in Pool

When testing for stray voltage in your pool, you need to check all wiring that runs from the pool pump ground to lighting fixtures, drains, slides, railing, and any other part of the pool. The first thing that you need to do is to visually check the wiring near or in the pool equipment room to make sure that there are no violations of the current electrical code. Next, you need to check the electrical continuity and integrity of the bonding and grounding system of the pool. You can hire the services of a professional to make a thorough inspection and analysis.

When it comes to the continuity test, it should be done on the equipment ground and not on the grounding electrode system. Moreover, underwater pool lights, non-electric, and metallic bonding points on the entire feature of the pool should also need to undergo continuity and insulation testing.

How Long Does Electricity Stay in Water?

Electricity will stay in the water until the electric supply is turned off or the power source of the electricity is removed. Bear in mind that water is only a conductor and does not hold the electricity itself. Waterworks like any other conductive material and is considered an excellent conductor of electricity. If you are touching water that also touched electricity, you can become the electricity path to the ground. This means that electricity would travel through the water and through you to the ground.

Can You Be Electrocuted in a Swimming Pool?

You can get electrocuted in a swimming pool. There are three common reasons that caused pool electrocution which include faulty electrical wiring, no GFCI protection for the outlets and circuits, and electrical cords and appliances getting in contact with the water. We have also shared this article that discusses if a pool light can electrocute you. You can check out the article for an in-depth discussion about the topic.

Electrical Clearances

Take note that there is a required minimum distance for overhead power conductors, overhead communication lines, and underground wiring. When building a pool, make sure that you followed proper guidelines. For instance, the clearance requirements for overhead lines should be relative to the maximum water level, diving surface, and pool surround. Furthermore, underground clearances should be relative to the wall of the pool.

Equipotential Bonding

When it comes to pools, the bonding creates a conductive link between the metallic components and the electrical components of the pool structure. In case there is a failure in the electrical system, the conductive link allows a low impedance path for the current to flow and trip the breaker. Without this, the water and other surfaces of the pool will get electrified. The binding also reduces the voltage difference between the exposed surfaces, which effectively lessens the risk of electrical shock injury.

Ground Fault Current Interrupter Protection

GFCIs or ground fault current interrupter protection are the fast-acting circuit breakers specifically designed to shut off the electric power in case there is a ground fault. GFCIs work by comparing the amount of current that goes to and returns from equipment to the circuit conductors.

✅ Video – Pool Expert Gives Tips To Prevent Electrocution

CBS Sacramento shared the video below on YouTube. It discusses tips on how to prevent electrocution. It is vital that you make sure to check and maintain your pool lights to avoid the danger of electrocution. Check out the video below for more tips and information.

How Do I Know if My Pool is Electrified?

Among the signs of an electrified pool includes the inability to move, muscle cramps, a tingling sensation feeling, or feeling like something is holding you in place while swimming. Knowing the signs of an electrified pool could be a life or death situation. Make sure that you check if your underwater lights are properly working and that there is no exposed wiring, cords, or equipment near or in the pool that can cause electrocution. We have also written this article titled, can you see electricity in water? Check out the article for an in-depth discussion about the topic.

How Can You be Electrocuted in an Above Ground Pool?

When you make contact with an electrical current while swimming in an above-ground swimming pool, you can get electrocuted. One of the causes of electrocution is. Lighting, filters, pumps, or appliances like radios are some of the electrical sources that you need to watch out for.

What Causes Electric Shock in Pools?

Pool lighting, faulty electrical installation, and electronics falling into the water are some of the common causes of electric shocks in pools. While pool electrocution is not a common, occurrence, it is possible to happen. Let us learn more about the common cause of electric shock in pools below.

Pool Lighting

One of the common causes of pool electrocution is pool lighting. Pool lights that are not properly grounded or bonded can cause electrocution. This means that electricity can be directly sent into the pool and shock those who are swimming in it. You can also check out this article that we have shared titled, can I put an LED bulb in my pool lights? We have shared helpful tips and information about LED pool light installation that you can refer to.

Faulty Electrical Installation

Another reason for pool electrocution is faulty electrical installation. Take note that wirings that are not properly installed can cause stray electrical currents or stray voltage which is connected to the various components of the pool.

Electronics Falling into the Water

Accidentally dropping the radio or CD player into the pool can cause electrocution and shock everyone who is swimming in the pool. Do not use a plugged-in appliance into the pool to avoid risking electrocution.

How to Prevent Electric Shock in Pools?

There are many things that you can do to prevent the risk of electric shock in pools. First, you need to make sure that your pool is designed with safety features built into it during the construction called bonding and earthing. Bonding and earthing are made before the pool is poured to help keep stray electrical currents from the pool water and prevent electrocution.

What is Bonding?

Bonding is done to your pool in order to reduce the risk of electric shocks to anyone in case there is a fault somewhere in the supply of electrical installation. Connecting bonding conductors between particular parts can lessen the voltage level. The common types of bonding used are main bonding and supplementary bonding.

What is Earthing?

Earthing is done to protect swimmers from an electric shock. This is because earthing provides a path and a protective conductor for a fault current to flow to earth. Furthermore, it also causes the protective device to switch off the electric current to the damaged circuit. Bear in mind that you can get an electric shock by touching live metal parts in your pool in case there is an electrical fault in your installation. To prevent this, you need to make sure that there is proper earthing in your pool.

Can Electricity in Water Kill You?

Electricity in water can kill you depending on the specific path that the current takes through as well as the individual characteristic of the body of the person. For instance, a relatively small current could flow into one hand, directly through the heart, and out the foot to instantly kill a person. However, an enormous current from a lightning bolt might hit a person but find the easiest path to travel through the skin and result only in burns. Bear in mind that a large amount of electric current can kill a person by burning the insides. Moreover, a small amount of electric current can kill a person if it flows directly through the heart.

What Happens if You Don’t Bound a Pool?

If you do not bound a pool, it can result in stray electrical currents that can get you electrocuted when you touch the metal poll rail or pool water. See to it that you bond your pool as it connects the pool’s electrical and non-electrical metal components into a network for additional safety. You can also check out this article that discusses what happens if a pool is not grounded. We have shared an in-depth discussion about the topic.


In this article, we have discussed how to test pool water for electricity. We have also shared the common causes of pool electrocution. If you are planning to have a pool, see to it that you carefully follow all the guidelines especially when it comes to bonding and earthing to prevent the risk of electrocution. It is also vital that you properly install and maintain your pool lights and other electrical equipment around the pool to avoid electrocution. Thank you for reading!

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