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How to Read Industrial Electrical Schematics


How to Read Industrial Electrical Schematics

Industrial electrical schematics are one of the most important tools that are used in your industry. They can be used as blueprints to create an electrical system. They can be used to diagnose and fix problems with existing electrical systems. They are vital to the electrical system working as it should, but what happens if errors are made in the way that the schematic is read? Often, nothing good can come from this issue.

Improperly Reading Electrical Schematics

As a manager, can you imagine the headache that you’ll have after an error is made by one of your electricians or staff members when following an electrical schematic? A new issue can pop up, or the whole electrical system may not even work. That means that someone else has to go through the schematics again to try to diagnose what went wrong, and then fix it. Costing valuable time and resources.

Imagine if that happens after the drywall has been put up or an engine has been put back together. That’s a lot of extra work for something that could’ve been avoided if your employee had been able to accurately read the industrial electrical schematics in the first place.

Why Invest in Training for Your Employees?

You may be asking yourself why you need to invest in training for your employees when it comes to how to read electrical schematics. They should know already, and it’s not really your issue, right? Well, even the most experienced electricians and staff can benefit from a refresher on how to properly read these schematics. Getting the job done right the first time around is a huge benefit that can be had by investing in training.

Also, investing in employee training pays dividends beyond just doing the job right as one report found that companies that invest over a thousand dollars a year in training for an employee will see an average profit margin of about 24 percent higher compared to companies that invest less in their employees. It not only improves the skills of your employees but also helps them to feel more important to the company. This effort can instill loyalty that improves turnover rates.

What’s Typically Taught During Training?

It’s easy to scoff at the value of training for reading industrial electrical schematics, but there’s a lot to be learned in a training seminar covering this topic. The first is that participants will be able to read a variety of blueprints from electrical, architectural electrical, and construction blueprints.

They will get an understanding of the different symbols and components that make up electrical systems. They’ll have a working knowledge of how to go back and look for errors in the schematics and ensure that the plans are depicting a system that complies with National Electric Code. Finally, they’ll be able to troubleshoot better when a problem does occur in the electrical system.

What Employees Should Get Training?

As a manager, it’s important to determine which employees vitally need to be trained on the proper methodology of reading industrial electrical schematics. Every staff member that is responsible for reading electrical schematics can benefit from this training. Electricians, HVAC technicians, mechanics, engineers, and apprentices are just a few examples of who can be best served by going through training.

Tips on Reading Industrial Electrical Schematics

There are some tips and tricks that you can share with your employees to help them better read electrical schematics.

  • One of the easiest ways that things get misread is not identifying the schematic symbols used in the electrical schematics correctly. Having a key or going over commonly used symbols can be helpful especially considering how similar some of the different symbols can be with just a line or arrow difference.
  • Think of reading schematics like a book would be read. Often, schematics are written up in a manner that should be read left to right starting at the top of the page and moving towards the bottom. This is typically how the signal moves among the electrical system that’s being set up.
  • Another tip for correctly reading industrial electrical schematics is making sure that the person understands the connections between all of the symbols on the schematic. Many symbols can be connected to several different symbols, and it may be necessary to take some time to differentiate where and how each symbol connects. Using several colors on the schematics is often helpful here, and for plans without this, a highlighter may offer some assistance.

Want to make sure that your employees all know the proper way to read industrial electrical schematics? NTT Inc. offers an Electrical Print Reading Seminar that can get all of your employees on the same page when it comes to reading schematics. Contact us today about setting up this seminar for your employees and help to eliminate issues from improperly read electrical schematics.

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