Typical Electrical Schematic Symbols

By | March 18, 2023



Electrical engineers are familiar with hundreds of electrical schematic symbols and their meanings. But this doesn’t mean that all non-technical people understand them - which is why it’s important to know the basics!

Electrical schematics are diagrams that show the components of a circuit and how they are connected by lines. While these symbols may look unfamiliar, they are actually quite easy to learn and recognize. Knowing them can help you understand the entire electrical system, which is a vital part of learning about electricity and electronics.

The most common symbols used in electrical schematics are:

Ground symbols represent the ground connection of a circuit. They are typically drawn as a single vertical line connecting the component or wire to earth ground.

Wire symbols are used to show the connections between components. This symbol is usually represented by a single line connecting the two points on the diagram.

Resistors are represented by the letter “R” and the value associated with it. The resistor symbol is typically drawn as a rectangular-shaped box with a diagonal line running through it.

Capacitors are represented by two parallel lines, one inside the other, with the value indicated on the diagram.

Transformers are represented by an “X” symbol. This symbol is usually used to show the input and output of a transformer.

Switches are represented by a triangle that contains a number to indicate the number of positions available on the switch.

Inductors are represented by a curved line with the inductance value indicated on the diagram.

Diodes are represented by a triangle with either a line inside or outside it.

Polarity symbols indicate the positive and negative sides of a component. These symbols are typically drawn as a small circle with either an plus or minus sign inside of it.

Finally, connectors are typically shown as a circle or square with a number inside to indicate the number of pins available in the connection.

Learning and understanding these symbols is essential for anyone working with electricity or electronics. By understanding the symbols and their meaning, you’ll be able to interpret the circuit diagram accurately, which will allow you to repair and create circuits with greater ease and efficiency.


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