Isolators are switches used in electrical systems to confirm that a circuit is fully discharged before it is handled. Consider a high voltage situation that is part of the electrical grid that transmits electricity from the power plant to the home. The high voltage that passes through the system is always a concern and sometimes even thought it has been disconnected from the source it can still maintain a residual charge. The residual charge can be fatal if not discharged and that is what the isolators do, they discharge the system when it needs to be worked on.

In commercial applications there are smaller isolators used to protect the home from lighting. These lightning isolators are also a way to discharge the electricity that has been transmitted by the lighting and it isolates the charge to the ground so that it does not linger in the conductor that it first passed through. Isolators are a very useful tool when it comes to discharging voltage. There are also minute isolators for equipment that are faulty.

Discharging a charged item is as simple, in theory, to connect the item to the ground where the charge then is allowed to flow to the earth. This is the fastest and safest way to transfer excess charge out of a system. In the electronic industry it is also customary to discharge the equipment and machinery with isolators. These isolators are smaller in size and are placed directly in the circuit board. Their functions; however are identical to the larger ones used at a power plant.