Difference Between Conductor & Insulator, Examples & Properties

One of the major difference between the conductor and insulator is that the conductor allows the energy (i.e., current or heat ) to pass through it, whereas the insulator does not allow the energy to pass through it. 

What are Conductors?

In simple terms, an electrical conductor is defined as materials that allow electricity to flow through them easily. This property of conductors that allow them to conduct electricity is known as conductivity.

The flow of electrons in a conductor is known as the electric current. The force required to make that current flow through the conductor is known as voltage.

When a charge is transferred to such an element, it gets distributed across the entire surface of the object, which results in the movement of electrons in the object. The charges transferred to an electrical conductor distribute until the force of repulsion between electrons in areas of excess electrons is decreased to the minimum value. When such an object is brought in contact with another conductor, the charge gets transferred from the first conductor to the other until the overall repulsion due to charge is minimized.

Metals, humans, and earth are all conductors. This is the reason why we get electric shocks!


Graphite, the human body, and the earth are good conductors of electricity. Some of the common conductor examples include metals such as:

  • Copper
  • Gold
  • Iron
  • Silver etc.,

What are Insulators?

Insulators are materials that hinder the free flow of electrons from one particle of the element to another. If we transfer some amount of charge to such an element at any point, the charge remains at the initial location and does not get distributed across the surface. The common process of charging of such elements includes charging by rubbing (for some elements, with the help of suitable materials) and charging by induction.

Examples of insulators

Some of the common insulator examples are given below:

  • Plastic
  • Wood
  • Glass
  • Rubber etc.,

Comparison Chart of Conductor &Insulator

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