I recently rooted my Asus Zenfone 5. When I looked at the system files using ES, I found that the animation used while charging the phone, when it is charging. I was wondering if I would ruin the device if I replace this. If yes, then would placing a similar folder in data/local help?
No, provided you had the valid file, or else it wouldn't display during your charging (phone off, of course). And be sure to fix permissions (both on folder and the images). make a backup always of your stock images. It's just the same with with changing bootanimation and shutdownanimation. Be sure to rename your files (the images you're going to replace to your stock) with the exact filename with those stock images.