Fuses, Circuit Breakers and Safety Switches
These devices are found in your Switch board understanding these devices and how to use and maintain them will help your management and understanding of Electrical Safety in the Workplace.
Primary Overload response devices (Fuses & Circuit Breakers)
Fuses and circuit breakers are built to fail in conditions of excess current which can overload the electrical wires in your home. These overloads are often caused by faulty appliances. When an overload occurs, the fuse melts before the wires can overheat, which reduces the risk of fire. Circuit breakers will often trip quicker and more importantly they can be reset to help diagnose and remove faults.
- Always replace a blown fuse with the correct fuse wire.
- Never use fuse wire that is heavier than the recommended gauge.
- Never use any other type metal or wire.
- If fuses keeps blowing, or a circuit breaker trips, check your appliances are not faulty.
- If fuses continue to blow, or circuit breakers continue to trip after appliances are unplugged, there could be a problem with your wiring. Contact a licensed electrician immediately.
Safety switches look similar to circuit breakers, but they provide extra protection from electric shock. Safety switches monitor the flow of electricity and if any irregularity is detected, the electricity supply is immediately cut off.
Homes with children or backyard workshops should consider installing safety switches to reduce the risk of electrical accidents. New homes are required to have safety switches installed. Licensed electrical contractors can install safety switches in older homes at a reasonable cost. You can also purchase portable safety switches for appliances and extension cords. Useful particularly when using power tools outside ie Electric Lawnmowers, Hedge trimmers, Drills, circular Saws etc
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