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Fuses, Big or Small

Huge, Medium and Tiny Fuses

Note the 200,000 Amp fuse in the image. This probably came from a power generating station or an electric railway sub-station.

Circuit Diagram Symbol

Fuse Circuit Diagram Symbol

Construction (Quick Blow Fuse)

Fuse Construction

Fuses are used to protect circuits by preventing large currents from flowing. In the UK, power connectors for devices like kettles and fan heaters use a 13 Amp fuse. If more than 13 amps pass through the circuit, the fuse wire melts and the circuit is turned off. This protects the other wiring from overheating and possibly causing a fire. Smaller fuses (three amp) are used for low power appliances like table lights and radios. Always use the smallest possible fuse that will not fail under normal (or switch on) current operating conditions.

Construction (Slow Blow Fuse)

Slow Blow Fuse Construction

This is similar to a normal fuse but the metal blob prevents the wire heating and melting so quickly. This is useful if the circuit has a switch-on surge current.

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