Should You Change Your Barge Fuse?
Watch Out for These Possible Signs…
The Barge Fuse or fuse holder is installed between the main connection point, near the bargeboard, and the Ausgrid power supply. It can also be in a riser basket or private power pole and it combines fuses that can’t be directly dropped into conductive paths due to size and shape, creating a robust path for electrical current wherein the voltage will not creep to other parts.
The Barge Fuse or fuse holder also protects the consumer Mains that lead to the switchboard, preventing Mains overload, which in turn would cause a fire.
How Does the Barge Fuse Work?
The barge fuse is a device that accepts incoming power and relays it through the fuse efficiently and makes it possible to add features that increase functionality of the end-user of the assembly.
Why Change the Barge Fuse?
Change the Bar fuse before It’s Too Late. A blown barge fuse is glaring evidence that there is are issues with the electrical supply. This could be due to many reasons, but homeowners shouldn’t wait for the worst to happen before making corrective or preventive measures; it’s critical to know the signs to look out for to avoid suffering more considerable damage in the future.
6 Important Signs That It’s Time to Change Your Barge Fuse
The most important reasons to change your Barge Fuse are listed below and we will also give some detail as to why:
· The barge fuse is unsafe or obsolete.
· Fuses are burning out regularly.
· Addition of fuses with higher capacity.
· The barge fuse is already melted.
· Failure to meet the demands of appliances
· Increase in electrical bill
1. The Barge Fuse Is Unsafe or Obsolete
Barge fuses are available in two basic types: Fully Enclosed or Open. Open types are fuse blocks, fuse clips, socket, and plug-on cap varieties; the Fully Enclosed type may have a fuse carrier inserted into a holder.
These have associated approvals and ratings to make sure that they are compliant with international standards. Examples of ratings include CSA, VED, BSI, IEC (UMF), SEMKO, Dentori, and UL.
· The UL listing confirms that the barge fuse was manufactured in accordance with the UL 248-14 standard.
· The CSA Canadian approval confirms that the barge fuse was produced in accordance with CSA C22.2 No. 248.14 or CSA C22.2 No. 39 standards.
· The Swedish SEMKO and VDE German approval confirms that the barge fuse is compliant with the applicable section of the IEC 60127 standards.
If the barge fuse currently used does not have any of these ratings, then it’s not safe. A licensed electrician should replace this immediately.
2. Fuses Are Burning Out Regularly
People living in their homes for a long time are aware of how often their fuses burn out and are likely to notice if the fuses begin to blow far more often, but it’s also important to check the possible causes.
If it’s because of something that never created issues before, it’s time to consult a local, trusted electrician, such as Real Electrical Solutions, who service Newcastle, Maitland, The Central Coast and The Hunter Regions. They will be able to check the electrical system to see if there are problems with components like the Barge Fuse.
3. Extra Fuses Added with Higher Capacity
One common mistake that property owners make is installing higher capacity fuses instead of a new circuit: Replacing a 15-amp fuse with a 30-amp fuse to manage higher electrical demand creates a potentially deadly fire hazard and should be avoided at all costs.
4. The Barge Fuse Has Already Melted
A melting intact barge fuse indicates poor electrical contact - loose connections are often seen in poor quality barge fuses that permit dirt and dust to enter the contact points due to lack of proper contact, leading to a voltage drop.
Electrical current flowing through resistance always leads to temperature increase in an electrical circuit and a large amount of resistance between the barge fuse and fuse leads to heat that’s strong enough to melt the barge fuse.
The heating of the electrical fuse doesn’t always happen immediately, however. If the heat isn’t quite high enough to melt the barge fuse, oxidation of metal connections can still occur, which increases contact resistance, and higher contact resistance speeds up the heating effect until there is a surge of rapidly increasing heat resistance, resulting in a sudden failure. To avoid this, use high-quality fuses and barge fuses, to ensure that the two have a solid connection.
5. Frequent Circuit Overloads
Some people might use too many lights or appliances at once which can cause a sudden electrical circuit overload, because electrical circuits are only built to carry a limited amount of electricity, so the circuit breaker will trip once the rated load of the circuit wiring is exceeded.
Different circuits also have different load ratings and offer more electricity than others, but most home electrical systems are designed to cater to typical household usage, which is why there’s always the risk of plugging in too many devices. If the Level 2 qualified electrician replaces or upgrades components of the circuit like the barge fuse, this will increase load rating.
Signs of overloaded circuits:
· Circuit breaker tripping and shutdown of all power.
· Dimming lights – especially when more appliances are turned on.
· Buzzing switches or outlets.
· Switch covers or outlets that are warm.
· Burning odour from switches or outlets.
· Scorched outlets or plugs.
· Appliances or power tools seem to lack power.
6. Expensive Electric Bills
If there have been no newly installed appliances but the electrical bill is off the charts, something might be wrong. Chances are there is an issue with the electrical system. An electrician must perform an inspection to see which circuits are inefficient, but this kind of problem doesn’t resolve on its own. Replacement or upgrade of components like the barge fuse might be necessary.
Real Electrical Solutions Provides Quality Barge Fuse Upgrades and Replacements
There are strict rules for replacing or upgrading barge fuses in New South Wales. This is why only fully qualified and licensed Level 2 electricians can perform this task.
Real Electrical Solutions has the necessary accreditation and equipment to finish the job in a safe and timely manner. If this article has made you realise you need to pay attention to your Barge Fuse, you need a licensed level 2 electrician in NSW.