From: Michael J. Schülke
Subject: Re: American vs foreign electrical parts and installations
Date: Tue, 17 Sep 2002 21:13:27 +0200
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Andrew Gabriel wrote:
> In article ,
> Michael J. Schülke writes:
> > Which brings me to a question that has been nagging me ever since: Why
> > is the fuse in the plugs, instead of using a central fuse box with a
> > fuse for, say, all outlets in one room? I can't see any advantage in
> > that, and there is no fuse protecting the cable.
> The fuse in the plug protects the appliance flex.
> If it wasn't there, the next fuse back is 30 or 32A
> ring circuit fuse. Of course it also protects the
> appliance too.
> Even if you reduced fuse coverage down to a whole
> room, you would want something like 15-20A. That's
> way above what many appliance flexs can carry, even
> as a short term fault current.
Thanks for the explanation.
You're right about the 15-20A -- fuses for a group of outlets
(usually one or two rooms; washing machines, fridges, etc., have their
own fused outlet) are rated at 16A here, and I always thought (though
IMBW) that Schuko plugs and any cables connected to them were required
to withstand a 16A fault current.
> I know which scheme looks more sensible to me...
You're probably right that it is safer to have additional fuses at each
device. I didn't know about the 32A fuses -- I never saw one when I was
What worries me (slightly) is the way some British plugs, namely the
"screw-open" type (as opposed to the molded type) are constructed: you
can easily remove the top (to change the fuse) *and then plug the plug
back in* with all terminals exposed. I'm sure someone will be dumb
enough to try. ;-(
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