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Why did circuit breakers replace fuses?
Monday, June 20, 2022
Here’s four reasons why circuit breakers replaced screw-in type fuses as the standard for new homes long ago:
• Circuit breakers can be easily reset. Fuses must be replaced when blown. If additional fuses are not stored nearby, the circuit will remain dead for a while.
• Circuit breakers are not a shock hazard. Fuses have electrically “live” surfaces that are exposed when changing them, and can arc if replaced under power.
• A circuit breaker can easily be used as on ON/OFF switch. Fuses must be removed to disconnect power to the circuit.
• Circuit breakers can provide additional safety protection for shock (GFCI), arcing (AFCI), or both (DFCI) breakers. These safety features have been phased into the building code requirements starting about 50-years ago. Fuses cannot do this.
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