A Guide to Domestic Fuses

Domestic fuses come in various amps and sizes, and can be used in many different applications. It is important to know which fuse should be used within an electrical component to avoid damage.

What is a fuse?

A domestic fuse is a wire attached between two terminals and protected in a sleeve. These fuses are crucial when designing electrical devices as they will act as the safety feature. If there is too much current passed through the wire, the fuse will fail, which is its designed to do. The wire within the sleeve will melt and break the circuit, before any damage has been done. Common ways too much current passes through the fuse is by overloading, a mismatched load, short-circuit or a faulty device.

Common types of domestic fuses that you would find around in your household are:

5A Fuses: Used in lighting circuits

15A Fuses: Used in storage heaters circuits

20A Fuses: Used in radical power circuit

30A Fuses: Used in ring main circuit

45A Fuses: Used in cooker circuits and shower circuits

Fuses found in the Household

Fuses are used within all electrical products in your household. These domestic fuses tend to within the 3amp to 13amp range as it will the industry standard. For electrical appliances up to 700w, the common domestic fuse used will be 3 amp. Anything over a 13 amp fuse will need to be used.

How to test fuses

The common way to test fuse is to use a handheld fuse tester. These can be bought at a cheap price and it will have the ability to test light bulbs and batteries also.

You can also use a multimeter to test fuses. A multi meter measures the AC and DC voltage, electrical resistance and the flow of the current. To test the fuse, you can measure the continuity or the ohms.

To start the process:

  • Make sure your equipment is turned off and remove the fuse that you would like to test
  • Grab your multimeter and set it to measure the continuity
  • Put one probe on each side of the fuse and look at the display (the black and red rods)
  • Listen to the multimeter if it has a continuous beep as you hold the probes against each side of the fuse. If there is no beep then the fuse has been blown and will need to be replaced.