The Top Five Ways You can Utilise the Advantages of Miniature Circuit Breakers
We all know the importance of the circuit breaker – it’s a main safety component of the home, without which the normal use of electricity would be impossible. In fact, the use of electricity would be utterly impractical; the hazard of using this valuable source of energy would pose such a risk that no one in his or her right mind would even attempt it.
In essence, the circuit breaker ensures that, if there is an overload of power or a short circuit, the home is protected by automatically breaking contact between the power supply and the rest of the wiring – preventing heat buildup, fires, and other unwanted incidents.
There’s a relatively new innovation, however. It’s called the miniature circuit breaker, and if you haven’t learned about it yet, then this one’s for you: here are the top five ways you can utilise the advantages of miniature circuit breakers for your home.
What exactly is a circuit breaker?
Simply speaking, a circuit breaker is a device that ensures all electricity to a certain network is cut once there is an overload of some kind. This is important because too much electrical current will heat up the wiring, the areas surrounding or touching the wiring – and this is a recipe for disaster.
In the old days, fuses were used; when there was an overload, the electricity that went through the fuse heated the wire to such an extent that it broke, thereby breaking the connection and safeguarding the network from electrical overload.
The miniature circuit breaker
The miniature circuit breaker (MCB) works in the same way. However, as the name suggests, it’s a lot smaller and therefore it has many more advantages than the traditional fuses. The miniature circuit breaker works by having the electricity pass through an electromagnet. Once a certain (critical) level of electricity is reached, the electromagnet switches on and breaks the connection between the source and the network, basically shutting off the flow.
The advantages of the MCB (miniature circuit breaker)
A circuit breaker will do the job, of course, but you’d be missing out on some very important advantages of the miniature circuit breaker if you don’t use it. Here are just some of the great benefits:
- Higher sensitivity – The fuse works, but it’s not the most reliable of circuit breakers in that it is dependent on the material the fuse is made of. The MCB, however, is very sensitive and detects any abnormality within the electrical system. Because of this sensitivity, it’s ultimately a lot safer.
- Very simple to resume supply – Unlike with fuses, there is no need to replace the fuse when the connection is broken and the fuse is triggered. Once an overload of current triggers the MCB, the MCB automatically goes to the ‘off’ position. All you have to do to resume your electrical supply once all is safe is switch it to the ‘on’ position. It’s handy, quick, safe, and convenient.
- Gives a better interface – It used to be a hassle replacing the fuse; it no longer is with the MCB, simply because there is a much better interface. There’s no more need to take care of the complete handle; all you have to do is throw a switch.
- It’s reusable – The fact that the MCB can be used over and over again (unlike the fuse, which needed to be replaced every time) means that there is a lot less maintenance involved, and hence, a lot less hassle and a lot less cost. In the long term, this saves you a lot of money.
- Easy identification – Safety is all about understanding the problem, and being able to understand where exactly the problem lies allows you to respond quickly and fix the problem in minimal time. Thanks to the simple mechanism of the MCB, the problem area can be easily identified (simply look and find the MCB which is in the ‘off’ position). The faulty zone is immediately identified.
Five great uses
Though there certainly are more uses than the ones that are mentioned below, here are five great ways to take advantage of the miniature circuit breaker:
- Home electrical panels – Just like all other circuit breakers (including those with fuses), the circuit breaker is designed to break the circuit if it experiences an overload of current. For this reason it can be used perfectly in any kind of situation, including in the home and for home electrical panels.
- Ground fault trip mechanism – The breakers are designed to open the contacts if a line-to-ground fault occurs, so it can often be used for ground fault trip mechanisms as well.
- Heaters – The miniature circuit breaker is often useful when there are heaters in the office or in the home. Heaters are often problematic areas, and the MCB can often prevent many problems associated with them. For heaters, care must be taken to choose the right kind of MCB, however.
- Lights – When lights are often and repetitiously used in the home or in the office, it’s wise to make sure their power supply can be interrupted by the MCB if necessary, especially when certain types of lighting (such as fluorescent tubes) are used.
- Industrial uses – More and more small industrial places are using MCBs instead of the traditional fuse-based breakers. MCBs are ideal for this, as well as for commercial places. Large stoves in restaurants, ovens in bakeries, and food shops are just some examples of where the MCB is gaining popularity.
Technology is constantly evolving, and this happens to be in all areas of human striving – and the miniature circuit breaker is just a small example of what can happen when smart minds put their heads together and create something that all of us can use in a variety of different ways. Lives become easier and – more importantly – a lot safer and more practical. If you haven’t checked out how miniature circuit breakers can make your life a lot easier, then it’s certainly time to do so.