Electrical components are somewhat of a mystery for most of us. In most of our everyday lives and jobs we don’t deal with the need to know a lot about various electrical components. That is until they stop functioning and we are hindered in what we can and cannot do. No one thinks about the electricity running into their home until they can’t turn on the television or cook dinner.
When the power goes out or a circuit breaker is blown we become interested in the electrical circuit running through our home. At that point the electrical system becomes important. This article will give you a bit more information on the basic components that must function together to allow electricity to flow into our homes or places of work.
Electricity in your home starts with the connection of electrical services. This is as simple as having the power company run wires to your homes’ feeder wires which are attached to a meter on your home or close power pole. The meter measures the amount of electricity used and that is the month you are charged for each month. The meter feeds into either a disconnect switch, main breaker or fuse panel within the home.
Disconnect Switch: The main advantage of a disconnect switch is that is offers a way to disconnect all power to the house with one main switch. This is for safety and is used in cases of fire and floods.
Main Breaker: A main breaker consists of a breaker panel. This is a panel that contains electrical currents to flow through to different areas within your home. If too much current is flowing to one area the circuit will blow and thus stop sending electrical current to that area of your home until the breaker is switched back on. If the current was to flow at an excess this could overload the entire circuit and cause a fire.
Fuse Panel: Fuses feed the amount of electricity that is being sent and blow out when too much current it being asked of it. This occurs a lot in rooms where major appliances are in use. Bathrooms and kitchens usually have to have more fuses allocated to them. This will allow the current to be broken up to different areas within the room. The flow of current then can be shifted throughout the space as to not overload one circuit.
In our next installment we will discuss branch circuits, switches, outlets and wiring. Electrical components within the home aren’t as complex as they are sometimes thought to be.
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