When it comes to preventing electric fires in your home, a good electrical consumer unit is the most important thing to have. They help regulate the power coming from the grid and keep it at manageable levels. They also monitor and shut off power if a short circuit occurs, and hence, it is essential to fit your house with a quality one.
At Electrical Discounted Supplies, we are an online electrical appliances supplier. We stock the best electrical appliances for your convenient access and at the best value. But with so little knowledge of consumer units out in the general public, how do you know which one is good.
In this article, we will look at consumer units and everything you need to know for your next build project. So if you’re ready to power up your mind, keep reading to learn more.
What is an Electric Consumer Unit
A consumer unit, also known as a fuse box, is a distribution board with a single row of fuses that helps control and distribute electricity. The main power is connected to the board, which in turn, distributes it to your house’s circuits.
It ensures that power is at the proper levels throughout the circuits and breaks or shuts off power if there is a surge or a short circuit. Therefore, preventing electric fires from starting and protecting your appliances from damage.
This process works automatically, and the most you have to do is clear the circuit of a fault that causes a break and re-energize the system.
What’s in a Consumer Unit?
The main switch is the main section of the consumer unit responsible for connecting electricity from the grid to the rest of the circuits. Turning it off isolates the rest of the circuits and your house from the main supply.
The main switch is the only one you can manually turn off when you have an issue with your power. In addition, it also helps you shut the power off whenever you want to do repairs on your electric system.
Residual Current Devices
These are a set of switches responsible for monitoring your system’s electrical current levels. They ensure that the current flow is balanced and shut off when they notice an imbalance, also known as tripping.
This helps prevent short circuits, a common cause of electric fires.
Miniature Circuit Breaker
MBCs are the small ports that individual circuits connect to. They monitor power overloads and overcurrent.
Power overloads occur when too many appliances or devices are connected to one circuit that cannot feed them all. The MCB trips to prevent overstressing your system.
On the other hand, overcurrent is where you have more power than the design rating of your electric system. As you know, one by-product of electric conductors is heat. So if more energy is flowing through your system than it’s designed for, it can easily cause a fire. However, MCBs in your consumer unit trip whenever this happens and ensures fires don’t start.