DIY How To

Rewireable fuses

Re-wireable fuses are fuse carriers that contain a length of fuse wire. The fuse wire is wrapped around the terminals bridging the gap between the carrier pins, thus completing the circuit.

The fuse wire is available in different thicknesses, the thickness relates to the rating and current carrying capacity of the wire.

Rewireable fuses are obsolete and should be replaced at the earliest opportunity.

Replace fuse wire

Working with electricity can be dangerous, please read the safety pages before you begin any work. If you are in any doubt always consult a qualified electrician.

If a lighting circuit or sockets are not working, the first thing to do is to check if the fuse has blown.

Consumer unit Always switch off the power using the main switch on the consumer unit. The main switch can be up or down for off depending on the make of unit, so always double check that it is off.
Consumer unit fuse Remove the fuse cover if there is one and then pull out the fuse holders one at a time until you find the one that has blown. Replace the fuse holder if the fuse wire has not blown before pulling out another, this way you will not get them mixed up. The fuse holders are colour coded so they can be easily recognised, 5 amp (white), 15 amp (blue), 20 amp (yellow), 30 amp (red) and 45 amp (green).
Blown fuse A close look at a blown rewireable fuse will normally show a broken wire or even no wire at all if it has completely vapourised. There may also be scorch marks on the fuse holder.
Replacing fuse wire Loosen the two terminal screws and remove the old broken wire. Thread some new fuse wire making sure it is the correct rating through the tube until it is visible at both sides. If the fuse holder does not have a tube for the wire to go through you can connect direct to one terminal.
Replacing fuse wire Wrap the fuse wire around the terminals in a clockwise direction to make a loop as shown and tighten the screw. It is important to wrap it clockwise to prevent the loop undoing when being tightened by the screw. Leave enough slack to attach the wire to the other terminal in the same way.
Good fuse Once the wire has been connected to the terminals at both ends, replace the fuse holder in the consumer unit, replace the cover if there is one and then switch the power back on. If the fuse continues to blow you should consult a qualified electrician.

Some manufactures have designed minature circuit breakers (MCB's) which will fit into existing consumer units, these allow you to do away with rewirable fuses. Always consult a qualified electrician for guidance

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