When carrying out electrical installation or repair work in the home it is important to be completely clear on the different components of a circuit. One of these components is the miniature circuit breaker or MCB. The miniature circuit breaker is a highly useful component and fulfils a vital function in a circuit. Take a look at the following questions and answers which explain the MBC in more detail.
1. What is a Miniature Circuit Breaker?
A MCB is a type of electrical switch installed in a circuit that protects the electrical circuit from overload and overcurrent. Miniature Circuit breaker is used in low current circuits and help to protect the circuit in a safe and convenient way. You normally find miniature circuit breakers in the range between 0.5A to 100A. A miniature circuit breaker for a house would normally have a fault level of 6kA while if you were designing an industrial circuit the fault rating would be more like 10kA.
2. How Does a Miniature Circuit Breaker Work?
The mcb works by detecting excess current flowing through the circuit. When it detects excess flow it automatically breaks the circuit and then the system is tripped. This function was previously carried out by a fuse.
3. Why is a Miniature Circuit Breaker Better than a Fuse?
In the past, fuses were used as a circuit protection device but the MCB has many advantages over a fuse. It is generally much quicker at detecting an overcurrent. And when it does identify the overcurrent you can see where the faulty zone of the circuit is located because it will be tripped into “off”. With fuses you have to take out the entire fuse and examine it. In order to restore power flow with a miniature circuit breaker you switch the lever back to “on”. This is much quicker to do than switching an entire fuse. It is much safer to work with MCBs than it is to work with fuses. And the miniature circuit breaker can be reused after a trip, which cuts down on costs.
4. Are There Any Unwanted Tripping Problems?
Sometimes some lamps can cause a miniature circuit breaker to trip when there is not a fault in the circuit. This is generally linked to installing lower quality lamps in the circuit and can normally be avoided when you install higher quality fittings. Unwanted tripping may also occur when you have too many appliances plugged into the same electrical circuit. You can check this is the case by unplugging certain appliances and retesting.