Difference Between FUSE and CIRCUIT BREAKER with Advantages

difference between Fuse symbol and Circuit Breaker symbol


The main difference between Fuse and Circuit Breaker is, Fuse works on the principle of thermal properties of a conducting material whereas the Circuit Breaker works on the principle of electromagnetism switching.

When we talk about Electrical Protection then two terms always comes in our mind that is, Fuse and Circuit Breaker. In some cases, Fuse gives more advantages over a Circuit Breaker and some cases Circuit breaker gives more advantages over a Fuse. But the circuit breaker has more advantages than a Fuse. So today we are going to know what is the important differences between Fuse and Circuit Breaker with their Advantages.

What is a Fuse?

A Fuse is nothing but a simple wire having a low melting point which gets damaged when excessive current flow through it. So basically, A fuse is a piece of wire, which melts when the current exceeds its maximum current carrying capacity. A fuse also melts depends upon the time of flow of current.

High Rupturing Capacity (HRC) Fuse, Fuse, Fuse types

What is a Circuit Breaker?

Circuit Breaker is a protective device which can automatically open a circuit when short or overload fault occurs. Circuit Breaker has not any element which melts when excessive current flows through it. Circuit Breaker uses thermal elements or bi-metallic contacts and the electromagnetic mechanism to protect the electrical circuit from short circuit and overload faults. Once the fault is resolved, it again can be turned on manually. Even we can control a circuit breaker remotely using a special circuit and device.

Some circuit breakers are worked with relay. Relay senses the fault and send signal to the circuit breaker so it can break the circuit to cut off the power supply.

Fuse VS Circuit Breaker

(1) The main difference between Fuse and Circuit Breaker is, Fuse works on the principle of thermal and electrical properties of a conducting material whereas the Circuit Breaker works on the principle of electromagnetism and bi-metallic property.

(2) Fuse open an electrical circuit by melting itself during the fault condition but Circuit Breaker breaks an electrical circuit by opening contacts during the fault condition.

(3) One Fuse can be used for one pole only, if we want to use Fuse in Three Phase Line then we need three Fuses for three lines but one circuit breaker can be used in the three-phase line, there is no need of multiple circuit breaker. I mean to say that there are only single pole Fuses are available but circuit breakers are available with a single pole as well as multiple poles.

(4) The operation of a Fuse such as Fault detection and interruption is completely automatic But we can manually ON/OFF the circuit breaker. Generally, a circuit breaker mostly takes the help of a secondary device to sense the fault such as relay, whereas a fuse can detect fault itself.

(5) Another important difference between the Fuse and Circuit Breaker is, Fuse is to be replaced after every operation but in Case of the Circuit Breaker, we need to be just Turn ON the circuit breaker by manually after the operation, there is no need to the replacement of circuit breaker.

(6) The Breaking Capacity of Fuse is low as compared than a Circuit Breaker. Breaking Capacity means the maximum current capacity of a Circuit Breaker or Fuse when it opening in a fault condition.

(7) Another important difference between Circuit Breaker and Fuse is, Circuit Breaker can be used as automatically or manually operated ON/OFF Switch but A Fuse cannot be used as ON/OFF Switch.

(8) The operating time of the Fuse is comparatively less, but the operating time of a  Circuit Breaker is more than the Fuse. Although it depends upon the setting and nature of the fault.

(9) Circuit Breakers are costlier than Fuse, but Fuses are low-cost devices. Maintenance cost if the circuit breaker also more even fuse wire need to be replaced after the melting.

(10) Fuse can give the protection against only Overload faults it cannot be used for the protection of Short-Circuit fault but Circuit Breaker can be used for both Overload fault as well as Short Circuit fault.

(11) Modern Circuit Breakers with Digital Screen shows the indication of the value of carrying current, inside temperature, etc but Fuse has not any indication facility.

(12) Let's look at the application of Circuit Breaker and Fuse, Fuses are used in low current applications such as in our Home electrical circuits, electronic devices, and with some low power motors. Circuit Breaker is used in high current applications such as Electrical Transmission and Distribution Lines, Substations, etc.

(13) Fuse can detect the fault and interrupt the circuit during the fault condition but Circuit Breaker cannot detect any fault. A relay is used with the circuit breaker which senses the fault and gives the signal to the circuit breaker, ultimately circuit breaker breaks the circuit. It is a very important difference between the Circuit Breaker and Fuse.

Relay, Circuit Breaker, Fuse

Advantages of Circuit Breaker over Fuse

1. Reusable
2. Manually operating feature and Remote controlling
3. Protect both Short Circuit and Overload faults.
4. Status Indication features.
5. Can be controlled by programmable devices like computers.
6. High current applications.
7. Manually fault current limit changing facility.

Advantages of Fuse over Circuit Breaker

1. Low Cost
2. High reliability
3. High stability
4. No maintenance Hazardous
5. Easy installation
6. Easy to replace and all

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Difference Between FUSE and CIRCUIT BREAKER with Advantages Difference Between FUSE and CIRCUIT BREAKER with Advantages Reviewed by Author on April 25, 2019 Rating: 5
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