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Why do my fuses keep tripping?

Mar 17, 2020

Large electrical power line with wires extending from the base standing in a field.

Are some of your electric sockets not working? Maybe you have a few lights out despite new bulbs. There are many different electrical issues to be aware of that could occur in your home, but one key issue homeowners should know the signs of are tripped fuses. So if you’re wondering, “why do my fuses keep tripping” or “what does a blown fuse look like?” then keep reading to find out some of the common reasons why fuses trip.

How Do Fuses Work?

To identify what might be tripping your fuse, it’s important to have an understanding of the purpose of fuses and how they work. While a fuse might look like an unimportant piece of wire, they actually play a huge role in protecting your home from electric fires and your electrical appliances from being damaged. The entire purpose of a fuse is to blow, thereby breaking a circuit and preventing the flow of electricity, if the current running through is too high or unsafe.

There are a few different types of fuses found in most homes. Some are inside electrical appliances or in their plugs, thereby protecting the appliance from an electrical surge. Others are in your fuse box or circuit breaker. Most electric lines have a fuse attached to them to ensure the electricity running through the circuit is safe. A tripped fuse indicates that some sort of issue occurred to cause the fuse to blow.

4 Common Reasons Why Fuses Keep Tripping

1. Overloaded Circuit

Too many appliances drawing energy from one source can lead to an overload on the circuit, thereby tripping a fuse. This issue is generally easy to spot by looking for an outlet or even an appliance that’s being heavily used. Too many appliances plugged into one outlet or a large appliance that’s drawing a lot of energy can also blow a fuse. To solve this issue, reduce the amount of power being drawn by that circuit by unplugging what you’re not using and redistributing power to appliances through multiple outlets.

2. An Electric Issue with the Circuit or Breaker

When you have a blown fuse, check your breaker box to see if the breaker was tripped (do so by checking if one of the switches on the panel flipped). If this is the case, the circuit breakers are doing what they are designed to do, which is to shut off the electric flow in response to some sort of issue such as an electrical surge. You can correct this issue by checking for signs of damage and resetting the breaker if there is no damage. If your fuses keep tripping, however, then there could be a more serious issue at hand and you may need to consult with a professional. They’ll be able to determine the source of the problem.

3. Short Circuit

This is a type of electrical surge (or fault). Generally, these occur when an electric current is drawn beyond its intended circuit because of a lack of resistance. That typically leads to a weak connection in the conductors, causing an excessive amount of current flow in the power source. Wires are then overloaded with electricity which can cause a lot of damage, even total destruction, to an electrical device. However, circuit breakers are designed to prevent this type of surge from causing harm. If your circuit breaker is in proper working condition, you should be safe from short circuits.

Be sure to unplug the device that caused the short circuit, check for any damage, and test the circuit. If you see any damage to the outlet or circuit, you will need to call an electrician before moving forward. If there is no damage, then you can reset the breaker. Be aware that if the problem occurs again, you will need to call a professional.

4. The Wrong Fuse was Installed, or You Have an Outdated System

While one fuse might look similar to another, they are wildly different and used to protect against different flows of electricity. If you or someone else installed the wrong type of fuse for the wrong circuit, then it could keep blowing or other serious damages could occur. If this is the case, you will need to have an electrician check out your system to be sure everything is properly set up.

It’s also possible that your fuses keep tripping because you have an outdated electrical system that isn’t designed to handle modern appliances. Your outlets, wiring, or connections could all be outdated or damaged. To fix this issue, you’ll need to have an electrical inspection performed to identify faulty or outdated equipment and see if you need replacements.

Fuses Keep Tripping Despite Fixes?

If your fuses keep tripping despite your repair efforts, then you could have a serious issue on your hands and you’ll need to call in an electrician to get the issue checked. If your home is over 40 years old, you should consider rewiring your electrical system. CroppMetcalfe’s 5-Star Technicians are trained to tackle any electrical issue and provide a solution that works for you and your family. Call 1-877-740-6657 to speak with one of our licensed electricians or request service online today.


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