Problem with my Electricity (Old Buss fuses)

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Old 01-23-13, 11:01 AM
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Problem with my Electricity (Old Buss fuses)

Hi guys,


My trailer uses the old Buss (Screw in) fuses. My fuse box has 10 of them screwed in along with a box that holds 2 long fuses. My problem is, if I run to many things at once the power either 1. cuts off or 2. starts to flicker and does not supply enough energy to my light bulbs or laptop. I honestly have nothing in this house that should take up that much energy. I can't even run my 2 laptops and my energy saver light-bulb without the light getting very dim. Don't even ask what happens if I try to run the heater that the people before me installed here. If I run that it will work for 30mins or so and then the 2 main long fuses inside the box will let out a huge blue light and then break. None of the screw in buss fuses are broken and I've already tried to increase/decrease the amp's. I've tried different main fuses. Also here is the thing, out of the ten screw in fuses, only the one in the bottom right has to be plugged in. If it is plugged in the all the sockets in my house get power. The other 9 basically do nothing. So can someone tell me how do I fix this?
 
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Old 01-23-13, 11:56 AM
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Welcome to the forums! That sounds very frustrating!

Some additional information may help us understand the problem better. What size is the supply to the trailer? We will also need to know how it is wired internally - that is, more exactly what is connected to each fuse. It may be that some of the other nine fuses are feeding only one or two outlets in the bathroom or kitchen, for example.

The light should not get dim as more loads are added, without blowing the fuse.

Right now, what size fuse do you have in the bottom right fuse holder, and what size cartridge fuses do you have in the 240V fuse block? Is there more than one fuse block? When the heater blows those cartridge fuses, do you lose all of the power in the trailer?
 
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Old 01-23-13, 11:59 AM
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Call an electrician!

What sizes are your screw in and main fuses?

Have you tried unscrewing all the fuses except for the bedroom one for the outlets and tried your computers and lights? Does it do the same dimming & flickering?

You should not have your lights dimming or flickering from a light load and plugging in a space heater should not blow the main fuses. Any situation that I can think of to cause those symptoms is not good.
 
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Old 01-23-13, 12:00 PM
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Honestly you won't like my answer but the best thing is to have it replaced and have your wiring checked.....Those old fuse boxes were great in their day but really obsolete now. The round plug fuse bases (where they plug into) become burned over time and you can no longer find replacements for them and the pullouts with the larger fuses (main etc.) become fatigued over time as well and loose connections make for heat and failure. My guess is that you have 60 amp maximum fuses in that box.
 
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Old 01-23-13, 12:00 PM
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I've already tried to increase/decrease the amp's
Never! increase the amperage of a fuse beyond limits of the wiring. That may cause a fire. For an old fuse box like yours that almost certainly means a maximum of a 15 amp fuse for the screw in fuses. You would need #12 wire to increase to 20 amp and almost certainly you have only #14 wire.

What is the full load amperage of the heater? What size wire to it? What size cartridge fuses. Does the heater have a fan?

I've tried different main fuses
I hope you mean slow blow and fast blow not higher amperage. They should be slow blow (time delay) fuses.

out of the ten screw in fuses, only the one in the bottom right has to be plugged in. If it is plugged in the all the sockets in my house get power.
That isn't correct. Could you please post a picture of the fuse box with any cover removed. http://www.doityourself.com/forum/el...-pictures.html

Echo, Echo, Echo. As you can see by the rapid replys you have a very serious situation. I agree an electrician may be your best bet.
 

Last edited by Nashkat1; 01-23-13 at 12:04 PM. Reason: Formatting
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Old 01-23-13, 12:31 PM
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Yes Nashkat1 I do lose all the power when the fuse blows. I don't know what you mean by bottom right fuse holder? I have a fuse box in the middle with 2 fuses in it. I only have one fuse box and I believe they are 60k amps or something like that. I don't know what size the supply is or how it is wired. And those 9 other fuses do nothing, I can have them all unplugged and every single plug in the house will still work.
 
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Old 01-23-13, 12:37 PM
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If you have an electric water tank two of them should go to that, some should do lights, both indoor and outdoor as well as outdoor outlets. No way to tell without an electrician looking at it but they should all go to something. Again, I suspect your pullout and even your screw in bases have had a lot of use over the years and that means alot of heat. That causes metal to fatigue and become loose and that makes poor connections. I would get someone over there ASAP.
 
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Old 01-23-13, 12:41 PM
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I would love to call someone out but honestly I have gone through a lot of expenses the best 2 months and have just over 20$ right now to my name. I should also note that the electrical disengage switch in my trailer does nothing. my guess is the last people to inhabit this hell jerry rigged the electric in the home.
 
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Old 01-23-13, 12:47 PM
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Pictures please of the inside of the fuse box and disconnect box.
 
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Old 01-23-13, 12:50 PM
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Also look under the trailor to see if by chance there is a large cord etc. plugged into anything....I have seen trailors with 60 amp services simply plugged into large outlet boxes...take pics of ANYTHING electrical involvng the service, even at the pole, if there is one.
 
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Old 01-23-13, 03:47 PM
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I don't know what you mean by bottom right fuse holder?
I meant the one you said supplied everything in the trailer:
here is the thing, out of the ten screw in fuses, only the one in the bottom right has to be plugged in. If it is plugged in the all the sockets in my house get power. The other 9 basically do nothing.
That one. What size fuse do you have in it right now?

I have a fuse box in the middle with 2 fuses in it. I only have one fuse box and I believe they are 60k amps or something like that.
The fuse box is another name for your electrical panel. A fuse block is one way of describing the pull-out fuse holder that has two cartridge fuses in it.

You answered the question: Since you only have one cartridge fuse holder and you lose all power when the fuses in it blow, that's your main. Since it has 60 amp fuses in it, your electric service is, for now, a 60 amp service.
 
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Old 01-23-13, 04:05 PM
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my guess is the last people to inhabit this hell jerry rigged the electric in the home.
I'm not going to bet against you on that one. What you described when you said
I can't even run my 2 laptops and my energy saver light-bulb without the light getting very dim.
makes me suspect some things got wired in series.

Except that most AC devices won't work at all if that's done. I'm thinking it might be true for the light though.

Do you have your energy saver light-bulb in a ceiling or wall fixture, or is it in a table lamp or floor lamp that's plugged into the wall?
 
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Old 01-23-13, 08:01 PM
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My trailer uses the old Buss (Screw in) fuses
That's an old trailer, do you have a manfacture date on it? In other words, how old is it? Is your trailer wired with aluminum wire?
 
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