Changing 6amp circuit breaker to a 32 one.

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  #1  
Old 01-18-15, 10:05 AM
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Changing 6amp circuit breaker to a 32 one.

Hi I am UK based and have lived in my house 2 years. I don't have any problems with the electrics however whenever I turn the circuit breaker at the fuse box to do some work it won't turn back on so I replace the circuit breaker each time. The other day this happened again (I didn't end up doing any work so I know it's not anything I have done) I have just gone to order a new circuit breaker and noticed the newly broken one and an existing broken circuit breaker are both 6amp and the rest in the fuse box are 32amp (except the shower and cooker which are 40). Do you think they could be breaking because they are to low and that I need to replace it with a 32amp? This is for the downstairs lights which is 3 lights. The upstairs one is 32amp and supplies 4 lights. I have no electrics experience so please ask if you need further info. Thanks
 
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Old 01-18-15, 10:43 AM
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If this is a ring circuit or the wires are not 10 gauge or larger you should not use a 32 amp breaker. Of course I doubt you have a breaker because a fuse box has fuses.

My answer is general not UK specific. This is a primarily a North American forum. Probably none of the members are well acquainted with the electrical requirements in the UK. I'd suggest you call an electrician because the 32 amp fuses seem too large and someone may have installed too large a fuse for the wiring on those circuits. It could cause a fire if I am correct.
 
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Old 01-18-15, 10:50 AM
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Welcome to the forums.

It sounds like the quality of the circuit breakers is in question. Our amperage ratings here are different than what you use.

I would definitely not switch out a 6amp breaker with a 32amp one. I'd try to find out why the breakers are falling apart. That would need to be addressed by an electrician in your area or the place you are buying the breakers from. I'd question the reliability of a company if their breakers keep breaking.

The upstairs one is 32amp and supplies 4 lights.
It would appear that this circuit breaker should be a 6amp also.
 
  #4  
Old 01-21-15, 05:30 PM
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Hi Arran

For lighting circuits in the UK 6amp MCB (Breakers) or 5amp fuses are used only. If you are having to replace the Breaker that often then something is definately wrong. Get an electrican in to check this - it doesn't sound right - perhaps a different one if the breakers are falling apart.

32amp circuit breakers are used for electrical sockets that are wired in a main ring. If its radial circuit for Electrical sockets then 16amp or 20amp depending on wire size. A ring main can be installed with a minimum wire size of 2.5mm - more if the run is long (more than 50 metres).

Definately do not switch the lighting circuit out for a 32 amp circuit breaker.

Thanks

Mick
 

Last edited by mick999; 01-21-15 at 05:32 PM. Reason: spelling...
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Old 01-21-15, 05:41 PM
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Interesting addition to the thread Mick.

32amp circuit breakers are used for electrical sockets that are wired in a main ring
I know very little about UK wiring but having general purpose receptacles wired in #10 (+/-2.5mm) scares me. That is 240volts at 32amps. That is quite a bang if an appliance cord shorts out.
 
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Old 01-21-15, 06:51 PM
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Hi

Yeah I know. I've seen a few! All appliance cords have a 13amp fuse in them in the UK - so in a short situation that is what goes first typically. When I moved to the US I was confused by the oversized wire in use! Then I saw 240V entering the house with the neutral and had to buy a book to understand the whole center tapped neutral concept.

When I was in England I saw a few main rings and it took a while to work it all out. In Australia we regularly put 20/25 amps on 2.5mm wire (Not main ring). So it didn't seem out of place once I understood that the current flows both ways around the ring.

I was a stage lighting technican for 10 years in Australia and the UK.

Mick
 
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Old 01-21-15, 06:57 PM
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Please check in here as often as you can spare the time. Your help is vary appreciated. Been a while since we had a non North American expert.
 
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