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Beyond the Lone Islands

Monday, 22 November 2010

Blowing A Fuse

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“Sometimes, a series of temporary overages can weaken the fuse's filament, which means you could still blow a fuse without exceeding the amperage rating. Some fuses are designed to withstand a number of brief overloads before blowing, but others snap quickly after one sustained power surge. When you blow a fuse, it is important to unplug all of the appliances and devices from that circuit before installing a new fuse. The energy required to restart those devices may cause yet another blown fuse.”

I blew a fuse the other day, turning on the microwave in the kitchen. At first I thought it was a general power-cut but then I noticed the light was still on in another room. So I had to check the fuses. That, my friends, is easier said than done. WHY do they put the fuses UP THERE?! I have a step-ladder with a handle to hold on to, but I still don’t like getting up on top of it. And even doing so, I had a hard time seeing which fuse was broken, or what the little notes said. I’ve never had reason to look before because this is the first time it ever happened while I’ve lived in this flat.

The idea of using the camera, unfortunately, did not come to me until afterwards. (As a blogger, I’m rather ashamed to admit it. I don’t even have a picture of the blown fuse.) Of course the first fuse I took down turned out not to be broken, and having nothing to do with the kitchen. It just meant I had to go through the process of resetting the VCR and the DVD player afterwards…

Well, I got it sorted out eventually. Fortunately I did have some extra fuses. And I even knew where. I am that kind of person. (I.e. I usually do not wait until I’m completely out of something before I buy the next package – whatever it may be.)

However, I am NOT really fit for jobs of this kind – the kind that literally have to be done “over my head”. Fixing that electric fuse meant that my body kind of blew one instead. With loud complaints from my bad neck-shoulder-arm.

So I’ve had to cut down a bit on computer time (among other things). Shouldn’t really be doing this post either, I suppose... But I was checking the internet trying to figure out what made that fuse pop in the first place, because I really hadn’t been doing anything unusual at all in the kitchen. And then I found the text above: “Some fuses are designed to withstand a number of brief overloads before blowing…” I guess that might be it.

And then it struck me that the same is true about people, physically as well as mentally. Well, some of us, anyway. We might be able to deal with “a number of brief overloads”. But then… out of the blue, as it might seem… we reach a limit, and something snaps…

I doubt I’ll manage to completely unplug myself, but I’ll try to stay off overloading for a while.


Ginny said...

Oh, I'm sorry to hear this! Overhead work is just dreadful, and so hard on the neck and shoulders! Don't get on the computer if it aggravates your muscles, at least not till you're better. I check your blog every day, so I can wait.

Rose-Anne said...

Sorry I have been quiet---no energy or creativity. When I saw you had blown a fuse I was a little worried. in Australia "blowing a fuse" has another meaning---you lose your temper and have a meltdown.

Sandra said...

I know exactly what Rose Ann means, i have MANY times in the past Blow A Fuse, like the one she describes. I have also had to replace fuses in the past, and they were always in the most inconveient places. Here in the US we don't use fuses anymore, only very old houses have them and most of those have been replaced with breaker boxes. it throws the switch and all we have to do, i push it back up. they put those in strange places also.
hope your back/neck/arm is better soon and we dont have to miss to many posts. my monitor is about to die so i have to go shop for one today andi am at last going to buy a lap top.

DawnTreader said...

I know what Rose-Anne means as well and I did have it in mind (on purpose) when I wrote the post.

In my previous flat the fuses were replaced by breaker switches too at some point while I lived there. But here they still have the old system.


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