In an electrical installation, switches are mechanisms used to manually connect or disconnect the flow of electrical current. Depending on their use and shape, there are countless types of switches.
How do the switches work?
A switch is an electrical device that allows us to perform an on/off function from a command. Its operation consists of letting the current pass or not in an electrical circuit. Therefore, its main function is to turn a light on and off.
Mechanically, a switch consists of two separate metal contacts and a moving part that is usually a rocker arm. By pressing the key, we move the rocker and open or close the circuit/light.
At the wiring level, a switch has a phase line input and an output that is connected to the light point.
Focusing on the installation, it is essential to know that the switch only acts from one point. For this reason, in the event that we want to control the same lamp from more points, we will use switches or crossings. The number of lamps connected in parallel does not influence, we always look at the points from which we want to control.
As an example, a switch can be used to actuate a ceiling light in a small room from a single point. We also find them in kitchens, bathrooms or small rooms where we can turn the lighting on and off from a single point.
For example, the switches can be used to open doors in a modern bank via code sent from a computer, which is much more advanced than inserting a key into the car and having the electrical current resume.
It is important to note that given their quality, you have to see the duration in them. Most are made of brass alloy, which in translation is a combination of 60% copper and 40% zinc.
Previously, they were all 100% copper, but according to experts, this material tends to oxidize under the effects of condensation. That is why it is joined to another material to become more resistant.
Why take into account the types of electrical switches?
The types of electrical switches stand out not only for a better aesthetic design, but for the many advantages it can offer depending on the needs.
You will see in the next points all the advantages that each type of switch you use can offer you and of course also its disadvantages. It is also important to highlight each use for which one type of switch is preferred over another.
The price is also very important to note since a thermal magno switch is not the same as a level switch. However, it also highlights a lot of the functions that can be found. Below you can find the main switch types to consider.
Main types of switches
We can find among them:
- Rocker Switches – These switches feature a lever that operates as the actuating member. It must be mobilized towards a certain position so that a transformation in the state of the contact is observed.
- Push Button Switch: As its name implies, this class of switch is made up of a button, which must be pressed or pressed in order for the state of the contact to be modified.
- Rotary Switch: the rotary switch has an axis, which must be rotated to a specific position in order to observe a change in the state of the contact.
- The Magnetothermal Switch or Automatic Switch: this class of switch has the peculiarity based on the provision of two protection methods. The first refers to the fact that the switch is automatically turned off in the event of a short circuit. The second refers to the deactivation of the switch when an electrical current overload occurs.
- Switches Reed Switch: the term refers to a switch housed in a glass capsule. It activates when it discovers a magnetic field.
- Centrifugal Switch: It is activated or deactivated when exposed to a centrifugal force.
- Transfer Switches: they are so called because their operation is based on a transfer of the load from one circuit to the other when a power failure occurs.
- Dip switch (Dual in Line Package): they consist of a set of small switches linked together, constituting a double line of contacts.
- Mercury switch: it is composed of a small dose of mercury located in a glass conduit. It is used in order to find the inclination.
- Differential Switch or Circuit Breaker: this special class of circuit breaker is characterized by interrupting the electrical current when people are in danger due to lack of insulation.
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