Nearly all Portable electrical items require a fuse for added protection in case of a fault. This fuse is designed to protect your device from harm should irregularities in current be detected.

Fuse production is dictated by British Standard regulation BS1362 to ensure fuses are safe to use and are manufactured to full quality.

But beware, there are counterfeit fuses which will cause more harm than good. These fake fuses could cause damage to your electronic equipment, your home, or yourself.

Fake fuse from Caterham PAT Testing

Let’s show you some of the things to look out for if you have found a suspicious looking fuse.

  • First of all, let’s look at the length. The length of the fuse can often be an indication sign that the fuse is genuine or not. A genuine BS1362 fuse between 3 – 13 amp should be the length of 25.4mm (+/- 0.6mm). Any longer or shorter than that may not fit properly in the fuse containment and will not work as intended.
  • Another key point is the weight. A genuine BS1362  fuse weight is 2 grams on average, anything higher or lower than this weight could mean it has not been filled with the required quartz sand. Quartz sand is in the fuse to control the breakage of the fuse wire and containment of flame reactions within the ceramic body.
  • If the detailed writing on the fuse is not ‘crisp’ and appears blurred, this can be a sign the fuse is counterfeit.
  • Lastly, the appearance of the fuse itself could be a sign of it being a counterfeit or genuine product. A genuine BS1362 fuse has small dimples on the end caps. There should be no gaps between the metal end caps and the ceramic body, ie, you should not see the wire poking down the side of the fuse under the cap.
Fake fuse in a UK plug

The fuse wire is connected through an eyelet, with no indication of the fuse wire trapped underneath the end caps.  The ASTA License number and kitemark number should be easily found on the BEAB website and BSI Kitemark website. if they are not found on these websites or don’t match the given requirements above; consider the fuse a counterfeit.

The best way to ensure you are replacing with genuine fuses is to purchase them from a reputable trader and be aware of flex, or appliances if you have found a counterfeit fuse as the remainder of the appliance may also be of poor quality.