What is this component that is from a box fan?

I found a box fan that somebody threw out on my street. Very clean, but didn't run. Found out that this piece in the picture was open, I bypassed it now it runs. What is this component? It has a temperature on it. Is it there to cut the power to the motor in case it overheats or it is just a fuse? Is it dangerous to run the fan without it? Thanks.

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Its a thermal fuse. It protects you from the motor burning.
+1 Yep. Sure is.
. That's my guess
I ain't guessin;' I've got a box full ;-)
kelseymh7 years ago
Steve should get Best Answer. Yes, it is dangerous to run the fan without a thermal fuse. You may be able to replace it at RadioShack, if you can read the part numbers off the casing.
.  Oops! I didn't answer the safety part earlier. kelseymh is right - it won't be safe to run the motor without replacing the thermal fuse.
.  Before I spent the time, effort, and money to replace the thermal fuse, I'd try to find out why it opened in the first place. If it was just a bad fuse or someone stopped the motor from turning, &c, it might be worthwhile
.  If the motor has gone bad and it is actually overheating, you need to fix the motor (first thing I would try is some 3-in-1 oil in the bearings) or junk it.
sctirvn687 (author)  NachoMahma7 years ago
Thanks for the great answers. I have had the fan running for a while and it seems fine. I think the thermal fuse was defective. The fan looks like it was hardly used, no dust anywhere, not even inside the motor. They have some thermal fuses at Radio Shack, as kelseymh suggested. The defective one says: 2A 115°C. The one at Radio Shack is 128°C, can't find an amp rating. http://www.radioshack.com/product/index.jsp?productId=2062259 Would this one be sufficient? It protects against temperature not amps, is this right?
.  I'd try to find one rated for 115°C, but 128°C will be safer than nothing.
sctirvn687 (author)  NachoMahma7 years ago
I replaced it with the 128°C. It was close by and cheap and available. Thanks for the help everybody. Now I have a $1.79 box fan. Silly neighbors throwin' away good stuff.
The trip might have blown if someone seized the fan somehow - dropped it so the case bent ? - so if it looks OK, it'll be fine, and you're right it isn't a CURRENT fuse, its a thermal one.