Ok so i'm hoping that someone can explain to me in basic terms: in an un-fused circuit what could actually cause an electrical component to be damaged by current flow. I'll explain the reason for my question.
I have recently fitted custom dash gauges to my Jeep. The instructions recommend fitting a fuse to avoid damaging the gauges, so that is what i have done. What i am trying to get my head around is how the gauges could actually become damaged if there was no fuse. Power is flowing through the gauges which are providing a resistance and then the power is flowing back to the battery. So what could cause the fuse to blow? I guess some kind of short circuit but i'm struggling to get my head around where the short circuit would occur that could damage the gauges (if i had no fuse). Maybe i'm over simplifying the system in my head but the way i am thinking of it is: if i had a simple bulb in a circuit, if that circuit shorted out then the wire would be destroyed but the bulb would still be ok? wouldn't it? because the short would bypass the bulb.
So in the case of my gauges what could hypothetically fail that would cause my gauges to be damaged by excess current flow? Or are the instructions wrong and what they actually mean is 'a fuse should be used in case something in the gauges fail in order to prevent a potential fire' and not 'a fuse should be used to protect the gauges'?