Printed circuits are plastic sheets on which copper tracks have been printed. Components are plugged directly into the tracks. A few modern cars have flexible printed circuits. The copper tracks are printed in ribbons of flexible plastic, which replace the whole wiring system.
If the wrong-sized wire is used, or if a wire becomes broken or disconnected, this can cause an accidental short circuit which bypasses the resistance of the component. The current in the wire may become dangerously high and melt the wire or cause a fire.
The other, probably rated at about 20-30 amps, protects components not wired through the ignition — horns, interior lights and the cigarette lighter. Where a single fuse protects a number of circuits and keeps blowing, each circuit must be checked individually to discover which one is faulty.
Most car handbooks and service manuals include a wiring diagram which can be difficult to follow. The colour-coding, however, is a useful guide to tracing wiring.