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I will try and explain. An electrical relay is used when you want to turn on a high current devide like headlights. It only takes a small voltage and very little current to engage a relay. If you used a switch to turn it on it would have to be pretty big to handle the instant turn on current and constant current load. In a relay it has two good sized metal plates that come together when energized and they handle the current load. I hope this helps. Or is it still clear as mud?
 

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basic Relays - a little less tech and more layman's

This is a little less technical and a little more layman's terms. Might help to explain the "why" and "how" of using relays. Click the link.

http://www.rattlebars.com/mtz/basicrelay.html

 
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