Filed under: Cable Management, Cables and Wires, Electrical
When it comes to installing power strips and extension cords it is important to install them correctly to ensure that they not only function accordingly but also provide a safe means of power for any application. Here are some of the don’ts of power strip and extension cord usage you may need to consider when installing them.
Don’ts Of Power Strip and Extension Cord Use
1) Extension cords are designed for temporary use only and should only be used for short periods of time. Never use an extension cord for weeks or even months at a time as this may cause harm to your devices and may result in overheating or overuse of the cord.
2) Power strips and other uninterruptible power supplies should never be used if they don’t have a resettable circuit breaker integrated into the design. Circuit breakers are designed to cut power instantly to the compatible devices causing them to avoid the risk of overloads. If your power strip doesn’t feature a resettable circuit breaker then it is best to replace it with a newer version for added safety.
3) Another no, no of power strip use is daisy chaining your power cords. Daisy chain is the method of plugging one device into another and then into another off the same power supply outlet. This form of installation can cause lowered power functions throughout the installation and can cause your devices to overheat.
4) Another thing that should not be done when installing a power strip is to overload it. Overloading your power strip with multiple devices running at once can cause the circuit breaker to trip. If this happens do not force the installation to function as it may cause it to overload and overheat resulting in a fire. You should also not cover any electrical boxes or strips as this may also cause the device to overheat resulting in a fire.
5) Lastly this may be common sense, although you should never use any sort of electrical device near moisture or wet areas. The risk of electrocution is extremely high when used in combination with water and may result in a fatality. Always use your power strips, extension cords and other electronics in dry areas.
Never mind how useful they are – extension cords just aren’t that exciting. Or are they? While I’ve always appreciated that power extensions take electricity to places it wouldn’t normally reach, they’d never struck me as having an element of, well… fun. That’s until the fateful day when I laid eyes on these little beauties: Cool Colors Outdoor Extension Cords by Coleman Cable.
As I remember, I was sitting in on one of our many New Products meetings, and was far from being the only one who was impressed by these power extensions. We were all hooked. How could we not be? This is the most fascinating extension cord I’ve ever seen. First of all, it comes in 6 different shades of neon: pink, blue, purple, green, orange and red (I, personally, find that the purple model, pictured above, floats my boat). And to top it all off, the cord’s clear plastic female connector lights up when power is running through it, a feature that not only further enhances its looks, but also helps to keep you safer and more aware of electrical current when you’re using it.
Lest I make this product sound like some kind of superficial electrical fashion accessory, let me just say that after I got over the initial “Oooh, funky colors!!!” reaction, I was also incredibly impressed by the sheer ruggedness of this extension cord. This is one tough piece of goods, a fact that becomes obvious as soon as you pick the extension cord up. The insulation, while flexible, is extremely heavy duty, and you immediately get the idea that it won’t be cracking or warping anytime soon. And being that its jacket is also water and UV-resistant, this power extension is rated for outdoor use. As a matter of fact, it’s great for use during yard work, when you want an easy-to-see extension cord that you won’t accidentally slice with a weed whacker or electric hedge trimmer.
Available in 25, 50 and 100-foot lengths, Coleman Cable Cool Colors extension cords are rated to 15 Amps, and are made with 12-gauge, three-conductor wires, as well as reinforced plug blades and pins.