Nowadays, current home devices require some source of power. Having power strips and extension cords are beneficial because a home only has a certain amount of outlets. It is important to understand that incorrectly utilizing a power strip can potentially cause electrical damage to the strip itself and plugged in home devices. Read on to discover the safest and correct way to use a power strip.
Power Strip vs Extension Cord
First, there is a difference between a power strip and an extension cord. A power strip is a single length of a cable, which features a plug on one end and a line of sockets inserted in a plastic box on the other end. Extension cords are relatively similar, but are considerably longer and include only two to three plugs. It is important to note that extension cords are less stable and used for hours on end. On the other hand, a power strip can be used over a period of a few days.
Important Information to Know
Power strips are evidently easy to use (plug and use), but here are a few things to keep in mind:
- They are intended to handle small loads: a power strip allows one to use many devices all at the same time. However, they are not intended to power large or major home appliances such as a space heater or oven.
- Pay attention to different voltage ratings: when selecting a power strip, find one that fulfills your voltage needs. If not, exceeding the maximum voltage on a strip can cause electrical fires and malfunctioning appliances.
- Be mindful about avoiding extended use: although power strips have the capacity to power devices for a few days and potentially up to two weeks, they are not a proper replacement for electrical outlets. Likewise, overuse will cause the power strip to fail and defect plugged in devices.
- Surge protection device: Make sure a power strip includes a surge protection device, which can be discovered on the box and by a small light or switch indicator. It protects the equipment if a short or surge happens.
- Do not plug them into another power extension: If you plug in power strips or extensions into one another, the power becomes weaker and less stable. Worst of all, it can result to device damage and cause an electrical fire.
Overall, power strips and extension cords are excellent for powering up a home with multiple devices at the same time. Equally important, it is imperative to pay attention to voltage ratings, length of use, and being proactive. Correctly using a power strip means a safer home!
Kirby Electric is a Premier Electrical Contractor Serving the Greater Seattle Area
As Seattle’s premier electric company, Kirby Electric specializes in commercial and industrial lighting. We provide top electrical services that best fit your building’s needs and present energy management solutions. Such solutions provide economically and environmentally beneficial services. Contact us today and request a quote at (253) 859-2000 or online here to learn more about our services.