Plugging In Safely
The next time you reach for an extension cord, remember this: just because a particular cord is long enough, it’s not necessarily the right one for the job.
Power extension cords aren’t all the same. They are manufactured to be used for different purposes, and to carry varying amounts of electrical current.
By basing your choice of extension cord on each task’s requirements, you can greatly reduce the risks of fire, electrical shock, and injury that come with improper use.
Extension Cord Safety Tips
- Don't use near sinks, bathtubs, or other water areas.
- Remove plugs from the outlet by pulling firmly on the head of the plug.
- Disconnect cords that become heated.
- Use the appropriate cord for the load to avoid over-heating.
- Minimum 8 gauge wire (lower the gauge, the heavier the wire)
- Many cords are rated for specific tasks – check the label
- Use only exterior UL-approved extension cords outside
- Don't allow a "wire octopus" of extension cords in any electrical outlet.
- Don't place extension cords:
- in high-traffic areas
- under carpets
- under furniture
- in doorways