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238 posts

Master Geek
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Topic # 242557 3-Nov-2018 14:24
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I have a budget power board on a single wall socket with a budget 1 meter extension cord to another power board which I have a portable air conditioner plugged into. I'm worried the extension cord might not be heavy duty enough and or length of run might be causing the voltage to dropping with the air con load. All that runs off of the same wall outlet is a digital clock, occasionally a pedestal fan and a 15W lamp. I'm not an electrician so not exactly sure what sort of supply the air con should be getting. Should I be using a heavy duty extension cord in place of the budget one to reduce any voltage drop? Should I use higher quality power boards in place of the budget ones? Ideally I should get another power point put in but if anyone can suggest something for the interim that would be great.

 

Edit: If I am reading this correctly the badge on the air con says AC Input: Cooling: 1460W - 6.4 A, Heating: 1270W - 5.6 A. That means a 10A extension and power board should handle the load but what about voltage drop with cable length?

 

 


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Uber Geek
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  Reply # 2119080 3-Nov-2018 15:33
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Your 1m extension cord is nothing to worry about however budget power strips are notorious for poor quality contacts in the sockets. The worst thing you can do is daisy chain them. As the socket contacts lose tension they get hot with reasonable loads. The airconditioner should be plugged into a wall socket rather than a power strip. Get the single wall socket replaced with a double.



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Master Geek
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  Reply # 2119109 3-Nov-2018 16:07
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Bung: Your 1m extension cord is nothing to worry about however budget power strips are notorious for poor quality contacts in the sockets. The worst thing you can do is daisy chain them. As the socket contacts lose tension they get hot with reasonable loads. The airconditioner should be plugged into a wall socket rather than a power strip. Get the single wall socket replaced with a double.

 

Ok great thanks. Swapping a single to double outlet is easier than a whole new wall socket located elsewhere. So with the air conditioner on a 1 meter extension on a single wall outlet is there not much to worry about with voltage drop being enough to damage the air con motor etc?

 

Is there more concern with the power boards catching fire when daisy chained than damage to the air conditioner? I know I should be more concerned about fire but the air con was expensive...

 

 

 

 


 
 
 
 


Glurp
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  Reply # 2119214 3-Nov-2018 17:10
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I'm not an electrician but I have some practical experience. I'm pretty sure any extension cord found here will be rated at 10 amps, which is pretty standard for all consumer connections. The cord is nothing to worry about, especially at that length. As Bung points out, cheap power strips may not have particularly robust contacts. If the connection is not perfect, and there is a substantial load, then the connection point could overheat and start arcing, which would definitely pose a fire risk. This is not all that uncommon. It could also conceivably damage the airco by constantly changing the voltage to the motor. If you absolutely must daisy chain, then try to limit the chained cord to low-power devices that won't overload it. Plug the airco into the wall, or as close to the wall as you can get it. Check that the plug makes a snug, solid contact. Don't buy the cheapest extension cords or doublers. Look for something that appears well-made. 

 

 





I reject your reality and substitute my own. - Adam Savage
 




238 posts

Master Geek
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  Reply # 2119235 3-Nov-2018 17:35
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Thanks @Rikkitic for expanding on that. I think I will get the wall outlet swapped to a double point as Bung suggests to run the air con separately (without power boards). The air con is the only high load appliance currently plugged into the power board daisy chain so I hope I haven't damaged it. You do have to watch out for these budget extension cords and power boards, just recently I noticed one of the pins on one of my extension cords has become loose (the end that you plug into). It is Elto brand I believe.


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  Reply # 2120252 5-Nov-2018 14:10
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I also agree with cheap boards,

The pins seem to spread often and I end up finding them melted as they’ve had heaters plugged into them.

Consider a construction/workshop type extension lead over a cheaper white elto ohe.

Just make sure after running it for long periods the lead isn’t getting hot to the touch.


I don’t think it will be too bad, fan heaters are far worse for loading up leads\sockets



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Master Geek
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  Reply # 2120543 5-Nov-2018 20:54
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I looked at heavy duty type extension cords but the problem is they only seem to come in lengths of 10-25 meters whereas I only need 1-2 meters. Will probably look for a better domestic brand like HPM.


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  Reply # 2120562 5-Nov-2018 21:47
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Kol12:

I looked at heavy duty type extension cords but the problem is they only seem to come in lengths of 10-25 meters whereas I only need 1-2 meters. Will probably look for a better domestic brand like HPM.



Most heavy duty extension cords have only 1mm2 conductors - exactly the same as those thin white extension cords. They just make the insulation thicker, use a bright colour, and label it as heavy duty. It is only if the cord is longer than approx 20m (can't remember the exact number) That it has to be made with 1.5mm2 conductors.

Try and buy an extension cord that is made with 1.5mm2 conductors. Even though such a cord will probably be almost impossible to obtain in a short lengh. Unless you (or a sparkie) makes it yourself / themselves.





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Master Geek
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  Reply # 2120743 6-Nov-2018 09:13
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Kol12:

 

I looked at heavy duty type extension cords but the problem is they only seem to come in lengths of 10-25 meters whereas I only need 1-2 meters. Will probably look for a better domestic brand like HPM.

 

 

 

 

I have bought two of these, they are a reasonable price and the only short 1.5mm ones I have found:

 

https://kelpls.co.nz/products/10a-black-extension-leads-tapon-plug-1-5mm-saa

 

 

 

I use a short 1m one for the electric frypaypan, (the previous crappy Mitre10/Bunnings one i used got quite warm...) and a 3m one I think to run some home brewing gear.


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  Reply # 2120821 6-Nov-2018 11:26
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Aredwood:
Kol12:

 

I looked at heavy duty type extension cords but the problem is they only seem to come in lengths of 10-25 meters whereas I only need 1-2 meters. Will probably look for a better domestic brand like HPM.

 



Most heavy duty extension cords have only 1mm2 conductors - exactly the same as those thin white extension cords. They just make the insulation thicker, use a bright colour, and label it as heavy duty. It is only if the cord is longer than approx 20m (can't remember the exact number) That it has to be made with 1.5mm2 conductors.

Try and buy an extension cord that is made with 1.5mm2 conductors. Even though such a cord will probably be almost impossible to obtain in a short lengh. Unless you (or a sparkie) makes it yourself / themselves.

 

Not just the thickness of insulation, but the quality of insulation and sleeving.

 

I use long heavy duty extension leads, the cheap ones are awful, not very flexible, very prone to tangling, hard to loop up.  There's a huge difference in prices at Mitre 10 etc between budget and quality extension cords.  It's worth paying extra for quality IMO.  Needing an extension cord for a 2 minute job, but having to spend 10 minutes untangling it is a great big PITA.




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Master Geek
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  Reply # 2126743 14-Nov-2018 17:46
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I suppose plugging the AC into one of these wouldn't be great either?

 

https://www.bunnings.co.nz/arlec-energy-cost-electrical-meter_p04410270




238 posts

Master Geek
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  Reply # 2126744 14-Nov-2018 17:47
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Mantis:

 

Kol12:

 

I looked at heavy duty type extension cords but the problem is they only seem to come in lengths of 10-25 meters whereas I only need 1-2 meters. Will probably look for a better domestic brand like HPM.

 

 

 

 

I have bought two of these, they are a reasonable price and the only short 1.5mm ones I have found:

 

https://kelpls.co.nz/products/10a-black-extension-leads-tapon-plug-1-5mm-saa

 

 

 

I use a short 1m one for the electric frypaypan, (the previous crappy Mitre10/Bunnings one i used got quite warm...) and a 3m one I think to run some home brewing gear.

 

 

 

 

I ordered one. Cheers.


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