When The Voltage Drops

Voltage drop explains how the energy of a voltage source is decreased as electrical current flows through the passive elements (elements that do not supply voltage) of an electrical circuit. The issue becomes important when the length of wire becomes elongated. A common analogy used to explain voltage, current, and voltage drop is a garden hose. Voltage would be the water pressure supplied to the hose. Current would be the water flowing through the hose. And the inherent resistance of the hose is determined by the type and size of the hose, just like how type and size of an electrical wire determine its resistance.volt

Excessive voltage drop can cause loss of efficiency of light, motors, and appliances. This could result in lights that are dim with a decreased life expectancy for motors or appliances. To avoid excessive voltage drop, select a wire size that will minimize voltage drop. You need to know the length of the wire run and the amp load or current that will be on the circuit. To determine amps, add up the wattage of all electrical devices that will be on the circuit and divide that total by the voltage of the circuit, 110 or 220. Continue reading When The Voltage Drops

IEC Has Gone Commando

commando plugHere you are, searching for a quality plug suited for all of your industrial needs. Perhaps you need to provide electricity to your construction site. Maybe you need to power important machinery in your factory. No matter your industrial need, you’re probably looking for a Commando plug, and you may be surprised to realize that there is no listing under Commando Plug! Well, let’s take a second to dive into its history, or more properly, the history of the IEC 60309.

If you’re searching for “Commando plug”, you’re actually referring to the IEC 60309. The “Pin and Sleeve” is another common name for the IEC 60309.  The IEC 60309 is the international standard created by the International Electrotechnical Commission for industrial purposes. After the standard was created, countries began adopting it and slightly changing the name, either for their own standards or their own colloquial terminology. Continue reading IEC Has Gone Commando

Termination: Wire and Cable

Termination – for all of you getting flashbacks to old Arnold Schwarzenegger films, take a deep breath, I’ll be back.

In this blog, we’ll be talking about the different ways to terminate (or end), a cord. People have different reasons for choosing certain ends to cords.

Cords can end in three different ways: First, we have the typical plug and connector. Then, there’s a stripped wire, and following is custom termination. Standard power cords feature a plug and a connector. These types of cords can be used to power computers, appliances, electronics, etc. Both ends can be plugged in or unplugged.

wire and cable

Continue reading Termination: Wire and Cable

Understanding Every Angle

Power cords with angles can be a bit tricky. Understanding one’s left from right involves acute perspective. In a matter to simplify a rather confusing topic (and thereby curing any predisposed dyslexia), I am providing a comprehensive overview of understanding the difference between IEC and NEMA power cord angles.NEMA-LogoIEC-logo

Angled power cords  feature a number of benefits:  they’re ideal for use in confined spaces, as well as eliminating stress placed on the power cord conductors and the strain relief. The space-saving angled power cords provide substantial value when equipment is positioned in atypical ways, such as behind home/office furniture or anywhere with limited clearance.

People often use the term “right angle” to describe a 90-degree angle (or elbow). In reality, this could be four different directions: up, down, left, or right. This post will help you recognize the different power cord angles and how to read them based on their layout.

We will examine two of the most popular plugs and connectors – NEMA and IEC. Both NEMA and IEC cords have a particular way of determining how the power cord angles are named based on cord direction. Continue reading Understanding Every Angle

Molded or Mechanical

When it comes to choosing a power cord for your electronic device, you can either choose between assembled (mechanical) and an over-molded (molded) cord. An over-molded cord is built using an injection molding process, which combines two or more materials with a molded plastic component over them to create a single part. Molding consolidates materials and parts and usually eliminates the need for an additional assembly. Over-molded cords increase reliability and deliver a completely assembled product.molded

An assembled cord consists of components that must be hard-wired prior to use. The connector is manually connected to the cord. Methods such as screw and clamp designs are often labor-intensive procedures used in the manufacturing of assembled connectors. The manufacturing process will also require tools to open the casing and other various electrical assembly, including modification and wiring.

On the other end of the spectrum, the flexibility of an over-molded plug’s design makes adding personalized customization seamless for the consumer. Mold colors and custom wires can coincide with various electronic components to create a more personalized application. The molded design also provides strain relief, which is good for frequent usage and plug-and-play accessibility. Continue reading Molded or Mechanical

Inner Wire Color Breakdown

When handling electrical wire, it’s imperative to understand and differentiate the corresponding color codes. Knowing the electrical color code is paramount for your safety and the correct configuration of an electrical system. Making the wrong connections can prove to be dangerous or even fatal. It’s not a hard system to learn and the information is handy to keep close by whenever you’re working on an electric wire. I am going to give you the Inner Wire Color Breakdown:

Note: each of the wires serves a different function and the color code of the wires will tell you what that is. Be aware, however, that sometimes exceptions do exist.black wires Continue reading Inner Wire Color Breakdown

Your Power Cord Is Melting? Here’s Why!

It may not happen to everyone and it may not hmelting cordappen often, but you definitely don’t want it happening to you. Today we’re talking about power cords melting: the how’s and why’s and what to do if you suspect it happening to your electronics.

A while ago, for example, there was a recall in which HP laptop power cords were overheating and melting.  HP received 29 reports of melted power cords, some of which caused minor burns and property damage.

So what caused this? Continue reading Your Power Cord Is Melting? Here’s Why!

A Letter from The Office Hero

People seem to believe that office work is the safest work.  Perhaps the lack of explosions or the predictability lulls people into a false sense of security. However, sometimes office work can be very dangerous, even given the somewhat slower pace of work compared to NASCAR drivers or stunt doubles.  Office safety is extremely important and should be reviewed, especially when it comes to power cords and electronics.office hero

The first major issue in office safety is using old and outdated surge protectors or power strips. While your old power plugs may seem to be working fine, it is extremely important to replace them regularly.  Power strips are often under an enormous amount of electronic pressure and are powering a lot of different devices. Continue reading A Letter from The Office Hero

A Guide for High Voltage Cords

There are times when life tells you to go all out and reach extreme measures, whether it’s revving up those power tools to fix up your motorcycle or rocking out on your electric guitar. And we’re ready for those extreme moments, with our high voltage power cords in hand.

People need high voltage cords. Period.  High voltage power cords are frequently used in construction sites.  Factories, or other areas where there are harsh conditions, often need high voltage cords as well. Common appliances around your house need high voltage cords. Even dryers, lawn mowers, or most appliances with motors need high voltage cords. Knowing what type of high voltage cords you need is important, and I am here to help you every step of the way.high voltage

When looking for high voltage cords, you will find three different categories: straight blade, locking blade, and IEC 60309.  Before you get overwhelmed, there’s no need to panic. I’m here to break it down for you. Continue reading A Guide for High Voltage Cords

No More Fuss About UK’s Fuse

UKOut of the dozens of international plugs in the world, the UK-style plug is in a class of its own.  While this plug may look unnecessarily clunky and outdated to the casual observer, it is actually referred as the safest and most efficient plug in the world.

Similar to the US standard plug, the UK standard plug features 3 prongs.  The UK version, however, is much safer. Each of the prongs are coated in insulation, which makes it impossible to be accidently shocked by the plug in case it is incorrectly plugged in. Even if the plug isn’t fully inserted into the wall outlet, touching the exposed prongs will not cause a shock.

UK plugs take extra precaution to prevent people from electrocuting themselves. The UK grounding prong is slightly longer than the other two so that when the plug presses into the wall, the longer one grounds first- making this an important safety measure. Continue reading No More Fuss About UK’s Fuse