Required Approvals

Flame Rating. Feel the Burn.

In a blog posted a few months back, when discussing test procedures, we mentioned multiple tests that power cords must undergo before being approved by safety agencies. To refresh your memory, some of the tests we talked about were:

  • Grounding test
  • Continuity test
  • Hi-pot test
  • Polarity test
  • Insulation test
  • Pull-test

ul94-testingToday we will be discussing another important test to be done – flame rating (or flame resistance) test. Fire safety is a huge concern when working with all different types of wires, cables, and cords. All safety measures should be taken to make sure your power cord meets fire prevention requirements for the device. Underwriters Laboratories (UL) focus specifically on product safety. In order for your power cord to be approved by UL Standards, it must first go through multiple flame tests.

First, we’ll start with an FT2 horizontal flame test for flexible cords. This test includes a series of cycles. In the course of each cycle, a burner flame burns a horizontal sample for 15 seconds then is turned off for an additional 15 seconds. Or it will burn until the sample stops smoking before 15 seconds have passed and must not go beyond 100mm from end to end. This process is repeated 5 times. Continue reading Flame Rating. Feel the Burn.

Put the Power Cord to the Test

Today we’ll be discussing the various “testing” cords must go through in order to be 100% ready to go and meet the requirements for the UL standards (or international safety agency approvals) of cord sets and power cord supplies.

UL generates standards and test procedures for products and equipment focusing on product safety. Power cords undergo some of the most common tests:insulation

  1. A grounding test. The purpose of a grounding test is to protect the consumer from hazards that can be caused by a faulty ground connection. A ground bond test is a high current AC test that measures resistance of the ground path under high current conditions.
  2. The continuity test is carried out under high current, simulating a fault to earth. This test is performed by applying an AC or DC current between the conductive surface and protective earth.
  3. There is a hi-pot test. This is a stress test of the insulation of a device under test DUT (Device Under Test). This means the voltage used in a hi-pot test can either be AC or DC.

Continue reading Put the Power Cord to the Test

Universal 3500 series is now Approved for China!

Universal Approved for China

Universal approvedUniversal 3500 series is now approved for China. We’re happy to announce the new CCC approval. At the moment, Quail Electronics offers the IEC-C14 to IEC-C13 jumpers on the market to be internationally and domestically approved. However, our 3500 series power cord now carries UL, C-UL, VDE and China’s CCC approval. That means you can take it all over North America, Europe and China without ever having to switch a thing. Travel the globe with our 3500 series!

Hospital-Grade Label

HG LABEL 1Cords used in North America medical equipment must be labeled “Hospital-
Grade.” The plug of this cord is what makes it hospital-grade.

These cords are subject to special requirements in the following standards: Medical Equipment Standards, Power Supply Cord Standards, and Attachment Plug and Receptacle Standards. The special requirement for these standards is that they must be UL and CAN/CSA approved, shown to the right in Figure 1. Continue reading Hospital-Grade Label

The CE Marking

CE rating 1All electronic devices sold in Europe carry an additional feature, the CE Marking. However, the power cord does not require the marking because it is an electrical component, not the finished product. This mark is the “European Conformity”, or in French known as the “Conformité Européenne.” It is essentially the electronic devices passport that allows it to gain access to Europe. Continue reading The CE Marking

Auto-Lock Power Cords Now Available in Color!

TitlePicOh, the Auto-Lock power cords. They are really a dream come true. They plug into any inlet without the hassle of extra hardware or tools and lock into place so you don’t have to worry about any unwanted disconnection. But wouldn’t it be nice if those handy power cords came in color? I mean, the color offers a great organizational tool and looks pretty amazing. But wait! Now they do! Continue reading Auto-Lock Power Cords Now Available in Color!

Australia’s New Power Cord Marking

RCM jpgTo all our customers from down under: you may have noticed something a little different about Quail’s Australian power cord plugs. There is a new marking on the plug that supplements the Australian standard for approving electronics in Australia and New Zealand. 

As of March 1, 2013, The Australian Communication and Media Authority (ACMA) and the New Zealand Radio Spectrum Management (RSM) consolidated regulatory certifications for electrical equipment to the Regulatory Compliance Mark (RCM). On that same date, Continue reading Australia’s New Power Cord Marking

GFCI Plug: A Cord For A Safe Surge

NEMA 5-15P GFCI_BLACKEver made a mistake and wish life had a reset button? In the power cord industry, Quail Electronics understands that life isn’t perfect. However, when dealing with electrical equipment, safety is a vital frame of thought we take seriously when powering your items. Regardless of the utility, assuring a safe solution in your home to potential health hazards from electronics is an important topic that necessitates just the right powering configuration. A ground fault circuit interrupter, or a GFCI, is a device that is designed primarily to prevent electric shock. GFCI outlets are often found in living rooms, kitchens and bathrooms.

You’ve probably noticed a GFCI near your sink area. The device automatically disables an electric circuit when it detects that electrical current is flowing along an unintended path. The GFCI measures the current leaving the hot side of a power source and juxtaposing it with the current returning to the neutral side. Any discrepancy in electric current flowing will activate the GFCI and shut the power off. If there is any imbalance, the GFCI trips the circuit. It is able to sense an electrical current mismatch as small as 4 milliamps, and it may react as quickly as 1/30th of a second. Continue reading GFCI Plug: A Cord For A Safe Surge

Russian Approval Goes from GOST to EAC

Russian Approval

EAC Russian ApprovalIn early 2013 the Russian approval, GOST R, came to an end and was no longer being issued. The new certification for Russia, Belarus and Kazakhstan is the Customs Union Technical Regulation (EAC). The Customs Union was started in 2010 to make it easier to transport goods in and out of the 3 countries.

The CU TR certification by EAC and declarations will be the new standard for the 3 countries. An EAC logo will now be displayed. This new single certification can be used to replace GOST R, GOST K and STB. Quail Electronics‘ power cords, such as the 8510 series, is currently displaying the EAC marking.


Understanding North American Cord Markings

Power cords come in all shapes and sizes. Depending on the functionality, they can be used from powering standard household devices to large-scale applications in enterprise or hospital settings. Knowing only the plug type and length of your power cord, however, gives a marginal grasp of your overall powering demands.

Even a technophile would agree that understanding the inner workings of electronic components can be quite complicated. This is also true in the power cord industry. Etched into our cord jackets display markings that refer to several characteristics that embody the powering solution to keep your products powered seamlessly. In an effort to explicate Quail’s worldwide-leading products, we have presented an exposition Continue reading Understanding North American Cord Markings