Go Back   DIY Chatroom Home Improvement Forum > Home Improvement > Electrical

CLICK HERE AND JOIN OUR COMMUNITY TODAY...IT'S FREE!

Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread Display Modes
Old 02-05-2008, 08:10 PM   #1
Learning by Doing
 
Leah Frances's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2008
Location: Easton, Maryland
Posts: 3,156
Rewards Points: 2,000
Blog Entries: 7
Default

Extension Cord Safety - My Husband's theory


My Dear Husband has run an extension cord along a baseboard behind one of our steam radiators. It is the appropriately sized cord for the only thing that gets plugged into it (Laptop AC cord). Sometimes the cord ends up in contact with the supply pipe for the radiator. He is under the impression that the heat from the radiator will not hurt the cord. This seems hinky to me. All I could find on the UL website said you shouldn't drape it over hot surfaces, such as a radiator. Well, DUH! But what about under it?

Thoughts? Other than finding another husband?

__________________
If I could only remember to THINK about what I was doing before I did it.
Leah Frances is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-05-2008, 08:14 PM   #2
Union Electrician
 
goose134's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2007
Location: Chicago, USA
Posts: 615
Rewards Points: 500
Default

Extension Cord Safety - My Husband's theory


A steam radiator is unlikely to generate the heat needed to really do a number on the cord. That said, if it can be avoided, why not? The ones of great concern are the electric baseboard heaters. There are stickers on them that tell you not to hang drapes, cloth, and so on over them. These have surfaces that conceivably could ignite these types of things.

goose134 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-05-2008, 08:50 PM   #3
Member
 
Join Date: Nov 2007
Location: Nashua, NH, USA
Posts: 6,964
Rewards Points: 2,024
Default

Extension Cord Safety - My Husband's theory


If the steam enters at the top of the radiator, the underside won't be quite as hot as the upper part. Still, some heat "radiates" downward. (As radiant energy in addition to the heat picked up by air (convection) moving upward (heat rises) through the radiator.)

The radiant energy is enough to accelerate the biodegrading of the extension cord insulation, namely the insulation might start to turn brittle and crack three years from now as opposed to eighteen.

Last edited by AllanJ; 02-05-2008 at 08:52 PM.
AllanJ is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-05-2008, 08:54 PM   #4
Learning by Doing
 
Leah Frances's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2008
Location: Easton, Maryland
Posts: 3,156
Rewards Points: 2,000
Blog Entries: 7
Default

Extension Cord Safety - My Husband's theory


I've got a good IR thermometer. Is there somewhere I can find optimal operating temperatures for extension cords?

I can't rebut my DH with anything but cold hard facts.
__________________
If I could only remember to THINK about what I was doing before I did it.
Leah Frances is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-05-2008, 08:57 PM   #5
Union Electrician
 
goose134's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2007
Location: Chicago, USA
Posts: 615
Rewards Points: 500
Default

Extension Cord Safety - My Husband's theory


The conductors inside should have their rating printed on the cord itself. As for the jacket, I'd have to say that either the NEMA website or the manufacturer would have something.

Wait. You don't know who made your cord, do you?
Let me check a few things. I'll report back.
goose134 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-05-2008, 09:15 PM   #6
Union Electrician
 
goose134's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2007
Location: Chicago, USA
Posts: 615
Rewards Points: 500
Default

Extension Cord Safety - My Husband's theory


Leah, I checked around and the jacket on the cords have a wide variety of limits. One was as high as 250 deg.F. Most were in the 120-140deg range. Shoot your temp scanner at the radiator at full heat and see what you find. I agree that even though it may not exceed limits, it will probably shorten the life of the cord.

Your husband being who he is, may need docs. on this and if pressed, I could link them. Who is, by the way, much like myself. I almost feel like I should live in Missouri.
goose134 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-06-2008, 04:26 PM   #7
Member
 
joed's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2005
Location: Welland, Ontario
Posts: 7,842
Rewards Points: 2,478
Blog Entries: 4
Default

Extension Cord Safety - My Husband's theory


I don't think the heat from the radiator will damage the cord. However you should install a proper receptacle so the cord does not need to be used. Cords are for temporay use. This is not a temporary use.
joed is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 02-06-2008, 04:47 PM   #8
UAW SKILLED TRADES
 
Stubbie's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2007
Location: Kansas
Posts: 5,040
Rewards Points: 2,050
Default

Extension Cord Safety - My Husband's theory


Reconsider your thoughts on a new husband in some womens worlds they are much like extension cords as Joe said ........ for temporary use.
Stubbie is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-06-2008, 05:03 PM   #9
Member
 
Join Date: Jan 2008
Posts: 70
Rewards Points: 75
Default

Extension Cord Safety - My Husband's theory


hinky ?
nacko is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-06-2008, 05:06 PM   #10
Member
 
yummy mummy's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2006
Location: Canada
Posts: 1,725
Rewards Points: 1,000
Default

Extension Cord Safety - My Husband's theory


I say go for a new husband
yummy mummy is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-06-2008, 10:06 PM   #11
Power Gen/RS Engineer
 
Join Date: Jun 2006
Location: Oak Park, Illinois
Posts: 751
Rewards Points: 500
Default

Extension Cord Safety - My Husband's theory


Quote:
Originally Posted by yummy mummy View Post
I say go for a new husband
Yummy, you have waaaay too much to take care of with your vapour barrier (and you best friend Atlantic) to be quipping here!

Carry on!
__________________
Well, now, there's what's right and what's right and never the twain shall meet.
BigJimmy is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-07-2008, 09:13 AM   #12
Member
 
yummy mummy's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2006
Location: Canada
Posts: 1,725
Rewards Points: 1,000
Default

Extension Cord Safety - My Husband's theory


Quote:
Originally Posted by BigJimmy View Post
Yummy, you have waaaay too much to take care of with your vapour barrier (and you best friend Atlantic) to be quipping here!

Carry on!
this forum is my relaxation.........and yes Atlantic is my favourite........
yummy mummy is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-07-2008, 10:27 AM   #13
Member
 
Join Date: Jun 2007
Posts: 3,508
Rewards Points: 2,004
Default

Extension Cord Safety - My Husband's theory


Extension devices and cords are one of the most dangerous methods out there. Never use an extension cord for permanent use. Even for TV's ect... Protected power extension strips are the exception.
The NEC prohibits the use of cords as you have described. Its a violation and dangerous (fire hazzard). Get rid of that cord today and get an outlet installed.
Having a real problem is about a million to one, but people do win lotteries.
J. V. is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-07-2008, 04:46 PM   #14
Sparrky
 
Join Date: Feb 2008
Location: Northern California
Posts: 79
Rewards Points: 75
Default

Extension Cord Safety - My Husband's theory


how about springing for a couple of extra batteries for the Lap Top in exchange for the cord you can dump into the round file..give him some excra batts and an charger and maybe you'll wean him off the cord no-no ?
Kingsmurf is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-08-2008, 07:32 AM   #15
Learning by Doing
 
Leah Frances's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2008
Location: Easton, Maryland
Posts: 3,156
Rewards Points: 2,000
Blog Entries: 7
Default

Extension Cord Safety - My Husband's theory


The NEC has yet to prove to be a persuasive during a spousal debate in my nearly ten years of marriage. I understand that this is a bad idea. My DH does not. That's why I was hoping to find some 'hard evidence' that putting the extension cord there was a problem.

FYI: he got another new battery for Xmas. It came with another AC cord for the laptop - hence his idea to put the extension cord behind the radiator, so he could have yet another place to plug his computer in.

__________________
If I could only remember to THINK about what I was doing before I did it.
Leah Frances is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply


Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off


Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
extension cord draining power? mt232 Electrical 14 05-25-2011 03:37 PM
safe way to add extension to power cord sil Electrical 7 10-18-2007 09:58 PM
Do I have a 30 amp or 70 amp welder. And help wireing it. Tmb9862 Electrical 17 12-04-2006 09:21 PM
Help w/Welding Machine Extension Cord ThePlumber Electrical 1 07-23-2006 10:27 AM
Extension Cord Question. camoram Electrical 2 04-08-2006 09:12 PM




Top of Page | View New Posts

Copyright © 2003-2014 Escalate Media. All Rights Reserved.