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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
In a thread I posted a while back, user "gregzoll" mentioned that Edison lamp light bulb socket adapters are dangerous and are only suited for temporary use. Is it true that they are actually "the worst thing next to matches"?
 

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Are you asking about a device that screws into a light socket and allows a 2 prong cord to be plugged in?
 

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Yes they are Jim. And I still stand by that, that they are only to be used for temporary use, not for the permanent replacement of a grounded outlet.

If you were to use a high current draw device, or someone cut the ground plug off of lets say a space heater, to get it to plug into one of these firestarters, you would in turn not only burn up the socket, but could overheat the wiring, in turn causing a fire.
 

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I would agree that they are for temporary use only. I would prefer that they be removed form the market.
 

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If you are talking about these...




Then I would agree they could be quite dangerous. I've seen some electricians wire for lighting loads ONLY to light fixtures. So the lighting electrical wiring is only designed for JUST the lighting loads.

For example they might come off a 12 gauge 20 amp circuit with 14 gauge wire going to a lighting circuit. And they say that is ok because there no outlets on that circuit, thus it will never be overloaded. Others disagree, but this is still done...
http://forums.mikeholt.com/showthread.php?t=90421&highlight=gauge

Anyway adding more of a load to such circuits could be quite a hazard!

(I don't do that...)
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Why does it say "MAX. 660W" if it's only supposed to comply with the wattage limitations of the light fixture, usually 60W?
 

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IMPHO the single plug or the combo plug are test adapters only. they are useful for plugging in a breaker tracer. use for nothing else. but everybody should have one on hand, in their test kit.
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
They really need to mandate integrated fuse protection into power cords and light fixtures. In some instances, circuit breakers, GFCIs, and AFCIs just don't cut it.
 

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They really need to mandate integrated fuse protection into power cords and light fixtures. In some instances, circuit breakers, GFCIs, and AFCIs just don't cut it.
Umm, yes they do, and no they do not need to mandate fuses in fixtures. Only place that I know that uses a fuse in the plug of fixtures is in England, and that is due to how their electrical system is designed.

BTW, a electrical system is only as safe as the idiot that is using it.
 

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some new christmas light have a molded plug with a fuse in it, they must make them idiot proof since people doesn't care about maximum load on those lights (series light)
 

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carmusic, the fuses were required, due to people would overload the old string sets, or use them forever. Now, you have a fuse that blows, and instead of checkimg the fuse, people just chuck the lightswts, even though they are good.
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
I could never figure out how to open up the plug to replace the fuse in those things. I have a couple of strings that have noticeably burnt looking light bulbs, so in my case, it looks like a voltage spike or burst of RF noise in the current somehow blew out all the bulbs before the fuse could go. It must have been a burst of RF noise that caused them to burn out. Eventually, they need to start making those things with integrated surge protectors and resettable circuit breakers. That'll drive up the price, which will make people more reluctant to wastefully throw them out without making an effort to diagnose the problem. They need to put that in the next edition of the National Electrical Code. :thumbsup:
 

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No, just that the bulbs go bad, or that they were not placed back into the holder correctly. Has nothing to do with RF noise.
 

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Why does it say "MAX. 660W" if it's only supposed to comply with the wattage limitations of the light fixture, usually 60W?
Those safety limits of 60w, are based on heat generated
by a incandesant lamp.
These adaptors would not create any substancial heat
so they could supply more currant.

But they are open to mis use so therefore they are risky.

These types of adaptors were originally invented
so that people could plug there valve wireless sets
into the early power mains, which were originally
just for lighting.
A LONG TIME AGO !
 

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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
The problem was that they were all burnt out at exactly the same time. There was two of them that suffered that fate.
 

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My grandmother used to have those edison sockets in the bare bulb fixtures in the basement.

They each ran a fluorescent strip light. Safe? Yes and no. It was way under the limit as far as wattage/amperage goes, so it was not being overloaded. It was pretty much the same as a 40 watt bulb in the fixture.

BUT! The cord for one of the fluorescent lights was an old grounded 3 prong cord. It was plugged into a small brown extension cord with the grounding prong bent outward. Then plugged into the edison socket.

Also plugged into that small brown cord, which wasn't intensionally done because the lamp socket was around the corner, was a cord running to a workstation and another to a fan. The little outlet socket was burnt into the lampholder from heavy load probably peaking 1,000w or more at times! The breaker/or fuse never blew/tripped either because it never exceeded the household wiring capacity. Usually 1,875w 15a.

They are safe if use right. But you have the people that "don't know anything" and think "if it fits, it works!" Best bet is DON'T use them. In fact, they should stop selling them because of the high risks of accidental misuse.

If you have a fixture that you want to plug something into, its easy to tap off of that or a nearby source with the correct gauge wire, connections and box, to install an outlet that will give you all the power you need.

Or, remove the light, and put an outlet right into the box. They are interchangeable. Just make sure that the wiring gauge is correct inside the box that matches the fuse/breaker.
 

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The problem was that they were all burnt out at exactly the same time. There was two of them that suffered that fate.
Not too drift the topic too much, but here's why that happens:

When one bulb in a christmas light string burns out, a shunt in the bulb closes, so current can still flow and the rest of the bulbs remain lit. When this happens, the current through the whole string increases slightly. When more than one or two bulbs are shunted, current through the string rises to the point that the rest of the bulbs can't handle it, and they all burn out nearly instantaneously.
 

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Not too drift the topic too much, but here's why that happens:

When one bulb in a christmas light string burns out, a shunt in the bulb closes, so current can still flow and the rest of the bulbs remain lit. When this happens, the current through the whole string increases slightly. When more than one or two bulbs are shunted, current through the string rises to the point that the rest of the bulbs can't handle it, and they all burn out nearly instantaneously.
This is very true !
But most people with light displays dont understand this.
As they only have the barest knowledge.
 
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