Is your air conditioner distant from the closest outlet? Although you are unsure if it would be safe to do so, you might wish to utilize an extension cord. No more worries! We have all the answers prepared for you.
Depending on the sort of AC unit you have, you may need to use an extension cord. Typically, an extension cable needs to be at least 10 feet long, 120 volts, and 15 amps in power. More things to think about while selecting an extension cord for an AC are listed below:
We’ll talk about the qualities of the extension cord your AC unit requires in this article. We’ll discuss several connected topics, such as electrical safety precautions when utilizing the AC.
- Wire gauge
- Energy efficiency
We’ll talk about the qualities of the extension cord your AC unit requires in this article. We’ll discuss several connected topics, such as electrical safety precautions when utilizing the AC. We still have a lot to teach you. Continue reading, then!
Selecting The Best AC Extension Cord
You must be aware of the considerations while selecting an extension cord for your air conditioning unit. For your protection, it’s critical to understand the various extension cord qualities. For further information, see the list below.
1. Cable Size
The amperage of the electricity must be compatible with the wire size. The majority of AC equipment need American Wire Gauge (AWG) of 15 to 18 to enable adequate power flow.
Think about the wire length as well. It has a big role in electrical resistance, which is how evenly electrical charges are distributed via wire channels. The length of the cable might range from 10 to 30 feet, depending on the air conditioner.
Utilizing electrical items safely is made possible by understanding resistance. The resistance of a wire increases with length.
However, the manufacturer of the AC unit determines the wire size. To select an appropriate wire size, refer to the AC unit’s description.
A wire gauge can be used to gauge the diameter of the wire.
2. Availability Of Power
Voltage, wattage, and amperage are the three components of electrical power that need to be kept in mind. Electrical wires contain these three elements, hence it is important to assess an AC unit’s power capacity.
Amperage quantifies the force of an electric current, whereas voltage relates to the direction of the flow of electricity. Wattage measurements therefore refer to the whole power of electricity.
Compare the extension cord’s capacity to the breakdown of your AC unit’s power capacity. Otherwise, don’t chance a power capability that is unmatched.
A 3-prong connector is typically used on AC appliances to balance the current flow. In contrast, low voltage power is typically connected via 2-prong connectors.
Since an air conditioner uses energy continuously, the additional prong is required to avoid electric overflow.
To prevent a fire, it is also essential that the connectors work with the outlet. So, check the connector and plug. If the AC unit doesn’t fit the extension chord, don’t force it in.
Why Is Choosing The Right Extension Cord Vital?
Electrical power is transformed into smaller, more efficient charges using an extension cord. Directly plugging in the AC unit to the main source could result in an electricity overcharge. The motors and components of an air conditioner are readily damaged by too much electricity.
Therefore, choosing the right extension cord is essential to maintaining electrical safety. Any improper electrical power or wire sizing measurement can result in issues like a circuit deficit.
When the wires are unable to transmit the amount of electricity flowing through them, a circuit shortage occurs. Burning wires or an electric shock are the outcome. A power outage is dangerous and can easily endanger the AC motor.
Do You Need A Circuit Breaker For Your AC?
A circuit shortage is protected from using a circuit breaker. It functions as a switch to keep the transmission of electrical power within a normal range in accordance with the AC’s voltage capacity. Additionally, it avoids circuit overflow.
Some AC manufacturers ship their products without a circuit breaker. Therefore, you must become familiar with the process of selecting the proper circuit breaker.
What to look for in an AC circuit breaker includes the following:
Circuit Ampacity Minimum
The minimal ampere that a circuit breaker can manage during an AC’s continuous use is measured as circuit ampacity. You can check the ampacity level on the circuit breaker’s back and then compare it to the label chart on your air conditioner.
Consider the largest fuse that a breaker can accommodate as well. This means that the breaker should not be connected at a higher voltage than what is specified in the maximum fuse section.
On the AC unit’s label, look for the maximum fuse compatibility.
To ensure safety, we advise you to let electricians install the circuit breaker. Wires that are improperly positioned run the risk of catching fire.
Can an Extension Cord Be Used Permanently?
An extension cord shouldn’t be used as a permanent wire. According to research, extension cords that are always in use are hazardous. For no more than 90 days should you use an extension cord for your air conditioner.
Reduce the amount of time you spend using an extension cord. To design the wiring in your home so that power outlets are in the best possible locations, think about visiting an expert.
Where Should The Extension Cord Be Placed?
Place the extension cord in an area that is difficult for children or animals to access. Although it can be put on a wall, it cannot be hidden behind one.
Avoid hiding the extension cord; keep it accessible and in use. As we previously stated, it is inappropriate to utilize as permanent wiring.
Additionally, keep it away from wet surfaces to avoid electric shock.
Can I Connect One Extension Cord To Another One?
You should never join two extension cords together. If the AC is too far from a main outlet, consider a longer wire as opposed to utilizing numerous, overlapping extension cords.
More electricity will be used as a result, increasing the electric bill. The extension cord continues to use electricity as long as it is attached to the main power source. When not in use, the extension cord should be unplugged.
What’s The Maximum Number Of Appliances You Can Plug Into An Extension Cord?
A maximum of two appliances can be plugged into an extension cord without risk. Use a single socket, however, and do not plug anything else into the extension cord when using the AC unit. This preserves electrical compatibility and safer power distribution.
An extension cord with many plugs uses more electricity. By allocating an extension cord to a single appliance, you can prevent this.
How Can Extension Cords Be Prevented From Tearing?
The wire on an extension cord can naturally rip apart over time. Avoid hiding an extension cord behind a wall and be cautious where you position one. Use cord safety measures and disconnect the device while not in use.
You might use a removable plastic or rubber strip to hide it. If you have pets who could damage the cables while it is in use, this is the best option. The covering strip gives an additional layer of defense against damage from the outside.
To cover a ripped area of the extension cord, you can also use electrical tape. Electric tape, however, ought to be used sparingly. To continue transmitting power across the copper line, electrical tape can be used as a bridge. However, don’t rely on it as a long-term fix.
What Is The Lifespan Of An Extension Cord?
Depending on how often you use it, extension cords can last anywhere from 4 to 6 years. To prevent overusing an extension cord, it is preferable to keep an eye on its usage. When the AC unit is not in use, don’t forget to disconnect it.
How Should An Extension Cord Be Wrapped?
Extension cords are frequently seen being wrapped in zigzag or circular patterns. understand the proper way to wrap an extension cord. A copper wire that has been bent too far may get compressed and deliver an electric shock.
Find out how to wrap an extension cord safely:
- The extension cord should be bent into a circle with a 7–8 inch diameter. Bend the wire at the length of your forearm to create a zigzag shape.
- To stop the wire from spreading, use a zip lock.
- To keep moisture out, cover the socket with an electrical cable.
- Maintain the extension cord in a dry, cold environment.
We have gained a great deal of knowledge on things to consider while selecting an extension cord for the AC. You should examine the connectors, power capacity, and size.
We also talked about why we utilize a circuit breaker as well as a few safety tips to keep in mind when connecting the AC to a power source. Don’t forget to check that the extension cord works with the air conditioner and any other appliances.