If your in-laws are visiting you and staying in a travel trailer in your backyard, you may need to provide them with some electricity. If so, you are likely going to use extension cords. Below are some tips on using these cords safely.
Make Sure the Extension Cords Are Outdoor Rated
When you purchase your extension cords, make sure they are rated for outdoor use. This information would likely be on the label. These cords look much different than inside extension cords. They are much thicker and have a weather resistant coating outside of them. The connectors will also look different, as they are made to prevent water from getting inside the cord. You should still be very careful that the cords do not get near water.
You also need to make sure the cord 's wiring gauge is strong enough to deliver the right wattage to the trailer. Measure the length that you need the extension cord to be before you go to the hardware or home improvement store. This is because the voltage will drop the longer the extension cord.
Make Sure You Store the Cord Properly
Even though outdoor extensions cords are very durable, if left outside the material may start to fray and crack. If this happens, you will no longer be able to use the cords as they could easily start a fire and spark. Lay them down flat while storing instead of hanging them up, such as on a hook or nails. If you hang them like this, it puts a lot of pressure on them and they could crack or fray.
Make Sure the Cords Do Not Get Hot
If you store the extension cords where it is hot, such as outside in a garage or shed, they can become damaged. If possible, lay them out straight instead of coiling them. If they are coiled, they will get hotter, which could cause a fire. Make sure they are not covered up by anything, as this will also cause them to become hot. If the shed or garage become very hot, such as such as during the summer, move them inside, if possible. Look on the extension cord label to see if it tells you the temperature the cord should be stored at. If not, ask the store employee if they can tell you.
When they are inside your home, they can be coiled so they could be placed in a closet or somewhere else out of the way.
If you need electricity outside often, do not keep using extension cords. Instead, call an electrician to set up a power line, as well as an outlet outside. If you have any questions about your extension cords, they can also help you with this. To learn more, contact a company like C & R Electric, Inc.