Outdoor Extension Cord Safety [4 Things to Know]

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Using an extension cord always feels dangerous. Especially when you have kids in the house. It’s a worrying matter. But still, you need to use them for some outside activity. 

What outdoor extension cord safety is?

There are 4 particular ways you can manage to save your household from outdoor extension cord hazards. You can ensure the right extension cord for the right use. You also need to ensure proper use of the extension cord for proper work. As well as you need to store your extension cord correctly. 

You might still be pretty dizzy about that matter about what safety precautions you need to follow. That’s why I have explained the safety measures for you. 

So, don’t worry, read along with the details for detailed information!

Is Outdoor Extension Cord Safe Enough?

You might think buying an outdoor extension cord should give you the ultimate safety. Well, the cord is actually different from an indoor extension cord. 

Because the jacket or insulation the outdoor extension cord has is tougher than the indoor one. This insulation can tolerate moisture, chemicals, sudden temperature changes, and ultraviolet rays. 

This is why it’s called the outdoor extension cord. It’s suitable for outdoor uses. 

But still, there are some safety rules for the outdoor extension cord. Because unfortunately, it’s not 100% safe if you don’t know the safety measures.  

4 Safety Measures for Outdoor Extension Cord

We all know how useful the outdoor extension cord can be, especially during the holidays. It can be a great tool to use in the household whether indoor or outdoor. 

An extension cord is a common way to power the electrical device. But many of us try to avoid extension cords. It is because of the danger and certain pitfalls of using the extension cord. 

Many times you will also notice that there is a smell of burning. This smell is kind of similar to the smell when the pressure cooker runs out of water.

But here’s a thing we need to take proper caution before using outdoor extension cord. Otherwise, it can pose a fire hazard or risk to safety. 

You can take 4 safety precautions to use an extension cord. Jump on and hit the details-

Tip 1: Choose The Right Extension Cord 

Choosing the right cord is super important. You should always choose the right cord for the right uses. 

Extension cord mainly falls into three broad categories according to uses. They are- occasional use, frequent use, rugged use. 

To make sure you have the right types of extension cord, you need to check the cord description. Or you can look for the cord designated letter.

If your cord is an outdoor one, it should be the W class extension cord. Because W class refers to the outdoor cord. 

The difference between outdoor and indoor extension cords is the insolation feature. Outdoor extension cords are well covered and made for heavy-duty. 

You should always choose your extension cord according to your uses and requirements. 

There are two types of plug cords in the market, 2-prong plug cord, and 3-prong plug cord. But I suggest you try to buy the 3-prong plug.

The 3-prong usually reduces the risk of electrical shock and electrical fire hazards. It gives the power surges a safe place to dissipate. 

Tip 2: Use The Extension Cord Correctly 

Using an extension cord incorrectly will get it damaged or cause a fire hazard. And it’s pretty difficult to get rid of electrical fire

As a result, you should always discuss safety issues and tips before using an extension cord. You have to have a fire extinguisher in your house for any hazard. 

Here I have collected some of the most usable and reliable fire extinguishers for you-

Product 01 
Product 02 

These extinguishers are very much useful. They will help to prevent any loss immediately if any related hazards happen. 

Here are some other safety precautions you need to follow before or after using an extension cord- 

You should never remove an extension cord grounding pin to fit into a 2-prong outlet

You should also avoid powering up multiple devices with a single cord. It will overflow the electricity to the cord. As a result, it can be a cause of damage or fire hazard. 

Next, you should never use an indoor extension cord outdoors. Indoor extension cords don’t have that much insulation feature. 

That’s why you shouldn’t use an indoor extension cord outdoors. But here’s a thing, you can use an outdoor extension cord indoors.

You must also avoid plugging multiple cords together. It can overheat the code as well as can damage the electric device.  

Remember to avoid running extension cord under rug or furniture as well. That can hamper the cord and release the electricity. 

You should never use staples or pins to attach the cord. Because it causes damage to the extension cord. 

You should definitely avoid bending or coiling the extension cord while you are using the extension cord. 

Lastly, you should avoid using an extension cord that feels hot when you are touching it. That can happen because of the extensive load or the unconditional release of electricity.

You should remember that outdoor extension cords aren’t a permanent solution to your electricity line. From my experience, I suggest you occasionally use them like how you plug in your Christmas tree in an outdoor outlet

But if you are using an extension cord regularly, consider updating your home electrical system. Because with an advanced electrical system, you can avoid any type of electrical danger.

Tip 3: Store the Extension Cord Correctly

You should always store the extension cord in a proper manner. Storing the extension cord requires you to follow some proper rules. These are-

  • You should always store the cord indoors.
  • Always unplug the extension cord when you are not using them.
  • Examine if the cord is damaged before using it. Using a damaged cord can cause a fire hazard. It can release electricity improperly.
  • Avoid pulling the cord when disconnecting it from the outlet. There is a tendency to pull the cord to unplug from the outlet rather than the plug. It causes damage to the connection of the cord. 

Tip 4: Don’t Forget a Few Small But Important Things

If you are using the extension cord outdoors, try to avoid the watery area. Purchase a cold-rated extension cord for outdoor use in the snow. Because water or snow can be a cause for electrical shock

FAQs 

Question: How do I know if my extension cord is indoor or outdoor?

Answer: You’ll know that by seeing the letter designation. If your extension cord package has the word “W” which denotes that the cord is used for outdoor activities. 

Question: Can an outdoor extension cord get wet?

Answer:  It’s very dangerous if your outdoor extension cord gets wet. Your plug could get leakages. You should unplug the cord before it rains. 

Question: Does outdoor wiring need to be in conduit?

Answer: Yes. Your outdoor wiring needs to be in conduit. This is to protect it from physical damage.

Conclusion 

That’s all from me. I hope now you are aware of how important outdoor extension cord safety is.

You can now, hopefully, avoid the danger from the extension cord. And also ensure the safety of your household. 

Best of luck with your outdoor work!

Richard Allen