Wednesday, 29 May 2013

Checking a Plug (UK only)

  1. Remove the plug from the socket and check the plug is not damaged.
  2. Look for signs of overheating, such as discoloured casing or cable.
  3. Check that the plug is marked British Standard BS 1363
  4. Check that the cable sheath is firmly clamped in the plug and that no coloured wires are showing.
All modern appliances in the UK use the familiar square-pin 13-amp plug. These plugs are used for handheld appliances such as hairdryers and vacuum cleaners, and appliances like microwave ovens. The plug and cable can suffer damage, particularly if they connect to handheld appliances. Checking a plug and its cable does not need a lot of detailed electrical knowledge and these tips should help.

With the plug removed from the socket, check the cable from end to end and ask the following questions. 
  1. Is the cable cut, worn or damaged in any way?
  2. There should preferably be no joints in the cable, and certainly no repairs with insulating tape.
  3. If for any reason, you need to check that a cable is correctly wired and fused, do the following:
  4. Remove the plug from the socket, and remove the cover. Check that:
  5. The brown wire goes to live (L);
  6. The blue wire goes to neutral (N); and
  7. The green-and-yellowwire goes toearth (E).
  8. Check that the cord clamp holds the cables heath securely and that both of the screws are tight.
  9. Check that the screws holding the three wires are tight.
  10. Check that the fuse is the correct size and meets British Standard BS 1362 - see the manufacturer's instructions if you are not sure what fuse to use. The fuse should clip securely into its holder. It should not be loose and there should be no signs of overheating.
  11. Replace the cover securely

Correctly wired plug
Most table lamps, standard lamps, televisions, computers, mixers, blenders, power drills, jigsaws, soldering irons will use 700W or less. Larger appliances such as washing machines, dishwashers and toasters, irons  and heaters will use more than 700W. For your convenience these are just standard two plug fuse ratings (3A and 13A). For appliances up to 700W, you use a 3A fuse. For those over 700W, you use a 13A fuse.

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