[Date Prev][Date Next][Thread Prev][Thread Next][Date Index][Thread Index]
diy gfci extension cord
I was dissatisfied with the options both home depot and lowes could bring to
the table in the power protection realm, so I set out to do it myself.
neither the depot nor lowes carried a true GFCI multistrip or extension
cord, depot did have a $40 multistrip that had a grounding fault indicator
(whatever good that does).
so, I went over to the electrical parts asile and began picking parts...
I bought two leviton almond colored gfci without pilot light for $7.50 ea
(pilot light cost an extra $4), and two almond colored regular outlets
(forget how much, but cheap). In the next aisle that had plastic wall boxes
(gang boxes maybe?) ... I bought two plastic dual boxes for $0.75 ea and two
dual faceplates (cheap also).
Going home, I dug out two 6ft shielded IEC computer power cords, and cut the
iec end off, and stripped back the shielding and wires. The gang boxes came
with nice 'spring' strain-relief slots that I pushed the cord through (don't
push too much through, it's really hard to pull back out).
After studying the diagrams and reading the instructions (very important!),
I wired the cord into the "LINE" section of the gfci, then using some 16
gauge wire I had laying around, I wired the second outlet to the "LOAD"
section of the gfci (be sure to connect all the grounds together!)... After
screwing the outlets into their box, and attaching the faceplate, I tested
it out with a desk lamp, first plugged into the gfci ... pushing test
immediately turned off the lamp, and pushing reset brought it back on ...
testing the second outlet also resulted the same.
Now all my fish equipment is protected by gfci, and $20 for two setups! I
have two multistrips plugged into the each of the 'top' outlets, and the
bottom outlets are for big timers. I imagine if one wanted to, they could
buy one of those commercial size gang boxes that has room for eight light
switches in it, and with one gfci and seven regular outlets, you could
eliminate the need for multistrips all together, just remember not to load
it too heavily, my gfci claims 15a at 120v, but I wouldn't want to test
that... If you were going to run 100's of watts of MH lights, might want to
talk to an electrician.
If you do decide to try this yourself, please be very careful, and read +
understand the instructions that come with the gfci, otherwise it could end
up being useless or even dangerous. Also 120vac can give you a really nasty
poke, and if you're grounded really well, it might even be lethal, so make
sure you choose a gang box and faceplate that seal completely, so there is
no chance fingers could find there way to a live wire.