Home & Garden

Any recommendations for an outdoor, heavy duty, long, retractable extension power cord ?

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  • Jun 2nd, 2021 7:25 pm
[OP]
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Jun 27, 2015
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East York, ON

Any recommendations for an outdoor, heavy duty, long, retractable extension power cord ?

The plan is to leave it attached to the side of the garage where I have a work area and to move it inside in winter.
I could plug it into an outdoor power plug that I want to install or leave the roll inside an pull out the cable through a hole that I could drill in the wall (sounds like a bad idea as the hole will need to be large and it will impact the ability of the retractable roll to pull back the cable )
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Oct 6, 2010
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DYI and make one yourself. Didn't even read your post.
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I have one of those dark green outdoor cords plugged into an exterior outlet running though the garden for a water feature - been sitting outside plugged in for probably 10 years now.

Any run of the mill outdoor extension cord will be fine. You only need 'heavy duty' if you're banging the cord around. If it's just laying there on the ground, any extension cord will be fine.
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CuriousC wrote: The plan is to leave it attached to the side of the garage where I have a work area and to move it inside in winter.
I could plug it into an outdoor power plug that I want to install or leave the roll inside an pull out the cable through a hole that I could drill in the wall (sounds like a bad idea as the hole will need to be large and it will impact the ability of the retractable roll to pull back the cable )
Both from Costco ($34.99 on sale) ... 100' 12/3 ...

Orange one inside garage for use in garage as well as mowing front lawn and snow blower:

IMG_20210601_101220.jpg

Green one ... Take to backyard when mowing backyard:

IMG_20210601_101224.jpg
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CuriousC wrote: The plan is to leave it attached to the side of the garage where I have a work area and to move it inside in winter.
I could plug it into an outdoor power plug that I want to install or leave the roll inside an pull out the cable through a hole that I could drill in the wall (sounds like a bad idea as the hole will need to be large and it will impact the ability of the retractable roll to pull back the cable )
Extension cords should not be used in a roll/ coil. They can quickly overheat and cause a fire. It's like a home made electro-magnet

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[OP]
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Jun 27, 2015
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East York, ON
https://www.eng-tips.com/viewthread.cfm ... 20overheat.

DRWeig (Electrical)21 Jul 09 09:23
I gotta vote with mcgyvr if the facts are as stated.

Even if there were a load, you don't get inductive heating from a coiled cord or they wouldn't sell them to us in lengths longer than a foot or so. The supply and return are in the same cord, there's no net magnetic field. In this case (no load connected to the cable), with no load at all, there's no current.

Now, if the cord were laying there plugged in, and the cat chewed away the insulation, and the dog dragged his metal water bowl over, and...

Ah, but all the inspectors ever get to see are charred remains.

Good on ya,

Goober Dave
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[OP]
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There is a potential problem if there is a short in the cable ..and because the users pulls the cable the plastic tends to crack and expose the wiring which can lead to a short
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CuriousC wrote: https://www.eng-tips.com/viewthread.cfm ... 20overheat.

DRWeig (Electrical)21 Jul 09 09:23
I gotta vote with mcgyvr if the facts are as stated.

Even if there were a load, you don't get inductive heating from a coiled cord or they wouldn't sell them to us in lengths longer than a foot or so. The supply and return are in the same cord, there's no net magnetic field. In this case (no load connected to the cable), with no load at all, there's no current.

Now, if the cord were laying there plugged in, and the cat chewed away the insulation, and the dog dragged his metal water bowl over, and...

Ah, but all the inspectors ever get to see are charred remains.

Good on ya,

Goober Dave
Try it for yourself. It gets damn hot, like in the photos
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Jun 4, 2020
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I would contribute that there isn't good heat dissipation on a coiled cord. That is where the fire hazard occurs - when you need 10 feet of a 100 foot coiled cord. Often the cords are smaller than the supply conductors (16 gauge is very common in the reels) and can heat up when you plug in a elevated sustained load. If I'm not mistaken, an electromagnet needs the wire to be wrapped around a ferrous core.
[OP]
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Jun 27, 2015
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KevinM56081 wrote: If I'm not mistaken, an electromagnet needs the wire to be wrapped around a ferrous core.
the stator could be a magnet and then the rotor has the solenoid that alternates the polarization so it can continuously oppose the static magnets around it
I think that later they used an coiled rotor in order to reduce the size and the weight of the stator
Image
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CuriousC wrote: the stator could be a magnet and then the rotor has the solenoid that alternates the polarization so it can continuously oppose the static magnets around it
I think that later they used an coiled rotor in order to reduce the size and the weight of the stator
Image
Yeah. Been a ling time since college and I dont use that anymore
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I think the best advice, though curtly given, is to make your own. The little cord ends aren’t expensive, and wire costs what wire costs. A retractable cord reel is good for a few years, one with a handle is good for much longer (it wont fail).
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KevinM56081 wrote: I would contribute that there isn't good heat dissipation on a coiled cord. That is where the fire hazard occurs - when you need 10 feet of a 100 foot coiled cord. Often the cords are smaller than the supply conductors (16 gauge is very common in the reels) and can heat up when you plug in a elevated sustained load. If I'm not mistaken, an electromagnet needs the wire to be wrapped around a ferrous core.
100% this. The problem isn't the fact it's coiled, the problem is the fact the cooling is greatly diminished. My "decent" extension cord gets hot when I use my dinosaur-age table saw. If I run it for a long time, it's plenty warm. Take away the cooling capacity, and I'm sure it would melt.
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ChubChub wrote: 100% this. The problem isn't the fact it's coiled, the problem is the fact the cooling is greatly diminished. My "decent" extension cord gets hot when I use my dinosaur-age table saw. If I run it for a long time, it's plenty warm. Take away the cooling capacity, and I'm sure it would melt.
It does seem to draw more current in a coil.

I have an extension reel with a built in 15A circuit breaker. When used in a reel / coil with my 10A pressure washer, the breaker would trip after a while. I thought it was defective, but someone posted that the extension needs to be fully unreeled. Sure enough, when I unreeled the extension fully, the breaker doesn't trip anymore. I checked the new reels at the store and there's a warning label on them to unreel fully before using.

Hey, these used to be used to service CRT TVs. Its the same type of coil plugged into AC. It generates a magnetic field to neutralize residual problems in a CRT. Says it can be used to erase tapes and floppy disks too

Image

https://hackaday.com/2016/05/25/wtf-is-degaussing/
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I think the biggest issue with extension cords is using the proper gauge and length that the tool needs. Quite often ppl are using high gauge (ie undersized) for the tool. If you don't need 100', don't buy it or you might need to buy a lower gauge (ie thicker).

Wait for Princess Auto sale as I think their extension cords are well priced.

Looking at a couple of pics on here of how they coil their cords...consider looking to store cords like this. Daisy Chain/Chain stitch.

We're all bozos on the bus until we find a way to express ourselves...

Failure is always an option...just not the preferred one!

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