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Old 06-13-2004, 11:50 PM   #1
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Electrical Safety? Is it really so important?

For those of you with more knowledge about home electrical supplies than I, is it OK to hook up two power strips to a single standard wall outlet. I realize you shouldn't hook up more than one power strip in series, but I need more holes to put my plugs in. Thanks.
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Old 06-14-2004, 12:14 AM   #2
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Depends on how old your house is [ Which, will result in quality and age of wire ]

How many other things you have on the breaker, ect ect.



If in doubt, about the only way is to have an electricial tech come to your house and do a survey of your wiring.
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Old 06-14-2004, 02:46 AM   #3
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2 power strips in a series are OK, but for safety you will be limited to the current capacity of the smallest one (i.e. 1850 watts). So as long as you do not have 1000+ watts of reef lighting, nothing to worry about, you can plug many low watt devices in.


Bear in mind the breaker in the power strip will not save you (or fish) from electrocution. All aquariums should have a GFCI outlet or adaptor. They are the outlets you see in kitchens and bathrooms which have a test and reset button in the center. You can buy them at any hardware store or buy a simple plugin adaptor from Walmart for around $12. With all the devices we put in and above the water, and with the possibility of one leaking electicity and killing you or the fish, they are a must. Basically they sense a small change in current or discharge and shut the circuit off in as little as 1/40 of a second.

http://www.cpsc.gov/cpscpub/pubs/99.html

Home Depot Email List Sign Up Page

Edited by reefrunner69 to fix the link that was screwing the margins, it's supposed to be a link to a search page, but if your not signed in to the home depot site, it doesn't work.
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Old 06-14-2004, 03:32 AM   #4
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Actually, forgot to mention my GFCI has saved me bigtime already. My skimmer overflowed and water was running everywhere as we were sleeping, I woke up and found the power strip got wet and the GFCI shut everything down before a major problem arose.
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Old 06-14-2004, 09:36 AM   #5
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You can buy them at any hardware store or buy a simple plugin adaptor from Walmart for around $12.
Thanks for the info. That will be money well spent
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Old 06-14-2004, 11:49 AM   #6
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Right now I have a HOB, skimmer, cannister, power head, heater, and 3 110w bulbs on it. If I were to overload the circuit, would the circuit breaker just trip or would I have other, much more disasterous problems?
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Old 06-14-2004, 11:58 AM   #7
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it should just trip the power strip or wall breaker, but again it does not prevent an electrocution of you, a loved one, or pets...only the GFCI recepticle or adaptor does that
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Old 06-14-2004, 11:59 AM   #8
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it should just trip the power strip or wall breaker, but again it does not prevent an electrocution of you, a loved one, or pets...only the GFCI recepticle or adaptor does that
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Old 06-14-2004, 01:46 PM   #9
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Right now I have a HOB, skimmer, cannister, power head, heater, and 3 110w bulbs on it. If I were to overload the circuit, would the circuit breaker just trip or would I have other, much more disasterous problems?
Go to the outlet, check the wire running into your power strip, if it's warm in any way you are casuing a problem, als you can place your hand on the outlet (don't touch anything metal), and see if it's warm there. In either case any warmth means trouble.
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Old 06-14-2004, 03:35 PM   #10
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here are some things to remember:

wattage = Current x Voltage

Voltage = 120

current = rating on powerstrip or wire gage

if your wire gage to the socket is 14 then it can safely handle 15 amps
if your wire gage to the socket is 12 then it can safely handle 20 amps

20 amps can handle 2400 watts
15 amps can handle 1800 watts

You also have to remember that the outlet in your house services many other things. Many electricians have no rhyme or reason as to why your garage overhead light, and 5 other random lights and outlets are all on the same circuit.

So there is potential for your wife to use a blowdryer and a breaker will pop and knock out the lights on your tank.

HTH
Jim
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