Any electricians in the house?

Discussion in 'The Garage' started by pne, Sep 8, 2017.

  1. pne

    pne Long timer

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    I'm adding some 4' LED Costco shop lights to my garage. I'm too lazy to wire them so I bought 2 light bulb socket adapters that allow me to plug in the lights. However these are only 2 prong and the cord to the LED lights are 3 prong. This are hanging up on a 15' ceiling nobody will ever touch them again until they burn out. Is it ok to cut the third prong off?
    #1
  2. VX Rider

    VX Rider Long timer

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    Yes.....or by the stupid 3 to 2 prong plug adapter
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  3. dhally

    dhally Hammerhead

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    I have done it but it isn't to code. The risk is if a hot wire comes into contact with the fixture, the fixture will become a shock hazard while still working fine. As a safety measure you could inspect the wiring inside the fixture to make sure all the wire nuts are on and no wires have been crimped.

    Don't assume just because they are new that they were assembled perfectly.
    #3
  4. CA_Strom

    CA_Strom Cunning Linguist

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    You could do it that way.... I've got 8 of those Costco LED 4 footers daisy chained into two ceiling outlets in my shop. Too much work to pull the light socket out of the box and swap in a duplex outlet? Mine replaced old fluorescent ceiling mounted fixtures, so I just yanked those and added a dual gang surface mount box with a switched duplex outlet and a 3' extension cord drop for use in the shop.
    #4
  5. dddd

    dddd Been here awhile

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    15' ceiling... won't be water safe if you live in houston...

    Seriously,

    Is it at least long+short slots in that adapter (polarised)? Basically, the long slot (white) is the safe and at the ground potential. The ground 3 wire is just another return path in case of broken case-like situations when the live (black) wire is touching and exposed conductive part, so that the breaker jump right then, rather than going through your body later.

    But if there is a ground prong on a device, it is because it is needed for safety. There are serious certification processes to sell that device and you can be sure the manufacturer tried to avoid this 3rd wire for cost but couldn't. Meanwhile your insurer will not pay in case of problems.

    It's trivial to install a proper standard outlet in an octogonal junction box like you probably have for your current socket. Just do it (IF YOU CAN LEGALLY DO IT YOURSELF, acording to province/state laws). Remember, live wire goes on short slot. safe wire goes to long slot, naked or green wire goes to green bolt/frame. Always test AC voltage with respect to ground to assert if the white is really the safe and if the black is really the live. I've seen many inversion in old/hacked houses, even condo not even 20 years old.
    #5
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  6. RetiredandRiding

    RetiredandRiding Retired to Ride

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    ^^^ What he said.

    Cheap out and the insurance company won't pay if the fire can be tracked in any way back to the lights. Also, when selling the place, you may have a liability.

    Spend a few bucks and do it right.
    #6
  7. anonny

    anonny What could go wrong?

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    I'm an electrician and also vote for it being done to meet or exceed code. A refused insurance claim or a lawsuit will make the price seem pretty cheap.
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  8. sparkingdogg

    sparkingdogg Prisoner In Disguise

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    I apprenticed under an older bloke. When he was an apprentice, his journeyman cut the 3rd prong off a drill, plugged it in, got on a metal trash can as a ladder, pulled the trigger, and got killed. Maybe an extreme example... but yeah that 3rd wire is there for a reason! Not to mention insurance claim denial, as previously mentioned.
    #8
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  9. dtysdalx2

    dtysdalx2 PITA but useful

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    After watching safety videos for LOTO I usually do it the safest possible way. :D

    Really amazed on how some can die from relatively simple shocks. I've got nailed probably 8 times or so from 120VAC+ voltage and lived to tell about it.
    #9
  10. sparkingdogg

    sparkingdogg Prisoner In Disguise

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    We used to have job site contests to see who could grab the hot wire the longest (120 volts). Probably not smart though. Saw a few fellow sparky's get hung up on 277 volts... painful stuff. Never got hit with it myself, I was pretty safety conscience.

    "Hung up" is when your muscles contract, you can not let go at that point. You have to kick the person's ladder out from under them.

    I know a backhoe operator that hit buried 480 volt 3 phase, he got shocked through the backhoe levers so hard, he nearly died of heart failure.

    There's a lot of variables. The shock that kills usually enters an arm and the ground path (exit) is the feet. The heart is not a muscle you want to shock.

    As a lineman about the "ring of fire". When a large underground feeder shorts to ground, the electrical potential decreases in a radius as you move away from the short. A 3' difference can have a 10 kv difference in potential. 3' is the pace of a man.

    Thomas Edison, as part of an ad campaign, shocked and killed a fully grown elephant with AC voltage.


    An interesting fact to note is that it takes less alternating current (AC) to do the same damage as direct current (DC). AC will cause muscles to contract, and if the current were high enough, one would not be able to let go of whatever is causing the current coursing through the body. The cut-off value for this is known as the "let-go current". For women, it is typically 5 to 7 milliamperes, and for men, typically 7 to 9 milliamperes. This is dependent on the muscle mass of the individual.

    In general, current that is fatal to humans ranges from 0.06 A to 0.07 A, depending on the person and the type of current.

    Jack Hsu -- 2000
    #10
  11. hdgeno777

    hdgeno777 n00b

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    also an electrician. take the time to do it right, due diligence always pays off in the long run
    #11
  12. dtysdalx2

    dtysdalx2 PITA but useful

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    Contests to hold 120VAC? :loco:lol3

    I got hit with 277V twice. It's a zinger that's for sure. Never worked with anything over 500VAC 3 phase. That may be even low voltage.

    Saw a video of a lineman that got nailed with real high voltage too. Damn near fried his whole leg off. :eekers

    "Voltages 600 V and below are referred to as “low voltage,” voltages from 600 V-69 kV are referred to as “medium voltage,” voltages from 69 kV-230 kV are referred to as “high voltage” and voltages 230 kV-1,100 kV are referred to as “extra high voltage,” with 1,100 kV also referred to as “ultra high voltage.”
    #12