Have you ever wondered how different stores power appliances and electronics in their showrooms? How long can extension cords be used at Walmart or any other store?
If you’re curious about this aspect of running a business, then you’ve come to the right place. Various retailers, like Walmart, frequently use extension cords to power their electronic equipment. However, they have a limit – they only get 90 days of usage with these items.
If you want to learn more about this topic and other restrictions, you can read this article all the way through.
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How Long Can an Extension Cord Be Used in Walmart?
In general, there are standards that any store, including Walmart, must follow while using a temporary electrical circuit. This includes the use of artificial lighting and extension cables to power equipment throughout their stores.
According to the National Electric Code extension cords should not be used for fixed applications or as permanent circuits. They also suggest that if an extension connection lasts more than 30 days, a permanent circuit should be considered instead.
There is also NEC NFPA Sec. 590.3(B), which specifies a 90-day timeframe for temporary circuits for decorative lighting. This refers to a variety of electronic decorations such as Christmas lights, projector lights, and other similar items.
Now, regarding the rule for using an extension cable in the workplace, OSHA has established a similar regulation. Its guideline states that any temporary electrical wiring in a working facility must be removed after 90 days.
Within the said limit of days, you can start planning where to install your circuit. However, you also need to keep your extension cable safe to prevent electrical problems, and here are some recommendations that will help you do so.
Tips to Improve Work Site Safety While Utilizing Extension Cord
1. Use GFCI Protection
In addition to the OSHA regulations mentioned above, the use of GFCI (Ground Fault Circuit Interrupter) is required for added protection. This means that a 3 prong extension cord or a connector with ground protection should be used.
2. Only Use Proper Ratings of Extension Cords
Primarily, there are three types of extension cables used for various applications. This can be a light-duty 14 AWG extension cord for equipment under 13 amps, a mid-duty 12 AWG type for equipment up to 15 amps, or a heavy-duty 10 AWG 220v extension for equipment up to 20 amps.
In each case, you should only use the appropriate cord rating for your application. Also, avoid plugging too many devices or connecting two identical extension cords to prevent overheating wires.
3. Ensure Your Extension Cord is in Good Condition All the Time
Before and after using your extension cord, it is a good practice to inspect it. This way, you will be assured that your cords are in functional condition.
4. Consider that the Cord Depends on its Application
Not all extension cords can be used in all applications, since some may require weatherproofing. In this instance, utilizing a non permanent outdoor extension cord might be helpful. On the other hand, you can use a flat cord for indoor applications.
Frequently Asked Questions
How Long Can Extension Cords Be Used in Your Facility?
To minimize the risk of electrical hazards while using cables in any facility, the OSHA extension cords 90 days limit is set. Furthermore, the organization restricts the use of multi-plug adaptors to distribute power to devices and the linking of extensions to surge protectors.
Anything beyond this time frame may no longer be considered temporary. In this case, installing a permanent circuit instead of using an extension cord within your facility is the best thing to do.
What is the Longest Possible Extension Cord?
Aside from the 90-day limit, OSHA also established a restriction for the longest possible cable. A 100 foot long extension cord is the maximum allowable length.
This is due to the fact that the length of an extension cord affect the power delivery, resulting in a higher rate of voltage drop. It can also cause overheating of wires, which could lead to a more severe electrical problem.
As a result, any distance above this limit should be served by a permanent circuit or a temporary distribution box.
Is the Extension Cord Flame Retardant?
Yes, in fact, most outdoor extension cords you will see in the market nowadays have this feature. However, despite their fire resistance, they tend to deteriorate over time, especially when improperly handled.
Overheating the wire by plugging in too many devices that exceed its rating is an example. In this case, checking your device’s rating before connecting it to your extension cord is best to prevent overloading it.
How Much are Extension Cords at Walmart?
Walmart electrical extension cords pricing is almost the same as other hardware stores.
If you compare the pricings of extension cord Lowe’s and extension cords Walmart, they are not far apart. Furthermore, the cost is not the main issue when finding a reliable extension cord.
Typically, you can find a good-deal cable at $20 to $40, but I don’t suggest buying a very cheap one. This is because cheap products are more likely to break easily, which can cause a fire hazard.
Knowing how long can extension cords be used at Walmart or any other store will assist you in deciding what to do with your cord. Furthermore, the above-mentioned regulation applies not only to specific working facilities but also to home applications.
Whether you are a business owner or a homeowner, you should keep safety in mind when utilizing an extension cable. If you still don’t understand your city’s electrical regulations, you may always seek clarification from professionals.
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I am Edwin Jones, in charge of designing content for Galvinpower. I aspire to use my experiences in marketing to create reliable and necessary information to help our readers. It has been fun to work with Andrew and apply his incredible knowledge to our content.