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Safety -- Make sure you are safe!

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  #1  
Old 2012-01-29, 6:58pm
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Default AIM kiln plugged into multi-plug?

I thought that kilns had to be plugged into the wall socket directly. One of my housemates put in one of those "multiplug" things for me (converting two sockets to six), because I was having to plug my oxygen concentrator in on the other side of the room and it was bugging him I guess (my studio space is in our shared garage and he has his work bench and drum kit in there). He doesn't see any reason why it wouldn't be safe... I don't know much/anything about electrical stuff and I thought I'd heard somewhere that kilns need to go directly into the wall.

So, is it safe to use the multiplug thing with it? Or not? It's not a question of overloading the circuit because our whole garage is on one circuit anyway and presumably all that stuff isn't overloading it.

I told him that I could just make a point of unplugging my oxycon and moving it out of his way every time I'm done in there but it would definitely be more convenient to just use the multi thing..
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  #2  
Old 2012-01-29, 8:54pm
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It is never good practice to place an appliance that takes high power either on an extension cord or on a "multiplug". Most household circuits are wired with number 12 copper wire. If the extension cord is number 12 and if the "multiplug" is wired for a 20 amp circuit the you could be OK..

However, if you want to be on the safe side, then the use of a duplex 110 volt 20 circuit would be in order. Keep in mind that kilns can take from 10 to 18 amps. And a concentrator perhaps 4 to 5 amps. It could be very easy to overload the circuit again depending on your kiln rating which was not stated.
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Old 2012-01-29, 8:55pm
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Probable not a problem (just maybe not a good idea if its poorly rated) .... It's just a "receptacle".... The real issue is how much amperage draw is on single breaker supplying garage...

Dale
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Old 2012-01-30, 1:20am
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Yeah and I think we are OK as far as that all goes. Haven't had any problems with blowing fuses or anything, so far.
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  #5  
Old 2012-01-30, 1:21am
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I'm not sure what my kiln rating is, it is quite a small AIM bead kiln though...
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  #6  
Old 2012-01-30, 5:52am
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most outlets and lights are daisy-chained off of a single breaker. you need a separate breaker for your kiln, and another breaker for your oxycon and everything else.
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Old 2012-01-30, 10:55am
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I find that here most houses have seperate circuits for lights, usually 15 amp service, and receptacles, sometimes 20 amp service; at least in more recent construction. When I did my place all circuits are 20 amp and only 4 receptacles on a circuit. I like having lots of power available. If it isn't popping the breaker then it's probably OK. Might mention that if a breaker pops alot it will weaken the breaker and it will start popping at less and less amps so you will have to change it out.
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Old 2012-02-03, 2:50pm
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I did that once and the cord from the plug strip MELTED to the wall socket..... NOT good ...do NOT recommend... The rating on most common plug strips is not high enough to run a kiln safely...imho. just plug it directly into the wall socket.. its safer...
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  #9  
Old 2012-02-03, 2:59pm
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i'd check you kiln booklet... mine specifically says DO NOT use with extension cords etc. so it remains plugged directly into the wall.
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  #10  
Old 2012-02-03, 4:51pm
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As a kiln manufacturer, I say that is not a safe situation. The power strips are just a thin strip of metal jumping all the plugs together. They can melt. You can have an unsafe draw without blowing a breaker in some circumstances. Even our Short Guy that draws only 8amps should be on its own circuit (a desk lamp would be ok, but nothing with a heater or a pump). Just think about how many space heater plugs start to melt in the outlet under heavy use. Loose outlets in the strips can also cause arcing of the plug to the strip, welding it together.

Be safe and drop another circuit in the room. We'd rather him be bothered than you be crispy.
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  #11  
Old 2012-02-03, 8:55pm
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Is this type of 6 outlet receptacle you "helper" put on outlet?



Also you really need more breakers service your work space....

Dale
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Last edited by Dale M.; 2012-02-03 at 8:57pm.
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  #12  
Old 2012-02-03, 10:34pm
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That is the type Dale, yes.

Can someone explain why I need everything to be on separate breakers? I really know so little about electricity.
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Old 2012-02-04, 5:19am
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Because the kiln draws a lot of power - nevertheless if the breakers are not tripping then it might not be an issue
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  #14  
Old 2012-02-04, 11:58am
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That's kind of what I was thinking Deb. Unless there is a safety reason to need to have it on a separate breaker.

I've been operating this setup for years too and never had a problem... although I know that doesn't always necessarily mean something is safe, it seems like there is enough power to run everything at least. The only thing different recently is the multiplug thing, which I am going to stop using cause you guys have made me sufficiently paranoid about that...
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  #15  
Old 2012-02-04, 8:09pm
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The specs on those units (quality ones) are 15 amp... That is rating of receptacle its plugged into and probably rating of circuit breaker supplying receptacle.... If unit is does not get warm under full use its probably ok...

Dale
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  #16  
Old 2012-02-05, 9:41am
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Quote:
Originally Posted by amyhoust View Post
That's kind of what I was thinking Deb. Unless there is a safety reason to need to have it on a separate breaker.

I've been operating this setup for years too and never had a problem... although I know that doesn't always necessarily mean something is safe, it seems like there is enough power to run everything at least. The only thing different recently is the multiplug thing, which I am going to stop using cause you guys have made me sufficiently paranoid about that...
There are quality electrical strips available that are suitable. You just have to read the rating when buying.
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  #17  
Old 2012-02-05, 1:25pm
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Is there a way to know what the rating is by looking at the thing? Like, is it written on there somewhere?
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Old 2012-02-05, 3:08pm
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There should be a name plate that lists the current in amps and voltage rating. You will have to look and see where that is posted for your particular model. If that fails, then Google for your model number or if the firm is still in business call them.

The other option is to use any number of watt measuring devices. Perhaps kill a watt, energy saver or watts up would be appropriate for your needs. The next possibility would be use to a DMM or VOM to measure the cold resistance of the elements and then calculate the power using Ohm's Law.

If none of this fits into your needs, then arrange for a licensed electrician to determine what is appropriate.
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Old 2012-02-05, 7:35pm
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Data should be printed on back of unit.... IF not, I would think its a cheap "Chinese Republic Authentic Product" (CRAP)...

Dale
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Old 2012-02-05, 9:33pm
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Data should be printed on back of unit.... IF not, I would think its a cheap "Chinese Republic Authentic Product" (CRAP)...

Dale
100% right. Wouldnt trust it at all if it isnt clearly marked.
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  #21  
Old 2012-02-05, 10:40pm
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It actually is rated for 15 Amp.. would that mean it's safe to use? My kiln is 14 Amp but I guess the oxy con and possibly my laptop would be plugged in as well. Maybe two oxy cons in future if I get my second one working again.
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  #22  
Old 2012-02-06, 8:05am
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The breaker that is powering it is probably 15 amp.... The receptacle that it is plugged into is probably 15 amp.... And if its has a "UL" approval sticker or marking...

The 6 outlet adapter is more civilized and replaces something like this....



Dale
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Old 2012-02-07, 10:15am
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And in a bathroom!

It's so scary it made me laugh (nervously)
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Old 2012-02-12, 9:10pm
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Okay, as an explanation to make it make more sense:

Amperage is like water going through a pipe - a larger pipe represents a higher amperage, or capacity to carry water through it. If you have too much water (amps) going through a small pipe (wire, breaker or outlet), you blow out the pipes (flip breakers/can cause an electrical fire).

If you've got a 15 amp circuit, you can add items up being used at the same time for a total of 15 amps. So if your kiln is 14 amps, your concentrator is 4-6 amps, and your laptop draws maybe 1 amp (figuring 120 watts at 120 volts). If you're running them all at the same time on a 15 amp circuit, you're trying to run 20 amps through it and are risking throwing breakers.

Hope that helped and didn't just muddy the waters for you
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Old 2012-02-13, 10:52pm
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Pretty good explanation. Now add that the voltage is like the water pressure that pushes it all through the pipe and that resistance is like.... wait for it..... resistance....LOL that tries to hold it back from flowing.
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Old 2012-02-14, 9:33am
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cheng076 View Post
Pretty good explanation. Now add that the voltage is like the water pressure that pushes it all through the pipe and that resistance is like.... wait for it..... resistance....LOL that tries to hold it back from flowing.
Resistance is like putting thumb over end of hose.....

Dale
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  #27  
Old 2012-02-14, 9:34am
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Thanks guys The water analogy is actually quite helpful.
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