Wire Splicing Safety Precautions

 

The average Fire Marshall may not approve of repairing electrical appliances by means of wire splicing and electrical tape, but people do it anyway. Most tradesmen, hobbyists and brainiacs can usually execute a competent wire splice, but it is always important to consider specific facts such as: what the device is for, if it is stationary,and what the wattage rating is. Appliances which consume high wattage can contract enough heat at the point of splice to melt ordinary electrical tape.

 

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High wattage appliances such as heaters draw a lot of current from the power source thus creating excessive heat on the wires. This heat tends to accumulate at the area which has been spliced along with other junctions. When splicing wires together on high wattage appliances, mere electrical tape is simply not safe. The heat at the spliced junction will cause the rubber tape to melt which can, in turn, cause the two wires, (hot and neutral), to arch, throw a breaker/fuze,  or cause a fire or shock.

If you currently have any heaters running with a basic electric tape splice, you should up- grade to a wire nut or butt connector to avoid  potential hazards.

 

 

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A butt connecter (left) is typically used on slim wire, but is available for 16# and 18# AWG. The  ends of the two wires are twisted with a lineman’s pliers, or substitute tool, and fit within the connector. The butt connectors are then crimped with a tool to ensure a good connection. There should be little or no exposed wire outside the connector.

A standard wire nut (right) is simpler and doesn’t require crimping. The wires are twisted clockwise as the threads within the wire nuts also clockwise.

Electric tape shold be used over both type of connectors to enure a safe connection.

Thank you for reading, and remember; be smart-be safe!

D.

 

 

 

 

Wire Splicing Safety Precautions