A short-term service could cost you more than you believe From time to time, all of us ask ourselves big deal concerns: Why are we here? Exists life on other planets? Which came first-- the chicken or the egg? And why the heck do some, but not all, of my electrical cords have 3 prongs rather of simply 2? OK, OK ... perhaps that's not one of your "biggie" questions, but we're thinking it's crossed your mind a minimum of when-- particularly when your plug has three prongs and your extension cord has only 2 areas. (That's so annoying!) So let's unpack this mystery. Why the third prong?
The 3rd prong on an electrical cable is the ground prong. Considering that lots of cords have only two, it might not appear awfully essential-- but it's an important security function that could save your life. Literally. So, in response to this post's title: No. It is not safe to cut the ground prong. Ever.
Here's why: A ground prong develops an emergency situation path for electricity to travel through if a brief circuit or fault takes place within the gadget. All home appliances with plugs have other electrical components, like wires. If among these wires breaks or ends up being dislodged, the electrical present won't flow properly though the gadget. At finest, this ruins your device. At worst, the misdirected current could offer a nasty and possibly lethal shock. The third prong grounds the gadget to avoid this problem. If there's something wrong with your device, the grounding prong develops a brand-new, low-resistance path down to the primary electrical panel. This journeys the breaker, stopping the electrical present and preventing damage to your device, a home fire, or an electrical shock.
Ok, so why do some of my appliances have only 2 prongs? Some electronic gadgets are built to prevent an electrical overload without a ground prong. A home appliance may have an internal voltage adapter so it will never put out a deadly voltage, even in case of a fault. Other devices have plastic cases or other insulation to shield the gadget and avoid short circuiting. Shielding does not safeguard against water, however. Gadgets or home appliances for outdoor or wet-area usage should have a ground prong to prevent electrocution. Devices with metal real estate-- metal you 'd touch when dealing with the appliance-- will also have the 3rd ground prong to prevent electrical shocks. Just make certain: Can I eliminate the ground prong? Absolutely not. Once again, the ground plug provides an alternative path for electrical energy to stream if there's a problem or fault. If you get rid of that 3rd prong, you get rid of the safety procedure. Sure-- the majority of the time, the third prong doesn't matter at all. Your gadget is in good shape and is Additional resources working completely. But when there is an issue, it can end up being life or death. So, no. Do not get rid of that ground prong! OK, fine. However my outlet just has two prongs. What now?
The majority of people make the mistake of cutting the ground prong just so their gadget will work with a two-prong outlet. Another-- safer-- option is to utilize an adapter.
A three-prong adapter is also called a cheater plug. You have actually seen them previously-- one side of the adapter has a place to place your three-prong cable and on the other side there are two prongs that plug into your outlet. What you most likely have not noticed is the little metal tab that protrudes on the top.
The majority of people overlook the little tab. They simply plug the appliance into the adapter, then the adapter into the outlet. While this is usually much safer than removing the ground prong entirely, it still does not ground the device effectively. That little tab assists to make the ground connection to the outlet, replacing the grounding work that the 3rd prong would do. To safely utilize an adapter, you should follow these steps: