The Electrical Contractor Network

ECN Electrical Forum
Discussion Forums for Electricians, Inspectors and Related Professionals

Books, Tools and Test Equipment for Electrical and Construction Trades

Register Now!

Register Now!

We want your input!

Featured:
   

2017 NEC and Related
2017 NEC
Now Available!

   
Recent Posts
Sprinklered equipment 26-008
by bigpapa
12/02/16 04:24 PM
On Delay Relay with Auto Reset
by Potseal
12/01/16 09:59 AM
Wow, that was close!
by jraef
11/28/16 07:06 PM
Earthquake in New Zeeland
by RODALCO
11/27/16 11:25 PM
Calling all Non-US members!! (Non-US only)
by Tjia1981
11/27/16 06:33 AM
New in the Gallery:
12.5A through 0.75mm² flex (just out of curiosity)
Shout Box

Top Posters (30 Days)
gfretwell 14
HotLine1 10
Trumpy 8
Texas_Ranger 8
sparkyinak 7
Who's Online
0 registered (), 198 Guests and 5 Spiders online.
Key: Admin, Global Mod, Mod
Topic Options
Rate This Topic
#193852 - 04/23/10 08:10 AM Child-proof socket protectors. More dangerous?
djk Offline
Member

Registered: 12/26/02
Posts: 1269
Loc: Ireland
This is quite an interesting site :

http://www.fatallyflawed.org.uk/index.html

They've put a lot of research into showing that using many commonly available socket-outlet blanking plugs actually render a BS1363 socket more dangerous.

Top
Test Equipment:

Large Selection of Test Equipment For Electrical, HVAC, Test & Measurement
Large Selection of Test Equipment For Electrical, HVAC, Test & Measurement

#193860 - 04/23/10 04:57 PM Re: Child-proof socket protectors. More dangerous? [Re: djk]
Wolfgang Offline
Member

Registered: 09/25/05
Posts: 154
Loc: the very West of Germany
The continent built-in shutters need 2/both prongs to open correctly. If this oldie really opens with the earth pin only it's time to revise it urgently.

Top
#193865 - 04/24/10 05:40 AM Re: Child-proof socket protectors. More dangerous? [Re: Wolfgang]
djk Offline
Member

Registered: 12/26/02
Posts: 1269
Loc: Ireland
The earth-pin opening system is what is used on most BS1363 sockets and has been a requirement since the standard was introduced in the 1940s.

A similar system is also used on BS546 (the old round-pin sockets).

It has proven to be quite safe and it's not very easy to override, certainly not for a toddler anyway.

However, I agree the MK approach which uses the two pins at the bottom is better. Some of their newest designs actually require all 3 pins to be inserted to open the socket.

The major thing in the BS system is that *all* sockets are shuttered, where as it's a relatively new or optional thing in other countries.

Top
#193866 - 04/24/10 09:14 AM Re: Child-proof socket protectors. More dangerous? [Re: djk]
Texas_Ranger Offline
Member

Registered: 12/17/01
Posts: 2343
Loc: Vienna, Austria
Shuttered power strips actually seem to cause trouble according to some people (cheap Schuko) - the shutters get mangled fast, first it's close to impossible to insert a proper plug and eventually they break off leaving the sockets unshuttered. Personally I didn't have any serious issues yet (and I have to admit for low power stuff like routers, modems and all the computer stuff I don't exactly buy quality power strips).

Top
#193867 - 04/24/10 11:54 AM Re: Child-proof socket protectors. More dangerous? [Re: Texas_Ranger]
HotLine1 Offline

Member

Registered: 04/03/02
Posts: 6804
Loc: Brick, NJ USA
Gentlemen:
Over on this side of the world (USA) our NEC (2008) mandated all 15-20 amp, 120 volt residential receptacles be "Tamper Proof". That caused quite a stir during the NEC Code Change seminars, mainly due to 'cost'. WE have all receptacle devices, 15 & 20 amp, 120 volt 'on the shelves' in all configirations, including GFCI devices.

Aside from that, we used to have a variety of faceplates that were 'child resistant' (aka Tamper Proof), but to my understanding most, if not all have lost the UL Listings/Labeling required for legal sale.

Tech info on the TR devices is available at the various mfg websites; Pass & Seymour, Leviton, etc.

Take care & stay safe
_________________________
John

Top
#193869 - 04/24/10 01:28 PM Re: Child-proof socket protectors. More dangerous? [Re: HotLine1]
Alan Belson Offline
Member

Registered: 03/23/05
Posts: 1801
Loc: Mayenne N. France
I found the schuko-type shuttered outlets to be a real pita when I arrived here. I then discovered the problem was.... me! If you insert the plug accurately and push really gently, it goes in easy-peasy, japanesey. Try forcing or slamming it in like a BS1363, [ which almost cries out to be bashed into the socket with gusto ], and it invariably sulks and jams. mad
_________________________
Wood work but can't!

Top
#193878 - 04/25/10 06:19 AM Re: Child-proof socket protectors. More dangerous? [Re: Alan Belson]
djk Offline
Member

Registered: 12/26/02
Posts: 1269
Loc: Ireland
Perhaps the difference is that BS1363 was designed to have shutters from the outset, rather than some kind of a retrofit. They were part of the original design.

I've really never seen any problem with the shuttering system used on BS1363 and it is very unusual to see it jammed or stuck open.

It just seems to work very reliably.

As for the cost, I don't think it seems to add much to it at all. Although, that being said, the fittings here are generally more expensive than US/Canadian and Continental-European counterparts. Our prices seem to start at around the mid-range of NEMA / CEE 7 prices.

Top
#193882 - 04/25/10 01:04 PM Re: Child-proof socket protectors. More dangerous? [Re: djk]
Texas_Ranger Offline
Member

Registered: 12/17/01
Posts: 2343
Loc: Vienna, Austria
We have a few "price categories" here. They start with rock bottom €1.50 for a single Schuko socket. The quality of those is usually that poor that I refuse to connect them.
The next group is around €4, no well-known brand names yet but ok to work with. We wired out whole place with switches and sockets out of that price range in 2002 and none of them failed yet. Big brands like Berker, Legrand and Busch-Jaeger start around €7 and go up to more than €10 for some. These are what you'd likely get if an EC wired your home. Then there are the luxury series that can get real expensive - €70 for a fake marble and brass socket for example. That's a design issue, not quality.

BS stuff tends to be a lot sturdier, even the cheapest. I recently saw double sockets that sold for around 2 pounds each and look pretty reliable. Much better than stuff in that price range here, where tightening the terminal screws most likely destroys the whole socket body.

Alan, with the strong ground scrapers Schuko plugs usually beg to be slammed into the socket too wink

Top
#193886 - 04/25/10 02:48 PM Re: Child-proof socket protectors. More dangerous? [Re: Texas_Ranger]
Alan Belson Offline
Member

Registered: 03/23/05
Posts: 1801
Loc: Mayenne N. France
Tex, that observation of gentleness versus brute force has now been tried by three of my carpenter colleagues, all report that it actually works! - even on those dreadfull extension lead reels we are often forced to use on site.

I just browsed a leading discount supplier and a 1 gang 13A single socket, white, can be had for £1.10; 2 gang £1.62, the MK branded items = £1.98 /£3.88. All discounted for quantity of course and next day delivery free with a minimum spend of £50.00 = US $75.00, an easy way to convince the wife to allow the purchase of new tools! These are all sturdy bakelite casings, as preferred by brit consumers. The red neon indicator types that I like seem to have been discontinued... frown
For georgian or victorian brass covers [ did they exist then?] , £4.67/£6.05, for real fancy brushed chrome, £13.00/£15.78.

And it's true, they do never seem to wear out. They just get replaced for the 'look' in redecorating/remodels, as they go slightly yellow after about twenty years!

Details of the 'safer' MK design from WIKI...

....BS 1363 allows two methods of opening the shutters. The original method of using the earth pin is still used by most manufacturers, but MK sockets use a method which requires both the lower pins to be inserted at the same time. In more recent MK sockets all three pins of a plug must be inserted to open the shutters. (MK sockets have the MK logo on the front of the socket.) The MK method eliminates the danger associated with inserting a cover upside down, but is no protection against the type of cover which allows paper clips and needles to be inserted into the live parts. The safest option is to rely on the protection required by law in a BS 1363 socket, and not add any unnecessary and potentially dangerous plug in covers ....
_________________________
Wood work but can't!

Top



ECN Electrical Forums - sponsored by Electrical Contractor Network - Electrical and Code Related Discussion for Electrical Contractors, Electricians, Inspectors, Instructors, Engineers and other related Professionals