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#52559 05/28/05 11:37 PM
Joined: Jun 2004
Posts: 176
I had an interesting thought today at work...(Lowes Electrical Specialist). While I was stocking outlets, I looked at the back to see the back stab holes and was thinking about how they work... pressure from a sping type contact... then i looked at the front and thought about how it was similar... and that got me thinking. To me, it makes sense to plug things in on a 120V 15/20A circuit... but what about a range? Why use a plug and receptacle which will eventually fail and create a high resistance situation. Why are they not hard wired? I know every now and then you have to move a range, so maybe use a flexible cord... It's just a thought, anyone agree or disagree? (This idea assumes that they make a UL listed way to do this)

Afterword: I know how much you guys have come to hate home center employees because they pretend to know code. Please don't show it in this topic, since I'm more working around an Idea rather than telling people to do this. I also have a little backgroung because I'm an EE student (although i know not the same as an electrician)

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#52560 05/28/05 11:51 PM
Joined: Mar 2005
Posts: 212
Well, the thing is, if a range is a free standing type it is considered a portable appliance and it must be disconnectable to allow it to be moved. A cooktop or oven that is built in to a cabinet can be hard wired without a local disconnecting means as long as the circuit feeding it can be locked off. One exception to this in some jurisdictions is a dishwasher, which is a fixed appliance but may be allowed to be cord and plug connected.

#52561 05/29/05 08:30 AM
Joined: Jan 2002
Posts: 1,457
Ok Mr shizzle my nizzle, here's the deal. Assuming the connection between the cord and receptacle will eventually fail is where your thinking is flawed. There are gazzilions of this very setup in use right now both on ranges and dryers. The world is not burning down. I do mainly remodel work so I come accross these all the time.I can't think of one instance in my 17 years in the trade that I have had to replace a failed one. The only instance where there has ever been a problem is with a loose connection on the wire terminal. So what I am sying is this is a perfectly fine installation.

PS. You have two strikes against you, home center employee, and electrical engineer. One more strike (like inspector) and you are outa here! [Linked Image]

#52562 05/29/05 09:22 AM
Joined: Jan 2003
Posts: 4,391
To me it is just one of many design decisions that we make out of habit. [Linked Image]

There is nothing I know of to prevent hardwiring any range other than "we always do it that way".

It would not surprise me if Chicago codes required using FMC from the wall to the range.

If you do hardwire it you will have to consider what the disconnecting means will be. You would probably have to make sure the breaker feeding it is capable of being locked in the open position.

That said why rock the boat? [Linked Image]

I agree with Scott 100% in 20 + years doing this I have not seen properly installed range outlets have problems.

By the way even with your 2 strikes [Linked Image] you are welcome here.

Hope you can take some ribbing. [Linked Image]


Bob Badger
Construction & Maintenance Electrician
#52563 05/29/05 09:28 AM
Joined: Feb 2002
Posts: 2,233
The one thing I saw why receptacles failed is because they were used so often. The more you plug and unplug, the less tension is going to be on the blades of the plug. Once the tension starts to loosen in the receptacle the higher the resitance. The higher the res. the more heat which makes the metal lose even more tension, and so on until the receptacle, and plug fails. By the way I am an AHJ, I was also a licensed EC in NJ, do I have to leave? [Linked Image]

#52564 05/29/05 11:01 AM
Joined: Feb 2004
Posts: 133
Oh no, you're all set. The rule is, as I understand it, only inspectors who are electrical engineers and work in a home center have to leave [Linked Image]

#52565 05/29/05 01:08 PM
Joined: Jan 2005
Posts: 5,462
Likes: 3
Cat Servant
Now if we could get Mr. Nizzle to tell hopeful DIY'ers that there is a waiting period for linesmans' pliers!

#52566 05/29/05 01:15 PM
Joined: Jan 2003
Posts: 1,429
LK Offline

Welcome, to the snake pit, we are here to exchange ideas, and information, so stop by and join in.

We had 4 EE's work with us over the years, they worked summers, and weekends, They did everything from pulling cable, trenching, and building control panels, we had them reference the code on every task, they were a real asset to us, they often keep in contact, and one thing they say, that stands out is, the work we did with you, really helped.

All four are working in the electrical, and communications fields, one is working as a senior scientist.

Hang in there, it's a great field.


#52567 05/29/05 07:47 PM
Joined: Mar 2004
Posts: 76
Nizzle, I agree with the others. A properly installed receptacle & cord will preform without incident for years.
The last trouble call I went on involving a pigtail was caused by an Employee of the Big Blue Box.
Seems that when they delivered the appliance, they couldn't figure out the connector supplied with the cord, so they just left it off.
8 months later, the vibrations of the cord cut through the insulation, shorted out, & scared the Homeowners silly.
I went to our local Store, & told them what had happened, & now they keep a box of 1" romex connectors on the delivery trucks.
Good Luck to You.

#52568 05/29/05 08:23 PM
Joined: May 2003
Posts: 2,876
e57 Offline
I too will also agree that failure rates of 30A and 50A cords and recepticals are low. The big differances being repeatitive use, and contact area on the whipes of the receptical being much larger and under much more tension.

I wouldn't worry so much about 30's and 50's.
Worry about the 15's and 20's is substantiated as use and abuse is more predominant, with minimal contact area.

Mark Heller
"Well - I oughta....." -Jackie Gleason
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