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)
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.
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!
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?
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.
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.
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