Electrical lube

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Here's a different electrical question.
On my computer desk I have a table-top power distribution box that lets me plug all the computer stuff into one central place.
While it has some claim as a surge suppressor, since I am in Florida where lightning storms are the usual event during the summer, my method of protection is to disconnect the distribution box from its a.c. outlet. (The cable modem uses a quick connect on the cable line coming into it.)
The problem arises because the wall receptacle that is being used is inconveniently behind the very heavy desk. To make things easier, I cut the power cord to the distribution box at desk-top level and rejoin the ends using an in-line plug and socket so that it is easy to disconnect from the line. The connectors I used are a good quality pair made by Hubbell.
The problem: It has become increasingly difficult to mate or open these connectors. They have been in this use for more than five years.
The male ends do not show any signs of distortion.
Is there an appropriate lubricant?
I could just buy another set of connectors, but a lube job would be a lot simpler. Is this a big box item? If I have to go to a real electrical supply house, it is cheaper and quicker to replace the set. At $3 a gallon travelling very far for a small item doesn't make sense
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I would think the female end is full of dirt and grease from the air and electronics cleaner or alcohol would clean it if sprayed or soaked, there is Dialectic grease, maybe clean first
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A small smear of Vaseline should do the trick. In the past other posters have discussed using this when installing light bulbs to ensure they are easily removed when they burn out.
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Charlie Bress wrote:

Vaseline is a common rec. But what I might consider if I were you is trying to vacuum out the connections and then using an electrical contact cleaner. Widely available in little spray cans for about $4 at hardware/auto parts stores.
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Charlie Bress wrote:

Go the a real electric supply house, not a DIY store and get a double pull double through switch and use that. One flip of the switch and it is all save.
--
Joseph Meehan

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Not as safe as unplugging it the way he is. Lightning can jump switches. A whole house surge protector would be wothwhile.
Bob
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Bob wrote:

I agree he is over doing it, but I was thinking of his safety and a switch would be both more convenient and less likely to cause some sort of problem itself than what the OP is suggesting.
BTW I live in an area where lightning is common and I believe that this is overkill. The OP would be far better off by using a whole house system and if he really wants to a point source surge protector as well.
I would suggest that if a lightning hit is going to jump the switch, he is likely going to find that the house may be burned down by the time he gets home anyway. :-)
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After 2 strikes 1 that jumped switches or through 300000v air static charge, went through Trip Lite surge protectors and wall switches, I can honestly say unplugging is the only 99,9% guarntee you can get. Don`t leave the unplugged socket to close to the outlet, on the last srike that hit me at the same time a neighbor 250 ft away saw lightning shoot 6" out of his electrical outlet. On one strike I saw flourescent tube lights switched off light up. No wonder my dog hides during thunder.
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On Thu, 27 Jul 2006 07:24:41 -0500, snipped-for-privacy@webtv.net (m Ransley) wrote:

I think the most telling thing was the Mythbusters show about lightning. They were using the lab at CalTech where they can make a lightning like discharge. You have to pay attention to the first couple minutes of the show where they say "with the grounding system built to code" nothing bad happened and they had to lift the ground before they could get all the terrible things that happen in the rest of the segment to happen. I thing it was a disservice not to make that point clear while they were setting things on fire. If you have point of entry protection on everything coming in and you have a good ground electrode system bonded to all of your protectors it is very rare to have these lightning problems. This is years of experience working on networked computer customers all over SW Florida talking.
Lightning is blowing the crap out of stuff all around me right now while I am typing this and I am not running around unplugging anything.
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On Thu, 27 Jul 2006 11:31:35 GMT, "Joseph Meehan"

Then comes the big question whether or not the computer equipment was damaged by the lightning? Since it burned in the fire, no one will ever really know...... This could become an issue with some insurance companies because they might claim that they cover fire damage but not electrical surge damages, and we all know they will do anything to avoid paying an extra penny.
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snipped-for-privacy@UNLISTED.com wrote: ..

Spoken like an attorney or someone who has had one too many contacts with them. ;-)
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On Wed, 26 Jul 2006 19:25:03 -0400, "Charlie Bress"

You are better off just implimenting decent surge protection and getting on with your life.
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snipped-for-privacy@aol.com wrote:

your cable is properly grounded. Mine wasn't, and that's where the lightening entered. I had the cable company come out and ground it at the electrical meter .... a mute point now as I cancelled cable and am using DSL.
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wrote:

Exactly. Decent surge protection involves establishing a good grounding system, making sure everything is connected to that system and using entry protection on everything. Back that up with point of use protectors that clamp surges on all inputs back to ground. If you do that you are not running around unplugging stuff every afternoon.
We did this for over 1000 commercial computer customers in 5 counties in SW Fla. Our lightning damage calls went from several a day all summer to virtually zero and nobody turned anything off.
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It is MOOT
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Charlie Bress wrote:

There is a silicon based di-elctric lubricant by Dow Corning. It's like clear gel out of tube. Electronics parts store will have it.
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Charlie Bress wrote:

buy anything, if you don't have Vaseline, just use any bacterial ointment in a tube, the base is always petroleum jelly. At least try it first, just a tiny smear on each side of the plug connectors. Expensive dielectrics (petroleum jelly is a dialectric) are just a waste of money for what you want to do.
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You could try rubbing a candle on each side of the plug. I do that on door latches to make them work easier.
Bob
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replace plug both ends, its likely wearing corroding and contacts will heat possible fire hazard.
lubng worn current carrying connectors isnt a good idea
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Silicone Lube in a spray can (not silicone caulk).
On Wed, 26 Jul 2006 19:25:03 -0400, "Charlie Bress"

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