"The Daring Dufas" email@example.com Veterans of
International Fart Wars
Just like Superman and Clark Kent, they always seem to be in the same
I detect a whiff of a stinky sock puppet obsessed with farting. Are you
that desperate to win, Dufe, that you have to generate fake personalities to
give you "attaboys?" That would be sad.
That's a great way to determine if the plug is out of specs or the outlet is
worn. But once you know that we're still talking about a female hairdresser
and I can't think of a single one I've known that could swap an outlet. Not
if their lives depended on it.
Hardly. You've learned that a brand new outlet can hold that plug for now,
but just like the "spread the prongs trick" you don't know how long it will
stay that way. The whole point to buying GOOD outlets when doing the
initial wiring is that they'll stay tighter, longer. But this isn't an
initial wire and in fact is a fairly unusual situation.
But let's say you're right. How does the outlet fly from the store shelf
and into the workstation in 5 seconds? That's the big problem with rewire
solutions proposed here. A hairdresser is asking this question and she's
not likely to do the work or even have it done without approval.
Alternate scenario: She goes to that same store, picks up a three-way
grounded outlet extender with childproof shutters or even the typical
"hammer the plug in because it's so tight" molded extension cord. She
brings it to the salon and plugs it in. Pretty simple, very low cost and
likely to do the job quite well. I don't think even the vastly experienced
Sir Dufas could swap an outlet out in 5 seconds.
And some people can't understand how to read a simple question and so they
offer help that's not appropriate to the circumstances.
This wasn't a homeowner asking the question, it was (a friend of) the
employee of a commercial business who seems appropriately reluctant to offer
her expertise as a master electrician to her boss. At least not without
proof the outlet is bad and represents a safety hazard.
She is not very likely going to be replacing any outlets in a shop she
doesn't own with skills she likely does not have. Recommending that she
does so is pretty useless compared to some of the excellent, very
inexpensive and easy-to-implement solutions others have put forth.
You do get credit for suggesting she test the clipper plug in a "known good"
outlet. That's the least that needs to be done before suggesting her boss
engage in an expensive rewiring job.
Bingo! It's certainly the sort of thing I'd recommend to an employee who's
likely not in any position to order a upgrades to the salon's workstations.
Most molded extension cord outlets are incredibly tenacious and hold onto
plugs so tightly that it's often difficult to force the plugs into the
extension cord in the first place. Those extension cords hold plugs as
tightly as the outlet extenders with the childproof slot shutters I
mentioned way back in this thread. Either one would probably do quite
A longer cord means that it can be routed out of the way of the stylist and
is far less likely to get "tugged on" than a shorter cord. It also gives
more cord to implement some of the good strain relief suggestions that were
Before remotely considering replacing the outlets, I'd first see if the
problem was really a bad outlet(s) or some other problem. Even if was MY
salon. Tug enough on any line cord and it will loosen unless it's a
twistlock connector. That's because plugs are meant to be inserted and
removed by average human hands.
I'll bet NEMA specs out precisely the insertion and removal forces
recommended in making plug connections.
If it's a bad plug, I'd replace it with a grounded one just because the
ground pin would make it very unlikely to pull out. I might do that even if
the plug's not bad because it's something the stylist's friend Bob seems
quite capable of doing and I doubt it needs the owner's permission. It would
also likely solve the problem. Of course it's not the ideal solution, but
is one that fits the parameters given by the OP.
Electrical upgrades are not usually implemented by employees like stylists.
(-: I think it's revealing that most of those suggestions came from the
apparently self-employed. Walking into the boss's office claiming a 'Fart
War' vet on the Web named Dufas says "the salon needs all its outlets
replaced" isn't going to be warmly received.
Sorry Bobby, the only Moe I know is one of The Three Stooges. Now me and
one of my brothers share the same Internet connection via a long
range wireless link and our IP range is the same but he doesn't go by
the handle "Moe" either but keep trying, it's entertaining. The only
thing Moe and me may have common is that he/she/it may also be an old
fart born in the middle of the last century. ^_^
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One more time Bobbles if you didn't grok what I posted before. Read
carefully,get real close to the screen. I am not nor have I ever posted
here or anywhere else as "Moe or Gasser". I think it funny that you
somehow believe me and Moe are the same person or even related. My
brother and I share an Internet connection via a long range WiFi
connection but my bro doesn't go by the nym "Moe Gasser" either. I don't
know Moe and have never carried on any long conversations with
him/her/it. If you wish to continue to believe I'm Moe or anyone else,
it's OK with me, I find it quite amusing. Oh yea, normal human males of
all ages think flatulence is funny. If you don't think farting is funny,
You're not a real man. ^_^
Pray tell, how would a plug be defective? How can you make a "defective"
plug fall out of a good socket? Good sockets are grabby. I think, in this
case, you're mistaken.
Christopher A. Young
Learn more about Jesus
If I have a defective plug and I bend the prongs it will stay in a good
If I have a defective receptacle and I bend the prongs on a good plug it
will stay in the defective receptacle.
What have I learned? I've learned that bending the prongs on a plug will
help it stay in a receptacle regardless of whether the plug or the
receptacle is defective.
What haven't I learned? I haven't learned which one was defective.
Unless other plugs fall out of the same receptacle or unless that plug
falls out of other receptacles, no one knows which is at fault. A few
simple steps would determine that. Steps that would be easier to do than
replacing either part as a guess.
We used to call swapping parts without knowing what was really wrong "shot
I've seen worn/broken plugs where the two layer blades may corrode and
one of the metal prongs separates. I often take a knife or small screw
driver and slip it between the metal layers of the prongs and expand
them which will give it a tighter grip inside the outlet. Bending the
prongs to make it tighter in the outlet can often break the prongs on
the inside of the molded plug. ^_^
I believe that went right over your head, Stormy. He was being ironic.
I'll explain. You seem to be implying that because *you* have never seen a
bad plug that *no* such plug exists and so the case is closed. I disagree.
Both DD and I have seen such plugs.
You have never seen the Angel Moroni, I would assume. Does that mean he,
like the bad plug you've never seen, doesn't exist?
See the logical inconsistency in your positions?
I've been measuring various plugs in the house with digital calipers and
photographing the results, which I've found surprising. There are several
types of "defective" plugs I've come across already. Some have blades that
are thinner than others, others have blades that are shorter than others and
one even has blades that aren't as wide. Any plug that doesn't meet NEMA
specs is likely to cause problems.
Of course, this assumes that an overseas manufacturer might want to
undersize a run of 100,000 plugs to save some money in material costs and we
KNOW they would never do that <cough, cough stinky drywall> because they
have the highest integrity <cough, cough dogfood poisoned with melamine> and
they would never abuse our trust <cough, cough tainted blood thinners>.
Aside from out-of-spec plugs, common sense tells us that different types of
plugs have different insertion and removal forces and resist accidental
unplugging to different degrees. A polarized two prong plug will stay
inserted better than a non-polarized one and a three prong plug will "stick"
better than either two prong design. More surface area means greater
<strange comment about violent and epileptic hairdressers snipped>
Exactly. It's not dispositive proof of anything except bending a plug's
blades can sometimes help the situation - for a while. I tried that with my
charger's plug and it still fell out of the wall. Comparing it to other
plugs, I found the blades were almost 1/4" shorter than most other plugs.
But it hasn't fallen out since I added the outlet extender with the
childproof slot shutters. That's because those shuttered outlets require
substantially more force to insert a plug - the plug blade has to force the
slot cover aside against the force of a spring. It resists unplugging
because of that added friction.
We've learned that it's easy to steer a thread away from initial problem.
That problem was what can a hairdresser do about her clippers coming
unplugged? The proposed rewire solutions all seem to ignore the fact the
electricians are not likely to take work orders from non-managers or owners.
The question is how does this person solve her problem within the defined
boundaries of the situation? There are plenty of things to try before
resorting to the "nuclear" option.
If I were a salon owner and someone convinced me I needed all new outlets
and the cord still came out of the socket after new ones were installed, I
think I'd be demanding a refund. Especially if that electrician failed to
inspect the plug first to see if there was something wrong with it before
doing the rewire.
There's the old IBM'er joke about the IBM employees on a car trip. They get
a flat. The sales manager says "the car's broken, we need a new one." The
software engineer says, "let's restart the car and see if the problem fixes
itself." The hardware engineer says "let's swap the front tires with the
back ones and see if that fixes it."
New outlets do not equate to "rewiring."
New outlets do not equate to "nuclear option."
Electricians are likely to do what they're hired to do. How would that
be considered "taking orders?"
Outlet extenders with safety shutters, velcro, tape, hooks, rings tied
on to the cord, springs for strain relief, are all back-asswards ways to
ignore the problem, which, I might remind you, includes *sparks* coming
from the outlet.
What the hell happened to our OP, "Bob," anyway? I seem to remember him
asking for a long term solution.
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