By Bob Difley
Portable heaters are a convenient way to ward off the season’s chill, but these devices increase amperage loads that poorly maintained electrical systems can’t handle.
SmartPlug Systems, maker of the revolutionary SmartPlug, offers tips to identify potential safety hazards in a shore power system, and ways to safeguard against overheating and possible fire.
With a traditional twist-type connector, pitting and corrosion forms on the metal surfaces due to arcing. A moist environment speeds the process. With less surface contact, electrical resistance increases, causing overheating, especially when running high amperage devices like heaters. Scorching – a yellow or brown discoloring – around inlet pins is the first sign this is happening and that the parts should be replaced.
SmartPlug Systems’ 30A/125V Retrofit Kit includes everything needed to safeguard against this and other dangerous shore power situations. Its easy-to-use design provides over 20 times the metal-to-metal surface contact to safely and efficiently transfer maximum electrical power.
Unlike twist-type power cords, the SmartPlug System has dual locking clips and a sleeved inlet that are easier to use than older traditional styles. The asymmetrical design pushes straight in – making connecting easy, even in the dark.
Replacing an inlet and connector is straightforward and requires only common household tools. Instructional videos on the process are available here.
The 30A/125V Retrofit Kit includes an inlet and connector and is easily installed using an existing cable. Improved wire guides and a new mechanical cord restraint are recent improvements. The inlet typically uses the existing mounting hole pattern. It comes in four trim colors: black, white, grey and stainless steel.