220v extension cords

zapdafish

Steve
Senior User
I have a 220v heater that i would like to move 4-5ft further than the plug will allow. I saw some dryer extension cords that I think will work but a quick google of that seems to say don't do it. I don't particularly want to get an electrician to run an outlet closer to where I need it. I do plan to leave it unattended, mainly to warm the area up before I start working. Any alternatives / suggestions that are safe/legal, lol? Current cord is about 4ft long.
 

zapdafish

Steve
Senior User
I might be able to, the soft pliable 220v cord I can get from Lowes is much thicker so pretty sure I'd not be able to get it through the opening in the heater casing. Maybe they have dryer cord that is longer than 4ft.

Can you install a longer cord on the heater?
 

Skymaster

Jack
Senior User
i have run my 220 on 12/3 the most IMPORTANT part is what is amps of heater, almost all can run safely on 10 ga which is 30A 12 is 20A
 

redknife

Chris
Corporate Member
I made 220v extension cords: bought SJ- wire of the appropriate gauge by the foot from the big box. Used a metal box, metal cover with the correct 220v receptacle, and the correct plug on the other end. "Appropriate" determined by amps. Some have mentioned this as an insurance risk, so if this worries you consider another option. The electrician I occasionally use made the same design 220v extension for me years back.
 

zapdafish

Steve
Senior User
I believe my heater uses a 15A plug, It's like the one in the middle. Doesn't look like dryers cords that kind of plug.

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@Skymaster I should have taken a pic of my heaters amps but dont have that info handy. I post it later to see if it will work safely with 10 ga.

@redknife i saw a video of someone using a metal box, but then I also saw google posts not to use extension cords, so am checking here
 

Ed Fasano

Ed
Senior User
I just bought a new 220V lathe. Of course, its cord would not reach the closest 220v shop outlet. The (Jet) lathe manual, it gave specs for wire gauge at ranges of length for using extension cords. That, to whatever degree may debunk the Googled prohibition of 220v extension cords. I only needed another 12 feet but I still went up a notch to 12g SJ wire (from Lowes). Fancy appearance was not an issue, so I too used a metal utility box and metal cover with the correct and high-grade 220v receptacle. A high-grade plug on the other end completed things, adding up to a surprisingly expensive extension cord.

Assembling the components and with care is, of course, essential. As others have said, if the wire and components meet or exceeds the needs of the draw in amps and if things are assembled correctly and securely, I know of no incremental risk.

As Mike Davis wisely suggested, replacing the appliance’s cord with a longer one of equal or greater gauge wire with a good 220v plug is an ideal approach. This method introduces no additional points of connection. The rewiring still has to be done prudently though. I chose an extension cord because I didn’t want to break into the lathe’s VFD inverter.

With all that said, If there’s an electrician out there that can chime in on either side of this, I’m all
 

mquan01

Mike
Corporate Member
we use 10-12' L6-30 (locking, 30 amp, 240 volt) cords under our computer room floor all the time. If you were to make an extension, I would highly recommend locking ends.
 

red

Papa Red
Red
Senior User
I've used shop made 220 volt extension cords for my shop when I had just moved into it. They worked flawlessly and I still use them on occasion. You will be fine using a cord heavy enough to carry the load needed.

Red
 

AllanD

Allan
Senior User
Use extension cords for several 240V items, including a 50 amp welding outlet. As long as you adhere to the correct gauge wire I don't see the issue of whether the wire is in the wall running to an outlet or through an extension cord.
 

Jeremy Scuteri

Jeremy
Staff member
Corporate Member
The standard extension chords at the big box stores are rated up to 600V. It is printed right on the extension chords. You can cut off the ends with the 120V plugs and install 220V plugs on both ends. Just ensure that the extension chord is the proper gauge for the current that you require.

14 AWG --> 15 Amps
12 AWG --> 20 Amps

If you need more than 20 Amps then this won't be a good solution for you.
 

Charles Lent

Charley
Corporate Member
And when in use for constantly ON high current heating appliances, not only should you use the proper plugs and receptacles, but check the plugs, receptacles, and wire occasionally for increased temperature. As plugs and outlets age, their contacts corrode and the spring tension of the contacts weakens. This increased resistance in the circuit causes increased heating at these points. If any part of your power cords get borderline too hot for you to safely hang onto, it's time for immediate replacement. This is true for the wall outlet, the circuit breaker, and all of the wiring connections too. A little temperature increase of 20-30 degrees above ambient is expected, but more than that says it's time for repair or replacement.

I have a 9' 20 amp 12 gauge 120 volt ready made extension cord in use in my shop at this moment. It's supplying an oil filled radiator that draws about 8 amps. At the moment my heat pump is in need of service, and the heater is keeping the shop above freezing for me. Each day I check on it and feel the temperature of the connections and wire to make certain that I won't have problems.

Charley
 

Oka

Oka
Corporate Member
#10 is for 30 amps NEVER RUN 30 AMPS ON #12.
If it is rated more than 24-25 amps then you will need #8 gauge Heater have enormous start loads that happen alot.

Buy 10 ft of #8 SO cord, get Hubbell commercial rated male and female plugs and just make it. That is the best way.

ALWAYS over rate the cord for a heater.
 

Pop Golden

Pop
Corporate Member
Remember that at 220 volts the amps are half of 110 amps. If my saw pulls 15 amps at 120 it only pulls 7.5 at 220. You size your wire to the load that is going to be pulled. I still use #10 on 220 volt circuits.

Pop
 

NCPete

Pete Davio
Corporate Member
I might be able to, the soft pliable 220v cord I can get from Lowes is much thicker so pretty sure I'd not be able to get it through the opening in the heater casing. Maybe they have dryer cord that is longer than 4ft.
they do - I would regularly purchase 6ft dryer cords, and I remember seeing longer available from my vendor (8ft, I think?) but I have been out of that business for 7 years. You may be able to find longer power cords intended for welders?
 

NCPete

Pete Davio
Corporate Member
and now laughing at that profile info. "new user" with a join date of 2005, and over 5500 posts.
 

bowman

Board of Directors, Events Director
Neal
Staff member
Corporate Member
and now laughing at that profile info. "new user" with a join date of 2005, and over 5500 posts.
Yea, the status resets if you don't have posts within 30 days. The day after, you go back to your previously earned 'rank'.
 

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