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Old 03-02-2013, 02:57 AM   #1
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Default Electrical problem with temp control setup

This has been an epic struggle. After overcoming several hurdles, I've come this far only to be foiled once again. I'm trying to rig up a Kenmoore chest cooler for temperature control, and as you can see, I have the Control Products device shown here, already wired with 12 gauge wire:



I thought I was being smart by using a 20amp appliance cord, but little did I notice until I had wired it to the controller that the end of the cord does not fit the 20amp, 120 volt outlet I installed for it:



Now, it's either reinstall a 15amp cord into the controller, which will be a huge PITA, or install a 20amp, 250 volt outlet that has the right prong holes, as shown here:



My question is this: Is it safe to install the 20amp, 250 volt single outlet as shown into this circuit? It's a 20amp circuit, according to the breaker box located on the other side of the house. Will it be safe to run the freezer off of it? Also, the 20amp, 250 volt single outlet has two hot sides, not the usual 1 hot, 1 neutral side, like other outlets. How would I install it?

Any help would be greatly appreciated.

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Old 03-02-2013, 03:23 AM   #2
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So go to the hardware store, buy a regular 3 prong plug, go home, chop off the old plug, replace with the new plug.

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Old 03-02-2013, 04:01 AM   #3
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So go to the hardware store, buy a regular 3 prong plug, go home, chop off the old plug, replace with the new plug.
Is there a way to do it without having an ugly splice in the cord? I'd prefer to not go entirely ghetto.
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Old 03-02-2013, 12:49 PM   #4
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What BigRob said - just replace the plug on the end of the cord with no splicing needed.

It's not a good idea to be mixing outlets or plugs for other than their intended voltage / amperage specs and also is probably a code violation.

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Old 03-02-2013, 01:41 PM   #5
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There's no splice, don't buy a new cord, buy a plug, they sell plugs at the hardware store too, many people actually make their own extension cords because it's cheaper and you can customize the wire gauge, etc.

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Old 03-02-2013, 02:08 PM   #6
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There is nothing wrong with using fixtures with higher ratings other than they are more expensive. You can also use a smaller rated plug that would not require splicing. A 20a, 240v outlet is designed for a maximum of 4800 watts. If you are using 20a at 120v, you are only using 2400w and will not overheat the connectors or insulation. Never go under rating.

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Old 03-02-2013, 02:25 PM   #7
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Okay, thanks for the input. I think I'll return the single 250 volt amp outlet and go with the different plug. That way, I'll be able to use the second outlet.

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Old 03-02-2013, 02:31 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by grimstuff View Post
...
I thought I was being smart by using a 20amp appliance cord, but little did I notice until I had wired it to the controller that the end of the cord does not fit the 20amp, 120 volt outlet I installed for it:



...
Any help would be greatly appreciated.
The plug you have (illustrated) is not a 120V plug. It is a 20A-240V plug.

Edit: Also - The outlet is a 120V-20A outlet.
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Old 03-02-2013, 02:40 PM   #9
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The plug you have (illustrated) is not a 120V plug. It is a 20A-240V plug.

Edit: Also - The outlet is a 120V-20A outlet.
You're right, that's what I meant. The outlet is 20 amp/120 volt, the cord and plug is 20 amp, 240v. I didn't know this when I bought it and didn't even notice when I was rigging the other end of the cord to the temp controller.
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Old 03-02-2013, 10:10 PM   #10
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You're right, that's what I meant. The outlet is 20 amp/120 volt, the cord and plug is 20 amp, 240v. I didn't know this when I bought it and didn't even notice when I was rigging the other end of the cord to the temp controller.
I certainly hope that your decision is to replace the plug if your intent is using 120V-20A. If this is the case, do not use the 240V-20A outlet and then run 120V power through it. If you do that you are courting a huge disaster.
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