Extension Leads

Extension leads, can not only gain you access to electrical sockets that are in hard-to-reach areas but also allow you to add multiple appliances to a single access point. With brands like SMJ and many more Cromwell have a range of extension leads of varying lengths and number of sockets (gangs) ideal for extending the reach of electrical cables.

What are extension leads?

Extension leads essentially are a socket on a lead which allows for one or more appliances to operate from a single mains socket. They come with varying cable lengths for multiple applications, and can feature multiple sockets allowing for easier access to power sources.

Why extension leads?

Sometimes the cord on an appliance wont quite reach a mains socket from where it is positioned. Sometimes You need to use more appliances than you have available sockets. This is where an extension lead can come in handy, simply plug the appliance into the gang socket and connect the other end to the mains plug.

Types of extension leads

There are a couple of types of extension leads, ranging from single gang leads to retractable and leads with multiple sockets for many appliances. Below are the most common variants.

Single socket - These leads operate purely as a cord extension for a single mains powered device.

Multiple gang sockets - These can come in a number of varying numbers of sockets but 4 to 6 sockets seem to be the most common for households.

Retractable - These extension cables are coiled around a reel and come in varying lengths of cord.

Outdoor - These are specifically deigned for use outdoors and can be singular, gang or retractable.

Considerations when choosing an extension lead

Indoor or outdoor? - This is a relatively obvious one, but an indoor lead should be used indoors only for safety reasons. Outdoor leads are better insulated against the elements and more robust.

How many sockets? - If you need extra plug space then a gang socket is probably the right choice as you can plug multiple items into one mains socket. However, it is important to avoid overloading them with high powered items as this can be a safety hazard. Also avoid plugging in extension leads into other extension leads for the same reason.

Amperage - Make sure this is suitable for the appliances you wish to plug into the lead. Using a higher-powered item than the lead can handle could be a fire hazard.

Cord length - This will depend on where the appliance is positioned and where the nearest socket is to it. Make sure to measure this first and allow for slack, as you don't want the cord to be pulled taught. This could result in a tripping hazard or damage to the cable.


Can I plug a space heater into an extension cord?

It is highly recommended that you avoid plugging a space heater into an extension cord as this can result in a serious fire hazard, due to electrical overload, resistance and overheating are just a few of the issues, not to mention the cable being a tripping hazard.