How to Install a Plug Strip for Desk or Workbench Outlets
Installing an Outlet Plug Strip: Plug strips are a great solution when several outlets are required for a desk or workbench.
Electrical Outlets for a Desk or Workbench
Electrical Question: I am designing and building a custom made desk that will require several outlets.
- The desk will also have my aquarium that has both lighting fixtures and electric filter equipment.
- I want to install receptacle outlets into the desk where all the electrical plugs can connect.
- I am currently renting my house so I do not have the option of running wires from the circuit breaker all the way to the desk.
- Is there a legal and electrical code compliant way of installing these receptacles into the desk and drawing power from a separate receptacle mounted in the wall?
This home Electrical Wiring Question came from: Jonas, from Blacksburg, Virginia.
See more about Home Wiring for Virginia
Thanks for your Electrical Wiring Question Jonas.
Installing an Outlet Plug Strip
Application: Wiring Utility Cords and Electric Plug Strips.
Skill Level: Beginner to Intermediate.
Tools Required: Basic Electricians Pouch Hand Tools and Voltage Tester.
Estimated Time: Depends on personal level experience and ability to work with tools.
Precaution: Never wire cord connections when the cord is plugged into the receptacle outlet.
Notice: Electrical projects and wiring connections should be done according to local and national electrical codes.
How to Wire a Plug Strip
- Plug Strip Options Plug strips are available in lengths of 3 feet to 10 feet long and contain several receptacle outlets which are evenly spaced in a metal strip which encloses the wiring and the receptacle outlets .These plug strips typically come prewired with #12 wires enabling a connection or circuit of up to 20 amps.
- Connecting Multiple Plug Strips Sections of plug strips may be fastened together for longer lengths, or a length may be cut shorter depending on the application. These plug strips are great for fastening under a desk or on a garage workbench.
- Installing the Plug Strip When installing make sure to keep in mind where the cords for the devices will be hanging to create a safe working environment. End connectors will enable the plug strips to have junction boxes or cords attached to them.
- Circuit Protection If GFCI or surge protection is desired then the plug strip may be connected or wired appropriately to incorporate these devices. Plugs strips are typically available in 4, 6 and 8 foot lengths and a few different colors.
- Where to Get a Plug Strip The concept of plug strips are the same as track lights, and are available from the same electrical companies, local hardware store, or construction supplier.
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Electrical Code Articles for Home Wiring
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Consult your Local Building Department about Permits and Inspections for all Electric Wiring Projects.
The Safest Way to Test Electrical Devices and Identify Electric Wiring!The Non-Contact Electrical Tester
This is a testing tool that I have had in my personal electrical tool pouch for years, and is the first test tool I grab to help identify electrical wiring. It is a Non-contact tester, [amazon.com], I use for the detection of Standard Voltage in Cables, Cords, Circuit Breakers, Lighting Fixtures, Switches, Outlets and Wires. Simply insert the end of the tester into an outlet, lamp socket, or hold the end of the tester against the wire you wish to test. Very handy and easy to use.
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