Extension: How to choose the best in 2021
Today we are going to talk about an accessory that is always useful at home or in the office: the extension.
Ideal for connecting multiple appliances to electrical power, especially in the absence of nearby wall outlets, the extension cord is one of those appliances you need to have close by.
Today there is a wide variety of electrical extensions, so we will show you in this article what you should check before buying the best model. that will meet your expectations and needs.
First, the most important
- The extension shifts and multiplies the number of sockets so you can connect multiple devices at the same time, wherever you want.
- There are several extension models, but you need to be aware that not all electronic equipment must be connected to this accessory.
- We will show you what are the features that differentiate one model from another and how to choose the ideal extension.
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Ranking: The 4 best extension models
Depending on the placement of sockets at home or in the office, a custom extension is required. Therefore, manufacturers invest in varied options for all needs.
In the following, we will introduce you to the best extension models available on the market today.
It may even seem simple to choose the best extension. But as there are variations in models and cable length, you need a little more attention before buying the ideal one.
That’s why we created this Buying Guide with all the information you will need to make the best decision when buying the best extension.
What is an extension?
You have probably had a hard time plugging in a lamp, a cell phone charger and a lamp at the same time due to the lack of nearby outlets. Or even because the wall outlets were too far from where you intended to turn on the devices.
Situations like these occur frequently in any home and especially in offices.
To solve this problem, the extensions appear. Also known as electrical extension, ruler or power extension, the extension is a device that moves and multiplies the number of sockets.
With this, you can use various equipment that depends on electricity, in any location, at the same time. For that, you just need a wall outlet.
n general, the extension is a device formed by a base that contains sockets, where the devices will be connected, in addition to an extension cable that will be connected to the wall socket.
Some extensions can connect more than 16 devices.
Nowadays there are several extension options, with different design, number of sockets and length of the extension cable. You will find from the simplest extension models, with a small number of sockets, to the most complete with options to connect more than 16 devices.
What is the difference between the extension and the power strip?
Attention is needed so that you do not confuse the extension with the power strip . Although both look similar, with a base, plugs and cable, these devices have different functions and objectives.
The electrical extension serves, as we have seen, so that you can connect several devices at the same time in the absence of sufficient sockets on the nearest wall.
But the extension does not offer any protection for your devices in the event of a power overload.
The surge protector, in spite of also multiplying the number of sockets, has the function of protecting the devices connected to it.
The line filter identifies when an overload or a short circuit occurs in the electrical network. And, in this way, it is able to interrupt the power before it can damage the equipment that is connected to it.
To prevent excess energy, some line filter models have circuit breakers and others have a fuse.
Circuit breakers only cut power in case of problems. The fused power strip retains excess electricity.
The surge protector makes sure that the right amount of electricity reaches your device, preventing the devices connected to it from burning.
In short, when you just need to move and connect your equipment, the best option is to buy an extension.
But, in case you need to connect your equipment and also protect it against voltage surges, we recommend that you choose a surge protector.
In addition, in general, the power strip is more suitable for connecting devices with higher power, such as microwaves , refrigerators and hairdryers .
Next, see the table that shows the main differences between the extension and the power strip:
What are the safety recommendations for using the extension?
Like all devices that transmit energy, the extension can also pose risks if used in the wrong way.
This is because, with the increase in the number of devices connected to the same source, overload and short circuits can occur that can permanently damage your electronic equipment.
Not to mention the imminent fire risks. So check out the expert tips for using the extension safely at home or in the office below:
- Use quality products: When the cables, plugs and sockets are quality, they help prevent fire and electric shock.
- DR: Ideally, the extensions should be plugged into sockets protected by a DR (residual device) that, upon detecting a current leak, automatically switches off the circuit.
- Power: The sum of the currents consumed by the devices connected to the extension must not exceed the maximum capacity of the wall outlet. For a typical residential outlet, the limit can be 10 or 20 amps (A).
In addition, we also list two important recommendations from the National Institute of Metrology, Quality and Technology, Inmetro:
- Never use the extension cord with the built-in cord. If you choose an extension cord with built-in cord, you should only use the extension cord with the cable fully unwound. Otherwise, the extension may catch fire.
- Do not buy extensions in informal commerce. This is because most of these products are made from scrap or have foreign origin. According to Inmetro’s tests, this type of extension performs worse.
What are the advantages and disadvantages of the extension?
There are many advantages to having an extension, either at home or in the work environment. The fact is that the extension is a practical, useful accessory that solves the problem of the lack of plugs.
That is, when you need a power point nearby, but you don’t have it, the extension allows you to connect several devices at the same time in the desired location.
In addition, the extension is a versatile product. As it has a wide variety of models, number of sockets and different cable length measurements, you can choose the one that best suits your objectives.
For example, with the extension you can connect a lamp, a table fan and a telephone at the same time , with only one wall outlet.
As these devices have low power consumption, they will not exceed the current capacity of the outlet.
On the other hand, with devices that consume more energy the extension would not be safe.
Another disadvantage is that the extension, if used improperly, can cause fires and damage electronic equipment connected to it.
The following are the main advantages and disadvantages of the extension:
The price of an extension can vary depending on the model, the number of sockets present and the size of the cable. The most common is that you find the extension costing between R $ 10 and R $ 1,100.
Of course, you don’t have to buy the most expensive extension. This is because those that have a higher cost are, in general, those for professional use with an extension cable that can measure up to 100 meters in length.
Where to buy?
You will find the extension for sale in electrical, department stores, and hypermarkets.
But, still, we recommend that you make your purchase in online stores like Amazon
This is because, when buying online, you will have more options for offers and models to choose from and still purchase and receive your extension without leaving your home.
Buying criteria: What to consider before buying an extension
As we already mentioned, there are several extension options for sale. In order for you to invest in the most suitable electrical extension, it is necessary to consider both its purpose of use and the properties of each model.
Therefore, we have selected for you the main factors that you should check before purchasing the ideal extension:
- Extension format
- Number of sockets
- Type of pins
- Cable footage
Below, we’ll explain each of these factors so that you can make the best decision and buy the best extension.
First, you should look at the format of the extension. In general, in this regard, you will have two options: the round extension and the ruler-shaped extension, long and rectangular.
The round extension has the advantage of being more compact and discreet. On the other hand, this model has less number of outlets.
In addition, it is very common to find the round extension that has the retractable cable. This functionality is also practical, especially when saving the extension, without having to worry about the wire.
However, as we pointed out, for security reasons, you should only use the extension with the entire cable extended.
The ruler-shaped extension is more modern and, in general, has a greater number of plugs. Because it is thinner, although it becomes more apparent, this type of extension takes up less space.
Below are the main differences between the extension formats:
Number of sockets
Also note the number of outlets available on the extension. To make the right choice, take into account your need for use.
That is, evaluate the amount of equipment that you will need to connect at the same time on the extension. A good strategy is to consider taking one or two more than you really need.
The more inputs to connect different devices, the more functional the extension will be.
For example, if you need to connect an alarm clock and a cell phone charger near your headboard, we recommend that you opt for a four-socket extension as a guarantee.
After all, it is likely that at some point you also want to turn on a lamp, for example.
In general, you can opt for electrical extensions that contain between one and 16 outlets.
Type of pins
Another factor you should check is the type of pin on the extension sockets. The most common is that the sockets are suitable for pins of type 2P + T, that is, the well-known three-pin socket.
But you can also find the extension for two-pin plugs and even universal plug.
Finally, take the cable size into account. This is an essential factor if you need to connect devices that are too far from the wall outlet.
You will find models of electrical extension with different lengths of cables, which can vary between 1 meter and 50 meters.
But, as we saw, the extension for use in companies and offices can have an extension cable of up to 100 meters.