Wiring a Plug

A common cause of electrical faults is a poorly wired plug. Wiring a plug is not difficult however it is important to get it right.

Firstly strip off about 4cm of the outer cable sleeve. Slit the sleeve of the cable lengthways with a sharp knife, being careful not to cut into the coloured wires. Peel the outer sleeve away and cut it off. Separate the wires and cut to length using wire cutters. Use the plug as a gauge to cut the wires to the correct length.

Leaving the wires the same length usually results in the live and neutral wires becoming crushed when the plug cover is replaced. Remove about 5mm of insulation from the end of each wire using wire strippers/cutters, be careful not to cut into the individual strands of wire. Now tightly twist the ends of the wires. Connect each wire to the correct terminal. Slacken the screw, push the bare wire into the hole and tighten the screw. Make sure the terminals are tight and that there are no bare wires or loose strands of wire showing. It is often easier to push the pins up slightly when connecting the wires.

Older appliances may have different colours:

Brown - Live

Blue - Neutral

Yellow and green - Earth

Red - Live

Black - Neutral

Green - Earth

Tighten the cord clamp over the cable sleeving. Make sure the cord clamp is gripping the outer sleeve of the cable not the coloured wires. Check that a correct rated fuse is fitted. There are three standard fuse ratings- 3A, 5A & 13A. For appliances up to 700W a 3A fuse is used. For those between 700W and 1200W a 5A fuse is used. For appliances over 1200W a 13A fuse is used. Modern electrical appliances will have a sticker or plate showing the maximum power consumption in WATTS (W).

Double check that the wires are correct and replace the plug's cover and tighten the screw. Some appliances will only have two wires - Live & Neutral. These are 'Double Insulated' and do not rely upon the Earth wire for protection. The plug is wired as above but there is no Earth wire to connect, however make sure that the screw on the Earth terminal is not loose.

Make sure there are no loose strands of wire in the plug and the wires are laying in the correct channels in the plug and will not become crushed when the cover is replaced.

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