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Flat plugs

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Flat plugs

Flat plugs belong to a group of electrical connectors that allow devices to be connected to the installation, and thus to be supplied with electricity. Apart from straight and angled ones, plugs are the most common type of connection, although for health and life protection reasons they are not suitable for all applications.

Flat plugs - structure and application

Flat plugs have a very simple structure. The two-core power cord is introduced through a gland, usually made of flexible plastic, although this is obviously not the only solution. Then it is led through the supply channel at the right moment by branching the veins. On the inside, the pins of the plug take the form of screw connections to which the phase and neutral conductors are connected, respectively.

Plugs sealed after the installation of wires are closed permanently, while the dismountable ones should be twisted so that the connection is tight and safe.

Plugs type C, E and F and Uni-Schuko

Various parts of the world have both electrical outlets and a variety of standards that use compatible plugs. The most popular in Poland are type C plugs, among them the simplest, i.e. without grounding (including flat) and type F (so-called French) with a contact enabling the introduction of a grounding pin. There are also universal plugs, the so-called Uni- Schuko , which combine the functionality of both F plugs and Schuko plugs (E type), popular e.g. in Germany. Schuko plugs are grounded as two grounding contacts on the sides.

What makes flat plugins different from others?

Flat plugs are intended for devices that do not have accessible conductive elements. Such devices are made in protection class II and are marked with the symbol of two squares placed one inside the other. They do not require additional earthing by means of an electrical installation, therefore the connection to the socket can be made with a flat plug. It is worth knowing, however, that the presence of a flat plug of the power cord does not clearly indicate class II protection - this is guaranteed only by the symbol on the rating plate.

Devices with accessible conductive elements must be powered via earthing plugs, i.e. plugs with a contact that allows connection to the socket pin. The PE protective conductor (green and yellow) is connected to the socket pin, while the PE conductor in the device power cable is connected to the plug contact. Inserting the plug into the socket ensures continuity of the PE wire.

Due to the lack of the need for protection, the power cables of the protection class II devices do not have a green-yellow PE conductor, but only a phase conductor (brown or black, depending on the manufacturer) and a neutral conductor (blue). Of course, the flat plug is connected to a standard socket with a grounded pin - the pin is simply not used in this case.

Demountable flat plugs - when are they useful?

Many power cords for flat-plug devices are offered with so-called a flooded plug, i.e. permanently joined with the cable. It is a very good, safe solution that does not allow any gaps in the insulation to increase the possibility of electric shock. However, when such a plug fails (most often at the cable entry to the plug, the delicate copper wires of the cable break), it must be replaced.

In this case, a demountable plug is a good solution. Flat twisted plugs are offered by numerous manufacturers of electrical equipment, such as Plastrol, Timex, Abex or Elgotech . The assortment includes both typical solid plugs and plugs with a handle that makes it easier to pull the plug out of the socket. The most common colors are of course white and black, but also green.