How to identify cord type (SPT-2, etc.)?

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Old 12-09-09, 07:23 PM
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Question How to identify cord type (SPT-2, etc.)?

I just bought a Lutron in-cord dimmer for a bedside lamp.

The installation instructions specify that the dimmer can be installed only on SPT-2 cords, and not on SPT-1 or TPT. (BTW, Lutron does not mention this important fact anywhere on the package; one must rip open the package to read the instructions.)

How can I tell what kind of cord my lamp has?

I've had this lamp for years. I don't know the manufacturer (no visible name on the unit). Also, I see nothing on the cord or on the plug that would identify the cord as being SPT-2, SPT-1, TPT, or anything else.

I called Lutron's "technical hotline", and all they could tell me was to take the lamp to an electrician to identify the type of cord; they said that any electrician would be able to tell from looking at the cord, but they could not explain what to look for over the phone.

I'm hoping that I may be able to find some other way to identify this cord.

TIA!

kynnjo
 
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Old 12-10-09, 07:21 AM
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Cord

The nomenclature you mentioned refers to the thickness of the insulation on the cord. Go to a big box or electrical supply and compare what you have to what you find at the store with a description.
 
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Old 12-10-09, 07:26 AM
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You will find most table lamps to be SPT-1.
 
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Old 12-11-09, 04:53 PM
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The cord should have identification printed on it or molded into it.

I find that my rule-of-thumbs as mentioned below is usually accurate, as compared to several manufacturer's SPT-1, SPT-2 dimension tables for 2-conductor lamp cords:


If contains 16AWG, is most likely NOT SPT-1.

If the dimensions are LESS THAN 1/8" x 1/4", it is SPT-1.

If the dimensions are MORE THAN 1/8" x 1/4", it is SPT-2.


Here are links from 2 SPT mfgs:
SPT Specs | Northwire Inc.
http://rds.yahoo.com/_ylt=A0geu7p36S...minisite=10077

kent
 
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Old 12-12-09, 05:49 AM
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Wire

This page from the web site mentioned above shows the outside dimensions of the cable.

SPT 2 Specs | Northwire Inc.

Scroll down to the bottom of the page.
 

Last edited by Wirepuller38; 12-12-09 at 05:50 AM. Reason: Added statement.
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Old 12-12-09, 08:19 AM
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Is the dimmer hard wired or is it just plug in? If plug in I'd be tempted to just use it. I would suggest e-mailing Lutron and asking why you can only use the one type of cord. I'd guess the UL rating only apples to one type because that is the only one they requested certification for.
 
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Old 12-12-09, 08:42 AM
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Dimmer

Is this a self tapping device which clamps onto the cord and taps into the wire to make the electrical connection?
 
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Old 12-12-09, 09:31 AM
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I think Wallpuller 88 has it figured out. Simplest solution may be to buy some SP2 and rewire the lamp. You can probably get a cord set with the cord cap attached.
 
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