Speaker wire for power

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  #1  
Old 09-17-12, 02:40 PM
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Speaker wire for power

Hello,

Quick question: I have a remote control charger that has a cable with a wall wart on the end of it. If I wanted to extend the length of this cable, could I simply cut it and splice in some speaker wire? The speaker wire would be a larger gauge than the power cable.

I wouldn't consider doing this with a lamp or something else that plugs directly into an outlet. My understanding is that the wall wart acts as a transformer and "steps down" the power coming from the outlet. Is this correct?

Thanks!
 
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Old 09-17-12, 03:37 PM
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Quick answer: You could, but there are a lot of possible glitches along the way.

One is the possibility of reversing the polarity. Since the device is a battery(?) charger, the wall wart is power supply rather than a transformer. It is changing the AC from the plug to direct current, and polarity really matters in DC. If the plug is polarized and you don't have a good way to readily distinguish the two wires in the cable, I wouldn't try it.

Is there a reason an extension cord won't work?
 
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Old 09-18-12, 05:08 AM
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Yes, it's a battery charger. I should be able to distinguish the two wires by marking them on either side before I cut it. Any other problems that you see with this? It would only be about 2 feet of speaker wire.

An extension cord would work for sure, but I'm trying to hide this cable along my baseboard in one of those wiremould wire hiders, and the power supply wont fit in there. I'm running it to an outlet behind a couch, but the couch is about six feet away, which is longer than the cord for the charger.

Thanks for the reply!
 
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Old 09-18-12, 07:00 AM
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I don't see any real issue with it as long as you observe polarity and aren't going any excessive distance. A couple feet would be fine, but if you wanted to extend it lots you would end up with voltage drop (the lower the voltage (ie 12v) the more wire length has affects the voltage).

I think you're good.
 
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Old 09-18-12, 07:47 AM
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I should be able to distinguish the two wires by marking them on either side before I cut it.
That should work.

It would only be about 2 feet of speaker wire.
That's short enough that it shouldn't affect the power to any significant degree.

Any other problems that you see with this?... I'm trying to hide this cable along my baseboard in one of those wiremould wire hiders,
Yes. You're planning to make four splices and put them inside what amounts to an unbonded conduit.

An extension cord would work for sure,
Including an extension cord that extends the cable from the power supply to the charger?
 
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Old 09-18-12, 09:01 AM
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It would be better not to cut anything. Instead use an ordinary extension cord to extend the high voltage side; plug the wall wart into the extension cord and plug the extension cord into a wall receptacle.
 
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Old 09-18-12, 09:13 AM
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I'm running it to an outlet behind a couch, but the couch is about six feet away, which is longer than the cord for the charger.
The cord for the charger is so short that the wall wart won't be behind the couch at all? Not even the near end of the couch? And that distance can't be shortened by moving the couch, or the charger location, just a little?
 
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Old 09-18-12, 09:48 AM
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extension cords are for temporary use only tho :P
 
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Old 09-18-12, 03:07 PM
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Or you can add another receptacle a few feet over.
 
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