Introduction: Repair a Sweeper / Shampooer Cord
We had a bit of a mishap with our carpet shampooer the other week and severely damaged the cord. This Instructable will guide you through the process of safely and efficiently repairing a cord found on a shampooer or sweeper.
Step 1: Gather the Tools
For the repair you will need:
Wire cutter /strippers
Section of repair cord
Jumper wire or alligator clips
Step 2: Cut Out the Damaged Section
Use the wire cutters to cut out the damaged section. Our Shampooer had about 3' of damaged section.
Step 3: Strip Off Outer Insulation
Using a knife CAREFULLY score a line around the wire about 2" from the end. You do not want to cut completely through the insulation. You want to just just cut partially through it. After scoring the line, bend the wire right where you made the cut. You should be able to split the insulation at your score line and pull it off. Carefully inspect your inner wires and make sure you did not nick the insulation on them.
Step 4: Strip Wires
Typically there is some string inside the cable with the wires. Use a scissors to trim the string. Then take a wire strippers and strip about 1/2" off each of the inner conductors.
Step 5: Solder the Wires
To keep the cord strong, safe and secure, the connections must be soldered and insulated. To do this, cut 3 pieces of heat shrink 1 1/4" long that will fit over the inner conductors. Slide these over the wires. Cut a piece of 3/8 heat sink the same length as the repaired area. Its purpose is to add a little fill over the inner conductors. You will also need a piece of 3/8 heat shrink about 5 inches long. Slide the 5 inch piece over one of the cables and then slide on the shorter piece. It is important to have these slid on the wire before soldering.
I found a handy way to hold the wires for soldering is to use alligator clips on a jumper wire. I stick the alligator clips to the magnet, and hold the wires together for soldering. Make sure to match the same colors of wire. Black to Black, White to White, Green to Green
Apply Heat to the wire. When it is heated,apply the solder to the wires. make sure the solder flows completely around both conductors. Leave the alligator clip on until it cools because it acts as a heat sink. This prevents the heat shrink from shrinking before you put it over the solder joint. Once cool, slide the heat shrink over the solder joint.
Use this technique to solder all 3 wires.
Step 6: Shrink the Tube
Make sure the small heat shrink tube is slid over your solder joints. Use the heat gun and shrink the tube.
Next slide the shorter 3/8 heat shrink tube over your wires. It should fit just between the outer insulation jackets of your cords. Again, the purpose of this heat shrink is to help fill the space and help support the inner wires. Use the heat gun and shrink this tube.
Now slide your longer piece of heat shrink over the repair. Center it over the splice and use the heat gun to shrink the tube. The repair is now complete and the cord is strong and ready to use.
Step 7: Finished
The repair is now complete. In my situation, I actually added 3 feet of cable to replace the damaged section, so the process I describes was actually done twice.
I would not do a repair like this on an extension cord that would be used outside, but for an indoor application, it makes a fine repair. Take your time, do things neatly and carefully, and it will come out nice. Good luck!