Safely Check Current for Appliances (for Da Poor Man)




Introduction: Safely Check Current for Appliances (for Da Poor Man)

About: Im a Machine Tool Electrician, I wire machines and assembly lines, Control Panels. I like to make my own stuff and help show others how to live better, cheaply, Self Reliant. If you give a man a fish, he w...

There are times you need to check the current on appliances that plug into the wall. I would rig a power cord to clamp on to the tongue of the neutral and clip the other one to my meter, plug it in the wall socket. More trouble than its worth.

With all the ways to make life convenient, they have standby power to everything electronic now a days. So, when you turn your television on, its on already (per say). Lets not forget (pun intended) power for memory is some devices... Where your DVD player (DVR) left off on the movie you were watching

I wanted to see how much energy was consumed when the device was off, but I wanted an easier, safer and yes convenient way to check the current of an appliance, so I came up with this (insert name here)...

Somebody have an idea for a name for this?

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Step 1: Disclaimer


Because BloFish has no control over quality of workmanship or the conditions under which engineered products are used, he cannot accept responsibility of product performance or designs as actually constructed

Step 2: BOM (aka Bill of Materials)

These are the minimum tools you'll need :

2 Plug Adapters (aka Cheater Plug) I got a 2 for a $1 at $Store

2 or 3 Wire Cord with Plug attached

Solder, Soldering Iron, Shrink Tube and or Electrical Tape

Wire cutter/Strippers

Step 3: All the Peeps Are Here, Lets Party!

Take notice of the prong sizes, one is larger than the other. This is for polarity, the small prong being the 'Hot' and the larger being the 'Neutral'

With a fine point marker, mark one plug 'Device' the other 'Test'

The Test plug gets a 90 degree bend on the Neutral prong

This needs to be soldered to the Hot on the Device adapter

I screwed these together temporarily to solder, I also plugged a cord into it to pull most of the heat from the adapter as I soldered it, so the heat wouldn't melt or weaken the adapter as I soldered it.

Step 4:

I screwed these together temporarily to solder, I also plugged a cord into it to pull most of the heat from the adapter as I soldered it, so the heat wouldn't melt or weaken the adapter as I soldered it.

After cooling I taped with electrical tape

Step 5: Adding the Wires

Now that the two adapters are joined you can add the wires. I didn't use the Ground tab, but you could add a jumper wire to connect the two and solder those as well.

Again as I soldered the wires on, I plugged a cord into the one I was soldering to aid in conducting the heat out of the adapter as I soldered it.

If your going to use shrink tube don't forget to put it on before you solder. I don't know how many times I soldered something and forgot to put the shrink tube on first   :(

Depending on what I'm building... Sometimes Ill put one layer of electrical tape, then put  my shrink tube over it.

Also note the Neutral wire may have a strip or ribs on it if it doesn't have separate colored wires inside the sheathing.

Step 6: How to Use...

I checked for Shorts/Opens BEFORE I plugged this into the wall!

Plug the appliance you want to measure into the plug marked Device

Plug your cord into the wall receptacle


2. Plug the first lead into the socket marked 1 and then use the socket marked 2 as your final connection!  The socket marked 1 is on the neutral side and it is NOT Hot. I know some meters are on when you check for current already. A meter should only be connected for a current reading for not more then 10 seconds at a time.

Step 7: In Closing

As always Safety FIRST. If your not sure how to construct anything that involves electricity, please consult a knowledgeable friend or professional

If you have any question or comments they are welcome

I can only tell you how I made this and what I think, I am not an electrician, but I am attending school to become an evil genius...

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    4 years ago on Introduction

    I think you are well on your way to be an evil genius! Great job!

    Thanks for a good idea, I believe I am going to make one today.