Professionals in the electrical industries, and even in within home improvement stores, will commonly use terms and phrases. Where most of these words are plainly obvious, to the layman they can leave many clueless. Bearing this in mind, we at Simon Electric would like to list some of the most frequently used terms and phrases to help you better understand.
Adapter: An adapter is a cord or block style device equipped with different ends that is used to allow for different devices to connect.
Alternating Current (AC): An electric current that periodically reverses the direction of the energy flow.
Amperage (Amps): Electricity’s flow rate measurement.
American Wire Gauge (AWG): Standardized measuring gauge for non-ferrous conductors, like non-iron and non-steal for example; the larger the conductor size with the lower the gauge.
Cable: Typically encased in protective outer jacket are a set of wires.
Conductor: The conductor is internal material of a cord, usually copper, that conducts electricity. However, silver is better, though expensive, but it does not corrode, and gold is ideal as high-quality surface-to-surface contacts.
Connector: Recessed behind the mating surface of the female end of the cord mounted wiring device is the conducting elements.
Current: Through the conductor wire is the flow of energy.
Direct Current (DC): A single direction of steady flowing electrical currents.
Fuse: A safety device as in the event the current exceeds a safe level, a strip of wire that melts and breaks an electric circuit.
Ground-Fault Circuit-Interrupter (GFCI): Should the electric current be imbalanced between the energized conductor and the return neutral conductor, the electrical wiring safety device known as GFCI, will disconnects a circuit.
Ground: An electrical voltage connection.
Hertz: Equaling one cycle per second, Hertz is a frequency measurement.
International Color Code (ICC): Ground=Green/Yellow, Hot=Brown, Neutral=Blue, which is the wire jackets standard colors.
International Electrotechnical Commission (IEC): An international organization who determines the standards for electrical products.
Inlet / Plug: Exposed from a male flange mounted wiring device. The inlet is the conducting pins protruding from the end.
Insulation: Insulation is the material that encases a conductor and prevents current leakage from a conductor.
Jacket: The cord’s exterior material.
North American Color Code (NACC): Hot=Black, Neutral=White Ground=Green
National Electrical Manufacturers Association (NEMA): An organization based in the U.S. that sets the standards of electrical products.
Outer Diameter (OD): The diameter cord’s exterior.
OEM: Original Equipment Manufacturer.
Polarized: A plug and connector formed accordingly to ensure the proper connection.
Receptacle: Otherwise known as an outlet, it is the conducting elements recessed behind the mating surface of a female flange mounted wiring device.
Slitting: Separating insulated parallel wires.
Stripping: Removing the insulation or jacket from a conductor/wire.
Temperature Rating: The maximum temperature that the insulation will maintain its integrity.
Terminal: A terminal is the point at which a conductor from an electrical component, device or network comes to an end, which provides a point of connection to external circuits.
Voltage: The force in a conductor or wire that drives electrical energy through it.
Watt: Defined as one joule per second, a watt is a unit of power.