Electric tape is a type of industrial tape that every DIYer will be familiar with. This versatile tape has many uses. It can repair minor damages in electrical wires and prevent pipes from freezing during cold months. But there are certain cases where you should not use the electrical tape. There are also certain situations where you have to know how to use electrical tape effectively. The following are some tips on how to use electrical tape.
Never use electrical tape as a substitute for wire nuts:
When you are wiring electrical items such as light switches, outlets, and junction boxes, never use an electrical tape as a long-term connection insulator. These wires must never get loose because it can result in a compromised solid connection. The heat from the connection can cause severe fire risks. Although older installations utilize this method, electric tapes were never really designed for this use. Instead, purchase electrical connectors that are specifically manufactured for this purpose.
Apply electrical tape only on minor wire damages:
A rigid industrial tape such as an electrical tape with a 33+ rating can be used to repair minor wire damages. But it should never be used on cracks and frays where the electrical wire is already exposed. If the cord has nicks on the outer layer with the inner part still intact, you can use electrical tape. It can be used as a safe repair alternative. Never cover up a wire with electrical tape but repair it with flammable material such as a rag or cloth.
Avoid covering with insulation:
If you utilize electrical tape to increase heat for water pipes in the colder months, never cover the tape with insulation material. It is crucial when the electrical tape is used as an insulation for extremely hot water pipes. Usually, the electrical tape gets hot easily. When you cover it with flammable insulation, it can turn into a fire risk.
Don’t buy too many electrical tapes:
Keep in mind that even the top brands of electrical tape will only have a shelf life of up to five years. If you find electric tapes sold at a bargain at surplus shops, you should avoid purchasing it. There is no way of knowing how the tape will hold up for your particular application. Older tapes are too risky to use. Hardware stores and home improvements sections sell electrical tapes and regularly receive new shipments. Purchasing tapes from these stores guarantee that you will get new electrical tapes.
Stretch the electrical tape:
Electrical tape works well when it is contoured on the object. When you put electrical tape to a wire or piece of cord, make sure to stretch the tape as you wind it. The tape will stick better and provide better insulation if applied tightly.
Use dielectric spray:
When applying electrical tape on sensitive wiring, it is a good idea to spray the finished piece with a dielectric spray coat such as clear coat enamel. It helps in protecting the tape and provides optimum insulation. But make sure that everything is unplugged before spraying in that area. Once the spray has cured and dried, you can restore the power.
It is crucial to know how to use electrical tape. An electric tape is vital to a handyman’s toolbox and home maintenance kits. Using electric tape in the wrong way can result in accidents. As a general rule, you can only use electrical tape for minor damages. For extensive repairs, you need to apply a more hard-wearing material or get a professional to fix the problem.