To IEC or not to IEC

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To IEC or not to IEC

Postby jonathan » Tue May 08, 2012 10:24 am

Hi,

In our company we have a lot of computers and monitors, and these will be the bulk of the items being tested. Each has a detachable IEC lead, however the computers and monitors frequently get moved around and the IEC leads are left in place for the next (very similar) computer / monitor to be slotted in.

Since having a quick look around it is evident that there are a lot of good quality 10A IEC leads with 10A fuses fitted, so I am not particularly concerned about the fitness for purpose of the IEC leads for any computer or monitor we may choose to connect to them (servers have their own set of mains leads), as most of the IEC leads are identical anyway.

I have come to the conclusion that I should test and label IEC leads as individual appliances, and not tie them to equipment. If I follow this through, am I correct in thinking that I can fore-go the plug and flex tests for the actual computer equipment? Since each IEC lead is already being tested on it's own merits, all of the equipment does get tested.

If the IEC lead is rated for 13A or 10A, and the correct fuse is fitted for that lead, this should be OK I think.
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Re: To IEC or not to IEC

Postby safe + sound » Tue May 08, 2012 6:25 pm

Hi Jonathon

"I have come to the conclusion that I should test and label IEC leads as individual appliances, and not tie them to equipment."

The CoP is clear that the IEC lead is treated as an separate appliance (15.9 page 78).

"If I follow this through, am I correct in thinking that I can fore-go the plug and flex tests for the actual computer equipment? Since each IEC lead is already being tested on it's own merits, all of the equipment does get tested."

Not sure what you are asking here?
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Re: To IEC or not to IEC

Postby Jim Wallace » Tue May 08, 2012 7:31 pm

Hi Jonathan

My view is that it is always best to inspect, test and label IEC lead as they can be moved around or swapped. As pointed out by safe+sound, they should be tested as a Class I appliance, with the addition of a polarity test.

If you inspect, test and label the IEC leads then there is no specific requirement to repeat this when you test the IT equipment powered by the IEC lead if the lead is not due for retest at the same time. The only challenge is managing the assets and test schedule if the IT equipment and mains leads are tested at different times.
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Re: To IEC or not to IEC

Postby jonathan » Wed May 09, 2012 3:33 pm

safe + sound wrote:"If I follow this through, am I correct in thinking that I can fore-go the plug and flex tests for the actual computer equipment? Since each IEC lead is already being tested on it's own merits, all of the equipment does get tested."

Not sure what you are asking here?


Thank you for your replies. What I'm getting at here is that if the equipment is connected by an IEC lead, on my test sheet and database can I omit the cable and plug tests for the equipment as they are performed and recorded for the individual IEC leads instead. I'm guessing the answer is yes.
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Re: To IEC or not to IEC

Postby Grizzly » Wed May 09, 2012 8:14 pm

If by 'cable and plug test' you mean the formal visual inspection, then no, this should not be omitted for the computers and monitors.
However, the visual inspection that is performed on the computers and monitors will obviously not include any plugs or flexes, as these items don't have plugs or flexes permanently attached.
Any plugs and flexes will have been visually inspected when the combined inspection and test was performed on the IEC lead.

Semantics, maybe, but I think that's what you're getting at?
C&G 2377 -01 & -02
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Re: To IEC or not to IEC

Postby jonathan » Thu May 10, 2012 8:03 am

... your first and second paragraphs appear to contradict one another, the way I am reading them. None of the computers or monitors in question have permanently attached mains leads, they all use IEC leads. In your first paragraph you say I should not omit these tests, then in your second paragraph you say it will obviously not include any plugs or flexes. I think your third paragraph sums up what I was saying.
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Re: To IEC or not to IEC

Postby safe + sound » Thu May 10, 2012 9:22 am

I always inspect & test the IEC lead then use the lead to test the appliance. If the appliance gets changed and the old lead stays they both get inspected & tested. The 'set' then have the same retest date.

The CL I lead gets Earth Continuity, Insulation - 500V and polarity tests
The appliance (assume CL I computer) gets Earth Continuity - 200mA soft test, Insulation - 250V and PE Conductor Current.
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Re: To IEC or not to IEC

Postby Grizzly » Thu May 10, 2012 8:09 pm

jonathan wrote:... your first and second paragraphs appear to contradict one another, the way I am reading them.


Nah, they don't contradict each other.
Just remember, a formal visual inspection is more than just checking the plug and flex.
A formal visual inspection on an appliance that does not have a captive power cord would obviously not include any inspection of a plug or flex. It would, however, still include inspections of other parts of the appliance.

None of the computers or monitors in question have permanently attached mains leads, they all use IEC leads. In your first paragraph you say I should not omit these tests, then in your second paragraph you say it will obviously not include any plugs or flexes.


No, I said you should not omit a visual inspection (see above).
C&G 2377 -01 & -02
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