Wednesday, November 17, 2010

The Difference Between Male and Female

You’d think I’d know the difference. Heck, I thought I knew the difference.

Actually I think I do know the difference, I just don’t always pay attention. The other day Tia asked me to help her fix some extension cords, which we use for the water heaters in the winter. The horses need water, and it tends to freeze in CO if we don’t add some heat.

I went out, cut the end off the extension cord, which was damaged, and used a replacement from the store to fix it up. Here’s what I ended up with:


Here’s what I needed:


As you can see when they’re together, they’re different. Since this end of the extension cord needs to accept the plug from the water heater, I screwed up.


So I had to remove my plug, then wire up the new one. It wasn’t hard, but I had to strip out the insulation in the cold weather. It wasn’t windy, but it’s about 35F out there and since I move slow with my big clumsy hands, it got chilly quickly. Working with those small wires and tight screwdrivers is tough.

I managed to get two wires in, and then in trying to get the third screw loose, I pulled out all my wires. So I had to put all three wires back in, tighten them, test things with my tester (it worked!) and then close things up and re-attach the PVC to the barn wall that covers the cords as they come down from the roof.

At least I learned that it’s worth checking whether you need a male or female plug before you start attaching wires.

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