Using an extension cable on a reel

Does an extension cable need to be completely unravelled from the reel when it's in use? I've read somewhere that it can melt.

Asked by Karen on 9th Sep 2022
Expert Trade Answers
"That is correct! It can melt when its not unreeled fully."
Answered on 11th Sep 2022 - Member since Mar 2021 - report
"Depends what you’re plugging into it, anything with pulling a high load could cause melting"
Answered on 9th Sep 2022 - Member since Aug 2022 - report
"Yes they should be, unless it’s an extremely load being pulled then no it won’t melt"
Answered on 16th Sep 2022 - Member since Feb 2021 - report
"It’s safe practice to do it however, unless you are plugging in very high energy consuming units, it’s unlikely to melt."
Answered on 9th Sep 2022 - Member since Jun 2022 - report
"Yes it is best to fully extend the cable as the build up of heat could cause the cable to melt and be a potential fire risk"
Answered on 20th Sep 2022 - Member since Feb 2022 - report
"Yes it does need to be unwound as it will get warm. Electrician."
Answered on 9th Sep 2022 - Member since Jun 2022 - report
"Yeah its always safe to unwind the cable fully , to prevent overheating of the cable"
Answered on 9th Sep 2022 - Member since Aug 2022 - report
"Yes it's is true that they can melt if not unwound fully. But it's also down to the load plugged into it.

A phone charger or a single table lamp is unlikely to make the unit overheat, but a heater or kettle will draw alot more power and when wound on the reel the power going through acts like a transformer and generates heat.

Best advice is always unwind them fully."
Answered on 9th Sep 2022 - Member since Apr 2017 - report
Find Tradespeople, compare up to 3 quotes!
It's FREE and there are no obligations
Ask a Trade
Got a question that only a tradesperson can answer? We have thousands of trades ready to answer any question you may have.
Ask your question
Ask a Trade

Are you looking for advice on a DIY project or have a question for our tradespeople?

We'll email your question to tradespeople who are skilled in your chosen category.

Your question will be made public - please do not include any personal details.

{{ first(ask.errors)[0] }}

By continuing you agree to the Community Guidelines.

Report Content

{{ first(reportForm.errors) }}

Thank you

Your report has been created and will be investigated shortly.

Ready to get a price for your home improvement project?
Get started

Over 1 million homeowners and over 50,000 tradespeople
use MyJobQuote nationwide each year