How to Replace a Flat Iron Plug

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Replacing a plug on a small appliance is a way to keep from replacing the appliance, and it is a task that is easy to do. Flat iron plugs are typically two prong plugs, and the cord they attach to is a zip cord. Zip cords are composed of two insulated wires held together by the common insulation. The two wires can be easily separated by simply pulling them apart.

Things You'll Need

  • Wire cutters
  • Wire strippers
  • Flat tipped screwdriver

Unplug the iron.

Remove the old plug by cutting the wires with the wire cutters as close to the body of the plug as possible.

Separate the two wires of the zip cord a few inches, and use the wire strippers to remove approximately 3/4 inch of insulation from the end of each wire.

Remove the cardboard insulator from around the prongs of the new plug. This is the top of the plug.

Insert the two wires into the hole in the bottom of the new plug and pull them through from the top of the plug.

Tie a knot in the two wires by making a loop in each one and drawing the opposite wire through the loop of each. This is called an Underwriter's knot and it provides strain relief for the cord. Pull the knot tight so it is about 1 1/2 inches from the ends of the wires. If the plug you chose has a clamp at its base with two slotted screws, then skip the knot and proceed with Step 8.

Pull the cord from the bottom of the plug until the knot is against the hole in the top of the plug where the wire comes through.

Loosen the two screws in the top of the plug, and wrap each wire clockwise around each prong. Then wrap each stripped wire end around each screw, and tighten the screws. If your plug has the clamp at its base, pull any excess cord from the bottom of the plug and tighten the two screws so the wire cannot be pulled out of the plug.

Replace the cardboard insulator on the top of the plug.

Tips & Warnings

  • Take the old plug to the store when buying the new one to get as close a match as possible.
  • Zip cords have stranded wires and sometimes when working with them small strands of wire will break off. Be sure to remove any broken strands from the plug before replacing the cardboard insulator.

References

  • “Basic Wiring;” Creative Homeowner Press; 1996
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