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Can NM-cable (Romex®) be used to make a cord and plug to connect an appliance?
Wednesday, July 4, 2018
The answer is no, and the principle behind it is simple: the electrical cords that manufacturers use for appliances, like the one shown above, have multiple strands in each wire that will flex repeatedly without breaking, but an NM-cable wire has a single, solid conductor that is only rated for use in a permanently installed branch circuit that is not moved once it is in place.
We occasionally see NM-cable used for a cord and plug to connect a water heater, disposal, or dishwasher. While it could be argued that these are not appliances like a vacuum cleaner that are frequently plugged and unplugged, NM-cable is just not rated for this use. Also, NM-cables are required to be secured and protected from damage by National Electrical Code (NEC), while cords are not.
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