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Mike G.
Mike G., Master Electrician
Category: Electrical
Satisfied Customers: 7528
Experience:  Proven Professional 48 years Experience
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I bought a portable a/c recently. It arrived, and the ground

Customer Question

I bought a portable a/c recently. It arrived, and the ground prong in the plug was loose and promptly fell out. I looked in the plug itself, and it doesn't seem to have been attached to anything. It was just a plastic indentation in the plug. Taking the thing for repair isn't immediately feasible - it's about 90000 lbs - and I'd really like to use it as it's supposed to be awfully hot this weekend. If I were to plug this into a power strip the way it is (a power strip with its own grounding prong), am I likely to kill myself/burn my house down/trip the circuit breaker? Or will the power strip's ground offer protection?
Submitted: 2 years ago.
Category: Electrical
Customer: replied 2 years ago.
(When I say "it doesn't seem to have been attached to anything," I'm talking about the prong. There was a hole in the plug, with the piece of metal sticking out of it, but there were no wires or circuitry, just smooth plastic...so while I probably wouldn't risk it otherwise, I'm not sure what its purpose is. I tried sticking the prong back into the plug, and it was loose enough that it just slid right back out.)
Expert:  Mike G. replied 2 years ago.
Hi, I'm Mike and I'll be glad to assist you. The power strip will not ground the A/C unit with the broken plug. The issue would be a potential for a shock hazard. I suggest replacing the plug or the cord set for safety. It will operate with the missing ground but it shouldn't be.
Customer: replied 2 years ago.
How serious a potential for shock would you rate this? I'm not going to be able to get it fixed before I slowly roast to death this weekend. The a/c is cased in plastic, though it's on wheels that may have metal in them. Can you explain the purpose of a piece of metal that wasn't attached to anything in the cord? I mean, the prong that fell out was just sitting surround by smooth plastic. No wires, no nothing. Is that normal? Considering it wasn't attached to anything, is there something I can do to fix the plug myself?
Expert:  Mike G. replied 2 years ago.
Upload a picture of the plug and part for review.