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Advice regarding electric lighting & wiring in gh

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#1 Greg Allan

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Posted 26 September 2011 - 21:37 PM

I am looking to put an envirolite in my greenhouse to help a few species in the winter. I am a little concerned about the safety aspect, however. I have the following questions:

1) I have an outdoor socket near my greenhouse that was installed by an electrician which I currently use for a heater. The lead feeds from the outdoor socket through a small hole in the greenhouse base. Would it be safe to use this socket for an extension lead with a duel socket that I could feed into the greenhouse so that I can plug in the light and the heater at the same time? In other words, is it safe to use a standard duel or multi socket adapter in a greenhouse, which may be decidedly damper than the average house?

2) Do envirolites (or other plant lights) require any special protection from damp or humidity?



#2 Phil Green

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Posted 26 September 2011 - 22:25 PM

Greg - I'm no expert but my opinion for what it's worth.

I'd make sure you use a socket in the GH which is designed to be used in 'wet' areas or outside - so one which is covered and so protected form water if it get sprayed. I use one like that in my outside yard - it has a roof only ,so doesn't get rained on but deffinately in a damp area when it raining and over the winter. I'd also suggest you use a circuit breaker, just in case. But do make sure it is before any timer and not after - as I discovered once.

The 'envirolites' should be safe in GH as they are designed for use in plant growing areas. I have one in my back bedroom over my heli's and only about 18inches above a water tray, constantly with water in it. I've not had any problems in nearly 3 years.

But see what others say.

#3 manders

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Posted 27 September 2011 - 09:28 AM

I'm no electrician either but have just done something similar in my geenhouse, having read around quite a bit first there are some obvious things to check, currently all outside power lines should be protected by an RCD (it makes sense that this is inside the house and then all the line outside the house is protected allong its whole length.

Any socket going in the greenhouse should be outdoor type sockets with a good IP rating, IP67 for example, which means the socket can stand a light degree of immersion in water, lower ratings can also be used but my view is minimise the risk, theyre not expensive to buy anyway from B&Q or homebase.

Any cable that is outside the house (ie running through the garden) should either be in conduits buried 2ft+ deep or armoured cable.

I dont think the envirolites are IP rated but just watch for the obvious (dripping water from the roof when it rains etc).

Also check the outside cable is of high enough rating for the heater + light, probably is if it was rated to supply power for a 2Kw heater for example, but worth checking anyway.

I have used ordinary sockets in the past and put a cover over them to stop water splashes etc, was never happy with that though, I also have ordinary sockets in the conservatory and theres often a fair bit of water sloshing about and its very humid, ok so far but not entirely convinced about that either...

#4 Dicon

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Posted 27 September 2011 - 12:00 PM

I agree with all the above,
The MK sockets are the best.
but cost about £20, whatever you buy, make sure they meet the IP rating WHEN PLUGGED IN as some are only rated when not in use as the cover does not close and seal when there is a plug in it!

Another option is a garden extention spike (JCB) which has a waterproof socket on a waterproof lead.

If cost is an issue however, I have successfully used a tupperware box with a standard extention socket placed inside.
Make sure the box is off the floor (preferably secured) and that both entry and exit cables enter from the bottom aspect of the box. (a slot is best from lip of box and the lid will complete the hole) do not attempt to make slot completely watertight as this may just create condentation inside, but left open it is a perfect drain.

Make sure the extension lead is suitably rated for your heater+ lighting.

#5 Greg Allan

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Posted 09 October 2011 - 19:08 PM

Thanks for all of the replies- very much appreciated. I finally got to B&Q today and got what I needed. Now to justify to the wife why I need another envirolite!



#6 keamy

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Posted 05 January 2012 - 01:54 AM

I think it should take the quality of the lights into consideration. Generally speaking, it doesn't matter if the lights has a good quality.