Best Extension Leads

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Best Extension Leads

Extension leads are used by EVERYONE! We think you would be hard pressed to find a home that doesn’t make use of an extension lead at some point, before even beginning to consider workshops and commercial use! This leads many people to thinking that they know all there is to know about extension leads and can also lead to complacency, but we found that many homes overload their extensions leads which can lead to fires, blown electrics and electric shocks! We all know that electricity is something that you shouldn’t be overly complacent with, so why are so many people complacent over their extension leads?

If this sounds familiar then you have come to the right place! We have put together all the key information that you need to know before purchasing and using an extension lead, so that you can be sure your home, yourself and your belongings are going to be safe and that you are getting the power levels that you need.

Best Cable Extension Pick – VonHaus Extension Lead

VonHaus Extension Lead Extra Long 15m - 4 Socket Extension Reel with Thermal Cut Out, 13A ideal for Workshops Home Use DIY and more
173 Reviews
VonHaus Extension Lead Extra Long 15m - 4 Socket Extension Reel with Thermal Cut Out, 13A ideal for Workshops Home Use DIY and more
  • TIDY REEL – keep your cable compact for convenient storage with simple yet effective cable reel – reducing clutter, tripping hazards and potentially tangled cables
  • PRACTICAL – 15 metre 3Gx1.25mm2 copper core cable with 4-gang socket.
  • EASY TO USE – freestanding durable plastic reel design makes it easy to unroll, rewind, use and store. Convenient carry handle and compact unit
  • SAFETY FIRST - features a thermal cut out to prevent overloading
  • Manufacturer 2 Year Warranty Included

Last update on 2021-05-15 / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API / As an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases

Only Got 5 Minutes?

If you need an extension lead – and quick – then this is the part of the article you need to be reading. We have included the best extension leads for sale at the moment and the key features that you need to consider before you decide which one to buy! Making it quick and easy for you to get buying!

What style of extension lead is right for me?

The first thing that you need to consider is the style of extension lead that is going to be right for you. There are various different styles of extension lead which allows you to choose one that is going to fit wherever it is that you are wanting to go.

  • Strip extension lead – The most commonly found type of extension lead. A strip extension lead lies flat on the floor and is nice and streamline so that you can slot it under worksurfaces, behind your sofa or even in a cupboard without it taking up too much space. Some even have the option of being attached to the wall in your workshop for example so that they are easily accessible but also out of the way!
  • Tower block extensions – Very similar to strip extension leads but designed almost like a “tower block”, these extension leads will stand on the floor or on a unit top. This makes them easy to use and plug into and they take up less floor space.

TOP TIP: If you do decide to opt for a tower block extension lead then make sure that the base of the tower is secure, stable but also has a soft finish so that it isn’t falling over and tipping, but also isn’t damaging the surface that it is on.

  • Block extensions – Compact and boxlike, these extension cables don’t offer the same distance coverage as they are more compact, but this works to their advantage if you are wanting something neat, modern and have a number of plugs all in one place. We found these were most commonly found on office desks where space is needed but you have a number of electrical items to plug in at once.
  • Extension cable reels – The traditional extension cable, the best option for anyone that needs electricity in a place where there currently isn’t any! These are perfect for people wanting to use tools outside or possibly even run electricity into a garage or a shed! A long cable that can be retracted or extended out allows you flexibility to where you can access your plugs. Plus you have the advantage of being able to retract it right back when it isn’t in use.

How much power do I need?

The first thing that we need to talk about when choosing your extension lead is power level! One of the main issues people have when using extension leads is that they over power the extension lead, which can be incredibly dangerous not just for your appliances but for you and your loved ones at home!

You will find that most extension leads will be rated 13A but there are some that are only rated at 10A so will be able to cope with less appliances being plugged into them. It is important to never overload an extension lead by exceeding the amount of power sources combined that are plugged into it. For example, if you are going to be plugging in small appliances such as a computer monitor, phone and printer then you will be fine with a 10A extension lead, but if you want to use your extension socket for items like a fridge freezer or washing machine then you are are going to need to make sure you have a more powerful extension lead.

SAFETY TIP: Remember you must never plug an extension lead into another extension lead, so if you know that you are going to need additional plugs or additional length then you need to consider this when purchasing an extension lead.

How many plugs should I go for?

The amount of plugs that you go for really depends on what is right for you and what you are going to be using the extension lead for. We found that plug numbers ranged from as little as 1 plug (although more commonly 2), all the way up to around 10 plugs! As you can see this is a massive difference! We would always recommend opting for slightly more plugs than you think you are going to need as this will save you having to buy a whole new extension lead just for one extra plug if you should purchase an additional electronic item.

It is important to remember that the amount of items that you can plug in at any one time also depends on the power that is compatible with the extension lead (see above) so don’t be fooled into thinking that a 10 plug extension lead necessarily means that you can have 10 electrical items running all at once!

What cable length do I need?

One of the main reasons to buy an extension lead is because you need just that….extension! The cable length that is right for you really depends on what you are going to be using your extension lead for and where you are going to be using it. If the reason for your extension lead is that you need multiple plugs in one place then you probably don’t need a particularly long cable – in fact it may be a case of the shorter the better so that it doesn’t get in the way. However, if you are using your extension lead in the garden so that you can mow the bottom of the lawn then chances are you are going to want the longest lead possible!

Most standard extension leads will be between 1m and 5m in length, but you will find considerably shorter cables for some block extension cables. You will also notice that cable reel extension leads have much longer cables going up to (and sometimes over!) 25m!

Best Budget Strip Extension – pro elec PL09181

pro elec PL09181 2m 4 Gang Extension Lead - White
4,584 Reviews
pro elec PL09181 2m 4 Gang Extension Lead - White
  • Rated at 13A and conform to BS 1363/A.
  • A 2 metre 4-gang extension lead in white, an essential for any home or business.

Last update on 2021-05-15 / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API / As an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases

What Else Do I Need To Consider?

Now that you know the main questions you need to ask yourself before purchasing an extension lead, here are some of those extra features that are worth considering to be sure that your extension lead is going to be right for you. The market is flooded with extension leads, so these are the features that will really help you to find the ones that stand out from the rest!

  • USB sockets – As technology is moving forward, so are extension cable designs. Many of our electrical items are charged using a USB lead now instead of a standard plug, which means that you have to have a plug adaptor whenever you are wanting to charge your belongings, such as your phone. To work with this change in the times, many of the best extension leads now come with USB sockets so that you can plug directly into the extension cable when you are wanting to charge any of those compatible household items.
  • Surge protection – If you are purchasing an extension lead online then it is important to make sure that it offers “surge protection”, which is a standard UK safety standard requirement! This will make sure that you and your belongings are protected against any electrical surges in the area!
  • Individual switches – Some of the best extension leads have individual switches next to each plug! This is a feature that we particularly love, as it means that you can leave a number of devices plugged in but only have power going to the ones that you need at one time! Saving money on your electricity bill and saving the other items losing power! Others have one switch on the extension lead which is great for if your extension lead is feeding a load of office equipment as this will allow you to switch off (literally!) at the end of the day, without the hassle of having to unplug your extension lead.
  • Colour – It used to be that extension leads came in a standard white colour but this is now far from the case. There are many different colours and styles of extension leads out there to choose from, which can be particularly helpful if you know that your extension lead is going to be on show. White does still tend to be the cheapest, so will be most cost effective if your extension lead is hidden away, but there are always other options available.
  • Outdoor Use – Now we know that the saying goes that you should never mix electrics with water but there are extension leads that have been specifically designed for outdoor use! These will have plugs that are covered and protected so that if they become splashed with water and damp, this won’t affect the electrics. Admittedly we still wouldn’t be dipping the extension lead under water but it will go a long way towards keeping you safe when you are mowing the lawn or cutting back hedges!
  • Indicator light (or lights!) – Some extension leads come with an indicator light (or more than one for individually switched models) that allow you to clearly see which appliances are being powered from a distance.
  • Wiring – If you are wanting the best extension lead on the market then check the wiring that has been used for the product. Some will use vacuum wire which is softer and more flexible than others. Other products will have flame retardant cords, heavy duty cords etc all of which will be specifically designed for different environments to make sure they can keep you safe.

Best of the Rest

TISDLIP Extension Lead with Switch 4 Gang 1.8M Black Power Strips Wall Mountable
3,864 Reviews
TISDLIP Extension Lead with Switch 4 Gang 1.8M Black Power Strips Wall Mountable
  • Switched Extension Plug: Each socket has an on/off switch that can cut power to the individual socket without forcing you to unplug the electronics. This is useful if you’re trying to conserve electricity.
  • TISDLIP 4 Way Black Extension Plug: Popular 4 gang extension, turn one wall outlet into 4 way plug, allowing you plug 4 items at once.Black style could be applied anywhere in the house, it’s stain-resistant.
  • 1.8M Extension Plug: High electric conductivity 1.8M long lead,has a well ability to manage electronic equipment.Applicable place:Office desk/Home Kitchen/Living room cabinet etc.
  • Superior Extension Plug: Bold 1.8M 100% copper electric lead;V0 class fireproof PC mainboard;BS1363 standard item.
  • Electric Necessity: Functional choice of enterprise customer. 3250W(13A 250V) heavy duty power supply meet the operating demand. TISDLIP give you 2 Year warranty.

Last update on 2021-05-15 / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API / As an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases

Masterplug LDCC2513/4BL-MP Four Socket Medium Open Cable Reel Extension Lead with Handle, 25 Metres, Blue
5,280 Reviews
Masterplug LDCC2513/4BL-MP Four Socket Medium Open Cable Reel Extension Lead with Handle, 25 Metres, Blue
  • STURDY AND ROBUST MEDIUM OPEN CABLE REEL EXTENSION LEAD: From Masterplug, has four sockets for convenient use around the home and office
  • FOR JOBS AROUND THE HOUSE, GARDEN OR OFFICE: With 25 m of cable, the open reel extension lead is perfect when you require a long cable extension lead in the office or when working in the garden
  • COMFORTABLE AND EASY TO GRIP GROOVED HANDLE: Makes it easy to lift and transport, and the drum winding handle makes it easy to wind and unwind the cable, and to keep the cables tangle free
  • MANUFACTERED TO BRITISH SAFETY STANDARDS BS EN 61242: The extension lead has a thermal cut-out, which prevents risk of fire caused by power overload
  • MASTERPLUG IS PART OF LUCECO PLC: They guarantee against faulty materials and workmanship – giving you total peace of mind

Last update on 2021-05-15 / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API / As an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases

Frequently Asked Questions

How do I know if my extension lead is safe?
It is important to make sure that your extension lead is safe to use. Look out for any smells of burning, smoke or sparks coming from the appliance. It is also crucial to check that the lead is not frayed and that there are no coloured wires showing. Another sign that there may be something up with your extension lead is if the fuse blows or the circuit-breaker operates for no clear reason. 

What is the longest extension lead?
The longest extension lead you will usually find is around 25 metres and this will normally be in the reel style of an extension lead. However, safety forums suggest that you shouldn’t go for an extension lead over 15m as this increases the risk of electrical faults so make sure to check how much you actually need before you just purchase the longest one you can find.

What warranty will I get with an extension lead?
Warranties for extension leads range from around a year up to five years depending on the make and model. However, you will often find that the products aren’t covered in the case of a power surge, which can happen quite regularly in some areas, so this is worth checking for before making your purchase.

  • Performance
  • Features
  • Ergonomics
  • Value

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