Ok, before everyone starts immediately telling me "NO" let me explain. I bought a new house last year and the original owner had installed a brown wall outlet in the garage. Now, there are also 2 brown outlets in the house. They are different than every other outlet in the house and according to the home inspector have no power that goes to them. 1 of the outlets is behind the fridge and the other is in the hall. According to the directions in the garage the brown outlet in the garage is where you plug in a generator and it feeds power to the otherwise "dead" outlets indoors. My problem is how do you plug the generator into the wall outlet? Can you buy a power cord with 2 male ends? Also where would I even go to get it? There is no risk of "backfeeding" because these outlets are not wired into the rest of the home wiring.

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    People will still immediately tell you "no" because a cord with 2 make ends is exceptionally dangerous. If the owners intended these outlets to be used this way they should have provided a proper plug to plug into the generator. With the generator outside, not inside the garage.
    – Johnny
    Mar 2, 2017 at 5:42
  • @doxylover has it on this one, the safest way would be to hook it up with a male / plug then use a male female to hook up to the generator, if you do not have the correct cord you can make one with SO cord of the proper gauge for the amperage. DoxyLover you should post this as an answer.+
    – Ed Beal
    Mar 2, 2017 at 7:07
  • Making the cord may be needed for a 20a outlet. I hate it when I hit enter in comments for a carriage feed then run out of time to finish the comment.
    – Ed Beal
    Mar 2, 2017 at 7:17
  • Ed, when I mistakenly hit 'Enter' I just immediately go to 'edit' and finish. If I run out of time, I copy what I have typed in using ctrl Insert then I delete the original comment and put what I want into a new comment box using Shift Insert. Mar 2, 2017 at 10:51
  • But before you do anything else, buzz out the brown outlets to verify that they are connected to each other (and that hot <--> hot), and properly grounded, and not connected to anything else that the inspector might have missed. Mar 2, 2017 at 16:38

2 Answers 2


You should replace the garage outlet with an inlet, such as this (Amazon, as an example).

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This way, you can use a standard male-female cord, either a standard extension cord or one made with the correct gauge of SO cord [Thanks, @EdBeal]. You avoid using a male-male cord which is so dangerous.

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    +1 But note @Johnny s comment about the danger of running a generator in a garage. Put it outside and connect it with a standard heavy duty extension cord .
    – bib
    Mar 2, 2017 at 12:57
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    YES. This is exactly the thing for that. In fact, nothing keeps you from using a common (heavy) extension cord to jump this inlet to a nearby outlet (perhaps one on a dedicated circuit), leaving the brown outlets energized 24x7. This configuration would be foolproof. (though perhaps not code legal). @bib The outlet, er, wrongly-pinned inlet, is exactly where it should be - indoors. Since the use of a cord is assumed, nothing here implies OP means to run a generator indoors. Mar 2, 2017 at 19:55
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    This is absolutely the correct solution. A male to male electrical cord is a really bad idea.
    – Haendler
    Oct 10, 2017 at 17:57

I think the reason the owner did this is because if he has a male plug inside, how does he plug an appliance into it? I think he has a double male plug from his generator to an outside dummy socket. Then that socket is connected to an inside dummy socket. It must be for hurricanes in order to not take cords through windows. This is potentially dangerous since you have a male end with power that can touch you when you're handling it or some other conductive material. I wouldn't recommend it. That male socket in the pic would be perfect in this case if its the one outside. No danger since it's a dummy and the only way to power it is to have it covered.The male to male plugs are called widow makers.

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