Note: I have very little clue about electricity/circuits so I can only provide info on what I know.

The setup: In our upstairs bedroom we have two wall sockets on either side of the room, with two 3-pin plugs on each (UK Connectors). For the last couple of years we have had one desktop PC & monitor setup on one socket and a PC/dual monitor, Two-Routers, Media Server, Home Theatre PC and TV set up on the other side of the room.

The problem: The power stopped working for the socket powering the Routers/TV/PC/etc. We got an electrician in who couldn't find anything wrong with the fuse box or the sockets (we found there's another socket also on the same circuit not working). He said we would have to start pulling up the floorboards to find a junction box and at the moment, we really don't want to start doing something like that.

What we want to do: Buy an extension cord (most likely 8m/10m) to route around the room to provide power to the PC and Routers from the socket currently functioning. My worry, and this is a huge worry, is that if we run an extension cord from this socket we will have too much running on the single circuit with two computers, three monitors, two internet routers at minimum...

Is this dangerous? I know you're not supposed to use extension cords permanently but we don't want to be ripping up carpets until we move out in a year/two years, when it makes more sense. But, if using an extension cord in this situation is likely to overload the working circuit or worse, set on fire, it ain't good.

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    Floor boards!?!?!? Find someone else. You said this is in an upstairs room. Usually it's easier to poke around and then repair a ceiling than it is to pull up and repair flooring unless you had Michaelangelo paint your ceilings or something like that. If you can't get someone to address the problem I would probably remove the fuse or turn off the circuit breaker so no power goes to lines that might be damaged. Fire bad. Maybe an electrician can chime in to confirm. Feb 28, 2014 at 19:50
  • @OrganicLawnDIY Yeah, I don't know anything about electrics and that's what he said. We'll consult with someone who can tell us if it sounds right or not to be doing that (partner's dad manages properties). The electrician said there's no power reaching the sockets not working and didn't mention anything about taking the fuse out, but we'll probs do that now you mention it. Feb 28, 2014 at 20:43

2 Answers 2


Without knowing the specifics of your wiring, you should be just fine running all of that and more from a single outlet. On one 15amp outlet I have running all at once a PC, PS3, 120watt AV receiver, and an LCD TV -- you'll be fine! If you do overload that circuit the breaker will trip or the fuse will blow, and you'll lose power to that outlet.

I would get a more competent electrician out to figure out what is going on with that outlet though.

  • I am concerned about using that much but you're right the fuse should just blow if it overloads. I am mostly worried about using an extension cable but it's not like I don't use them all over all the time, just usually a slightly shorter length. Thank you. Feb 28, 2014 at 20:45

There are two separate questions here: will this usage overload the one working outlet, and will this usage overload the extension cord. In both cases, it's a matter of adding up the loads and comparing the result to the power source's rating. So for the outlet, look at how much current each of the things you're going to plug in takes. That's on the device's label, and the unit is amps, abbreviated A, as in 0.5A. If there's no rating for amperage, it will mention watts; divide by the line voltage (220 in the UK, right?) to get amps. Add them up. As long as the total is less than the current that the outlet is rated to handle, it's okay. Similarly for the extension cord: add up the current needed for each of the things that will be plugged in to the extension cord, and compare the result to the current rating for the cord.

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