I have an outdoor plug socket (UK) in my garden that is ip66 sealed (basically the plug is inside a box that you can open and close).

I intend to use this plug for a hot tub in our garden, but there is one hitch. The hot tub pump/heater has been supplied with a moulded european plug.

I will need to cut this off and replace it with a UK plug.

Should I be concerned that I will be replacing a moulded plug with a standard plug? The plug will of course be inside the ip66 sealed socket, so should be free from moisture - but I cannot shake the feeling that I'm downgrading my safety here.


I don't think I'd worry about it. I don't know much about UK electrical hardware but it looks like your outdoor plug / receptacles look a lot sturdier than the US equivalents. (Apologies if I confuse any terms translating electrical terminology to English.)

It looks like you have RCD / GFCI protection on outdoor receptacles / outlets, which is probably more important than the plug.

The BS 1363/A plug is made so the cord exits down rather than straight out of the wall in most US cords. This makes your outdoor cover a lot more low profile and probably a lot more secure than the US versions.

The seam on the rewirable plug is probably less susceptible to water than the mating between the plug and the socket. So you're really relying on the waterproof cover even with a molded plug.

The only alternative I can think of would be to splice on a molded cord. I am sure you can make a very secure waterproof splice. But I personally would worry more about the splice than the rewirable plug.

I will admit that sometimes I still add a wrap of Scotch 88 tape on things like this, even though it probably isn't needed, just because it can't hurt. (The US electrical components may not be as robust as the UKs but we make the best tape in the world, hands down!)

  • Thanks for the reassurance. The only other thing I could think to do would be to spray some dielectric grease over the inside of the plug to give it some moisture protection - but I'm not totally sure how suitable dielectric grease is for high voltage applications? I've only ever used it before on 12v PCB's.
    – James
    Dec 9 '15 at 16:29
  • @James Napier - I use silicone dielectric grease (tube not spray) quite a bit for low voltage and sometimes for 120VAC. The one I buy does list some 120V applications such as light bulb sockets on the package. In a rewirable plug I'd be worried it might make the connections inside more likely to loosen. Dec 10 '15 at 12:32

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