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Quality Goal: Ensure that Every Product is Safe

Posted on 2/26/18 10:30 AM

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Quality and safety are two top values at Interpower. Designing and manufacturing products that meet quality requirements are an essential part of Interpower.

An important part of a quality management program is the emphasis on all products meeting quality and safety requirements. Since safety is the number one value at Interpower, a number of tests on both product development designs and manufactured products are performed.

Product Development Quality Testing

Within the Product Development department, Interpower has implemented a test lab for continuous improvement and product compliance. “Specific tests are performed in the product design process before samples are submitted to safety testing agencies. This test lab primarily conducts tests on power cords and cord sets, specifically on plugs and connectors. These tests are conducted per various North American and international standards,” explained Ron Barnett, Product Development Manager.

Below is a quick overview of some of the tests conducted at Interpower in Product Development.

  • IEC 60320 Withdrawal Force Test

    Interpower uses the IEC 60320 gauges to verify proper withdrawal forces of the connectors and proper positioning of internal connections. This ensures that loose connections and arcing do not occur.

  • Cord Flex Test

    The cord flex tester machine allows automated flex testing of the plug and connector. This test verifies the plug and connector designs protect the cable and internal conductors from stress, breaking, and arcing.

  • Crimp Cross Section and Pull Test

    This test checks for quality wire crimps. The crimp is visually inspected for proper crimp geometry and conductor wire compression, ensuring a good connection. Samples are prepared by cutting, grinding, and polishing crimp cross sections to visually inspect the crimp.

  • Temperature Rise Test

    This test simulates cords under full electrical load and measures how hot they become to ensure they do not exceed maximum temperature limits per UL 817, UL 498, IEC 60320, and IEC 60884 standards.

Manufacturing Testing

“Approximately 70% of the Interpower product line is manufactured at Interpower. Made in Iowa, all Interpower manufactured products are 100% tested and inspected,” explained Mike Boyle, Vice President of Manufacturing and Logistics.

Below are brief descriptions of some of the production electrical testing that is completed at Interpower for power cords, cord sets, accessory power strips, and international socket strips. A Certificate of Compliance for each test is available by contacting Customer Service.

  • Hipot Test

    This test checks for a breakdown in insulation and correct spacing of conductive components in the line, ground, and neutral wires.

  • Continuity Test

    This test checks that the line, ground, and neutral wires are connected where they are supposed to be.

  • Pull Test

    The pull test is conducted in accordance with UL 817 and UL 498 standards and Interpower pull test requirements.

  • Inspections

    There are also inspections conducted on all Interpower manufactured products. These include:

    1. All plugs, connectors, and cable are visually inspected for surface quality,
      molding flash, markings, etc.
    2. Length of power cords and cord sets are checked on a random sample basis.
    3. Once tested, the assembly is given a mark to show it passed testing.

Additional Resources

Quality and safety are two top values at Interpower. For more information, see Interpower’s website and webcasts on Quality Topics.

If you have questions, Interpower offers free technical support. For further assistance, please see Interpower’s contact information below.

Topics: electrical safety, product design, testing

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