1. Limited time only! Sign up for a free 30min personal tutor trial with Chegg Tutors
    Dismiss Notice
Dismiss Notice
Join Physics Forums Today!
The friendliest, high quality science and math community on the planet! Everyone who loves science is here!

How the plug works in both in both directions in socket?

  1. Nov 12, 2015 #1
    If I plug my electrical device in the socket in any direction the device works. If i plug the device in opposite direction, it makes no problem. while the current in the socket is coming in hot wire.
    Is there hot and neutral also in the wire connected to the device or they are both hot ?
     
  2. jcsd
  3. Nov 12, 2015 #2

    DrClaude

    User Avatar

    Staff: Mentor

  4. Nov 12, 2015 #3

    jbriggs444

    User Avatar
    Science Advisor

    It is alternating current. Part of the time the "hot" wire is pushing current into the circuit and that current is sinking into the neutral wire. Then a fraction of a second later the hot wire is pulling current and the neutral is sourcing it. It does not matter which wire is "hot" and which wire is "neutral". All that matters is the potential difference between the two. That difference is the same regardless of which way you plug in.
     
  5. Nov 12, 2015 #4
    Hi there,

    Its because the current alternates back and forth between poles, look up some DC vs AC theory.

    Hope that gets you going the right direction.
     
  6. Nov 12, 2015 #5
    But when i check the socket with tester, it just shows the current in one hole. ( This AC current my greatest confusion these days )
     
  7. Nov 12, 2015 #6

    jbriggs444

    User Avatar
    Science Advisor

    Your tester does not detect current. It detects voltage.
     
  8. Nov 12, 2015 #7
    ok .. thank you.
     
  9. Nov 12, 2015 #8

    berkeman

    User Avatar

    Staff: Mentor

    Note that having a polarized 2-prong plug has at least two important functions:

    -1- As mentioned in the Hyperphysics link, it lets you be sure that the power switch for the device is in the Hot lead.

    -2- For lamps like the one below, the more exposed threads part of the bulb socket is connected to the Neutral line, and only the small button down in the bottom of the bulb socket is connected to Hot. That makes light fixtures much less of a shock hazard...

    https://softsolder.files.wordpress.com/2012/09/img_2327-interior-of-3-way-lamp-socket.jpg
    img_2327-interior-of-3-way-lamp-socket.jpg
     
    Last edited: Nov 12, 2015
Know someone interested in this topic? Share this thread via Reddit, Google+, Twitter, or Facebook




Similar Discussions: How the plug works in both in both directions in socket?
  1. Does it work both ways ? (Replies: 11)

Loading...