We received lot of questions recently about powering your Handi Quilter longarm machine. It’s a great question to ask! You definitely want to protect your investment in your beloved quilting machine.
I posted back in the summer about this topic and you can read the entire post here. It explains how to choose the proper surge protector or UPS (Uninterrupted Power Supply) for your machine. Read it now, we will wait.
I want to answer a few of the most frequently asked questions here, in order to expand on the previous post. The expert answers come from our esteemed engineers.
Q: Do I really have to unplug my machine when not in use?
A: YES. This is important. These words are in every machine manual: A quilting machine should never be left unattended when plugged in. Always unplug the machine from the electrical outlet immediately after using. So do take the time to unplug your machine.
Q: If I leave my machine plugged in when not in use, will it void my warranty?
Q: Can you have a UPS or surge protector that is too big?
A: No, there is no such thing as too big a UPS or too much surge protection, but cost must also be considered.
A UPS that has a larger capacity means it will keep your machine powered for a longer period during an outage. It has a larger battery to draw from, but may be heavier to move into your home. They are obviously going to be more expensive. A person running a business might opt for a larger model to assure they can finish a row on a customer’s quilt before shutting their Pro-Stitcher down. BTW, we don’t recommend ever leaving your Pro-Stitcher unattended.
Quality surge protectors do have the rating listed on the box. Having a higher rating means it protects your equipment from stronger surge events. Most list a warranty, but review the conditions. If you live in an area with lots of lightning strikes, definitely spend the money for a higher rating. Even if your home is not hit, a strike nearby can cause a disruption that will affect your home. Interesting fact: the power system in the overhead wires to your home only carry the power from the power plant. To complete the circuit, the energy returns to the power plant via the earth. So lightning hitting the earth adds energy to that return path – and also back to your home!
Q: What kind of extension cord should be used with my machine?
A: A three-pronged extension cord rated for 10 Amperes or better is sufficient for your needs. Household wiring is generally rated for 15 Amperes, so you don’t need more than that, unless you are going 100 feet and using power tools.
We found a tasteful, white, 15-foot, three-prong power cord on the Lowes website rated at 13 Amperes.
Always use a power cord with the three prongs with our machines and Pro-Stitcher. Never plug your machine into a two-prong outlet.
I hope this helps answer questions about the best way to protect your investment.
Quilt every day!
by Mary Beth Krapil