El Paso — Power strips and extension cords look like convenient ways to plug in a lot of things that need power, but you can plug in too many electronics. Depending on what you plug in, you could overload and cause a fire. Appliances like space heaters, air conditioners, refrigerators, washers, and dryers should never be plugged into a power strip or extension cord. Manufacturer guidelines for big appliances warn they should only be used on a single outlet circuit.
"What people typically do is they'll plug multiple big things into it because they think, boy six five plugs here that's a lot of power, well it's no more power than the plug on the wall," said Marc Bashoor, a fire chief in Maryland.
Smaller things like lamps, cell phones, and laptops pull less electricity and are safer to use with power strips and extension cords.