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I'm sorry if the question is too dumb, but I was wondering if I could connect a power strip rated for 250v into my home's power outlet (120v). I wanted to connect 3 power adapters rated at 120v to it (that would then power up some effect pedals I have for guitar). Could the wire gauge inside the power strip be a problem? Because I thought that since the rated voltage support is higher, there shouldn't be any problem (I mean, resistors and eventual caps wouldn't catch fire, but would they some how underpower my power adapters?). Please correct me otherwise. Thank you!

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  • \$\begingroup\$ Can it handle the desired current? \$\endgroup\$ – Ignacio Vazquez-Abrams Oct 4 '14 at 20:33
  • \$\begingroup\$ Yes! I appreciate your worry, but I checked it and the power outlet handles, presumably (it's cheap...), 10A, thats 2,5 A more than I'll need \$\endgroup\$ – flen Oct 4 '14 at 20:44
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The answer may be both yes or no, depending on some details.

You will get a yes answer if, and only if all of the below are yes:

  1. Your adapters are all guaranteed to be rated at the voltage that comes out of the wall socket (I believe to read in your question this is the case, but be 100% sure).
  2. The power-strip you mention does nothing fancy. i.e. it has only pieces of metal and wire intended to let you go from one outlet to multiple outlets, no internal electronics that may behave weirdly on a voltage below rated. A neon-light in a switch is okay, they're too stupid to cause problem ;-)
  3. The current you will draw is less than the current the strip can distribute.

For point three, if the strip only has a wattage rating, I = P/V, use the highest voltage it can operate at to be safe, so 250V. So if it says 2500W, it can handle 10A. Which means for your adapters, try and stay at or under 1000W (100V * current) and you'll have used a little margin in both calculations and will stay on the safe side.


EDIT: Point 2 can get a no and the end-answer still be yes, but within the range of (over-)equipped power-strips there are sooooo many different functions and functionalities that it's a bit senseless to add all the options, since I'm not in the mood to write a 110 point list.

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  • \$\begingroup\$ Asmyldof, thank you very much for your answer! Replying your questions: 1- Well, actually, they are rated for 120V to 250V, all of them. I usually plug them to a power strip I have here with no problems. But as I'm currently using this power strip in another room, I thought about buying this new 250V power strip. 2- Thanks!! That's what I thought but couldn't be sure. I think it's just plain wire, since it's very cheap. 3- True, it's 2,5A less than that. \$\endgroup\$ – flen Oct 4 '14 at 20:55
  • \$\begingroup\$ But now I'm wondering if answer (1) could be a problem... I thought that since the power strip would only distribute the current coming from the 120V power outlet, the voltage would remain the same. What do you think, could there be a problem? (assuming the power strip has no voltage converter) Thanks again! \$\endgroup\$ – flen Oct 4 '14 at 20:55
  • \$\begingroup\$ @flennertz A simple power-strip does nothing with the voltage, that was the point of number 1. If 120VAC goes in, 120VAC comes out, if 24VDC goes in, 24VDC comes out. If 50000VDC goes in, fire comes out, that's the only conversion it can do. There wasn't a real need to answer them all out loud, but if it helps :-) \$\endgroup\$ – Asmyldof Oct 4 '14 at 21:00
  • \$\begingroup\$ Thanks!:) It helps a lot, I don't understand much about electricity (as you see), and I was very worried about setting all my equipment on fire \$\endgroup\$ – flen Oct 4 '14 at 21:05
  • \$\begingroup\$ @flennertz No worries. I'd rather you ask five strange or simple questions than skip one good one and kill yourself in the process. Just remember what you learnt today and stay safe :-) \$\endgroup\$ – Asmyldof Oct 4 '14 at 21:09
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My concern is that the plug and receptacles on the 250 volt power strip will not be compatible with the 120 volt outlet and the plugs on your equipment.

Since it seems that every country (a slight exaggeration) has its own design for AC power connectors, it is best to buy AC-powered equipment and accessories in your own country (or in a country whose plugs are the same as yours.)

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  • \$\begingroup\$ Yes, that's a good point... but I might buy this guy here ebay.com/itm/… I think that's pretty much universal. And the problem is I looked around but couldn't find such a simple power strip, all of the ones I found the plugs are too close to each other and don't allow me to use the adaptors together \$\endgroup\$ – flen Oct 4 '14 at 21:29
  • \$\begingroup\$ I found an 8-outlet power bar at Amazon.ca - made by Belkin. It has two rows of 4 outlets, rotated 90 deg from the usual in-line style. On special for Can$20. \$\endgroup\$ – Peter Bennett Oct 4 '14 at 21:52
  • \$\begingroup\$ Thanks for the tip! The problem is I need something small, there's also the Quirky pivot power that is curved as to allow bulky power adaptors to coexist. But it's the same problem, it's rather big... \$\endgroup\$ – flen Oct 4 '14 at 23:09
  • \$\begingroup\$ @flennertz I would advise against universal power strips. A socket that is designed to fit lots of plug types will fit none of them well. \$\endgroup\$ – Peter Green Dec 17 '15 at 12:27

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