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It might sound weird but I want to use 125V plug on 220V line.

The plug is US type (type b) but I live in EU now. I'll change the outlet with US type outlet and also my cables has US type plugs on.

Outlet and plug are both classified for 125V/15A. So it's 1875 watt theorocly.

Let's say my device is 220V and 1000 watt. Will it be safe to use 125V/15A plug and 125V/15A outlet?

The question is all about plugs and outlets. Cable and the device both suitable for 220V.

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    \$\begingroup\$ In addition, your equipment for US might expect a different frequency 60Hz compared to the 50Hz that is commonly used in the EU. As long as you just connect something that converts VAC to VDC then it could perhaps work, but if you connect something which is powered on AC then you get problems. \$\endgroup\$
    – Lundin
    Dec 20, 2023 at 10:46
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    \$\begingroup\$ Also all countries in Europe use 230VAC, not 220VAC. (And North America uses 120V not 110V iirc?) \$\endgroup\$
    – Lundin
    Dec 20, 2023 at 10:49
  • \$\begingroup\$ The question is not about devices. As I said all about plugs and outlets. Also my line is 220V mostly. I know Europe rated their line to 230V but mine is arround 221V mostly when I measure it. \$\endgroup\$
    – kokojuh
    Dec 20, 2023 at 10:56
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    \$\begingroup\$ W.r.t. the So it's 1875 watt theorocly part of the question, Can you use the same connector when using lower voltages but with higher current? explains that Connectors do not have a constant power rating. The voltage and current limits apply independently of each other \$\endgroup\$ Dec 20, 2023 at 10:57
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    \$\begingroup\$ @kokojuh It's up to you if you want to revert to an earlier version of your question, but at least please take note of Writing with SI (Metric System) Units. \$\endgroup\$ Dec 20, 2023 at 16:31

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US-type outlets are probably not legal where you are in the EU. Changing outlets yourself may also not be legal.

It is not safe to use a plug rated at 125 VAC on substantially more than that. It is not safe to use an outlet rated at 125 VAC on substantially more than that. 200+ VAC is substantially more than 125 VAC.

If the devices have IEC connectors on them, you could buy a replacement cord with the correct plug on it and dispose of the old cord in the electrical equipment recycling bin.

If for some reason you wanted to keep the existing cords, you could buy user-wireable mains plugs and replace the US-style mains plugs. (Note that gold plating is not the best for mains voltages, if you want to go for something fancy.) I suggest that you get a qualified electrician to swap the plugs for you if you haven't successfully rewired plugs before.

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  • \$\begingroup\$ IEC plug is classified for 125V/15A and 250V/10A. Both plugs are made by same company with using same materials. So I would like to assume that Type B plug can also work on 250V/10A :D \$\endgroup\$
    – kokojuh
    Dec 20, 2023 at 11:20
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    \$\begingroup\$ @kokojuh You're asking about safety and you want to assume something? The two are not compatible! \$\endgroup\$ Dec 20, 2023 at 11:35
  • \$\begingroup\$ I would like to because IEC plug is rated for 125V/15A but it's also rated for 250V/10A. So just a thought. Why not for Type B plug. Like I said. Both are made by same company with using same materials. \$\endgroup\$
    – kokojuh
    Dec 20, 2023 at 11:48
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    \$\begingroup\$ @kokojuh If the devices have IEC connectors on them, simply buy a replacement cord with the correct plug on it and dispose of the old cord in the electrical equipment recycling bin. \$\endgroup\$ Dec 20, 2023 at 13:48
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    \$\begingroup\$ @kokojuh It's still a bad idea to have outlets that should present 125 VAC having more than that, as Justme pointed out earlier. Note that using a transformer will reduce some of the electrical noise on the line, although that job is already done sufficiently by the power supply in the equipment. \$\endgroup\$ Dec 20, 2023 at 17:53
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It does not matter if you want to use your expensive mains cords with US plugs.

If you have US 110V plugs that are approved for US 110V use, there are already two problems.

They are only approved for 110V use, not 220V use, and even if they were approved for 220V use, they are not approved for use at any voltage in EU, unless there are approval markings that may be country-specific.

Which is why you can't use them in EU, even if they were perfectly safe.

Also since every elecrical installation must be made according to electrical codes, you are not allowed to use non-approved outlets as you likely cannot find EU approved US outlets and even if you do you are not allowed to perform the work yourself unless you are an electrician who is allowed to legally approve your work and take responsibility of the installation with proper documentation.

Now, having said that, I believe you are allowed to build simple electrical devices for your own use if you know what you are doing. Specifically, extension cords may be on the list of devices that ordinary people are allowed to build themselves.

So what you could do is to build an extension cord with EU plug on one end and US sockets on one end. I do not recommend purchasing an US extension cord and just changing the mains plug because the cable may not be rated for enough voltage and current. You could buy an EU and US power strips and combine the EU plug and cable with US strip.

On your own responsibility of course. Having 220V on US socket just to use your expensive cables may sound like a good idea until you, your wife, your kids or guests plug a 110V US device into US socket providing 220V.

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  • \$\begingroup\$ Cables are rated for enough voltage and current. No doubt about that. There is no way to plug 110V device into 220V US outlet because the room is isolated but I get your point. IEC plug side is classified for 125V/15A and 250V/10A. Both plugs are made by same company with using same materials. Still wondering the Type B plug can handle 250V/10A. IEC looks fine for 250V/10A but why doesn't same rated Type B (125V/15A) \$\endgroup\$
    – kokojuh
    Dec 20, 2023 at 11:39
  • \$\begingroup\$ @kokojuh You need to separate two things. Your plug is rated and approved for handling 125V by some laboratory to have a plug you can legally use in US. The plug itself might be able to handle 250V just fine, but as those plugs are never used for 250V, they are not tested and validated and approved by any laboratory for such use, because there is no need as it is not intended for 250V use to begin with. \$\endgroup\$
    – Justme
    Dec 20, 2023 at 11:46
  • \$\begingroup\$ "you are not allowed to perform the work yourself unless you are an electrician" - Do you have a source for that? - "... I believe you are allowed to build simple electrical devices for your own use if you know what you are doing. Specifically, extension cords may be on the list of devices that ordinary people are allowed to build themselves." - You're implying it's not allowed to build other things yourself. As far as I know, that's not true. So, do you have a source for that? \$\endgroup\$
    – marcelm
    Dec 20, 2023 at 14:48
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    \$\begingroup\$ @marcelm In EU the laws are country-specific anyway. For which country you are interested in? I can legally e.g. change a non-fixed ceiling lamp, replace a lamp cord or fix an extension cord, and remove switch covers and socket covers temporarily f I am painting the wall but that's basically it. But no electrical work to fixed installations allowed by non-electricians. \$\endgroup\$
    – Justme
    Dec 20, 2023 at 15:32
  • \$\begingroup\$ @Justme Fair enough that the laws are country-specific. For my case, it would be The Netherlands. But I'm still at the very least intrigued by such work being forbidden for non-electricians. What country do you live in, if you don't mind sharing? \$\endgroup\$
    – marcelm
    Dec 21, 2023 at 18:40
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The EU uses a different plug/socket design since it thinks it is "safer" than the US design. No country which has a recent plug design has chosen the US design. Your US plug, and the whole of the USA is unsafe by EU standards, and by the standards of most of the rest of the world.

However, you can buy plug adapters, and universal power boards. The degree of unsafeness is not such that it prevents people from plugging US plugs into plug adapters or universal power boards.

This mostly doesn't kill people or burn down hotels, because

(1) power plugs, even 110V power plugs, are designed and tested with a very large voltage safety margin, partly because people do all kinds of stupid things, and

(2) operating plugs and sockets under-current, at lower than their design current, makes them safer than when used correctly, at full current.

The Apollo 13 space mission is a well known example of a life-threatening electrical failure caused by the use of a lower-voltage switch in a higher-voltage application. I'm horrified by the thought of using a 125V outlet in a 220V system. But that's because the switch isn't rated for 220V, not because the plug isn't rated for 220V.

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  • \$\begingroup\$ Hello. I asked about to a manufacturer and they said our plugs will be okay for 250V/10A. I've sent them a new email but didn't get any reply because it's weekends. I thought same thing about outlet sockets like you did. I just ask them step by step to not scaring them :D I'm waiting an asnwer for outlet sockets now. \$\endgroup\$
    – kokojuh
    Dec 24, 2023 at 19:07
  • \$\begingroup\$ Let me share what I found. I didn't see any Type B plugs and Type B outlets rated for 250V but they use it on 220V-230V. That give me hope. \$\endgroup\$
    – kokojuh
    Dec 24, 2023 at 19:07
  • \$\begingroup\$ Antigua and Barbuda 230V 60Hz Power socket: Type A, Type B \$\endgroup\$
    – kokojuh
    Dec 24, 2023 at 19:08
  • \$\begingroup\$ Montserrat 230V 60Hz Power socket: Type A, Type B \$\endgroup\$
    – kokojuh
    Dec 24, 2023 at 19:08
  • \$\begingroup\$ Peru 220V 60Hz Power socket: Type A,Type B,Type C \$\endgroup\$
    – kokojuh
    Dec 24, 2023 at 19:08
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check if the device you are powering accepts 110-240 Volts and 50-60 Hz.

Many AC powered devices accepts the well known Universal AC Input 110-240.

If yes, go to Amazon an buy an adapter that is UL marked.

The UL mark means that the manufacturer passed all safety tests required by the regulations of the country where the adapter is being sold.

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    \$\begingroup\$ The plug still won't be rated for 230 VAC. \$\endgroup\$ Dec 20, 2023 at 10:57
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    \$\begingroup\$ All my devices and cables (not plugs) are suitible for 220V. There is no problem with that. The only problem is my cables has Type B plug. Plugs are classified for 125V/15A, not for 250V. Also I will need Type B outlet to use my cables. My power cords are expensive and I want to use them. \$\endgroup\$
    – kokojuh
    Dec 20, 2023 at 11:02
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    \$\begingroup\$ Two issues with this: 1) The correct marking for a device sold in Europe by a legitimate European seller is CE, not UL. If it has UL and not CE markings, then its completely untrustworthy as a European supply chain. 2) Just because a maufacturer on amazon claims to be UL listed does not mean they actually did the UL process. Amazon does not police any marketplace products, even when shipped by them and there are huge problems with fakes and ignored regulations. \$\endgroup\$ Dec 20, 2023 at 16:23
  • \$\begingroup\$ You are right. Except the China Export logo Is almost identical to the CE mark. That's why I trust UL more than CE. UL listing can be verified by browsing UL's database. \$\endgroup\$ Dec 20, 2023 at 17:00

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