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Power Accessories > UK / USA Transformers


US to UK Step-Down Transformers
UK to US Step-Up Transformers



Step Up or Step Down?

Step Down Voltage Converters (or Step Down Transformers) are for using electrical equipment/appliances from the USA in the UK or Ireland. They have a 3 pin UK power Plug and a US Socket.

Step Up Voltage Converters ( or Step Up Transformers) are for using electrical equipment/appliances from the UK or Ireland in the USA. They have a 2 or 3 pin US power Plug and a 3 pin UK Socket.

Selecting the correct Transformer / Converter for your appliance.

The information compiled below is designed to help you, & is there as a guide only.

Voltage Converters also known as Voltage Transformers are devices that convert foreign electricity to power devices from different parts of the world.

A ‘Step Down’ Voltage Converter is a 220 to 110 Volts Converter.
A ‘Step Up’ Voltage Converter is a 110 to 220 Volts Converter.

They will also work within the ranges of 100-120 Volts, or 220-240 Volts.

We are able to supply both Step Down and Step Up Transformer, & these come in many different sizes including 45/50 Watts, 100 Watts, 200 Watts, 300 Watts, 500 Watts, 1000 Watts, 1500 Watts, 2000 Watts, & 3000 Watts.

To determine the correct model Voltage Converter or heavy duty Transformer you need, you must find the Watts of your appliance.
You can find this information listed -
- on the appliance manufacturer's label located on the back or bottom of the appliance, or
- the 2/3 pin Plug, or
- in the specifications section of the appliance owner's manual.

We recommend using a Voltage Converter / Transformer with a Max Watts rating that is at least 25% higher than your appliance. Some appliances such as Power tools, Motors, Laser printers and TVs require a converter 2-3 times the watts that the appliance is rated for.

-A higher watts rated transformer will never hurt your appliance, however if you buy one that is not strong enough, it will not work.
-Items such as TVs, Microwave Ovens, Laser Printers and Power Tools require a transformer with 3 times the Watts rating on the equipment. This is because these items require a surge of power when they are first turned on. This is important and must be taken into consideration when deciding which Transformer to use!

Christmas Tree Lights - Voltage Transformers are commonly used to Power Xmas Lights. To calculate the correct rating simply count the amount of Lights, and multipy this by the Wattage of the Bulbs. Example; 20 Lights fitted with 2watt Bulbs = 40 watts. We would reccomend a 45w or 50w Transformer or greater.

Hair Straighteners and Hair Dryers - These products are often of a higher power rating than many people expect, and care should be taken when choosing the correct Transformer. They may only state a 35w or 70w rating, but we have found that some hair straighteners heat up quickly by drawing a very high wattage (peak load), sometimes in excess of 200w when first powered up, thus causing the smaller 45w and 100w transformers to blow. We therefore would not recommend any Transformer with a power rating of less than 300 Watts, and it may be adviseable to contact the Manufacturer of your product to find the peak load rating. Using these products may not always be cost effective, and should be considered before purchasing equipment abroad, or when taking your appliances overseas.

A transformer of a Higher Rating will never damage your product. However, using one of Lower Rating than suggested, on any applicance which needs more power will damage the Voltage Converter, and may damage your equipment !

NOTE: Watts may be abbreviated as W on your appliance. However if you can't find Watts or W on the label of your appliance, then you may be able to find Amps also known as Amperage, and A. This can be converted to Watts to select the correct converter.
If only the Amperage rating is shown, Multiply the Input Voltage by the Amperage rating to find the Wattage rating.

Examples - Volts x Amps = Watts, therefore 110V x 1.5 A = 165W, Or 230V x 2 A = 460W

Cycles - 50 Hz vs 60 Hz

North American 110-120 Volt electricity is generated at 60 Hz. (Cycles) Alternating Current. Most foreign 220-240 Volt electricity is generated at 50 Hz. (Cycles) Alternating Current. This cycle difference will cause Analogue Clocks and timing circuits that use Alternating Current as a timing base to keep incorrect time. Most modern electronic equipment including Battery Chargers, Computers, Printers, Stereos, Tape and CD players, VCR/DVD players, CRT, Plasma, or LCD TVs and Monitors, etc. will not be affected by the difference in cycles

US to UK Step-Down Transformers
UK to US Step-Up Transformers
Home Electronics Online Ltd. PO Box 329, Waterlooville, Hampshire, PO7 9BW, UK.
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