Go Back   DIY Chatroom Home Improvement Forum > Home Improvement > Electrical

CLICK HERE AND JOIN OUR COMMUNITY TODAY...IT'S FREE!

Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread Display Modes
Old 07-04-2007, 09:16 AM   #1
Newbie
 
Join Date: Jul 2007
Posts: 2
Rewards Points: 0
Share |
Default

European 220v Tools use with US 220v Outlet


Hi,

I leave in the US.
I come from Europe and I have European home tools (Peugeot, Black & Decker and so on...) that I want to use in the US.

In my garage I have a US 220 volt outlet.
Can I use the European home tools in that US 220 volt outlet if I have an adapter?
If yes what adapter do I need? and where do I purchase it?

If there is no possible adapter, can I change the male plug of the European Tools by a US 220 volt male plug to fit the US 220 volt outlet?

TIA for your help

dominator is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-04-2007, 03:02 PM   #2
retired
 
Join Date: Jul 2007
Location: Idaho
Posts: 108
Rewards Points: 0
Default

European 220v Tools use with US 220v Outlet


Quote:
Originally Posted by dominator View Post
Can I use the European home tools in that US 220 volt outlet if I have an adapter?
If yes what adapter do I need? and where do I purchase it?
You probably could do it because 220 is 220, but it really is not a good idea. There's a few reasons why. One, US 220v outlets come in several configurations depending on the current capacity of the circuit, so there is no easy answer as to what adapter you need and there is no one adapter that will fit all. The main reason you should not do it is because almost all 220 circuits in the US have circuit breakers 30 amps or greater. If your tool develops a short you very likely will melt and burn the tool, and yourself, before the circuit breaker trips, if it trips at all. Your 220v circuit does not have ground fault circuit protection so if your tool leaks current into your body you have no protection. US electricity is 60 Hz whereas European is 50 Hz. Depending on what kind of motor your tool has, it could easily turn 20% faster than intended, which could easily be dangerous. European 220 circuits have one leg at ground, or earth as it's called there. Here, each leg of the 220 circuit is 110v to ground. Depending on how your tools are made, you might actually energize the grounded side, creating a shock hazard.

One option would be to have a transformer fixed up by an electrician that would convert US 110v or 220v to a European type of 220v circuit. This will work for tools that are rated for both 50 & 60 Hz.

Actually I'm surprised you have 220v tools. I thought Europe many years ago switched to 120v tools connected to transformers because 120 isn't as dangerous as 220v.

If by chance this discussion is more than you understand, then by all means be safe and buy or rent US tools and leave your European tools in the tool box.

dmaceld is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-04-2007, 06:22 PM   #3
Master Electrician
 
JohnJ0906's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2007
Location: Baltimore, MD
Posts: 332
Rewards Points: 0
Default

European 220v Tools use with US 220v Outlet


I would like to point out that the US does not use 220 volts. Hasn't for years. Your utility provides 240 volts.

I do not know if Europe is 220 actual. I would check with the manufacturer to see if it is 240v compatible.
__________________
John from Baltimore
One Day at a Time
"Experience is what you get when you were expecting something else"
"The bitterness of low quality lingers long after the sweetness of low cost is forgotten"
JohnJ0906 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-04-2007, 08:21 PM   #4
retired
 
Join Date: Jul 2007
Location: Idaho
Posts: 108
Rewards Points: 0
Default

European 220v Tools use with US 220v Outlet


Quote:
Originally Posted by JohnJ0906 View Post
Your utility provides 240 volts.
Most of the time that's the target anyway, but there is wide latitude in what the actual delivered voltage inside the house can be. Most everything is listed or rated 110-120v or 220 - 240v. I've always more or less equated 110 to 120 for all intents and purposes. American usage is inconsistent in that we generally use the terms, 110v, 120v, and 240v.
dmaceld is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-05-2007, 07:07 AM   #5
Member
 
Join Date: Apr 2007
Location: Downeast Maine
Posts: 999
Rewards Points: 0
Default

European 220v Tools use with US 220v Outlet


I don't think it will work because your tools are made to run on 50hz and our electricity is 60hz.
NateHanson is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-05-2007, 09:44 AM   #6
retired
 
Join Date: Jul 2007
Location: Idaho
Posts: 108
Rewards Points: 0
Default

European 220v Tools use with US 220v Outlet


Quote:
Originally Posted by NateHanson View Post
I don't think it will work because your tools are made to run on 50hz and our electricity is 60hz.
Many appliances and tools are rated 50/60Hz. Others will work but not run correctly or efficiently. I used a US microwave in England 20 yrs ago using a 240/120 transformer. Power was less, and the clock ran about 20% slow, but otherwise OK. Tools, such as drills, that have series wound motors with variable speed triggers don't care which frequency they're on. Other tools, like saws and fans, with induction motors will turn 20% faster on 60Hz than on 50Hz. Those could be dangerous to run on 60Hz.
dmaceld is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-07-2007, 10:54 PM   #7
Newbie
 
Join Date: Jul 2007
Posts: 2
Rewards Points: 0
Default

European 220v Tools use with US 220v Outlet


I thank you all for your replies.

I guess I am going to forget about this idea. It is not worth so much efforts. The tools may end up on ebay :O(

Thanks again for your help.

dominator is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-09-2007, 07:52 PM   #8
Extreme DIY'r Adk's, NY
 
Join Date: Nov 2005
Posts: 293
Rewards Points: 0
Default

European 220v Tools use with US 220v Outlet


Europe has many different standards. There are at least 5 converters for travelers to step down to 110-120v. I believe all of the countries are 50 hz yes, but some are 220v, some are 230v and some are true 240v. Some electronics (say low voltage transformers) rated for 220-230v will cook instantly at 240v. I dont know much about the European power tool market except that they are suppose to make some robust ones. It sounds like you already gave up but if you read the ratings of the specific tools you'll know for sure.
crecore is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-10-2007, 10:00 AM   #9
Newbie
 
Join Date: Jul 2007
Posts: 12
Rewards Points: 0
Default

European 220v Tools use with US 220v Outlet


So would it be safe if I were to go over to Europe and use my American tools over there?
timmy is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-10-2007, 12:09 PM   #10
retired
 
Join Date: Jul 2007
Location: Idaho
Posts: 108
Rewards Points: 0
Default

European 220v Tools use with US 220v Outlet


Quote:
Originally Posted by timmy View Post
So would it be safe if I were to go over to Europe and use my American tools over there?

Most likely. You would have to use a transformer, but they are available to buy or rent, particularly for the construction business. The transformers have 120v US outlets on them. The only potential problem area I can think of would tools that have induction motors, i.e. no brushes, like some saws and fans. If they are not rated 50/60 Hz they will run about 20% slower on the 50 Hz current, which means they may pull more amps if loaded down. That could be, but wouldn't necessarily be, a problem.
dmaceld is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-10-2007, 03:55 PM   #11
Newbie
 
Join Date: Jul 2007
Posts: 12
Rewards Points: 0
Default

European 220v Tools use with US 220v Outlet


thanks dmaceld that is uber helpful.
timmy is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-10-2012, 03:27 PM   #12
Newbie
 
Join Date: May 2012
Posts: 1
Rewards Points: 0
Lightbulb

European 220v Tools use with US 220v Outlet


Don't Dump your European tools! I know this is an old post, but there really is a very easy solution.

Easy Solution: buy a fused transformer that takes 110/120V 60Hz input and changes it to European 220/240V with 60Hz output. Mine has a standard European plug for its output. Works fine-the tools can tolerate the frequency difference just fine.
Jill:alltrades is offline   Reply With Quote
The Following User Says Thank You to Jill:alltrades For This Useful Post:
Amusinglisa (08-01-2012)
Old 05-10-2012, 08:12 PM   #13
Idiot Emeritus
 
Join Date: Mar 2008
Location: Fernley, Nevada (near Reno)
Posts: 1,603
Rewards Points: 0
Default

European 220v Tools use with US 220v Outlet


I have a bunch of 220 volt 50 HZ power tools. Several drills, a portaband, a couple of routers, a sawzall, and a few others. All work perfectly fine on 240 volts 60 HZ.

Some of these have seen quite a bit of use over the years, no trouble with any of them.

I have several 20 amp 240 volt receptacles in my garage, I cut the foreign plugs off and installed NEMA 20 amp 250 volt plugs on the tools.

Yes, I know it's an old thread, but I think it's still valid.

Rob
micromind is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-10-2012, 09:03 PM   #14
Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2008
Location: Canada (s/w ON.)
Posts: 2,294
Rewards Points: 0
Default

European 220v Tools use with US 220v Outlet


Back in the 1950s Ontario, Canada used 25~ power and the switched over to 60~.
There were many 25~ motors that were missed during the conversion process.
I happened to acquire one of these missed motors and used it for my table saw, for many years. It did run faster than it was rated for, but it made little difference for sawing!
Wildie is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-01-2012, 03:48 PM   #15
Newbie
 
Join Date: Aug 2012
Posts: 3
Rewards Points: 0
Default

European 220v Tools use with US 220v Outlet


Jill & Micro

Could either of you elaborate on how to make a two-wire 220 into a three-wire 220?

Amusinglisa is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply


Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off


Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Help with outlet controlled by switch craigpall Electrical 2 05-18-2008 08:08 AM
Electrical outlet hook up. helpless handyman Electrical 4 07-30-2007 08:18 PM
20a Outlet Vs. 15a Outlet bobo Electrical 3 05-29-2006 10:55 PM
Adding garage outlet Shane Electrical 1 02-23-2006 04:43 PM
European 220V outlet "Schuko" estophile Electrical 6 08-27-2005 08:45 AM




Top of Page | View New Posts

Copyright © 2003-2014 Escalate Media. All Rights Reserved.